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A

Aboriginal:
A term to describe all indigenous people in Canada, usually including the Métis and the Inuit.

Aboriginal Rights:
Usually refers to the inherent, collective rights of Aboriginal people. These rights come from the social orders that existed prior to European contact and land occupation. Most Aboriginals consider this their right to self-determined independence when it comes to their culture, land, governance and resources.

Aborigines' Protection Society:
A Protestant coalition in Britain during the 1830s against slavery and the prejudicial treatment of Aboriginal peoples in British colonies. As a result of this society's efforts, many segregationist British government policies changed to one of assimilation: the government encouraged Aboriginals to become productive members of the colonial British society, instead. The society was particularly against Sir Francis Bond Head's racist 1836 attempt to get Aboriginals in Upper Canada to settle on Manitoulin Island.

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Absolutism:

The system of government in which the ruler (or rulers) had unrestricted power. It is generally used to refer to the period in which European kings believed they ruled by divine right and they should exercise that right over their subjects. It can be contrasted with a constitutional monarchy, in which the power of the monarch is limited.

Acadia
Region across parts of Atlantic Canada that was populated by Catholic, French-speaking people in the 1600s and early 1700s. In 1755, most of the Acadians were deported to other British colonies in what's now the United States, though some remained or escaped back to the Maritimes. Some Acadians also migrated back to France. See also Deportation of the Acadians.

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Act:
A statute, decree, or enactment delivered by a legislative or a judicial body. An act is termed an ordinance if the governor creates it, and is termed a statute if it is made by the legislature.

Adversarial system of justice:
The system of justice based on the British model, in which two lawyers (the prosecutor and the defence) present opposing cases in an open court. A judge or jury decides the case on the merit of the arguments presented. Innocence is presumed until guilt is proven. This system can be contrasted with the inquisitorial method.

African Canadians (Blacks)
Immigrated from Jamaica or the United States as British Loyalists, refugees or as fugitive slaves to New France during the 19th century. During the first half of the 1800s, many came to Upper Canada to escape slavery in the southern United States through the Underground Railroad. These slaves tended to settle in what's now southwestern Ontario during the 1840s and '50s, but many of these Blacks returned to the States to fight with anti-slavery forces in the American Civil War. While Britain gradually abolished slavery starting in 1805, many Blacks still faced much intolerance and prejudice in its colonies. Whites generally saw Black immigrants as being backward and ignorant, or as being a significant economic threat to their livelihood as cheap labour. Segregation between Whites and Blacks was also common in Upper and Lower Canada during the 1800s, particularly in schools.

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Alaska Boundary Dispute, 1903
A Canada-U.S. disagreement that came about as a direct result of the Klondike Gold Rush. When America bought Alaska from the Russians in 1867, the U.S. believed it had land ownership of various fjords along the coastline in what's now called the Alaskan Panhandle. The federal government didn't want America to claim ownership of this land, since this would block easy access to the Yukon for would-be Canadian prospectors arriving by sea. The problem was brought before an international tribunal in 1903, which ruled mostly in favour of the Americans, but also agreed to give four islands in the region over to Canada. Because a British chief justice was responsible for this compromise, many in Canada became quite angry. However, Sir Wilfrid Laurier conceded that Canada had little if no treaty making power with other countries, and could do nothing.

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Algonquin (Anissinapek):
The Aboriginal people living in western Québec and eastern Ontario, centred along the Ottawa River. The Algonquin language is a dialect of Ojibwa, one of the Algonquin languages. However, Ojibwas and Algonquins are politically separate from one another.


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American Civil War:
War between the Northern and Southern United States, fought from 1861 to 1865. The chief issue underlying the conflict was that of slavery, which was central to the economy of the agrarian South. This issue manifested itself through the controversy of states' rights and powers versus the rights and powers of the union (federal government). In an effort to preserve the institution of slavery, the South attempted to secede from the Union. This triggered the war. Britain and her North American colonies favoured the South in this conflict, which led to tension and several crises with the Northern government, and convinced many in British North America that Confederation was the safest route for the colonies to take.. The issue of provincial versus federal powers was also a point of debate in the Confederation debates.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.
Visit the Library of Congress: American Memory collections. (Look under HISTORY.)
Visit the PBS: The Civil War site. (Look under THE WAR.)


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American Revolution:
Also known as the American War of Independence. Lasting from 1775 to 1783, the Revolution was founded on discontent in the Thirteen Colonies regarding taxes, representation in government and limitations on growth set by British treaties. After war broke out, two armies invaded the province of Québec, but were defeated. Most French Canadians remained neutral, while most in Nova Scotia, Île St. John (now Prince Edward Island) and Newfoundland were loyal to the Crown. In 1781, British forces were defeated and, in 1783, Britain recognized the independence of the United States in the Treaty of Paris. After the war, 40,000 Loyalist refugees moved north into what is now Ontario, Québec, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. This formed the nucleus of what would later become Canada.
Visit the Library of Congress: American Memory collections for more information.
Visit the PBS: Liberty! The American Revolution site for more information.


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Amnesty Act, 1849:
The Amnesty Act, passed on February 1, 1849, granted a pardon to all participants of the 1837 and 1838 rebellions.

Anglicize:
The act of anglicizing: to cause a society to adopt English idiom, pronunciation, customs, manners etc.

Arabs (Syrian-Lebanese):
A group of people not affiliated to any particular cultural group or country of origin, but who are generally based out of a Middle Eastern homeland. Arabic Canadians usually practice Muslim or orthodox Christian religions. Arabic immigration didn't begin until 1882, but only in small numbers. Most would come to Canada from the 1960s onward, and settle in large Canadian centres, usually in Ontario or Québec.

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Ashburton-Webster Treaty, 1842:
Also known as the Treaty of Washington. A minor Canada-U.S. treaty, it set the borderline for both nations between Lake Huron and Lake of the Woods in present-day northwestern Ontario. More controversially, it also set the borderline between New Brunswick and Maine, where Acadian settlements south of the St. John River were given over to the Americans. This was seen as a British concession meant to please the U.S.

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Asiatic (or Asian) Exclusion League:
Formed in San Francisco, California, in 1905 by white labour leaders and workers, this anti-Oriental movement soon moved north into all of the American States along the West Coast and, eventually, the area around Vancouver, B.C. This racist group wanted to have all Asians removed from North America out of the fear that Chinese and Japanese immigrants, a source of cheap labour, were taking jobs away from Whites. The league was the main instigator behind the Anti-Asian Vancouver Riots in 1907.

Assimilation:
Occurs when a minority or outside group is completely absorbed into a dominant group.

Assiniboin or Assiniboine:
Aboriginal nation that splintered from the Sioux tribe during the 1640s. Its members speak either Dakota or Lakota dialects. They originally called the Mississippi headwaters their home, before moving northward into the Lake of the Woods and near Lake Winnipeg. During their peak, their territory ranged from the Saskatchewan and Assiniboine Rivers in Canada well into the American Plains.

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Austrian Canadians:
German-speaking immigrants from the Austro-Hungary region of Europe, this group settled on Canada's Prairies between 1896 and 1914. By 1921, roughly 57,000 Canadians of Austrian descent lived on the Plains. Like most settlers, many of these immigrants came to Canada to escape religious and economic troubles in their home country.

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B

Band:
The name given to Aboriginal clans and families in the Indian Act.

Beothuk:
Aboriginal group that used to live in Newfoundland, but is now extinct. They lived on this island long before European contact, and used red ochre on their canoes - which may have led to the derogatory term "Red Indian" by the white man across the rest of colonial North America. As a result of European settlement, fighting and disease that they had no natural resistance to, the last remaining Beothuk died in Newfoundland in June 1829.

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Beaver:
Related to the Chipeweyan, Slave and Sarcee tribes, the Beaver nation lived in a large tract of land between the Alberta-Saskatchewan border and the Peace River region. They were driven further west into the Rockies and Peace River area due to advancing Cree tribal warfare after Europeans began to move onto the Prairies. Beaver tribes tended to be small, family units that only came together for celebrations during the summer months.

Berger Commission, 1974 - 1977:
Also known as the Mackenzie Valley Pipeline inquiry. This was a royal commission headed by Judge Thomas Berger to look into the effects of building an oil pipeline from Alaska to Alberta, via the northern Yukon and the Mackenzie Valley. This concerned local Aboriginals, who saw the pipeline as an environmental threat and believed the project that could jeopardize regional land claims. The commission ruled that a moratorium should be placed on construction until 1987 to give time towards land claim settlements. However, the pipeline was never built due to the controversy and an unstable economy.

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Bill:
A draft piece of legislation. There are two types of bills, public and private. These can be introduced by the government or by a private member. There are five stages that a bill must go through before it can be made a law:

First Reading
The first reading is by title only, which allows the bill to be introduced, printed and distributed.
Second Reading
The second reading is read before the House, if affirmed the bill will go to a standing, special or joint committee.
Committee Stage
If a committee has amended a bill, it will be reprinted.
Third Reading
The bill can be passed, defeated, or sent back to committee or deferred by a vote of the House; if passed, it will go to the Senate.
Senate Stage
Amendments made by the Senate are listed in the Order of the Day; if passed, it is ready for Royal Assent.

Read the entry "Parliamentary Procedure" in the Canadian Encyclopedia Online for more information.

Blackfoot or Blackfeet:
The Blackfoot nation is made up of three different tribes: the Blood, Peigan and the Blackfoot. (Blackfeet is the more common term used in America.) From the mid-16th century, the Blackfeet were commonly found in the western Prairies, and their territory extended as far south as the upper Missouri River in the current United States. Their population has fluctuated, and was, during the 1830s, reduced by half due to smallpox. However, more than 25,000 Blackfoot Aboriginals live in reserves, particularly along the Alberta and Montana border.

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Blood:
One of three Aboriginal tribes that make up the Blackfoot nation, the Blood belong to the Algonquin linguistic family. They once occupied hunting grounds from the Red Deer River to the Belly River in Alberta, and eventually pushed southward into Montana in order to trade furs with American companies. During the late 1800s, they established the largest reserve in Canada on the Prairies. James Gladstone, Canada's first Aboriginal Senator, was also of theBlood tribe.

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Byng-King Affair (1926):
In June 1926, William Lyon Mackenzie King's Liberal government lost a vote of confidence in parliament. Governor General Viscount Byng asked Arthur Meighen , to form a new government as his party (the Conservative Party) held the most seats in the House of Commons. As such, Byng felt he should have a chance to govern instead of allowing parliament to dissolve for a federal election. King, who had held onto power since the 1925 election by forging unions with other political parties in power, was angered by this move, and resigned before his power could be taken away. However, a mere four days after Meighen was sworn in as prime minister, his new Tory government accidentally lost a vote of confidence. The Governor General then agreed to a general election. Meighen lost the election three months later due to public dissatisfaction with Byng's involvement in the political crisis, and resigned as party leader not long after.

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C

Cabinet:
The political executive that develops and promotes the passage of government policies and legislation. In Canada today, the prime minister selects Cabinet ministers , who each usually head a department (for example, the Department of Finance). Cabinet members work together to determine the administrative and financial priorities of the government. Before responsible government, the responsibilities of today's Cabinet were usually carried out by the Legislative Council of the British North American colonies, which was made up of members selected by the governor. This system led to nepotism and the abuse of powers of the governor embodied in the Family Compact of Upper Canada and the Château Clique in Lower Canada.


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Calder Case, 1973:
Aboriginal chief Frank Calder tried to sue the British Columbian government for financial compensation over lands historically occupied by the Nisga'a tribe in his province. The case went to the Supreme Court of Canada in 1973, and the court found that Aboriginal titles could exist in common law. However, the court was divided as to whether or not the Nisga'a tribe's land rights had been extinguished by any government statute or treaty. Chief Calder eventually lost his case on a legal technicality, but his case led to a new willingness on the part of the federal government to negotiate Aboriginal land claims in the 1970s. Also see Nisga'a Treaty.


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Canada Company:
Formed by John Galt in 1825 for the purposes of granting land to immigrants. In 1826, the Company purchased about 2.5 million acres (or one million hectares) of land from the Family Compact for $295,000. Half of this land lay in western Upper Canada along Lake Huron, and payments for this land were to be made to the provincial executive during the course of 16 years. This angered Reformers in the provincial legislature, who claimed the Company treated immigrants unfairly and wasted money through poor management. After the 1840 Act of Union, the Company began to run more efficiently and had less of a connection to Tory elites who were in power. The Company existed in this manner, more or less, until 1951 when it decided to sell off all of its remaining land holdings and go out of business. It finally closed in 1953.

Canada East:
The region of the Province of Canada previously named Lower Canada. Formed by the Act of Union, 1840, it later became the nucleus of today's province of Québec.

Canada West:
The region of the Province of Canada previously named Upper Canada. Formed by the Act of Union, 1840, it later became the nucleus of today's province of Ontario.

Canadian Alliance
Party formed in January 2000 out of the former Reform Party of Canada (formed in 1987) and members of the Progressive Conservative Party. It was similar to the Progressive Party of the 1920s in that part of its agenda was to reform the way government is managed. Like the Progressives, however, it remained a largely regional party with its greatest support in Western Canada. The Progressive Conservatives and Alliance merged in December 2003, fearing that they would split the right-wing vote in an expected federal election the following year.

