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Lecture

September 21&27


Department
History
Course Code
HIS312H1
Professor
Ian Radforth

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HIS312 September Lectures
Lecture 2; Sept 21st
Early days of immigration, people mainly came from France and Britain
-Small, erratic immigration was sparse; people were disconnected from one another
- immigrants tried to assert themselves into aboriginal places
- this didn’t go over poorly, the number of newcomers was small, aboriginals found ways
of accomodating these newcomers
- there was some violence but for the most part things were welcoming, beneficial, trade
happened.
-biggest source of suffering came from the disease the newcomers brought, many
aboriginals died
- few accounts from the immigrants themselves who came to Canada, there were
advertisements from their home countries that are still around
-most new immigrants were illiterate, very little to go on for the ordinary immigrant
- European expansion, 1490s led to further exploration into North America
Gold, God and Glory
-3 main reasons for exploration
- gold wasn’t found, however economic success came through fur and fish which could
be traded internationally for profit.
- did not encourage large-scale expansion due to the nature of the economy. The fur
trades required few people, work mostly done by the indigenous people.
- fishermen; migratory, came out in their boats, fished, and returned home. Didn’t settle
down
-God, Christian missions were very active particularly in the 17th C.
- priests who arrived, didn’t reproduce; little impact on settling
-Glory
-desire for international prestige of monarchs, heads of state.
-believed if they acquired vast territory they would be feared etc.
-acquired land through alliances with native peoples
Canada--St. Lawrence Valley
- Part of what was soon called Canada, St. Lawrence river was first explored by Cartier.
- French attempts to create settlements here, none of them were successful until
1608; Samuel de Champlain
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- - French gov’s original plan for populating the area was that it was better to have some
French people living here amongst the traders with the natives
-Proprietorships; privately run businesses who were interested in establishing fur trading
along the St. Lawrence river. Part of the deal was to bring over some immigrants and to
assert Christianity in Canada.
-did this unenthusiastically didn’t care for immigrants, main purpose was profit through
furs
-would hire others who would get immigrants to settle. Offered them free land, offered to
pay their way across the Atlantic as an inducement to come and settle
-by 1660, only about 3000 french immigrants had come to the st. Lawrence area to settle
- King Louis XIV aggressively moved immigration forwards
-busy decades 1660s-70s, a large # of immigrants arrived in the St. Lawrence Valley
-then the French gov lost interest and fewer immigrants came
-1763; French gov gave up its claim to the St. Lawrence valley
-by 1760, population was 75 000 people
- from these, 10k immigrants who stayed that the entire Quebec population is derived.
- rural settlers on the land, running their own independent farms; that was the attraction of
coming to Canada
Who were these French immigrants?
-half rural France, half urban places
-most of them ended up in rural Canada
- urban immigrants came from port cities such as La Rochelle
- these ports already have commercial ties with the fur trade in Canada
-most of rural imms came from the back country of those ports along the west coast
-immigrant males greatly outnumbered the females
-most came as contract workers, thus males. ‘engages’ they had an engagement; contract
- these young men signed a 3 year contract to work at a particular kind of work in
Canada. Either the gov or proprieter paid their ticket across the atlantic, guaranteed them
work for 3 years, sometimes housing and food too, and they were to do particular kinds
of work. Such as building roads, houses, furniture.
-very few women came as contract workers
- some of these indentured servants became permanent settlers, some took out a farm, got
a land grant and began to build a farm
- others however returned, 25k immigrants came, 15k went home, only 10k stayed.
- these contracts usually came with tickets to go home, thus why many returned to France
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-mostly males also due to the fact that many soldiers came over, troops there to protect
them from aboriginal attacks, sometimes the Iroquois attacked the French settlement.
-at the end of their soldiering days they were offered land and encouraged to settle, still,
all male soldiers
-gov intervened to bring women over, Louis XIV fostered the Kings Daughters or La
Filles du Roi, their immigration was organized and paid for by the French state, assisted
by the Catholic church which recruited these girls mostly from orphanages in paris and
the Church looked to recruit girls who was virgins who would become good wives and
mothers.
-immediately upon arrival they were snatched up by settlers, very quickly marriages took
place, children born.
-only 770 women came over, yet they were responsible for the huge natural increase of
the population of the st. Lawrence valley.
-king sent many petty criminals to settle the area
-over 500 captured British could begin to settle
-300 African slaves were brought over; worked as household servants, some were
carpenters. Men and women slaves in this period
- these slaves were greatly outnumbered by the Aboriginal slaves.
Why so few immigrants in early Canada?
-penile colony, not so attractive
-Church; catholic church in France would say they had an awful job to do in order to gain
funds. Horrible conditions, we need your support.
- also a kind of general disinterest when immigrating to France, going so far, material
circumstances
-peasants in France were secure on their lands, didn’t need to really look for new home
- wanted Canada to be Catholic, small protestant population in France, French gov
wouldn’t allow protestants to move to new france, it would be a ‘pure place’
- as a result, many protestants in France who wer eon the move ended up moving to the
Brtish colonies, what became the U.S. eventually.
-1760 French immigration came to a hault; this part of the world would now be British,
French government stopped encouraging people and very few continued to come over.
Further east, maritime region of Canada
-Area usually called Acadia (PEI, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick)
- British didn’t call it Acadia, called it Nova Scotia
-Vy for power, both sides saw this as a good region, a way of protecting their heavily
populated colonies here (British)
- france saw this area as somewhere that would protect the St. Lawrence valley
-area had military/strategic importance.
- French were first to settle the area, # of attempts early in the 1600s
Bay of Fundy !
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