Tutorial Reading Response: Confederation: What Kind of Country Are We to Have?
The first document to be read was the seventy two resolutions devised by the British
North American colonies when they met in Quebec in October of 1864. The purpose of the
resolutions was to create a framework on which the new federal system could function and look
to deal with some of the issues the regions were facing at this time. The Maritimes in particular
were suffering from economic debt in their attempts to build transcontinental railways.
Therefore, it was thought that it would be a better idea to band the regions together as one nation
in order to have more security when they borrow money for their railways. Furthermore, defense
issues were also an issue, with the increasing threat of American annexation, and the Fenian
raids creating unrest among the inhabitants of British North America. What is interesting about
this document is not only that it is extremely detailed and has hardly undergone any changes
since its creation, but the fact that the last eight or nine resolutions seem to act as incentives for
the other provinces to join into confederation.
The next two assigned documents are debates about the federal union from the politicians
meeting in Charlottetown and Quebec City, and two maps depicting Canada before and after
confederation. The maps are a great supplementary to this module because it gives the reader a
visual as to what is happening geographically. The debate gives us a look on the on the different
perspectives of political leaders and their reasons behind wanting to join or not wanting to join
into confederation. Some politicians, for example Antoine-Aimé Dorian, were hesitant about
joining confederation because he does not want to relinquish power to a general government.
George Brown, a pro-confederate ma