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Canadian National Railways:
Now called CN Rail, Canadian National Railways was incorporated as a Crown Corporation in 1919. It was made up of five previously-existing railways: the Grand Trunk , its subsidiary the Grand Trunk Pacific, the Intercolonial, the Canadian Northern, and the Canadian Transcontinental. These railways had been unprofitable for years, and during World War I the government was forced to take full control (i.e.: nationalize them). The railway gradually returned to profitability and continues to be the fifth largest railway in North America.


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Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) Act, 1874:
This act was meant to create a privately run railway generously funded by the federal government that would connect British Columbia to central Canada. The construction of an Intercolonial Railway was one of British Columbia's conditions before it would commit to entering Confederation in 1871. Completed in 1885, the CPR served as the main settlement line in the Prairies during the late 1800s and early 1900s. The Intercolonial Railway to the West also was the source of the Pacific Scandal, which was responsible for bringing down Sir John A. Macdonald's first government.

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Canadien, le:
The first French-language newspaper in Canada. It was founded November 13, 1806, in Québec, Lower Canada. The newspaper was intended to represent French-Canadian interests and promote the French-Canadian cultural identity. In 1810, the governor of Lower Canada arrested and imprisoned the chief editors for sedition, and seized the presses. This was not the end of the paper, however. It did not go out of print until December 21, 1893.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.

Capitalism:
An economic system in which goods and services are produced, exchanged and owned by individuals with little or no government interference. Contrast with communism and socialism.

Catholicism:
A Christian religion, usually referring to the Roman Catholic Church headed by the Pope. Québec, in particular, had strong political and cultural ties with the Catholic Church until the Quiet Revolution of the 1960s. Many immigrants originally from Central and Eastern Europe - except, notably, those who were Jewish - had strong ties to this religion

Cede:
To give up, yield or surrender.

Chartered company:
A company with a written grant from a government giving it the right to trade with certain rights and privileges. Canada's most famous charter company is Hudson's Bay Company, which in 1670 was given a monopoly on the fur trade in the vast area making up the watershed of the Hudson's Bay. Governments formed other charted companies to compete with businesses from rival nations.

Charlottetown Conference:
The conference held from September 1 to 9, 1864, to discuss a union of all British North American colonies. Originally planned as a conference over Maritime Union, delegates from the Province of Canada requested to attend and the idea of Maritime Union was almost completely abandoned. The delegates of the conference were able to reach enough agreement to plan the Québec Conference a month later, which ultimately led to Confederation.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.


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Château Clique:
The name given to a small group of officials in Lower Canada which dominated the Executive and Legislative Councils, as well as senior bureaucratic and judiciary positions in the province until the 1830s. Family, ideology and commercial interests connected these individuals. They favoured canal building, the creation of a banking system, and the end of the seigneurial system and French civil law. They resisted efforts by French Canadian reformers to gain responsible government and frequently clashed with the elected members of the House of Assembly.


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Chinese Canadians:
Immigration to Canada from China stretches back as far as 1788, when a group of 50 Chinese artisans accompanied Capt. John Meares to build a trading post on Vancouver Island. However, Chinese immigration truly began in earnest around 1858, when Asian gold prospectors came to British Columbia. Migration peaked in the early 1880s, when up to 9,000 Chinese immigrants were accepted by the government to work on the western portion of the Canadian Pacific Railway under horrendous and dangerous working conditions. After the railway was completed, the Canadian government - fearing that such immigrants were inferior - tried to prevent Chinese immigration by placing a head tax on these immigrants in 1885, among other measures. Today, though, more than one million Chinese live in Canada.

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Chinese Exclusion Act, 1923 - 1947:
An extremely restrictive law passed by the government of Canada that effectively curtailed the number of Chinese entering the country. Fewer than 15 Chinese people were able to enter the country to live when this act was enforced. Just three Chinese were allowed to live in the country between 1924 and 1930.

Chinese Head Tax:
A tax meant to stem the tide of Chinese from immigrating to Canada during the late 1800s and early 1900s. In 1885, the Chinese Immigration Act was passed to place a $50 head tax on the Chinese. This amount increased to $100 in 1900 and $500 in 1903. (Five hundred dollars in 1903 money was considered to be equal to two year's working wages for a Chinese labourer.) The Canadian government collected $23 million through this tax. It didn't slow down Oriental immigration enough, however, so the federal government eventually felt it had to take much more drastic action in 1923 through the Chinese Exclusion Act.

Chinese Immigration Act, 1885:
This act placed a $50 head tax on every Chinese person entering Canada following the successful completion of the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR). This act was meant to reduce the number of Chinese entering Canada, as it was believed that they wouldn't adapt well to Canada's then-burgeoning agricultural society. No other ethnic group had to pay this tax. The act was rewritten in 1900 and 1903 to increase the head tax to $100 and $500 respectively.

Cholera:
A disease of the stomach and intestines. Its symptoms are vomiting, cramps and diarrhea, and it is caused by water infected with the bacteria Vibrio comma. The fatality rate is very high without treatment.

Chipeweyan:
A branch of the Ojibeway Aboriginal community that moved from the upper Georgian Bay region into the Lake Superior region and southward during the 1700s.


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Civil disobedience:
Refusal to obey civil laws or decrees. This refusal usually takes the form of passive resistance. People practicing civil disobedience break a law because they consider it unjust, want to call attention to its injustice, and hope to bring about its repeal or amendment. They are also willing to accept any penalty, such as imprisonment.

Civil list:
A list of the amount of money to be paid to members of the civil government and civil servants. This list guaranteed that the officials named would be paid, an issue that produced friction between governors and Houses of Assembly in the British North American colonies. The Assemblies argued that they had the exclusive right to pass money bills, while the governors were concerned that the Assemblies would not pay certain appointees if given that control. Ultimately, a compromise was reached whereby the Assemblies were given control of money bills in exchange for the civil list.

Clear Grits:
A group of reformers who advocated the removal of all signs of special privilege and aristocracy in Canada. The Clear Grits broke away from the LaFontaine-Baldwin ministry when they felt the government was too conservative in their reforms. They favoured elected institutions, universal suffrage for men, free trade with the Unites States, secularization of the clergy reserves, and representation by population to counter what they saw as French Canadian domination in government. This group formed the basis of the Liberal Party after Confederation.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.


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Clergy reserves:
Lands set aside by the Constitutional Act in 1791 for the Church of England. The land could be leased to provide the church with income to cover its expenses. The Clergy Reserves became a source of controversy when other denominations protested the exclusive use of the reserves by the Church of England. In 1854, the reserves were secularized.


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Colbert's Compact:
The idea proposed by Jean-Baptiste Colbert, France's Minister of Finance and Naval Affairs during the 1660s and '70s, that setting up a few compact, defendable colonies in New France was preferable and opposed to massive territorial expansion favoured by explorers and, initially, Jean Talon. Colbert felt the latter idea would scatter France's military might in the new colony, and make them particularly vulnerable to the English and Aboriginal enemies.

Colonial Advocate:
A weekly newspaper founded at Queenston on May 18, 1824, by William Lyon Mackenzie. The paper was opposed to the Family Compact and argued for the granting of responsible government. Tory supporters destroyed the presses in 1826. In 1833, the paper was reborn as The Advocate. It merged with the Canadian Correspondent on November 4, 1834, forming the Correspondent and Advocate, as Mackenzie retired to dedicate his time to politics.

Communism:
An economic system first developed in Russia during the 19th century that believes all means of production should be owned and run by a government on behalf of the public good. Compare with socialism. Contrast with capitalism.

Compagnie des Cent-Associés:
The "Company of a hundred Associates" was founded April 29, 1627, by Cardinal Richelieu, chief minister of Louis XIII in France. His intention was to create a stable monopoly of trade and administration to promote the expansion of the French Empire along mercantile lines. As such, it was given control of New France from Florida to the Arctic and from the Atlantic to the unexplored West. British rivals captured its fleet in 1628 and, the following year, the colony at Québec fell. The territory was returned in 1632, but the company never fully recovered. It leased its monopoly to the Communauté des habitants in 1645.

Communauté des habitants:
The "Community of Inhabitants" leased the trade monopoly in New France from the Compagnie des Cent-Associés in 1645. The Communauté was not successful due to the ongoing war with the Mohawk and their financial and commercial inexperience. In 1652, the Conseil de Québec opened the fur trade to all inhabitants of New France, which continued until the French Crown took direct control of the colony in 1663.


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Confederation Bridge:
Completed May 31, 1997, Confederation Bridge was built to connect Prince Edward Island (at Borden-Carleton) to the mainland (at Cape Jourimain, New Brunswick). As a result of the bridge, the federal government amended the constitution in 1993 to eliminate its guarantee of a ferry service to the island.

Conseil Souverain (Sovereign Council):
Part of the governing council of New France, which also included the gouverneur, the intendant, the bishop. At first composed of five members, it grew to twelve in 1703 and then sixteen in 1742. The Conseil acted as a court of appeal for civil and criminal cases, as well as playing a role in regulating trade and public order. The council members were appointed from the French gentry by the gouverneur and the bishop until 1675, then later by the king. It was renamed the Conseil Supérieur (Superior Council) in 1703.


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Conservative Party:
The Conservative Party of Canada is rooted in the Tory party and Parti Bleu of the province of Canada before 1867. In this sense, the founders of the party were John A. Macdonald and George-Étienne Cartier, who formed the first government after Confederation. At that time, the party was based on a commitment to Confederation, a strong central government and national economic growth. It rejected efforts at radical reform.
Visit the Conservative Party of Canada history page for more information.


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Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF):

Political party formed in 1932 that believed that people should co-operate for the common good and that certain industries should be owned by the government. The party was at its most popular in the prairies and in Ontario, and actually became the ruling party of Saskatchewan in 1944. However, the CCF could never gain a significant foothold federally since its detractors were successfully able to equate the party with communism. The ruling Liberal party also kept the CCF at bay by adopting ideas like family allowance and unemployment insurance for their own platform. In 1961, the party joined with the Canadian Labour Congress, and changed its name to the New Democratic Party (NDP).


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Coureurs de bois:
Independent, unlicensed fur traders in New France circa the mid-to-late 1600s who pushed deeper into the frontier country in their quest for beaver pelts, and thus became Canada's first group of unsanctioned inland explorers, particularly around the Lake Superior region. Their attempts to work around Aboriginal middlemen in the fur trade, who would ordinarily bring pelts to the French in Montréal, initially raised the ire of both the French church and state. Eventually, "professional" licensed traders or "voyageurs" would come into being to help put a stop to these illegal traders.

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Covenant Chain:
During the early 1600s, a series of treaties were negotiated between the Thirteen Colonies, which would eventually make up the United States, and the six-nation Iroquois Confederacy. These agreements likely originated between the Mohawk nation and the colony of New York, and were a series of iron or silver chains that symbolized the binding of a promise. These agreements would often be re-negotiated as more financial aid to the Aboriginals was needed, and these chains would be symbolically polished to show that revisions had taken place. The concept of the Covenant Chain lasted into the early 1800s, although Aboriginals upset with English territorial expansion broke the chain briefly in 1753-54.

Cree:
The largest Aboriginal nation in Canada - its members live from Alberta to Québec. The tribal name originated with a group of Natives living near James Bay, who were called the Kiristinon by the French. Later, this was shortened to Cri and spelled Cree by the English.

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Crown, the:
A term used to refer to the power and authority of the monarch (in Canada, the King or Queen).

Crown corporation:
An organization owned by a federal or provincial government that operates along business lines. They have more freedom in their operations as a result, but are still ultimately responsible to a minister or department. Larger Crown corporations include Canada Post and Petro-Canada.


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Crown reserves:
These were reserves of unused, uninhabited land that the British colonial government owned in the early 1800s, similar to current-day Crown Land owned by the federal and provincial governments. However, because of the way these reserves were maintained in Upper Canada, farms were kept at greater distances from each other than they were in the United States. Since settlers were kept more isolated from each other, the property values of their farms lessened. Following the War of 1812, Crown reserves came under control of wealthy owners in the Family Compact. This land started to be sold to large land grant companies (like the Canada Company) for pure profit motivations. This became a major issue with poorer farmers who wanted fairer, responsible government. Crown reserves indirectly became a contributing factor to the 1837 Rebellion.

Constitution:
A system of rules and/or principles upon which a nation, state or other group is governed. In Canada, the constitution is composed of written documents and unwritten conventions. In the words of the Supreme Court of Canada: "constitutional conventions plus constitutional law equal the total constitution of the country." Some acts that make up Canada's constitution include the Royal Proclamation, 1763, the Québec Act, 1774, the Constitutional Act, 1791, the Act of Union, 1840, the British North America Act, 1867 (now renamed the Constitution Act, 1867), the Statute of Westminster, 1831, the Canada Act, 1982 and the Constitution Act, 1982. British Acts such as the Magna Carta, 1215, are also included.


