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hjarg

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So, basically, in the future, Microsoft will be a Canadian company?

Anyway, loving it thus far!
 

stnylan

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volksmarschall

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The U.S. will be better off without Washington! So, well done! Well done, indeed! :p
 

RossN

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Very interesting. I wouldn't have expected such a beneficial peaceful resolution! :)

I suppose this makes Frasier Crane Canadian in this timeline.
 

vyshan

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AvatarOfKhaine and Southernpride: Yup Alaska is what I am aiming for next. :)

Guillec87: Intersting indeed. I actually had to mod this one a little bit. As their are a number of different outcomes from historical to the yanks just giving up all their claims. The problem though was with the option if they chose to split it at the columbia river, it just gave the historical outcome. So I had to fix that. Also had to add some renaming events for the states, it obviously will not be called Washington :p

Specialist290: Quite the strategic coup. :)

Iain_a_wilson: give it a go at some point. :)

Stnylan:
Pretty much.

Hjarg: Thanks, and yea looking at things it seems like Microsoft will be Canadian :D

OtakuStrategy: Plenty of tv shows will be set in Canada :D

Volksmarschall: Now Oregon and the city of Portland can become the crown jewel of the PNW. take that Seattle :p

RossN: I was a bit lucky, that I didn't get a war with the Americans. :)
 
Chapter 5: Refugees, Railways, and Alaska

vyshan

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Chapter 5: Refugees, Railways, and Alaska

The 1850s and 1860s were a period of growth and change throughout British North America. In the east, there was a massive boom in the economy and the British effort to support industrialization started to pay off. This economic boom brought more immigrants from the British Empire as well as brought refugees from America as slaves sought to escape their horrid conditions. The decade would also see soldiers from British North America fight in the Crimean War and not long after that war ended, the HBC would expand further by buying the frozen north.

A Trading Boom
By 1850, world trade was rapidly expanding as grain and timber production rose. The St. Lawrence canals were more active than ever. As more capital flowed into the colonies of British North America, investors and entrepreneurs took readily to focusing on Trains. With the border disputes settled with the United States, tracks were soon able to cross both countries. You could travel from Portland, in Maine up to Montreal while lines from Chicago and New York were being built to extend up to Toronto. All of which lead to a boom in trade as more goods than ever before were able to be shipped overseas.

Moreover as more track started to crisscross the colonies, this lead to more industrialization and factory towns to start to pop up. The British government encouraged the development of railroad and industrialization within their various colonies in British North America.

The best example of the impact of the train on the Canadian colonies was the town of Bytown. In 1854 the town was transformed by the St. Lawrence and Ottawa railway, and the Bytown and Prescott Rail which linked it to the rest of the empire, at great expense and cost to the city. This in turn caused a massive industrial and population boom to occur for Bytown. This would lead to the city being incorporated as Ottawa in 1855. Several years later Queen Victoria herself would choose Ottawa as the permanent capital for the United Province of Canada; before then it alternated between several cities.

What helped the trading boom, was a treaty signed in 1854 that gave Canadian grain and lumber free access to the American markets. However despite this treaty or perhaps because of it, there were also some tariffs placed to help promote industrial development and manufacturing in Canada. It should be noted that these tariffs were put in place to help support the lavish railroad grants going on during this time period. Said treaty would last till the Americans failed to renew it during the mid 1860s. The American’s refusing to renew that treaty would help the British later on in the decade as confederation was implemented.

Refugees from America
In the United States, the fighting over slavery would lead to the passage of the Fugitive Slave act in 1850. What this meant was that if a slave escaped to the various free states in the North, they could still be a slave and it was legal to capture them.

For Canada though, this act would see a massive increase in immigrants from the United States. Slavery was illegal within Canada by the 1850s as it was throughout the British Empire. Somewhere between 30,000 and 100,000 would flee to Canada.Their would be two principal regions for the slaves, Southern Canada and Nova Scotia.

The British welcomed the immigrants and supported the campaign to have the slaves escape to various of British North America. Their reasons for doing so was far more practical and realpolitik focused over wanting to do good. The British Government was well aware of the importance of Slavery to the economy of the Southern United States and if the slaves left the south that would help hinder the economy of the United States, even if it was ever so slightly.

Life in British North America for these slaves often was not what they expected. While there was no slavery in the colonies of British North America, there was plenty of discrimination and overt racism. When the United States would experience their Civil War over the issue of slavery, a good number of slaves who fled to Canada would return to fight in the Union Army. However, a good number would also continue to live in Canada to make a new life here.

