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Chapter 3

GEO2010 Chapter 3 Notes.docx

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Western University
Geography 2010A/B
Suzanne Greaves

Chapter 3: Historical Geography The First People  First inhabitants of North America were old world hunters  Sea level was lower during glacial periods, thus creating a land bridge between Asia and Alaska (Beringia) – allowed people to migrate o Ice-free corridor was formed just east of Rocky Mountains and were able to migrate southward into the heart of North America o Early migrants traveled south in the continent down to USA, settled on the islands on the West Coast (island-hop over generations of people)  Paleo Indians: descendants of Old World hunters and their descendants are the Indians of North America  Culture Areas: regions within which the population has a common set of attitudes, economic and social practices / values  As glaciers began to retreat, the peoples of the Southern area followed the glaciers (used to the periglacial environment) o Portion of Paleo Indians migrate with the responses to varied environmental conditions o Those who stayed behind had to adapt to the changing environment, climate became more temperate, vegetation colonized and varied, wildlife colonized  Thule People: ancestors of today’s Inuit o Artic Canada was settled much later than the forested lands o Ice sheets had to melt and hunting technique needed to develop for Artic environment  First contact with Europeans in the late 1400s through 1600s  Terra Nullius: doctrine according to which European countries claimed legal right to ownership of the land occupied by Indians and Inuit because land was not cultivated and lacked permanent settlements  Met European explorers searching for a trade route to the Orient  End result of the first contact, aboriginal numbers decimated (as much as 80% disappeared at that time) o Loss of hunting grounds to European settlers and spread of new diseases greatly contributed to this depopulation o Europeans brought with them diseases that never affected the Aboriginals before, had no resistance o Following contact, language loss was swift  French who allied themselves with the Aboriginals North of the great lakes and British who allied themselves with the Iroquois South of the great lakes o French and British were opponents as far as getting and maintaining larger shares of the fur trade  Aboriginal people of Southern Ontario suffered considerably because of this o Groups of people being massacred, those that survived were adopted into the Iroquois (as slaves or members of the nation) o Terrible decimation of Aboriginals The Second People  Colonization of North America by the French and British was second major development in Canada’s early history  French dominated Canada first in Quebec  British came later, balance of power between French and British is decided on the plains of Abraham and British defeat the French  Britain dominates Canada, and immigrants came in two ways: o Loyalist refugees (late 1770s) – people from the American colonies who wanted to stay loyal to Britain o Immigrants from the British Isles between 1790 – 1860, stream of migrants from Britain helped relieved population pressure experienced by Britain  British migration to Canada had changed demographic balance between French-speaking and English-speaking Canadians The Third People  Wave of migrants from 1880s to 1914  People of European background other than French or English  Immigration had two key advantages for settlement: o Threat of American settlers moving into the Canadian West and annexing these lands would be annexed o Creation of a grain economy would provide freight for the Canadian Pacific Railway  Canadian government wanted to target this particular group in order to settle the West more effectively  Targeting of migrants from Europe is the start of multiculturalism, Sifton’s immigration policy changed the face of Canada o Ex: Wheat Belt – still known for its Ukrainian ethnic background The Territorial Evolution of Canada  1867 British North America Act by the British Parliament created the dominion of Canada  At that time, four colonies (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, province of Canada – Upper (Southern Ontario) / Lower (Southern Quebec)) came together as the dominion of Canada o 1870 – Deed of Surrender transferred Rupert’s Land and the North-Western Territory to the federal government o 1870 – Manitoba (Red River Settlement) joined Confederation o 1871 – British Columbia joined Confederation o 1873 – Prince Edward Island joined Confederation o 1880 – Ottawa acquired Artic Archipelago from Great Britain o 1905 – Alberta and Saskatchewan are created but land already belonged to Canada (no new land) o 1949 – Province of Newfoundland joined Confederation o 1999 – Creation of Nunavut  No new territory was added after 1949  Canada began as a small country but quickly became one of the largest  For Britain, the union of its North American colonies had three advantages: o Better chance for their political survival against the growing economic and military strength of the United States o Improved environment for