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Cumberland House:
Village in northern Saskatchewan that was the site of the first Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) inland trading post, making it one of the first settlements in Canada's West. Samuel Hearne selected its site in 1774. The construction of this post contributed to a fierce period of trading activity between the HBC and rival North West Company until 1821. It also marked the start of a period where fur traders sought to deal directly with each other, rather than rely on Aboriginals to bring them pelts.

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D

Debates:
See Hansard.

Debates Hansard Index:
The Index to the Debates is subject-based and extensively cross-referenced. It provides general subject analysis as well as subject breakdown under the names of Members of Parliament, indicating issues discussed by them in the Chamber. The Index is updated daily throughout the session.

Read the entry "Parliamentary Procedure" in the Canadian Encyclopedia Online for more information.

Decree:
An ordinance or order issued by a person or body of persons, usually having the force of law.

Deculturation:
A social condition that occurs when Aboriginal people lose their traditions and cultures through contact with Western civilization. This loss can lead to social and economic problems, leaving the group dependant on others.

Denominational schools:
Schools operating with a religious charter. In Canada, where education is controlled by each province (and not the federal government) denominational schools have existed in a variety of forms in almost all provinces. These schools are usually (but not always) administered separately from the public, non-denominational system. Québec, an exception, had public Catholic and Protestant schools until recently.

Read the entry "Separate School" in the Canadian Encyclopedia Online for more information about the evolution of separate and denominational schools across Canada.

Deportation of the Acadians:
The forced expulsion of the French-speaking inhabitants of Acadia. Under the terms of the Treaty of Utrecht, 1713, France ceded Acadia to Britain. For the next 42 years, the inhabitants attempted to maintain neutrality while under British rule. When external threats became too great in the early 1750s, however, Governor Charles Lawrence insisted on an oath of loyalty. When this was not made to his satisfaction, he ordered all 12,000 Acadians deported to other English colonies. Many of those deported died in the process; perhaps 1,000 managed to remain by hiding in the woods. Some Acadians returned years later, by which time British settlers had claimed much of the land.

Read the entry "History of Acadia" in the Canadian Encyclopedia Online for more information.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.
Visit the Blupete site for more information.

Dr. Barnardo's Homes:
A large, privately run British boarding agency - one of many - responsible for sending poor orphaned children (or home children) from England to Canada from 1882 to 1939. Founded by Thomas John Barnardo, this agency was by far the largest source of immigrant home children in Canada. In fact, it placed 1,150 of the 2,049 children who arrived during 1903 alone. By the time of Barnardo's death in 1905, some 18,000 British children had been sent to live with rural families in either Canada or Australia.

Dogrib
An Aboriginal nation that lives roughly in the area between Great Slave Lake and Great Bear Lake in the North West Territories.

Dominion Lands Act, 1872:
This law laid the ground rules for western settlement after the federal government purchased land on the Prairies from the Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) in 1870. It allowed large plots of Prairie land to be divided into townships featuring 36 different sections or squares; it also stipulated what the land in these townships was to be used for. Sections 11 and 29 had to be set aside for the construction of schools, and another one-and-three-quarter sections were to go back to the HBC. The rest of the land was used for settlement. This act was revised and amended numerous times throughout the 1870s to 1890s when land needs changed with the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) and increased immigration.

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Double shuffle:
According to parliamentary convention, newly appointed ministers were to resign their seats and face a by-election. However, this rule did not apply to a minister who resigned one office and took another within a month. In order to avoid a by-election, the Macdonald-Cartier government devised a plan whereby its ministers each took a new portfolio one day and then, in another quick shuffle, resumed their former the following day. The result was that the government was able to stay in power without having to face a by-election.

Douglas Treaties, 1850 - 1854:
Also called the Vancouver Island Treaties. A series of 14 treaties negotiated between Aboriginals and the colonial government of Vancouver Island, represented by island governor Sir James Douglas. These treaties saw Aboriginals forever give up their rights to about 360 square miles of land on Vancouver Island in order to advance colonial settlement and industry.

Doukhobors:
A group of fundamentalist Christian settlers who emigrated from Russia in 1898-99. Under a group settlement plan offering large tracts of Prairie land, some 7,500 Doukhobors arrived in Canada to live after facing religious persecution in their home country. In October 1902, about 1,000 Doukhobors marched across the Prairies in the belief that they would meet Christ during his second coming. When confronted or blocked by police and government officials on this journey, many pilgrims disrobed in protest. Eventually, skirmishes with the federal government over land regulations and various internal conflicts within the Doukhobors community led many of these settlers to leave Canada for the United States beginning around 1908.

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Drybones Case, 1970:
A Native man, Joseph Drybones, was found drunk in a Yellowknife hotel lobby in 1969, which went against the 1951 Indian Act. This version of the act stipulated that, although Aboriginals could finally possess alcohol in public, they could not be drunk off a reserve. The Supreme Court of Canada ruled the following year that Drybones was discriminated against for his race, and this part of the act went against the 1960 Bill of Rights. Ultimately, the court decision rendered the 'no intoxication' clause inoperative.


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Dust Bowl, 1929 - 1937:
The worst drought on record in the southern Canadian Prairies, the Dust Bowl affected about one-quarter of all available farmland in the country. The ground was so dry at times that the topsoil simply blew away in the wind, forming massive dust clouds that sometimes towered high above the skyline. Since the Dust Bowl coincided with the Great Depression, a period of extremely high unemployment and deep economic recession, many families were forced to abandon their farms altogether.

Dutch Canadians:
Dutch Loyalists first settled Canada following the American War of Independence, but came mainly between 1890 and 1914 to settle along railway lands in the Canadian West. The largest Dutch settlement prior to 1914, however, was probably in and around Winnipeg. They were particularly quick to adopt Canada's culture, and most of their cultural traditions have been absorbed into mainstream society.

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Duty:

A tax, especially on goods taken in and out of a country.

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Enemy aliens:
During times of war or feverish nationalism, certain ethnic groups may fall under suspicion for being anti-government conspirators or enemies of the state - regardless if they're actually guilty of such actions or not. As enemy aliens, these groups can be locked up in internment camps, plus see their lands and possessions gathered up and sold by the government without any recourse. Also, new members of these ethnic groups can be prevented from coming to Canada though Immigration Act revisions. During World War I, the Canadian government classified Germans, Hungarians and Ukrainians already living here as enemy aliens for no other reason than the fact that Canada was at war against their home countries. The same thing happened to Japanese Canadians during World War II.

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Engagés:
Indentured servants in New France who worked for farmers or fur traders as hired help, usually on three-year contracts.

English Canadians:
English migration to the Atlantic colonies first began with the foundation of Halifax in 1749. Most of Halifax's early population of 3,000 were Englishmen based there as a counterbalance to the French force at Louisbourg. At the end of the American War of Independence in 1783, the Loyalists came northward into what is now Ontario and New Brunswick. Since the British government sought to reproduce an English imperial system of governance and high society in Canada, settlement to eastern and central Canada came from ex-military officers and other members of the English gentry throughout the early 1800s. The largest wave of immigration to the Prairies from England occurred between 1890 and 1914. More than 113,000 English people, many fleeing poverty, would arrive on the Prairies in 1913 alone. As of the 2001 census, roughly six million people cited England as their country of origin, though there are probably many millions more in Canada with English heritage.

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Emigrate:
To leave one's country of origin for the purposes of settling in another.

Enfranchise:
To give full status to a person as the citizen of a country or member of a group. Until modern times, Aboriginals had to surrender their special status as an Indian if they wanted to become legal, full-fledged Canadian citizens and obtain voting rights. This included the surrender of their Aboriginal right to special reserve lands, and other privileges. It was the aim of the federal government in the 1870s to eventually assimilate and enfranchise Aboriginals into European-Canadian society.

Executive:
A person, group or branch of government that has the power and responsibility of putting laws into effect. In pre-Confederation Canada, the executive was made up of the governor and the Legislative and Executive Councils.

Executive Council:
Under the Constitutional Act, 1791, the governor was assisted by an Executive Council appointed by, and only responsible to, the Crown. In practice, these positions were often awarded to friends and family members of the governor. In modern terms, the Executive Council is made up of the prime minister and the Cabinet.

Ewing Commission, 1934 - 1936:
A commission set up by the Alberta government to investigate the condition of the Métis population. Its findings led to the Métis Betterment Act of 1938, which gave more land and financial resources to the Métis peoples living in the province.

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Family Compact:
The name given to a small group of officials in Upper Canada which dominated the Executive and Legislative Councils, as well as senior bureaucratic and judiciary positions in the province until the 1830s. Family, ideology and commercial interests connected these individuals. They believed in strong imperial ties and sought a society built along British lines. They resisted efforts by reformers to gain responsible government and frequently clashed with the elected members of the House of Assembly.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.


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Fathers of Confederation:
Generally refers to all of the people who represented the British North American colonies at one or more of the three conferences that paved the way for the birth of the Canadian federation (held in Charlottetown, Québec City and London, England between 1864 and 1867). Former Newfoundland premier Joey Smallwood was considered a modern Father of Confederation until his death in 1991.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.


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Fenian Order:
A secret Irish and Irish American society organized for the purpose of overthrowing British rule in Ireland. One strategy adopted by the movement was to invade and "free" the British North American colonies. Several small incursions did take place in 1866, and although they were completely unsuccessful, the perceived threat managed to turn public opinion in favour of Confederation in areas where it had not enjoyed significant support.


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Filles du roi:
"Daughters of the King" in French. This was the name Louis XIV gave to young female settlers of New France between 1663 and 1673. They were sent to become wives of male settlers - usually former army officers who had retired in the colony. The idea was to increase the population of the colony, as there were few women available in New France to allow for such population increases by natural reproductive means at the time. Many of the Filles du roi came from orphanages or were poor, though there were a few women who came from France's upper class. Nuns, usually Ursulines, initially looked after these women upon their arrival to the colony.

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Finnish Canadians:
Many Finnish people settled in Alaska (which was then a part of Russia) between 1835 and 1865, and would gradually move down the coast of British Columbia. Socialist miners from Finland would attempt to start a colony in B.C. called Sointula between 1900 and 1905, though it was quick to collapse. Many Fins also helped to build the first Welland Canal in southern Ontario in 1829.

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First Ministers:
A term used to refer to the prime minister and the premiers of the provinces.

First Nations:
The name usually used by Aboriginal or indigenous people in Canada to describe themselves, and may sometimes include the Métis and Inuit.

Freehold:
Land held for life with the right to transfer it to an heir.

French Canadians:
French settlers founded two colonies in Canada during the 1600s: Acadia, in what's now the Maritimes, and New France. In the mid-1700s, the English deported most of the Acadians, though many of them would return to settle in parts of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. After Britain obtained New France in 1763, French immigration from France went to a standstill. Most of the French who populate Québec can trace their ancestry back to these original settlers, as there was historically very little immigration to or emigration from the region. On Canada's 2001 census, more than 4.5 million people said they were purely of French origin, though the precise number of French people living in Canada is much larger.

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Gazette:
Official government newspapers containing proclamations of the governor, appointments to government posts, some statutes, tenders for government work, notices of bankruptcy, and militia information. Used to disseminate government announcements to the public.

Read the entry "Parliamentary Procedure" in the Canadian Encyclopedia Online for more information.

German Canadians:
Canada's third oldest ethnic group after the English and French, Germans form the backbone of Canada's Mennonite and Hutterite communities. The first German settlement could be found in New France and Nova Scotia during the mid-1700s, but Germans eventually moved into Upper Canada, settling in the area around current-day Toronto. More than 150,000 people of German origin would eventually call Canada's Prairies home by 1911, but such immigration would cease during World War I (when Germans were considered enemy aliens) and World War II, when Canada was again at war with Germany.

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Globe:
A newspaper founded by George Brown on March 5, 1844. At first a party newspaper for reformers, the Globe's readership steadily increased until it could call itself "Canada's National Newspaper" just after 1900. In 1936 it merged with the Mail and Empire to become the Globe and Mail, the name under which it continues today.
Visit the Globe and Mail history page for more information.


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Gouverneur (governor):
The French monarch's official representative in New France, and as such the most senior official in the colony. He was responsible for external affairs, such as relations with Aboriginal peoples and the British, and military matters. He was selected from French nobility and reported to the Ministère de la Marine.


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Grand Trunk Railway:
A railway company incorporated in 1852 to build a railway from Toronto to Montreal. In 1853, it amalgamated with five other railway companies, and traffic on the line opened in December of 1859. It continued to grow, supported by financing from Britain, but, by 1860, it was $72 million in debt. Canadian government financing saved it. Continuing to buy competitors and expand, it declared bankruptcy in 1919 and was absorbed by Canadian National Railways.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.


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Great Depression:
The term applied to period of economic hardship between 1929 and 1937. Unemployment reached levels of 30 per cent by 1933 and did not fall below 12 per cent until the start of World War II in 1939. The depth of the crisis exposed the absence of a true welfare system to care for the needy, and led to greater government involvement in the economy and social welfare once times improved, including the introduction of a national unemployment insurance plan in 1940.