Crimean War
Image00001.jpg

[The memorial in Halifax today]
When Britain got involved in the Crimean war against the Russian Empire, the colonies in British North America were brought into conflict with the Russians. The vast majority of the support that British North America brought was economic in interest. Similar to previous European conflicts, the Maritimes and now Columbia were the ones to benefit the most from the war as they became centers of trade as goods were shipped off to the rest of the empire.

However, in contrast to previous European conflicts that the empire got involved in, it was not purely economic. For the first time, Canadians would be go overseas to fight for the empire. Specifically Alexander Roberts Dunn and several other men would go and volunteer as part of the 11th Hussars. Dunn would be the first Canadian to be awarded the Victoria Cross for his bravery in during the siege of Sevastopol.

In Halifax, not long after the war ended, there would be a war memorial dedicated to the men that went overseas and died fighting for the Empire. the Welsford-Parker Monument would be one of the oldest War Memorials in Canada, specifically the 4th oldest and the only one dedicated to the men who fought and died for Canada and the Empire in the Crimean War.

The Alaskan purchase
Near the end of the Crimean War, Tzar Nicholas the 1st would die and his son, Alexander the 2nd would ascend to the throne. Alexander the 2nd would go down in history as one of the greatest rulers of Russia for his many reforms that he brought the country.

Following the end of the war, Alexander the 2nd would embark on a policy of reforming Russia along the model of Britain. Britain had one of the largest Empires in the world and her empire stretched to basically every continent on earth. The two biggest reforms that Alexander the 2nd would become famous for was his liberating of serfs throughout Russia and the creation of the Russian Duma which was modeled on the British Parliament. As part of his reforms it also brought about improvements in the relations between the Russian Empire and the British Empire.

For Canada though, the biggest impact of Alexander the 2nd reform was his desire to sell off the Russian colony of Alaska. The Russian Government was regarding the Alaskan colony as a drain on the Russian Empire’s economy. Moreover, he was far more interested in expanding Russia’s interest in Central Asia over Alaska.

The decision to buy the colony was a controversial decision as it was regarded as just more uncharted land for Canada by many within government. However, the argument that won the Prime Minister over was national defense. The Russians were could sell it to other powers such as the French and there was no guarantee that the current relations with the French would last. If war happened, then does Britain want her colonies being border by the French or the Americans.

With the sell of Alaska, the western territory would expand even greater. It however would have great impact on the HBC who took on the vast majority of the debt for the treaty. This would be of great import in the future as Confederation was implemented.

JGLlCmf.jpg

[Western British North America following the Alaskan Purchase]
 

Specialist290

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The Alaska Purchase may look like folly to some now, but undoubtedly future generations of Canadians will be grateful for the gold and oil deposits lying in wait to be discovered. And, as noted, there are good geopolitical incentives to secure the entire coastline, regardless of the value of the interior itself.

I do have to admit that, while I learned a great deal about the Fugitive Slave Acts and the Underground Railroad in the course of my studies, I never really looked much into what happened to those fortunate fugitives after they reached Canada. That's something I'll have to rectify one of these days.
 

stnylan

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Well that makes the borders a bit tidier :)

Canada is definitely solidifying.
 

RossN

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A very nice acquistion! :)

It seems we are getting close to Confederation. Can you give us an overview of the country when that happens?
 

vyshan

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Specialist290: yea, that aspect I wasn't that aware of till I started looking into it. I knew they arrived in Canada but then obviously since the PoV of this AAR is from Canada's perspective, I was curious as to "then what". So thus I started looking more into it. One could easily do far more as to what happens next for these slaves. :)
Stnylan: Indeed. Pretty borders. :)
RossN: Yup, there will be an overview of Canada :)
Riotkiller: A good strategic advantage. Not as good as the Mother country in having no border to worry about as she is an island, but the next best thing.

Also I want to apologize in general for the long break between chapters. I have just recently started a coding boot-camp that is part of my new job, so my time for a while was a bit erratic as I was adjusting to things. However, that period is done, so chapters should come out a bit more regularly, though no guarantee as this is a boot-camp.
 

Idhrendur

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No worries on the update schedule! And good luck with the bootcamp. If you find yourself with a need for some practice, I have some projects I can always use help with. :D
 
Chapter 6: Canadian Confederation

vyshan

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Chapter 6: Canadian Confederation

The 1860s were a period of immense transformation for British North America. By the end of the decade the various colonies, with the exception of Newfoundland, would have become one new Country. However this process was not a simple process, still it marked a major step forward for both Canada and Canadians as well as the British Empire as a whole.

Canada at the start of the 1860s
At the start of the 1860s British North America was divided between numerous different colonies. You had the United Province of Canada, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, Prince Rupert Land, Alaska, the arctic territories and the colony of Columbia.