British investment, especially proposed trans-Canada railway o Reduction in British expenditures for the defence of its North American colonies  The colonies saw different benefits from unification: o Largest domestic market for its growing manufacturing industries and stronger defensive position against a feared American invasion o Stronger defensive position against invasion by US  Maritime colonies were a little different, not keen on joining Confederation until the Fenian raid and termination of the Reciprocity Treaty o 1866 Fenian (Irish Nationalists) raided into New Brunswick, invade from the US and hold New Brunswick as hostage as a way of giving Ireland its independence but failed o Not as secure as they thought they were and thus, decided to join Confederation even though they had nice trade with the Caribbean o End of Canadian American Reciprocity Treaty (1864 – 1866) – raw materials free trade left Maritime colonies looking for new trade opportunities National Boundaries  Well before Confederation in 1867, wars and treaties between Britain and the United States shaped many of Canada’s boundaries  Oregon Territory: territory in the Pacific Northwest stretching from 42°N to 54° 40’ N, possession of which was disputed between US and Great Britain (determined Vancouver Island remaining within BNA)  Red River Migration: Hudson’s Bay company had perhaps as many as 1,000 settlers from Fort Garry travel by horse drawn wagons to Fort Vancouver in 1841 to shore up the British claim to the Oregon Territory Internal Boundaries  1881 – Ottawa enlarges boundaries of Manitoba  1898 – Ottawa approves extension of Quebec’s northern limit to the Eastmain River  1899 – Ottawa decides to set Ontario’s western boundary at the Lake of the Woods and extends its northern boundary to the Albany River and James Bay  1905 – Ottawa announces the creation of two provinces, Alberta & Saskatchewan  1912 – Ottawa redefines boundaries of Manitoba, Ontario, and Quebec which extend their provincial boundaries to their present position  1927 – Great Britain sets the boundary between Quebec and Labrador as the Northern Divide. Quebec has never accepted this decision  1999 – New territory, Nunavut is hived off from the Northwest Territories in the eastern Artic The Aboriginal / Non-Aboriginal Faultline  Framework of Ottawa VS Aboriginals  Aboriginal population of Canada represents a very diverse population o Poundmaker: outstanding political leader of the Plains Cree and played a key role in setting terms for Treaty No. 6 and sought peaceful solution for desperate plight of his people o Big Bear: last of the great chiefs who had a vision to unite the Plains Cree to stand together against the impending wave of settlers and to find a way to sustain their culture o Pass Laws: government officials tried to prevent Indians from leaving their reserves (feared another rebellion)  Government’s first goal in the late 1880s was assimilation, sooner or later the Aboriginal people will be assimilated into mainstream Canadian society  Education was an important tool in federal efforts to “civilize” Aboriginal people  Put in place policies and took actions designed to facilitate to promote assimilation quickly except it didn't work  One of the darkest chapters in Canadian history – residential schools, more difficult to assimilate mature generations but if you can get younger people that are more easily manipulated o Providing education, you can help the younger people become part of mainstream Canada o Young people took to residential schools that were religiously dominated, children were forbidden to speak their own language, every aspect of their traditional life was taken away from them and plunged into foreign  Abuse of every type was heaped onto residential schools  Children sent back to villages from summer, could not develop identities  Latterly, federal government recognized Aboriginal rights and recognized the failure of assimilation  Relationship with Ottawa has traditionally been paternalistic (caretaker, Aboriginal need to be supervised), now the Aboriginal people want control over their own affairs o Main elements – settling of outstanding land claims, recognizing Aboriginal right to self-government, and accepting that the concerns of each category of Aboriginal peoples are different  Aboriginal Peoples: All Canadians whose ancestors lived in Canada before the arrival of Europeans  Status (Registered) Indians: Aboriginal peoples who are registered as Indians under the Indian Act  Non-Status Indians: those of Amerindian ancestry who are not registered as Indians under the Indian Act  Treaty Indians: Aboriginal people who are descendants of Indians who signed a numbered treaty and who benefit from the rights described in the treaty (all treaty are status but not all status are treaty)  Metis: people of mixed biological and cultural heritage (joining of blood lines between Indians and Europeans)  Inuit: people descended from the Thule who migrated into Canada’s Artic  First Nations People: those Aboriginal persons who report a single response of “North American Indian” to the Aboriginal identity census question  Abori
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