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Great Coalition:
A government formed in the Province of Canada at the instigation of George Brown in 1864 for the purpose of bringing about Confederation. Other leaders included John A. Macdonald and George-Étienne Cartier. The coalition was successful and dissolved following the enactment of the British North America Act, 1867 (now renamed the Constitution Act, 1867), and the formation of a new government under Macdonald.


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Great seal:
The most important seal of a country, which is used to stamp official documents as proof that a government has approved them.

Greek Canadians:
The first Greek immigrants arrived in Canada in 1891, and settled mostly in Toronto and Montréal where they usually became small business and restaurant owners. More than 200,000 people considered Greece to be their country of origin in the 2001 census.

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Habeas corpus:
A writ or order requiring that prisoners be brought before a court to determine if he or she is being held lawfully. The right of habeas corpus is intended to prevent imprisonment without charges. The right habeas corpus has been suspended several times in Canadian history, most notably when German, Ukrainian and other Slavic Canadians were interned in World War I, and when Japanese Canadians were interned during World War II. It was also suspended in Québec in 1970 during the October Crisis.

Habitant:
Inhabitant of New France. These were initially free proprietors from an impoverished class who were farmers and labourers, either recruited within the colony or brought over from France. Habitants lived on concessions contracted out by a seigneur, whom they paid rent and taxes to. The land was, however, co-owned between the seigneur and habitant. Sometimes, habitants worked a few days out of each year for the seigneur.

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Han:
Aboriginal community based in the Yukon. While some descendants remain in the area around Dawson and tend to live like modern Canadian citizens, their original way of life (centered around hunting and fishing) was wiped out by an influx of American and Canadian settlers during the Klondike Gold Rush. Settlers invaded Han land in droves in their quest for gold, disrupting natural habitat and the once bountiful food supply. The settlers also brought diseases like smallpox north with them, which were particularly fatal to the Han since they only had had irregular contact with the white man prior to this. Han lands are now protected under the Western Arctic (Inuvialuit) Claims Settlement Act, 1984.

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Hansard:
The unofficial name of the record of parliamentary and legislative debates; the printed verbatim record of the proceedings in the Senate or House published after each sitting. The Debates are named Hansard from the name of the British family originally responsible for the transcription of the proceedings of the House of Commons in the United Kingdom.


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Read also the entry "Parliamentary Procedure" in the Canadian Encyclopedia Online for more information.

Hare:
The Hare Indians lived north of Great Bear Lake in an area that extended almost to the Arctic Ocean, particularly pre-First Contact. They were a nation that shared the distinction of being one of the most northerly Aboriginal tribes along with the Loucheux and the Inuit. By the end of the 1800s, however, only 600 people remained, due to disease and starvation.

Home Children:
Impoverished or orphaned children - usually between eight and 16 years of age, but as young as four - who were sent from Britain to Canada throughout the late 1800s and early 1900s. These children were placed into "receiving homes" (usually in Ontario) for a short period, and then were sent to rural farming communities in the western provinces as a source of cheap labour on family farms. Dr. Barnardo's Homes, a British boarding agency founded by Thomas John Barnardo, placed most of these children in Canada. However, many of these children were physically, emotionally and mentally abused - particularly boys. By the 1920s, Canadian social welfare leaders like J. S. Woodsworth started to decry this practice as being barbaric and inhumane. It eventually curtailed off during the Great Depression of the 1930s, but only because of poor economic conditions.

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House of Assembly (also Legislative Assembly):
Prior to Confederation, the elected body of government in the British North AmericanColonies that had powers to pass legislation, especially on matters of finance. Until the granting of responsible government, the Legislative Councils were appointed and could overrule the Houses of Assembly. The provincial legislatures and the House of Commons are the modern equivalents.

House of Commons:
The elected lower house of Parliament. It is made up of a speaker, the prime minister and the Cabinet, members of the governing party and members of the opposition parties. There is also a shadow government made up of members of the official Opposition party (the party with the second greatest number of seats). The members of the House are called Members of Parliament (MPs) and are elected in single-member constituency elections or by-elections.


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House of Lords:
In Britain, the upper house of Parliament. Like Canada's Senate, it is non-elective. Unlike Canada's Senate, its members are nobles and members of the clergy.

Hudson's Bay Company:
Canada's oldest trading company. Chartered in 1670 in Britain, it was given a monopoly over the fur trade in the huge area that makes up the Hudson's Bay watershed. It retained these rights until 1870, at which time the Canadian government took control of the Northwest. It continues today as a department store.
Visit the Exploration, the Fur Trade and Hudson's Bay Company site for more information.
Visit the Hudson's Bay Company history page for more information.


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Hungarian Canadians:
A group of immigrants, usually peasants from Hungary who had already failed to make a living in the industrial slums of the United States' inner cities. They first came to Canada between 1886 and 1911; most were young adult men. About 8,000 settled here before World War I, primarily in Saskatchewan, which was sometimes informally called "Little Hungary" at the time.

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Huron:
A confederacy of Aboriginal peoples that lived in the Simcoe County area of Ontario during the 17th century. The tribes in the confederacy were the Arendaronon, Ataronchronon, Attignawantan, Attigneenongnahac and Tahontaenrat. They lived in villages, practiced agriculture, and because of their central location controlled the trade in the region. Decision-making was done by in two councils (one for civil matters, the other for war). In 1649 their enemies, the Iroquois, defeated and scattered them. They called themselves Ouendat (Wendat).


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Hutterites:
A Protestant religious group originally from Moravia, which is now a part of the Czech Republic. The Hutterites settled in Canada's western provinces after some members emigrated from the United States around 1918. They formed small farming communities of no more than 150, where they practiced sharing land, animals and tools amongst themselves in accordance with their communal religious beliefs. While about two-thirds of the world's Hutterite community lives in Canada (more than 20,000 of them live in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba today), some members of Canadian society in the past have seen their way of life as being too closely aligned with that of communism. Laws were passed in Alberta during the mid-20th century limiting their ability to buy new land, though these were repealed in 1971 with the introduction of multicultural policies.

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Icelandic Canadians:
A group that first arrived in Canada in 1873, founding settlements like Gimli and Riverton on the western shores of Lake Winnipeg by 1875. Their colony was known as New Iceland and was entirely self-governing. They eventually joined Manitoba when the province's borders expanded in the 1880s.

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Île Royale
The French name for Cape Breton Island. This name changed when Britain won most of France's North American possessions under the Treaty of Paris, 1763.

Île St-Jean
The French name for Prince Edward Island. This name changed to the Island of Saint John when Britain won most of France's North American possessions under the Treaty of Paris, 1763. It became Prince Edward Island in 1799.

Immigrate:
To enter a country for the purposes of settlement.

Immigration Act:
An act that spells out who can and cannot immigrate to, work or study in, or visit Canada. It was first introduced in Canada in 1869 and has been rewritten many times over the years to encourage immigrants from desired parts of the world. It is also meant to discourage criminals, those with serious diseases and others who are or might be major threats to the peace, safety, security and well being of Canadians from entering Canada

Imperialism:
A policy of intense territorial expansion undertaken by a nation. Imperialism was practiced by numerous countries around the globe throughout history, but was particularly strong during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in Britain, the United States and elsewhere. During this period, Canada held onto strong imperial ties to Britain to avoid being swallowed up by the United States. However, British expansion inside Canada meant that the Aboriginals often lost certain rights during this relentless pursuit for land.

Indemnify:
To repay for expenses, damage or loss. Also to protect against loss; to insure. For example, people who had assisted the army during the 1837 and 1838 rebellions, or had suffered damage because of the army's actions, were repaid and protected by law from lawsuits that might arise from their actions to help the army.

Indian:
The term originally used by Europeans to describe the Aboriginal people of Canada.


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Indian Act, 1876:
The federal statute that deals with Indian status, governance, and the use of reserve lands and government monies. The act was initially meant to help the federal government assimilate Aboriginals into Western culture. A new version of the act was passed in 1951, and amendments were made in 1985 that changed the definition of Indian status. Discriminatory provisions in this act that once made it illegal for Aboriginals to vote in elections, leave their reserves without permission or drink alcohol have either since been repealed or are generally no longer enforced.

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Indian Agent:
A Canadian government official, appointed through the Department of Indian Affairs, to look after a particular Aboriginal reserve or band. In the case of Numbered Treaty Six, this agent was responsible looking after the health of the Aboriginal peoples who had signed that document.

Indian Territory:
A long strip of land granted to Aboriginals by Britain under the Royal Proclamation of 1763. It extended from current-day Labrador and central Québec into the Great Lakes region and the Mississippi and Ohio River valleys, west of the Thirteen Colonies. This land was granted specifically for Aboriginal settlement and hunting and fishing, but remained under the domain of Britain. Gradually, European settlement pushed this territory further west and south, into the United States, during the late 1700s and early 1800s until it occupied the area now known as Oklahoma.

Inquisitorial system of justice:
The method of law by which judges or other officials seek to draw from the suspected person an acknowledgment of guilt. They examine him or her regarding all the circumstances of the crime. In earlier times, torture was also used. Guilt is presumed until innocence is proven. This system can be contrasted with the adversarial system.

Institut canadien:
A club and reading group founded in 1844 as a centre of French-Canadian culture and patriotism. Its soon came to be dominated by members of the Parti rouge. Their radical views favouring annexation to the United States and opposing the Catholic Church led to the efforts of the bishop of Montreal to ban the Institut. These efforts succeeded in weakening the Institute beyond resurrection by 1885.


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Intendant:
The French colonial official responsible for the administration of New France. Although technically subordinate to the gouverneur and bishop, the intendant had much wider and more influential powers. He controlled the three departments of the interior: justice, civil administration, and finance. This included areas such as fisheries, agriculture, settlement, public order, economic development taxes, the building of public works, and more. The king from appointed this position, and the intendant was chosen for his competence among a pool of people in influential circles. The intendant reported to the Ministère de la Marine.


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Intercolonial Railway:
A railway built to link the Maritime colonies with the province of Canada. The first portion of the line was opened in 1858 between Halifax and Truro. There was some difficulty with financing, and ultimately the completion of the railway became a condition of Confederation. The last gap between Halifax and Montreal was closed in 1876. Freight rates were kept low to promote trade, the result of which was deficits. The federal government covered losses until 1919, at which time it became part of Canadian National Railways.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.


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Internment Camps:
A detainment area where an entire group or race of people is held against their will, usually for political reasons during wartime or periods of intense nationalism. In Canada, such people included Japanese Canadians during World War II because Japan had declared war on the U.S., one of Canada's allies. Such persons usually lose most of their rights, including the right to habeas corpus, and are treated to the same standard as Prisoners of War (PoWs).

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Intolerable Acts:
A term used by American patriots to describe five laws passed by the British Parliament in 1774. These included the Quartering Act, the Québec Act, the Massachusetts Government Act, the Administration of Justice Act, and the Boston Port Act. The Québec Act was perceived as preventing settlement and practice of the fur trade between the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, and sanctioning Catholicism and French civil law.
Visit the site USHistory.org: The Intolerable Acts for more information.

Inuit:
A group of peoples settled in the arctic from Alaska to Greenland. They arrived from across the Bering Strait into Alaska about 4,000 years ago, long after the arrival of the first Aboriginal peoples 20,000-30,000 years ago. With better technology for the harsh arctic climate, they displaced earlier Aboriginal peoples and were also able to resist the colonizing efforts and western expansion of the Norse. The word Inuit simply translates as 'people'. In the past, the Inuit were called Eskimos, which is now considered a disparaging, derogative term since it literally means "eaters of raw meat." Groups were usually small, and its decision-making and choosing of leadership was done on a situational basis.


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Irish Canadians:
A group of immigrants from Ireland who came to Canada generally in the early 1800s. Since many were poor and had little money for traveling into central British North America, many of them settled in the Atlantic region of Canada. However, in 1847, a particularly devastating potato famine in Ireland caused many to migrate here, even though many were in such poor health that they would die of starvation on the journey. This immigration continued in droves into the 1860s, but many would use Canada as a resting point before continuing on into the United States. Comparatively few Irish would immigrate to areas west of Ontario. Some Canadians viewed the Irish as a threat in the 1860s thanks to the Fenians.

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Iroquois:
A confederacy of Aboriginal peoples originally living in the northern part of what is now New York state. The tribes originally included the Seneca, Cayuga, Oneida, Onondaga and Mohawk nations. The Tuscarora joined in the 18th century.


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Italian Canadians:
While Italians were exploring the eastern coast of Canada as far back as 1497 - explorer John Cabot was Italian - most Italian immigration really didn't begin until Italians from the United States came north looking for work in 1900. About 80 per cent of these were young men who came to take part in intensive, seasonal labour on the railroad, in the lumbering industry or in mines. Many of these workers eventually decided to settle here permanently. Though some settled in smaller communities, most headed to large urban centres like Toronto and Montréal.

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Jay Treaty, 1794:
A treaty between Canada and the U.S. Following the American Revolution in 1783, Aboriginals in the newly created United States began to be pushed further west by white settlement, despite the fact that the Royal Proclamation of 1763 created a specific Indian Territory. Fighting between the new U.S. government and Aboriginals ensued, culminating in 1794 in the Battle of Fallen Timbers. The Aboriginals lost. In order to prevent a full-fledged war between the U.S. and Britain over this defeat, the British responded with a peace agreement that would see them remove all Crown officials from their posts south of the Great Lakes by June 1796. The treaty also created a British stipulation allowing Aboriginals to freely cross the Canada-U.S. border without any impediments placed upon them.