While the process of Confederation is said to have started in the 1860s, the process of binding the colonies of British North America can easily stated to have begun after the American Revolution. From fighting together in the war of 1812 to more recently as rail companies worked to lay track to cross the borders of the colonies. More and more it looked like British North America was going to be united.

In regards to the matters of literacy, the annual reports to the colonial office reported over two thirds of the population was regarded as literate, or to be specific 67.7%. Most of the illiteracy coming from recent immigrants as well as the various first people of Canada.

Quebec

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The colony of Lower Canada was united with Upper Canada but as Confederation began to be underway it would split off to form the province of Quebec. At the start of the 1860s, the interior of Lower Canada had seen extensive immigration from Britain. There was concern among many within Montreal and Quebec City that their french culture and religion might disappear. To that end various policies were enacted to help support the Catholic Church and their french culture. These policies would be strengthened following confederation.

Ontario
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As mentioned above, Upper Canada was united with Lower Canada in the United Province of Canada. During the 1850s a number of reforms were underway that had drawn a divide between Upper and Lower Canada. The biggest being around state and church. Since the Family Compact lost power following the Durham Report, the Colony was interested in a number of reforms and one of them was separation of church in state. This was exemplified by the secularization of King’s College.

It should be noted that one of the other reasons for the decision for secularization in Upper Canada were the recent immigrants from Britain as a number of Presbyterians and Methodists had immigrated to Canada. Many of them resented the influence that the Anglican Church and supported policy to remove the influence of the Anglican Church.

The Maritime Colonies

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The city of Halifax had experienced some quite a bit of prestige when it was able to take the America’s Cup trophy after the British lost it to the Americans. The America’s Cup is a sailing competition between Yacht clubs. This was one of the many examples of the pride in the shipbuilding industry.

From fishing to shipbuilding, the sea was integral to these colonies. As industrialization began to be introduced to British North America, these colonies remained tied to the sea but adapted to the changing times. The new steamers and Ironclad ships that had begun to transform the Royal Navy were starting to be built in these provinces. Coal from cape Breton Island became integral not just in the new ships but also to the development of Canada as a whole.

Charlottetown Conference
1024px-Charlottetown_Conference_Delegates%2C_September_1864.JPG

In 1864 the various Maritime colonies began to plan for a conference between themselves to chart a path to the future. The British government in London was looking at a way at decreasing the expenses that the colonies were costing the crown. Moreover, they believed that responsible government in the region could help protect British Interests in light of the American Civil War. However, the colony of Canada would hear about this conference and decide that they too wanted to partake in it. Thus the Charlottetown Conference was planned to include representatives from most of Eastern British North America to occur for about a week and a half starting on September the 1st.

They could not have picked worse timing. For you see, a circus was in town at the same time, which was arguable more interesting to the locals then the economic conference. Thus the city of Charlottetown was crowded with visitors for the circus and for the conference. This lead to rather humorous incidents like the fact that all the hotels and accommodations were taken, forcing the Canadian delegates to stay aboard their own ship; as well as the fact no one was at the wharf during their arrival forcing William Henry Pope to personally row out and meet them as well as handle the new arrivals.

The inclusion of Canada, naturally overshadowed the rest of the colonies. One Canadian delegate, George Brown, spent two days discussing the details of the proposed constitution, which would keep Canada within the British Empire. However despite that the Conference was undoubtedly a success. As the various colonies began to plan for even greater cooperation between them the following month of Quebec.

Quebec Conference
A month after the Charlottetown Conference was the Quebec Conference. In contrast to the Charlottetown Conference which was more about the general outline of a plan for the union, the Quebec Conference was focused on hashing out the details of what this new country would look like. It established that Ottawa would be the capital of the new country. The government was modeled on the British Government with a House of Commons and upper House called the Legislative Assembly, which would later be renamed to Canadian Senate.

In terms of money, it was decided to have a national currency, the Canadian Pound, that would be linked to the British Pound, to help provide for some economic stability; as this was coming on the heels of the Americans cancelling a free trade agreement. It was also thought that by working to tie the economies of the new country and the British Government that it might help in the negotiations. The Conference also established that while no new colonial money would be minted, they would still be accepted as legal tender at least for the first decade.

The principal issue was over the scope and power of the central government. John A. Macdonald favored a strong central government. However, George-Étienne Cartier as well as delegates from the Maritime colonies favored a more weaker central government to protect both the francophone and Maritime interests from being dominated by what would become Ontario.

A balance was reached in which powers were to be divided between a central Parliament and provincial legislatures, creating a federal union where the interests of regions and minority populations could be defended. The provinces would have control over education, language and municipalities. The national government's powers would include control over currency, international trade and the criminal law. Some areas, such as immigration, would be shared, and both levels of government could raise taxes.

