Seven Years’ War (Plain-Language Summary)
The Seven Years’ War (1756–63) was the first global war. In North America, Britain and France fought each other with the help of Indigenous allies. At the end of the war, France gave Canada (Quebec) and Ile Royale (Cape Breton) to Britain, among other territories. This is the reason that Canada has a British monarch but three founding peoples — French, British and Indigenous.
(This article is a plain-language summary of the Seven Years’ War. If you are interested in reading about this topic in more depth, please see our full-length entry Seven Years’ War.)
South Sea Company
South Sea Company, chartered in 1711 by the British Parliament, with a monopoly over the W coast of the Americas to a distance of 300 leagues out to sea. In 1720 it assumed a large part of the British national debt and almost collapsed that year in a stock market crash known as the South Sea Bubble.
The American Response to the Canadian Rebellions of 1837–38
By December 1837 and January 1838, rebels from Upper and Lower Canada had suffered heavy defeats at the hands of British and Loyalist forces. (See: Rebellion in Lower Canada; Rebellion in Upper Canada.) They fled to the United States to seek financial and military assistance. The American public was aware that there had been armed conflicts in the Canadas. Many were even initially supportive. However, the presence of Canadian rebels on American soil forced many to question American involvement. The growing tensions with Great Britain over the Caroline Affair complicated matters. The creation of the Republic of Texas and the fight over the abolition of slavery were also factors. In January 1838, US President Martin Van Buren took steps to ensure America’s neutrality in the Canadian rebellions.
The Conquest of New France
The Conquest (La Conquête) is a term used to describe the acquisition of Canada by Great Britain during the Seven Years’ War. It also refers to the resulting conditions experienced by Canada’s 60,000 to 70,000 French-speaking inhabitants and numerous Indigenous groups. French forces at Quebec City surrendered to British forces on 18 September 1759, a few days after the crucial Battle of the Plains of Abraham. French resistance ended in 1760 with the capitulation of Montreal. In 1763, the Treaty of Paris surrendered New France to Britain. The Royal Proclamation of 1763 introduced assimilative policies that ultimately failed. They were replaced by the provisions of the Quebec Act of 1774. Although it helped spark the American Revolutionary War (1775–83), the Act also granted Canadians enviable conditions that resulted in generations of relative stability.
Trade Goods: Indigenous Peoples
Indigenous trade goods (often referred to in the literature as Indian Trade Goods) are items of European manufacture that were traded with the Indigenous peoples of Canada for furs.
Trade Silver: Indigenous Peoples
Trade silver was made by silversmiths in Québec City, Montréal, London and various American cities, including New York, Philadelphia and Detroit. Because of the high demand between 1780 and 1820, it became a mainstay of the silversmiths' trade.
The trading post can be viewed as a large household whose size and social organization reflected the cultural heritage of its members and the post's role in the fur trade.
Travels and Adventures in Canada and the Indian Territories between the Years 1760 and 1776
Travels and Adventures in Canada and the Indian Territories between the Years 1760 and 1776 (New York, 1809; Toronto, 1901) was written by Alexander Henry (the elder), one of the first Britons to venture into western Indigenous territory after the defeat of the French at Québec.
Ville-Marie, Catholic utopian colony founded on 17 May 1642 on Île de Montréal by the Société Notre-Dame de Montréal, under the governship of Paul de Chomeday de Maisonneuve, to bring Christianity to the native people; but located in a key region for the development of agriculture and the fur trade.
Voyage of the Nonsuch: A Turning Point in the Fur Trade
At some point in the 1650s, two adventurers from New France embarked on a journey that eventually revolutionized the fur trade and changed the course of Canadian history.
Voyageurs were independent contractors, workers or minor partners in companies involved in the fur trade. They were licensed to transport goods to trading posts and were usually forbidden to do any trading of their own. The fur trade changed over the years, as did the groups of men working in it. In the 17th century, voyageurs were often coureurs des bois — unlicensed traders responsible for delivering trade goods from suppliers to Indigenous peoples. The implementation of the trading licence system in 1681 set voyageurs apart from coureurs des bois, who were then considered outlaws of sorts. Today, the word voyageur, like the term coureur des bois, evokes the romantic image of men canoeing across the continent in search of furs. Their life was full of perilous adventure, gruelling work and cheerful camaraderie.
Wacousta; Or, The Prophecy: A Tale of the Canadas
Wacousta; Or, The Prophecy: A Tale of the Canadas, novel by John Richardson, was published in London and Edinburgh in 1832; and in Montréal in 1868, as Wacousta; Or the Prophecy.