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James Bay and Northern Québec Agreement, 1975:

The first major land claim settlement since the early 20th century. The Inuit and Cree peoples of northern Québec were not consulted when the provincial government announced a large hydroelectric project in 1971 that would flood a significant portion of their land. To address their land claim and environmental concerns, the Aboriginals of this region were asked to give up their land rights in exchange for $225 million, special hunting and fishing rights and self-governance rights. A follow-up agreement, the Northeastern Québec Agreement, saw $9 million given to the Naskapi tribe in exchange for their land in 1978. However, some Aboriginals feel that the federal and provincial governments have not lived up to their end of the bargain.

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Japanese Canadians:
The first wave of settlement from Japan to Canada was between 1877 and 1928, when mostly young, literate men came to work as fishermen or lumbermen along the Pacific coast of British Columbia. (They also settled in B.C.'s Fraser Valley and parts of Alberta.) In 1907, the same year as the Vancouver Anti-Asia Riots, Canada began limiting the number of young Japanese men emigrating from Japan to no more than 400 a year. This quota was dropped to 150 men a year in 1928 before Japanese immigration stopped altogether with the start of World War II. No further Japanese immigrants were allowed into Canada until 1967.

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Jesuits:
Also known as the Society / Company of Jesus. A religious missionary order particularly active as missionaries in New France between 1625 and 1763, it tried and failed to convert Aboriginals over to Christianity. Aboriginals frequently referred to the Jesuits, among other religious groups, as the "Black Robes". The order was abolished by Rome in 1773 and reestablished in 1814. They were back in Canada in 1842. Jesuits have since built churches and various academic institutions in Canada.
Visit Pathfinders & Passageways online for more information.

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Jewish Canadians
Unlike many settlers, the Jewish peoples didn't come specifically from one place, but from a number of scattered communities throughout Europe. They first began settling in Lower Canada in the 1760s, and eventually were immigrating to Upper Canada by the 1800s. It wasn't until the 1880s, however, that Jewish families started fleeing Europe for western Canada, thanks to religious persecution and violence in their home countries. Some Jewish people also emigrated from the United States during this period. Unfortunately, Jewish immigration to Canada would virtually stop around the time of the Great Depression and World War II due to racial intolerance and prejudice. Nearly 40,000 Holocaust survivors seeking peace and religious freedom emigrated from Europe again in the late 1940s. Today, more than 350,000 Jewish people call Canada home.

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Journal:
The official record of business of the Houses of Assembly and Legislative Councils of British North American colonies.

Read the entry "Parliamentary Procedure" in the Canadian Encyclopedia Online for more information.

Journals Index:
The Index to the Journals is subject-based and extensively cross-referenced. It includes references to every item that is tabled or introduced in the House of Commons. The Index is updated daily throughout the session.

Read the entry "Parliamentary Procedure" in the Canadian Encyclopedia Online for more information.

Judicial Committee of the Privy Council:
A board of the British Privy Council. Formed in 1833, it had jurisdiction over Canadian courts from 1844 until 1949. As such, it was the court of final appeal and passed judgment on a number of issues affecting the Canadian Constitution. In 1931, the Statute of Westminster gave the government of Canada the right to limit the kinds of cases that could be appealed, and in 1949 the Supreme Court Act was amended to make the Supreme Court of Canada the last court of appeal in Canada.

Read more in the section Judicial Committee of the Privy Council.


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Killistine:
A branch of the Cree nation in the Red River district.

Klondike Gold Rush:
The discovery of gold in the Yukon River in August 1896 led to one of the most famous gold rushes of all time. News of the discovery in the United States the following year touched off a virtual stampede, as some 100,000 people would flock to Canada's Yukon hoping to make a quick fortune within the next three years. This influx caused the birth of new towns like Dawson, which quickly became the biggest city north of Seattle and west of Winnipeg. For a brief time, prostitution would be tolerated in Dawson and the city would soon boast modern amenities like electricity, as well as saloons, dancehalls and gaming parlours. The gold rush would peak fairly early (1897 - 1900), but some $50 million would ultimately be taken out of the Yukon by 1901.

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Korean Canadians:
A group of people from the Korean Peninsula, located between China and Japan, who began to immigrate to Canada in 1890. Most wanted better fortunes and a way of life for their families, and were introduced to Canada through Canadian missionaries stationed in Korea. Migrant Koreans tend to be highly skilled professionals, like doctors or professors, who usually choose to live in urban regions. Virtually all of the Koreans who settled here come from the southern end of the Korean Peninsula.

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Land Cession Treaties:
See Numbered Treaties.

Land Claims:
A legal process enabled by the federal government to give Aboriginals full recognition of their legal rights under treaties signed by their ancestors or, in the case of the Métis and Inuit, as one of the original inhabitants of Canada. The process is formally centered on resolving land titles, Aboriginal rights and treaty rights, and is intended to create social and economic change. Sometimes, provincial and territorial governments, as well as other groups, are involved in this process.


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Last Best West, The, 1896 - 1914:
The most famous of many advertising slogans introduced by Canada's Immigration Ministry used to attract new settlers to Canada's West from the United States and Europe. It was used in many immigration pamphlets, handbills and circulars.

Last Spike, The, 1885:
On November 7, 1885, the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) line moving from the Pacific coast met the portion of the line moving east from Canada's Prairies at a small siding in the western Rockies at Craigellachie, British Columbia. Many of the businessmen, contractors, surveyors, and workers responsible for building the railway gathered there to watch Sir Donald Smith drive the last spike tying the railway line together from coast-to-coast.


Legislative Council:

The terms of the Constitutional Act, 1791, called for a Legislative Council appointed by the governor. The Council shared the responsibility of making and passing laws with the House of Assembly, although the Council could overrule the Assembly. In practice, these positions were often awarded to friends and family members of the governor.

Liberal Party:
The Liberal Party was founded after Confederation in 1867 but has its roots in the Reform Party and Parti rouge. The first leader of the Liberal Party was Alexander Mackenzie. Although the Conservative Party dominated the period between 1867 and 1896, the Liberal Party has been in power for more years since.
Visit the Liberal Party of Canada history page for more information.


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Lord Chancellor (also Lord High Chancellor):
In Britain, the Lord Chancellor is the highest-ranking official of state, except the royal princes and Archbishop of Canterbury. He is chairman of the House of Lords, keeper of the Great Seal, and a cabinet member by political appointment. The Lord Chancellor's main duty is to ensure the efficient administration of justice.
Visit the Lord Chancellor's site for more information.

Loucheux:
The Loucheux nation (also known as the Kutchin nation) lives in northern Canada to the west of the Mackenzie River. Yukon Territory takes its name from a Loucheux word meaning great river.

Louisbourg:
A fortified town on Île Royale (Cape Breton), founded by France in 1713 and destroyed in 1758. The town was founded after the Treaty of Utrecht, 1713, in which France gave up rights to Newfoundland and Acadia. The primary business of the colony was the cod fishery, but it was also an important trading port and military base. It was captured in 1745, but returned by treaty. After its capture by the British in 1758 and the surrender of New France to Britain under the Treaty of Paris, 1763, it was demolished and the inhabitants returned to France. It was rebuilt in the 1960s as a make-work project and is now a significant tourist attraction.
Visit the Parks Canada Louisbourg site for more information.
Visit the Fortress of Louisbourg site for more information.


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Lower Canada:
The area of Canada that formed the geographical basis of Québec. Created from the colony of Québec by the Constitutional Act, 1791, it was so named because of its position on the lower part of the St. Lawrence River (Upper Canada was upriver). The dividing line between Lower and Upper Canada was the Ottawa River. The Union Act, 1840, reunited Upper and Lower Canada into the province of Canada. The two regions were then known as Canada East and Canada West until Confederation created the provinces of Ontario and Québec.


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Loyalists:
Those people who remained loyal to the British crown during the American Revolution and moved north into the old province of Québec at the end of the war.


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Mackenzie Valley Pipeline Inquiry:
See Berger Commission.

Malecite or Maliseet:
This tribe has traditionally lived along the St. John River in New Brunswick and Maine, though they have also called the lower St. Lawrence River valley home. In 1996, there were more than 4,600 Maliseet people living in New Brunswick.

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Maritime Loyalists:
Group of Loyalist settlers who chose to live on Canada's East Coast following the American Revolution, as opposed to Upper Canada. This led to the creation of the distinct colonies of Cape Breton and New Brunswick in 1784. Most of the Loyalists were said to be slightly more aristocratic than those who chose Upper Canada as their final destination. However, this group of Loyalists also included some 3,500 black Loyalists and former slaves who were shipped to these colonies under the promise of freedom for supporting Britain during the Revolution.

Maritime Union:
The union of the British North American colonies of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island that was proposed in 1863 and 1864. The project was driven by Arthur Hamilton Gordon, the lieutenant governor of New Brunswick, for reasons of personal ambition, to provide a stronger colony against the United States, and to reduce administrative costs. A conference to discuss the issue was planned in 1864, to which the province of Canada asked for an invitation to discuss a larger union of all the colonies. The idea of Maritime Union quickly died at the Charlottetown Conference in September 1864.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.

Marquis Wheat:
A hybrid variety of wheat developed in Canada at Ottawa's Central Experimental Farm in 1903 under the guidance of Sir Charles Saunders. This type of wheat, which matured early in the growing season, extended the areas of the Prairies in which wheat could be grown without dying from frost. Marquis wheat was tested in the West until 1911, when it was finally commercialized and sold. By the 1920s, this strain of wheat accounted for 90 per cent of the spring wheat grown in Canada's West and 60 per cent of the spring wheat in the U.S.

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Mennonites:
A Protestant religious-cultural group that first immigrated from the U.S. to Canada following the American Revolution in 1776. However, the largest wave came from Russia, Prussia and the U.S. during the years between 1890 and 1914. Those from Europe were generally fleeing religious persecution, and were also attracted to the large tracts of homesteading lands available in Canada during this period. Additionally, this pacifist or peace-loving group was attracted by the fact Canada offered non-compulsory military service. Many of those who settled here spoke Germanic languages, and generally resided in southern Manitoba.

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Mercantilism:
The economic theory that there is a fixed amount of wealth in the world, or the idea that one nation's gains is another nation's loss. When this theory was popular, European nations tried to minimize their imports and maximize their exports. They created barriers to imports through tariffs and other measures, and established colonial empires to create captive markets for their exports. Colonies were also useful as a source of raw materials. In the mid 18th century, mercantilism began to lose strength.


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Métis:
The term Métis is used to describe people of mixed native and European origin, and comes from an old French word meaning "mixed." As such, Métis people have existed wherever European and Aboriginal people intermarried, especially along the St. Lawrence and in the west. The Métis in the west were particularly successful at establishing a culture and national identity. They came into conflict with the Canadian government during two rebellions in 1870 and 1885 over land rights. The Métis began pursing their rights again in the 1920s and 1930s, and were formally recognized in the Constitution Act, 1982.


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Mi'kmaq (also Micmac):
Aboriginal people living in eastern Canada. At the time of European contact, the Mi'kmaq occupied the Gaspé and the Maritime provinces east of the Saint John River. Since then, they have also established settlements in Newfoundland and New England. The Mi'kmaq language is in the Eastern Algonquin family of languages.
Visit the Mi'kmaq Resource Centre for more information.


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Ministère de la Marine (Marine Department):
The section of the French government responsible for the navy, the colonies and maritime trade. Created by Jean-Baptiste Colbert in 1669, the Ministère was divided into bureaux. The Bureau du Ponant, renamed Bureau des Colonies in 1710, administered Canada.


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Ministerial responsibility:
In Canada, the doctrine of ministerial responsibility is an extension of the principles of responsible government, which seek to make the executive accountable to the House. Under ministerial responsibility, each minister is held responsible to the House of Commons for the conduct of every civil servant working in their department. A minister may be asked to investigate allegations of incompetence or impropriety in their department and take appropriate action. The minister must take personal responsibility for any major acts of mismanagement. In the most extreme cases, the minister may be asked to resign.

Mississauga Indians:
The alternate name used for Ojibeway Aboriginals who live along the shores of Lake Ontario. French settlers gave this nation their new name. These Aboriginals originally came from settlements near the mouth of the Mississauga River area by Lake Huron, and moved following the defeat of the Iroquois and displacement of the Huron in the mid-1600s.

MLA:
A Member of the Legislative Assembly in all provinces and territories except Ontario and Québec, where the designation Member of Provincial Parliament is used. After a general provincial or territorial election is called, the person who wins the most votes in a riding becomes its MLA.

Mohawk:
Part of the Iroquois Confederacy, the Mohawk were originally settled on the Mohawk River. They were involved in a lengthy war with the French in the 17th century, eventually negotiating treaties of neutrality with the British and the French. The Mohawk became closely tied to the British in the 18th century and fought with the Loyalists during the American Revolution. At the end of the war in 1783, they were forced to resettle in the old province of Québec along the Grand River and on the Bay of Quinte.