The London Conference
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With the details of what the new country would look like, then came the more difficult challenge of convincing the British Government. Thus by 1866 a bill was drafted however during the year Prime Minister John Russell who favored confederation was defeated in an election. This put the matter of the Bill in uncertainty..

In late 1866, the delegates from British North America arrived in London to discuss the matter of British North America. John A. Macdonald would be the leader of the delegation. The other delegates from British North America believed that they sought to secure an array of improvements to the Quebec Resolutions. The most contentious had to do with educational clauses. For example, Roman Catholic bishops in the Maritimes, notably Archbishop Thomas Connolly of Halifax, sought guarantees for Roman Catholic separate schools. In addition, Alexander Galt wanted protection for the rights of the English minority in Québec. And Samuel L. Tilley and Charles Tupper pressed for increased federal subsidies for the Maritimes.

The issue was that the various delegates could not agree on how bidding these new additions should be. Some stated that new additions had to be secured before they could sanction Confederation. While others stated the opposite. MacDonald decided to take the middle road and said that both were right but within definite limits. By late December, they had the newly named London Resolutions ready for submission to the Colonial Office, and later, to Parliament.

The biggest and most divisive issue was the matter of the name. Macdonald strongly favored the term Kingdom to firmly fixate the status of monarchy to the new country. However the colonial office regarded this as premature and pretentious, moreover the was some legal concern if Canada would be of equal to England or Scotland or even the United Kingdom as a whole.

In the end a compromise was made. The title of the new country would be the Kingdom of Canada, however the status would be solidified as below that of the United Kingdom. This secondary status would be titled Dominion to help avoid any issues.

The new Kingdom
640px-Canadian_Red_Ensign_%281868%E2%80%931921%29.svg.png

[the Flag of the new Kingdom of Canada]

In the various Maritime Colonies, the decision to join Canada, was not a popular one at first. There was a great deal of concern that the region would lose out to the bigger provinces. Thus formed several parties that have been regarded by history as the ‘anti-confederation party’. The anti-confederation was made up of both Liberals and Conservative. They wanted the same status as Newfoundland which remained a separate colony from Canada. There was some threats that they would secede from Canada, however the British government informed them in no certain terms that was off the table.

John A. Macdonald who had overseen the process of Confederation that brought together the various colonies into one nation would be elected as the first Prime Minister in 1867. Though as mentioned above that election also saw a number of anti-confederation parties winning in the Maritimes. Though by 1870 they had fallen apart and the liberal and conservative members would join up with the liberal and conservative party respectively.

The decision to create the Kingdom of Canada would have massive ramifications for the rest of the Empire down the road. Many within Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, India and more began to look at Canada as a model for gaining responsible government while remaining connected to Britain.

The buying of Prince Rupert Land
OySOhqK.jpg

[The Kingdom of Canada in 1870]

Almost immediately after becoming a country, the first step was to expand exponentially. The Hudson Bay Company which had been administering Prince Rupert Land, as well as the colonies of Alaska and Columbia was facing financial difficulties. It turned out running all that land was not that profitable. To that end they began to look to sell the land.

The new Canadian government decided that they would take on the expense of buying the land in 1868. This was influenced by the British government who were greatly concerned that the Hudson Bay Company would sell Prince Rupert Land to the Americans. The HBC was able to retain 20% of the arable land for their own usage.

After the sale of land to Canada, it would exponentially increase the size of the country. From Alaska to the Columbia river and from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean was now under the control of the new Kingdom of Canada. The HBC itself found that it was greatly in their benefit to get rid of the problem of running the land; for after selling the land they started to turn a profit, it did not hurt that it worked with the new Canadian government to help with immigrating to the interior.
 

Specialist290

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As ever, the most interesting bits are in the subtle differences. I wonder if the existence of Canada as a full-fledged "Kingdom" rather than a "Dominion" (even if not as an equal kingdom de jure) is going to have an impact on how Canadians view themselves, both as a nation and as subjects of a common British Crown.
 

stnylan

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Canada exists, but still needs to be tempered if she us to thrive
 

RossN

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God save the Kingdom of Canada! :)

I love the little detail about the circus being more a draw than the extremely important conference!
 

Arnulf Floyd

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Interesting and nice AAR:)
 

vyshan

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Specialist290: Yes it will, once we get to the whole imperial conference stuff the decision to grant Canada the status of Kingdom will make things interesting.

Also speaking of the British Crown, there will be some interesting things there as well down the road.

Stnylan: Now that she exists, comes the fun part of building the country. and connecting east and west together via Rail.

RossN: Same, when I was researching the events and I discovered that It was one of those silly events that I just had to include. I love these sort of details of how crazy things can be. :)

Arnulf Floyd: Thanks and welcome aboard. :)