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Mormons:
Mormon settlers from America's Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints founded and settled in Cardston in current-day Alberta in 1887. They came up with the region's first irrigation system and sugar beet crop. The first wave of Mormon immigration to Canada ended around 1910. While many of Canada's 100,000 Mormons now reside in cities - particularly Toronto - there is a significant number living to the south and southwest of Lethbridge, Alberta.

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Naskapi:
Name given an Arctic-region group of Inuit, probably by seventeenth century French missionaries although its true origin is unknown. They live in northern Québec and speak a dialect of the Cree language.

Nepotism:
Favoritism shown by somebody in power to relatives and friends, especially in appointing them to positions of power, profit or influence.

New Democratic Party:
This moderate socialist democratic party favors pacifist, anti-war policies and supports government ownership of important industries - much like the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) before it. While it has formed governments in four provinces since its inception in 1961, including Ontario, and the Yukon Territory, it has had limited success at the federal level.

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New England:

The four northeastern states of the United States, including Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Connecticut.

Niagara Treaty, 1764:
The Niagara Treaty was a peace treaty that created a new Covenant Chain between Britain and the Aboriginal nations of the western Great Lakes - including the Iroquois Confederacy, and the Algonquin and Huron nations - some of whom the British had been at war against since 1760. This treaty grew out of the Royal Proclamation of 1763, which ensured fair and voluntary land dealings between the British and Aboriginals. The Niagara Congress met in July 1764 and it included members from 24 Aboriginal nations and Crown officials. More than 2,000 people attended.

Nisga'a:
Historically, this tribe lived in the Nass River Valley in present-day northwestern British Columbia. Frank Calder, Canada's first Aboriginal MLA and federal Cabinet minister, was from the Nisga'a tribe. In 1996, this nation signed a historic land claim deal worth about $200 million with the Canadian and British Columbian governments, which was ratified in 2000. Currently, about 6,000 Nisga'a people live in Canada, mainly on the west coast.

Nisag'a Treaty, 1996 - 2000:
Treaty signed in 1996 between the British Columbian government and the province's Nisag'a tribe. It received royal assent in 2000 from the federal government, despite opposition from the former Reform Party (later called Canadian Alliance party) that delayed its passage through the House of Commons in 1999. The treaty gave about $196 million to the tribe (to be paid over a 15-year period), plus communal self-government and control of natural resources in their corner of northwestern British Columbia. See also Calder Case.


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Nomad:
A person who moves to follow the food supply (for example, the buffalo) or to find fresh pasture for livestock.

Notice paper:
Both the Senate and the House of Commons publish a Notice Paper for each sitting day, which presents all notices of bills, motions and questions that Senators, Ministers or Private Members may wish to bring before their respective Chamber.

Read the entry "Parliamentary Procedure" in the Canadian Encyclopedia Online for more information.


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North West Mounted Police (NWMP):
A national police force that came into being in 1873 to act as a visible symbol of Canadian sovereignty against the United States, and to help maintain law and order in Manitoba and the Northwest Territories - particularly the region that was to later become Alberta and Saskatchewan. This police force helped incoming white settlers, and Aboriginals making the transition to Indian reserves. In 1920, it merged with the Dominion Police - a policing agency responsible for protecting Ottawa's Parliament Buildings and a few naval dockyards in northern and eastern Canada - to become the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).

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Norwegian Canadians:
Major Norwegian settlement occurred on Canada's Prairies between 1886 and 1929, particularly around Calgary in connection with the lumber trade. While many Norwegians came from Europe (nearly 19,000 immigrated to Canada between 1900 and 1914), there was also an influx of those with Norwegian heritage from the United States during this period.

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Numbered Treaties, 1871 - 1911:

Also known as the Post-Confederate or Land Cession Treaties. These were a series of 11 treaties signed between the federal government and the various Aboriginal tribes of the Prairies and Northern Canada over a period of four decades in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Aboriginal tribes ceded all of their rights to large tracts of land (and resources therein) in return for reserve land and various forms of government assistance. While status Indians could not live on any land outside of reserves, they still enjoyed hunting, trapping and fishing rights on it.

Nunavut:
A new territory in the eastern Arctic that was created in 1999 as a result of the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement in 1993. The federal government gave some of this land to the Inuit specifically for living, hunting and controlling underground resources. The government is also paying the territory almost $1.2 billion for the retention of non-Inuit property during a 15-year period.

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Oath of allegiance:
An oath expressing loyalty made to a ruling monarch. In 1755, the British expelled the Acadians for their reluctance to make an oath of allegiance. From 1763 until 1774, French-speaking inhabitants of Québec could not take official positions in government because the oath they were required to take (taken from the Test Act, 1678) required all office holders to formally accept articles of the Protestant faith - articles that no Catholic could, in good conscience, accept. The Québec act, 1774, revised the oath to remove references to religious faith.

October Crisis:
The crisis initiated by the kidnapping of the British trade commissioner in Montreal on October 5, 1970, by members of the Front de Libération du Québec (FLQ). This was followed on October 10 by the kidnapping of Pierre Laporte, the Québec minister of labour and immigration. The government of Québec requested the assistance of the Canadian Armed Forces and the federal government proclaimed a state of "apprehended insurrection" under the War Measures Act. Civil liberties and the right of habeas corpus were suspended. Laporte was found dead on October 17, and the FLQ members responsible were found and arrested in December. The government response to this crisis has remained a source of controversy ever since.


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Ojibeway:
Derived from Ouchibou, a name given to Aboriginals living in the northeastern Georgian Bay and eastern Lake Superior region during the 1600s. During the most violent period of fur trade competition between the French and British, this nation sided with the French. Following the dispersal of the Hurons during the mid-1600s they moved further west and traded with other Aboriginal groups. They eventually became British allies during the American War of Independence and War of 1812. Most of Ojibeway tribes, however, did not sign formal treaties with the colonial or federal government until well after the 1850s.

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Orange Order:

A Protestant association originally founded in 1795 in Ireland to commemorate the victory of William of Orange at the Battle of the Boyne in 1690. Orangemen brought the association with them to Canada, founding the first lodge in 1830 in Upper Canada. The Orange order welcomed Protestant settlers to the province, but was hostile to the interests of French Canadians and Catholics. Many in the Orange order were active in politics, including George Brown.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.


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Order paper:
The Order Paper is the official agenda of the Senate and the House of Commons. Both Chambers publish this document for each sitting day. This document lists all items that may be brought forward in their respective Chamber on that particular day.

Read the entry "Parliamentary Procedure" in the Canadian Encyclopedia Online for more information.

Ordinance:
Legislative enactment produced by a governor, acting unilaterally or with the advice of a council, in the absence of an elected legislature.

Ottawa:
These Algonquin-speaking people lived on the Bruce peninsula during French conquest of the Upper Great Lakes region. Most eventually moved onto Manitoulin Island and the area where Michigan intersects with the Great Lakes near Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.

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Pacific Scandal:
The Pacific Scandal was the result of an improper granting of a contract to build a railway to the Pacific Ocean. Prime Minister Sir John A. Macdonald had solicited $360,000 to help win an election in 1872 from Sir Hugh Allan, and awarded him the contract soon afterward. Liberal politicians under Alexander Mackenzie, and newspapers controlled by the Liberals, revealed this to the public and the government was defeated in 1873.


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Palliser's Triangle:
An extremely dry region of Canada's Prairies straddling southern Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba that's used for farmland. Named after explorer John Palliser, the region can be severely affected by drought. It was particularly hard hit during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s.

Parliament:
According to the Constitution Act, 1982, Parliament is made up of the monarch (represented by the governor general), the House of Commons (the lower house) and the Senate (the upper house). The governor general today performs only a ceremonial role. The Senate officially has similar powers to the House of Commons, but in practical terms the real centre of power is in the House of Commons. The governor general, on the recommendation of the prime minister, appoints senators. The House of Commons is often referred to as the Parliament, although this is not, strictly speaking, accurate.


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Parti bleu:
A political party formed in 1850 by Louis-Hippolyte LaFontaine. Moderate and reformist, it worked with English-speaking Tories in Canada West and can be contrasted with the more extremist Parti rouge. The Parti bleu and the Tories formed the basis of today's Conservative Party. Members of the party were called Bleus.


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Parti canadien:
Party founded in early 1800s by French professionals and merchants to promote the idea of ministerial responsibility and the control of patronage by French Canadians. The party newspaper was Le Canadien. It changed its name in 1826 to the Parti patriote.


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Parti Québécois:
A Québec nationalist party, formed in 1968 from the Mouvement Souveraineté-Association (MSA) and the Rassemblement pour l'indépendance nationale (RIN). The first leader of the party was René Lévesque. They won the 1976 election in Québec and, as promised in the election campaign, held a referendum on sovereignty-association in 1980. This referendum failed to produce a mandate to negotiate sovereignty-association. Another referendum was held in 1995, again failing to produce a mandate, but the result was much closer this time .
Visit the Parti Québécois site for more information.


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Parti rouge:
Party established in about 1848 by radical French Canadian intellectuals. The party's platform was based on republican ideas, the abolition of the seigneurial system and universal suffrage. They were also anti-clerical, which helped to limit their popular appeal. After Confederation they merged with the Clear Grits to form the Liberal Party.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.


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Patriation:
The act of bringing a constitutional document to its home country.

Patriots (U.S.):
Those who helped the colonists in the Thirteen Colonies win the American Revolution against Great Britain.

Patriotes:
Name given to members of the Parti Canadien in 1826, and of the popular movement that spawned the 1837 and 1838 Rebellions. Primarily a francophone party that was run by merchants and liberals, it was supported by farmers, labourers and craftsmen.

Party system:
In Canada, the system of government in which individuals with similar social, economic or political beliefs form into parties and attempt to gain power through constitutional means (i.e.: by winning the most seats in Parliament in an election). Once in power, they promote their political objectives. The party system in Canada emerged in the mid-1800's and is based on liberal-democratic values. Following Confederation, the two major parties were the Conservative Party and the Liberal Party.


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Patronage:
The granting of favours or rewards to someone who has provided a valuable service. In the history of Canadian government, this has ranged from appointing individuals to the Senate as a reward for loyal services to the more corrupt practice of granting large government contracts to sponsors or friends without a proper competition.


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Peace and Friendship Treaties, 1725 - 1789:
Various agreements signed between the Aboriginals and colonial governments in the Maritime regions of both Canada and the U.S., which bound Natives to promises of keeping the peace during periods of colonial expansion.


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Pemmican Proclamation, 1814:
A proclamation issued by Assiniboia governor Miles Macdonell to prohibit the export of pemmican supplies in the fur trade, so that settlers of Red River Colony could be fed. This set off tensions between French fur traders and the Métis on one side, and settlers of Thomas Selkirk's settlement and English fur traders on the other.

Person's Case:
A case in law in which five women demanded the right to hold a seat in the Senate. The law, which stated that "qualified persons" could hold office, had previously been interpreted to mean only men. In 1928, the Supreme Court ruled that women were not persons under the British North America Act, 1867 (now renamed the Constitution Act, 1867), but this was overturned by a decision of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council in Britain. In the long term, this victory increased opportunities for women to participate in government. The women involved were Emily Murphy, Henrietta Muir Edwards, Nellie McClung, Louise McKinney, and Irene Parlby.
Visit the National Archives of Canada site to learn more.

Polish Canadians:
A hardworking, religious group of people who started coming to Canada in large numbers around 1851, usually from parts of Europe owned by Austria. Most of these settlers were peasants who settled in eastern Ontario (founding Canada's first Polish settlement in Wilno, Ontario). They also settled in large numbers on the Prairies - particularly around Winnipeg - where they either worked on farms, the railway or in mines. Later waves of Polish migrants starting around 1916 would become storekeepers in the burgeoning cities of the Plains.

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Portuguese Canadians:
Despite some early Portuguese settlements in Newfoundland, immigration to Canada for this ethnic group didn't really begin until 1953 when the federal government allowed some people from this country into Ontario to work as agricultural labourers. Portuguese communities now exist throughout Manitoba, Ontario and Québec. The number of Portuguese in Canada was well beyond 350,000 as of the 2001 census.

Post-Confederation Treaties:
See Numbered Treaties.

Potlatch:
A ceremony and social custom practiced by Aboriginal peoples on the northwest coast of North America. Potlatches were held as celebrations and mourning, and brought different villages and tribes together. The events could last several days and involved the exchange of gifts, with status of the gift giver increasing with the generosity of the gifts given to others. The potlatch was banned from 1884 to 1951.


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Progressive Party:

Political party started in 1920 that shares striking similarities to today's Canadian Alliance. The second-largest party in the House of Commons from 1921 to 1925, the Progressives were extremely popular among those living in Western Canada and rural Ontario. It was an anti-industry and pro-agriculture party that supported political reforms that would place more power in the hands of voters. Their refusal to act like a traditional political party, ironically, led to their ineffectiveness in reforming parliament. Their popularity began to wane by the mid-1920s. Many Progressives would leave the party to form the socialist Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) in 1932, while the party's remnants would eventually merge with the Conservatives to become the Progressive Conservative party in 1942.


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Progressive Conservative:
The official name of Canada's Conservative or Tory political party at the federal level from 1942 to 2003. Until the arrival of the Reform party (later Canadian Alliance) in the 1990s, the PC party tended to contain a mixture of Conservatives and right-leaning members of the former Progressive party. The Progressive Conservatives and the Canadian Alliance merged in December 2003 in order to ward off right-wing vote splitting in an anticipated federal election the following year.

Protestantism:
A term applied to a variety of churches that broke with Roman Catholicism in the 16th century to "protest" corruption and abuses within the Roman Catholic Church at the time. Most who are of British descent in Canada trace their lineage back to these churches.

Province of Canada Treaties, 1850 - 1864:
A series of land cession treaties signed between the colonial government and Aboriginals that saw the latter give up their land and resource rights in current-day northern Ontario.

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Provisional Government:
A government meant to exist only for a specific temporary period of time. When the Métis took control of the Red River region in 1869 under Louis Riel, they created a provisional government until Manitoba was included into Confederation the following year.

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Quakers:
Properly known as the Religious Society of Friends. The Quakers are a religious community best known for their Puritan religious beliefs, though they are also known to be opposed to slavery, war and capital punishment. During the late 1600s, Quakers visited Newfoundland. They settled in Nova Scotia in the mid-1700s, and what is now known as southern Ontario after the American Revolution. Quaker settlements were founded in Western Canada during the early 1900s as well.

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Quarantine Act, 1872:
An act introduced by the Canadian government that forced ships carrying deceased or ill passengers to dock at a Quarantine Station at Grosse-Île.

Québec Conference:
Held from October 10 to 27, 1864, the Québec Conference took place a month after the Charlottetown Conference and was held to establish guidelines and principles for a federal union of the British North American colonies, including the province of Canada, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island. The Seventy-Two Resolutions, which the delegates agreed upon, formed the basis of the British North America Act, 1867 (now renamed the Constitution Act, 1867). Despite this, however, Prince Edward Island did not join Confederation until 1873 and Newfoundland until 1949.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.


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The Québec Gazette/La Gazette de Québec:
A Tory newspaper founded on June 21, 1764, by William Brown and Thomas Gilmore. It was a bilingual publication and consisted mainly of government announcements. In 1873, the Québec Gazette joined with the Morning Chronicle to become the Québec Chronicle and Québec Gazette. On July 2, 1925, the Québec Chronicle and Québec Gazette merged with its liberal competitor The Chronicle to become The Chronicle-Telegraph.

Queen's Privy Council of Canada:
Also known simply as the Privy Council of Canada; it advises the Crown. Privy Councilors are selected by the prime minister and appointed for life by the governor general. The Privy Council includes the chief justice of the Supreme Court, provincial premiers, former and present cabinet ministers, and speakers of the House and Senate.


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Quiet Revolution, the:
A period of rapid social change in Québec from 1960 to 1966. It was characterised by a rejection of conservative values and the authority of the Catholic Church. Under the Liberals, a wide range of reforms were passed, including legislation for federal-provincial hospital insurance, a revision of the labour code, a pension plan, and raising the legal status of women from minors to equals of men.


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Railway Act, 1851:
An act passed in Canada West and East in 1851 to set the ground rules about how railways could be built and maintained. This was to prevent fly-by-night railway companies from cutting corners on construction and maintenance, and ensure the safety of railway builders and passengers.

Ratify:
To formally approve a document such as a treaty. For example, a government might need to hold a vote to ratify a treaty negotiated with another country.

Rebellions of 1837 and 1838:
The rebellions were armed uprisings that took place in Upper Canada and Lower Canada in 1837 and 1838. Many in Upper and Lower Canada demanded change to their system of governance, which gave a great deal power to the small ruling elites in Upper and Lower Canada. Calls were made by reformers to make the executive accountable to the elected legislature. These calls for change were ignored by the government; thereby instigating the rebellions. The rebellions led directly to the appointment of Lord Durham who, in his Report on the Affairs in British North America, recommended that the Canadas be united into one colony and called for the introduction of responsible government.

Visit the National Library of Canada site to learn more about the rebellions in Upper Canada and Lower Canada.


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Reciprocity Treaty:
A treaty in effect from 1854 to 1866. The treaty grew out of a conflict over fishing rights on the Atlantic coast and was negotiated by Governor General Lord Elgin. It included open access by fishermen of both countries to fisheries (north of 36º N latitude in the United States) and free trade for many other goods. Due to a number of factors, it lapsed in 1866, and efforts made to revive it in the 1880s and again in 1911 by Sir Wilfred Laurier failed. Free Trade did not become a reality until the signing of the U.S.-Canada Free Trade Agreement in 1989.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.


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Récollets:
A group of missionaries and priests who first came to New France in 1615, though they were also present in Acadia and Newfoundland. They followed the teachings of St. Francis, and lived relatively simple lives under French rule. However, British authorities refused to allow these missionaries to train any new novices when the British took control of New France in 1763, and this order died out. They returned to Canada, however, in 1888.

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Red Paper, 1970:
The Aboriginal response to the federal government's White Paper of 1969. It was a counterattack that argued for treaty Indians, "there is nothing more important than our treaties, our lands and the well-being of our future generations." This paper successfully caused the government to change its policies on Aboriginal affairs.


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Reform movement:
A movement with several factions, advocating a variety of reforms to the government and administration of Upper Canada. Born out of social and economic tensions after the War of 1812, the movement began to split in the 1830s. Moderate reformers were led by Robert Baldwin and sought responsible government, radical reformers wanted to build a society and economy based on the United States, and an extreme faction led by William Lyon Mackenzie led the rebellion of 1837.

Reform Party of Canada:
Please see Canadian Alliance.

Reserve:
Land set aside by the federal government for status Indians. Though the government owns the land, the particular band that lives on the reserve is responsible for managing it.


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Refugees:
Those who flee from their home country to escape danger or persecution. The first refugees to Canada were the Loyalists. Refugees to Canada in the 1800s included Blacks fleeing slavery in the southern United States, followed by Doukhobors and Mennonites fleeing religious persecution in Russia by the 1880s. Canada was open to most refugees, save Chinese and black people, until the start of World War I in 1914. It wasn't until the end of World War II in 1945 that refugees started to be welcomed again in fairly large volumes, due to a booming economy and a need for more manpower.

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Reserve Act:
Legislation to which Royal Assent is not given, pending review by the imperial Law Officers of the Crown. (May be printed a year or two late).

Responsible government:
A term used for government responsible to the electorate (for example, through elections). In Canada, the term was coined in the 1830s in Upper Canada to refer to a government that was responsible to the elected members of the House of Assembly. Prior to 1848, governors could select the Executive Council (the equivalent of today's Cabinet) without the support of the Assembly. On the instructions of the colonial office in Britain, the first responsible government in British North America was formed in Nova Scotia in 1848.
Visit the National Library of Canada site for more information.


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Riel Rebellions:
Two rebellions led in 1870 and 1885 by controversial Métis leader Louis Riel in what is now known as Manitoba and Saskatchewan. Both the Red River Rebellion in 1870 and North West Rebellion in 1885 were in part attempts by the Métis to preserve their land rights and culture.


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Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP):
Please see North West Mounted Police.

Rupert's Land:
The portion of North America granted by Charles II of England to the Hudson's Bay Company in the company's 1670 charter. Named after Prince Rupert, the first governor of the company, the area granted was the entire Hudson's Bay watershed, including parts of Québec and Ontario, all of Manitoba, most of Saskatchewan and southern Alberta, and parts of Nunavut and the Northwest Territories. In 1869, the company surrendered the territory to the Crown, and in 1870 it was annexed by Canada.
Visit the Exploration, the Fur Trade and Hudson's Bay Company site for more information.
Visit the Hudson's Bay Company history page for more information.


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Rush-Bagot Ageement:
Treaty signed in 1817 to limit the naval armaments on the Great Lakes and Lake Champlain. The limit was set at one ship per country on Lakes Ontario and Champlain, and two on the upper Great Lakes. Both sides continued to build fortifications on the border, however. The Acting United States Secretary of State Richard Rush and Sir Charles Bagot negotiated the treaty.


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Russian Canadians:
Russians are the single largest ethnic group among Slavic nations. While some immigrated to Canada as fur hunters in the 1700s along the Pacific coast and Alaska, most would begin immigrating here around 1875. Many were peasants who gravitated to the larger cities to work as labourers in industry, but there were a few select groups of Russian farmers from fringe religious communities who settled in the West - namely the Doukhobors and Mennonites. After World War I, many of the million Russians fleeing their homeland due to the Russian Revolution of 1917 sought admission into Canada.

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Ste. Marie Among The Hurons:
Roman Catholic mission run by Jesuits just off Georgian Bay, near current day Midland, Ontario, between 1639 and 1649. Probably the first major settlement in what would become Upper Canada, it was meant to serve as a retreat for priests and a centre meant to transform Huron Aboriginals into Christians. It was destroyed and burned to the ground when Iroquois attackers began a war on the Huron in the late 1640s. Today, a rebuilt version of this fortified settlement is a tourist attraction.

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Sarcee:
Also known as the 'tsotli'na" (earth people) or tsuu t'ina (many people). Said to originate from the Beaver nation, they may have been separated from their parent band by the advancing Cree. They have similar customs and traditions as the Blackfoot (e.g: the Sun Dance and dependence on the buffalo hunt for food). After signing Treaty Number 7, they were to share a reserve on the Bow River but, instead, resumed their nomadic lifestyle. Eventually they settled on the western outskirts of Calgary.

Sauking or Saugeen:
Aboriginal nation that descended from the Ojibeway nation that was native to southwestern Ontario, particularly during the 1830s when Sir Francis Bond Head, Upper Canada's lieutenant-governor, wished for them to surrender land south of Georgian Bay. He wanted them to move northward into less hospital territory on and around Manitoulin Island.

Saulteaux:
A branch of the Chipeweyan nation in the Red River district.

Scottish Canadians (Scots):
The first large wave of Scottish immigration to Canada occurred between 1770 and 1815, when some 15,000 moved to places like the Selkirk Settlement in current-day Manitoba, as well as settlements along the East Coast and eastern Ontario. A significant number during the fur trade were men, and many of them would settle with Aboriginal women to create the Métis. During the great wave of immigration to Canada's West during the late 1800s and early 1900s, they were the preferred group of immigrants by Immigration Minister Sir Clifford Sifton for their hardiness and adaptability to farming, and were highly sought after. Many people of this origin came from the nearby United States during this period of expansion.

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Secularize:
To remove religious influences.

Sedition:
Speech or action promoting discontent or rebellion against a government.

Segregation:
The separation of one group of people from another, usually based on race.

Seigneurial tenure:
A form of property of feudal origin. It involves dual property rights: the property of the seigneur on all lands in his seigneury and the property of individual censitaires (the individuals living on and working the land). The system of seigneural tenure was established in New France in 1627. The French Crown granted ownership and legal rights for blocks of land to influential people (seigneurs) who in turn, conceded the land to censitaires who had to pay annual dues. A seigneury was a tract of land granted in this manner.


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Seigneurial Tenures Act, 1854:
The law that repealed the seigneurial system in Lower Canada, and allowed tenants to gain complete control and ownership of their land.


Selkirk Treaty:

James Selkirk in 1811 bought land from the Hudson's Bay Company in current-day lower Manitoba, which led to the settlement of the Red River Colony the following year. He signed the Selkirk Treaty with area Aboriginals in 1817 to secure land along the Red River. However, all of the unsettled land negotiated in this treaty was eventually sold to the federal government in 1869, one of the main causes of the Red River Rebellion.


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Senate:
Created under the British North America Act, 1867 (now renamed Constitution Act, 1867), the Senate is the upper house of Parliament. It has many of the rights of the House of Commons, but rarely initiates or refuses to pass legislation by the lower house. Members are appointed by the governor general on the recommendation of the prime minister, usually along regional and party lines, and serve until the age of 75. The number of Senators and the length of their term have changed several times since 1867.


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Seven Oaks Incident, 1816:
A violent incident that occurred in June 1816 near the Selkirk Settlement in current-day Manitoba that was the culmination of a number of lesser events. The massacre at Seven Oaks led Lord Selkirk to step in and capture the North West Company's primary base in the region at Fort William and reclaim Fort Douglas for the Hudson's Bay Company simply to restore order in the region. Legal battles over this ensued until Selkirk died in 1820. However, the massacre at Seven Oaks made both companies realize that a merger would probably be in their best economic interests, as it would spare future violent confrontations. Both companies did in 1821, the year following Lord Selkirk's death.

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Seven Years War:
The international conflict lasting from 1756 to 1763, pitting Great Britain, Hanover and Prussia against France, Austria, Sweden, Saxony, Russia and eventually Spain. Although mainly a European war, France and Great Britain struggled for control of North America. In 1760 the last significant French force was defeated at Montreal. By the Treaty of Paris, 1763, France surrendered New France to Britain permanently.


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Sessional Paper:
Reports and other documents incorporated into the proceedings of the legislative body, usually as an appendix to the Journal.

Read the entry "Parliamentary Procedure" in the Canadian Encyclopedia Online for more information.

Sikhs:
Immigrants originally from the Punjab region of India. The first of these immigrants came to Canada between 1905 and 1908 when they were hired as labourers, usually for railroad construction. Asian Indians (not to be confused with Aboriginals) eventually came from other Hindu regions of India beginning around 1968 and settled throughout Canada. However, they remain in their largest numbers in British Columbia and southern Ontario.

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Six Nations:
Please see Iroquois.

Slave (Indians):
An Aboriginal nation that lives between Lake Athabasca and Great Slave Lake in the North West Territories. The lake is named after the Slave Indians.

Smallpox:
A highly contagious and often fatal viral disease characterized by fever, weakness and scabs that leave scars. It was used as a biological weapon against Aboriginal tribes during warfare lasting between 1756 and 1763

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Socialism:
An economic system in which the government owns and controls a few key industries and utilities - for instance, hydro and insurance - on the behalf of the public good. The New Democratic Party (NDP) and Co-Operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) are examples of socialist political parties that have existed in Canada. See also communism and capitalism.

Sod Houses:
A type of home on the rural Prairies, usually before World War I, that was made entirely out of hard-packed blocks of earth or sod. These homes were cheap and relatively quick to build, which was a necessity considering many settlers to the region during that time usually didn't have money nor time to construct a proper brick-and-mortar home during their first seasons of farming.

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Southeast Asians:
Includes a wide swath of peoples from places like Thailand, Singapore, the Philippines, Vietnam, Burma, Indonesia and so on. Many arrived as students during the 1950s and 1960s. However, a large group of Vietnamese boat people began to arrive in 1978, hoping to escape oppression in their homeland. Roughly 6,500 Vietnamese were admitted during this time as political refugees.

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Sovereignty-association/Souveraineté-association:
The slogan and main objective of the Parti Québécois (PQ) from 1970, explicitly described in 1978. The PQ sought political freedom from Canada (sovereignty), while maintaining economic links (association). A referendum in 1980 asked the people of Québec for a mandate to negotiate sovereignty-association, but was defeated. A referendum was held in 1995 requesting a similar mandate, which was defeated again, but only narrowly.


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Spanish Canadians (Spaniards):
Though there was much Spanish exploration of the Pacific coast between the 16th and 18th centuries, Spanish immigration to Canada didn't occur until the early 20th century. In 1913-14, about 2,000 Spaniards came to Canada, but that number tapered off to only 400 between 1920 and 1945. Most settled in large Canadian cities and came due to economic hardships at home. More than 200,000 Spaniards lived in Canada as of the 2001 census.

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Spanish Succession, War of:
The war fought from 1702 to 1713 over conflicting claims to the Spanish throne. Holland, Britain and most of the German States fought against France, Spain, Bavaria, Portugal and Savoy. The conflict spread to North America, with both France and Britain suffering losses and winning territories. Under the Treaty of Utrecht, 1713, France gave up claims to Newfoundland, Acadia and returned the captured territories in the Hudson's Bay to Britain. New France, Île St-Jean (now Prince Edward island) and Île Royale (now Cape Breton) remained in French hands, however, until the Treaty of Paris, 1763.


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Status Indians:
Refers to those Aboriginal peoples who are subject to laws contained in the Indian Act, and can only 'own' land on a reserve. Non-status Indians are those who are of Indian ancestry and identity but have abandoned their legal status rights either voluntarily or through marriage with a non-status Indian (i.e.: a white person). In 1985, the federal government introduced Bill C-31 as an amendment to the Indian Act, which extended Indian status to all Aboriginal women, their children and Aboriginals who were already enfranchised.


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Stony or Stoney:
Also known as the Stoney-Nakoda or "Rocky Mountain Sioux." They are related to the Assiniboine in language, but some members of these tribes have cultural and language differences. Oral legend has it that these Aboriginal peoples have lived at the foot of the Rocky Mountains since the beginning of time, but were part of the Lakota/Dakota nation on the Prairies. The Stony split away during the 1600s, and began to associate themselves with the Cree. They traveled westward with them, probably to avoid disruption to their way of life by European settlement and disease.


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Supreme Court of Canada:
The highest court in Canada. The British North America Act, 1867 (now renamed the Constitution Act, 1867) allowed the creation of the Supreme Courton April 8, 1875. The Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (JCPC) in Britain remained the final court of appeal, however, until the Statute of Westminster allowed Canada to end criminal appeals in 1933. In 1949, civil appeals to the JCPC also ended. The Supreme Court originally had six justices; this was increased to seven in 1927 and nine in 1949.
Visit the Supreme Court of Canada history page for more information.


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Swampy Cree:
An alternate name for Woodland Cree.

Swedish Canadians (Swedes):
Three settlers from Sweden invited to be part of the Selkirk Settlement in lower Manitoba made up the very first Swedish settlers. A much more substantive wave of a million Swedish settlers immigrated to Canada from the United States between 1868 and 1914, as land for farming became more and more scarce in America. Crop failures in their home country between 1866 and 1868 encouraged a similar exodus from Europe.

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Swiss Canadians:
Like the Swedish, many settlers from Switzerland can trace their lineage back to the Selkirk Settlement along Red River in what's now Manitoba. One hundred men from Swiss mercenary regiments that fought in the War of 1812 were asked by Lord Selkirk to come to the settlement to help establish order in the colony. Many would later remain on as settlers. A new wave of 180 civilians would join them at Red River in 1821. However, upon finding no new cabins built for them and an inhospitable landscape ravaged by three years of flooding, many of these immigrants traveled slightly further south to live along the current Manitoba-U.S. border. Other Swiss settlers came to live in Ontario and Québec during the 19th century.

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Tenants' Compensation Act, 1873:
A controversial law passed in Prince Edward Island. It provided compensation to the descendants of Maritime Loyalists who'd settled on land owned by absentee landlords, but never received land or money for their work readying the land for their settlement.

Test Acts:
Established in Great Britain, these acts required a person to profess their religion or religious beliefs in order to determine their eligibility for public office. Beginning in the late 16th century, the Church of England (Anglican Church) was the official faith of Great Britain. Thus, Roman Catholics and other Protestants were not allowed to hold office under these acts. By the end of the 19th century, tests were abolished.
Text of the Second Test Act, 1678

Thirteen Colonies (American Colonies):
The colonies that formed the United States of America by breaking away from British control through the American Revolution. They included Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia.

Tory:
The name used for members of the Conservative Party and its predecessors. Originating in Ireland, it came to be the name of the British political party with conservative beliefs and that supported the supremacy of the Church of England. It continued to be used for the British Conservative Party and, after 1867, the Canadian Conservative Party.


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Treaty:
An agreement or arrangement made by negotiation. For example, a contract in writing between two or more political authorities or parties, formally signed by their representatives and duly recognized as binding.

Treaty of Ghent:
The treaty ending the War of 1812. Neither side held the advantage in the military situation, so the treaty simply returned the nations to the situation that had existed before the war.

Turkish Canadians:
Immigrant labourers who arrived in Canada after 1945. They have tended to settle in large cities like Toronto and Vancouver, or heavily industrial cities in Ontario like Brampton and Hamilton.

Tuscarora:
A tribe that is frequently considered part of the Iroquois nation as they were linked to the Covenant Chain. The Tuscarorans predominantly lived in the area now covered by New York state.

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Ukrainian Canadians:
While some Ukrainian migration to Canada occurred with the arrival of mercenaries during the War of 1812, most Ukrainians didn't start settling in Canada until the period between 1891 and 1914. Many Ukrainians suffered from economic trouble and oppression from Russia, which would gradually absorb the Ukrainian homeland throughout the 20th century. Ukrainians weren't allowed into Canada during World War I, as they were seen as enemies of the state. Some 6,000 Ukrainians were held in internment camps during this war as enemy aliens.

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Underground Railroad, 1840 - 1860:
A secret network of black and white people who helped around 30,000 black slaves escape from the United States into British North America, primarily Upper Canada. Those escaping would travel by night on covert, secret routes to "safe houses" scattered across the United States, where they would remain until it was no longer dangerous to travel without fear of being caught by white slave owners.

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Upper Canada:
The area of Canada that formed the geographical basis of Ontario. Created from the colony of Québec by the Constitutional Act, 1791, it was so named because of its position on the upper part of the St. Lawrence River (Lower Canada was downriver). The dividing line between Upper and Lower Canada was the Ottawa River. The Union Act, 1840, reunited Upper and Lower Canada into the province of Canada. The two regions were then known as Canada East and Canada West until Confederation created the provinces of Ontario and Québec.


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Upper Canada Treaties, 1764 - 1836:
Series of small land cession treaties signed between the colonial government and Aboriginals living in southern and central Ontario.

Ursulines:
Nuns involved with the Company of St. Ursula, a group who would instruct and protect French and Aboriginal young girls. They first came to Québec in 1639, and have since started up numerous religious institutions in Canada, particularly within French Canada.

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Vancouver Anti-Asian Riots, 1907:
On September 8, 1907, members of the Asiatic Exclusion League staged a massive parade in front of Vancouver city hall to stir up anti-Asian sentiment. Most of the 9,000 or so who took part were unemployed white people competing with Orientals for jobs during an economic downturn. The leaders of this group encouraged the crowd to start looting and rioting in the city's Chinatown district. The crowd complied and destroyed Asian business storefronts throughout the city's bustling downtown. A commission led by future Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King (then Deputy Minister of Labour) later awarded $26,000 in damages to the Chinese community and $9,000 to the Japanese. A similar riot also occurred in Vancouver in 1887.

Vancouver Island Treaties:
Please see Douglas Treaties.

Voyageurs:
Licensed adventurers who canoed from Montréal into the interior of Canada during the first fur-trading era of the 1600s and 1700s. They acted as middlemen between Montréal merchants and Aboriginal allies who had access to beaver pelts.

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War of 1812:
The war fought from 1812 to 1814 between the United States and Britain. The war was fought over control of the British North American colonies. Although outnumbered, combined British, Canadian and Indian forces were able to repel the American invasion. In 1814, Napoleon was defeated in Europe and the British were able to reinforce their forces in North America. The Treaty of Ghent ended the war in 1814. As the situation was balanced, there was no exchange of territory. The conflict was an important event in establishing a Canadian identity and reinforcing ties with Britain.


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War Measures Act, 1914:
A statute giving special emergency powers to the federal Cabinet when it believes that there is a "war, invasion or insurrection, real or apprehended." This allows the government to rule by decree and suspend such rights as habeas corpus. It was used in World War I to detain Canadians of German, Ukrainian and Slavic descent and to detain Japanese Canadians in World War II. Their property was also confiscated. In 1970, the Act was also used during the October Crisis. Concern over this action led to a more detailed and limited Emergencies Act in 1988.


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Welsh Canadians:
Welshmen serving with British forces during various North American wars and conflicts of 18th and 19th centuries would stay on in and settle along the northern shore of Lake Erie. Like their English and Scottish cousins, they would settle the Canadian West during the early 1900s and were considered particularly suited for farming. Most would settle in Alberta and Saskatchewan.

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Western Arctic (Inuvialut) Claims Settlement Act, 1984:

An act approved by Parliament and covered by the 1982 Charter of Rights and Freedoms. It is meant to protect the area's wildlife and Inuit culture, and give the Inuit people of the Western Arctic control over the use of their resources. This act now cannot be changed without the approval of the Inuit living in the area.

White Paper, 1969:
This formed the basis of the federal government's position on Aboriginal land claims under the governance of Pierre Trudeau. He felt that treaties were international agreements between nation states, not the First Nations within Canadian society. His government did not initially believe in Aboriginal land claims, because it felt they were too general and undefined. See also the Red Paper.


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Williams Treaty, 1923:

Last of the major land cession treaties until the latter half of the century. This clarified land claims in favour of the federal government in areas of southern and central Ontario where formal treaties were never signed. Unlike other treaties, Aboriginals in this part of Canada gave up not only their land rights, but also their right to hunt and fish on ceded lands.


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Woodland Cree:

A branch of the Cree nation that can be typically found on the northern Prairies, although their domain once extended well into Hudson's Bay and James Bay. They were one of the first groups of Aboriginals who traded with Europeans in the 1600s and, by the 1800s, they were well known as middlemen in trading circles throughout Manitoba and Saskatchewan.


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Workingmen's Protective Association:
A highly visible, racist anti-Chinese association formed in British Columbia among white labourers during the Canadian federal election of 1878. Each of this group's members pledged to not hire Chinese workers or frequent Oriental businesses, fearful that Asian people would take their jobs and destroy their way of life. This group's members would confront politicians on the Chinese question during federal, provincial and municipal elections during the late 1800s. Many politicians, scared of losing the white votes needed to win, began to denounce the Chinese community in public. This racist attitude would still exist among many B.C. politicians well into the 20th century, and would contribute to events like the internment of the Japanese during World War II. Noah Shakespeare - a racist mayor and Member of Parliament for Victoria, B.C., during the 1880s - was notably elected this group's president in 1879.

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