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Sunday, 1 December 2013



Canada actually comes from the word 'Kanata', a Huron or Iroquois word for village, and Canada is a 'big village'.

England’s King Henry Henry VII paid John Cabot a 10-pound reward for discovering Canada in 1498.

French explorer Jacques Cartier planted a cross on Canada's Gaspé Peninsula on July 24, 1534. The 10-meter cross bearing the words "Long Live the King of France" took possession of the territory in the name of Francis I of France.

Portrait of Jacques Cartier by Théophile Hamel, ca. 1844. No known paintings of Cartier were created during his lifetime.

King Francis I of France gave Jean-François Roberval (c. 1500–1560) on January 15, 1541 a commission to settle the province of New France (Canada) and provide for the spread of the "Holy Catholic faith".

Portrait of Jean-François de la Roque de Roberval

French explorer Samuel de Champlain founded Quebec City as a trading post at the confluence of the St. Lawrence and St. Charles rivers in 1608. From this and subsequent settlements Catholic missionaries, explorers, and fur traders pushed across North America. Having begun with just 32 colonists, the city is now home to about 500,000.  It is considered to be the first European-built city in non-Spanish North America.

The first English child born in Canada came into this world at London and Bristol Company's Cuper's Cove, colony in Newfoundland on March 27, 1613. The father, Nicholas Guy (fl. 1612 – 1631), was a member of the first group of settlers to journey to Newfoundland for colonization. In the winter of 1612 - 1613 there were sixty-two people were living in the colony.

The early Canadians wanted to get the population to increase, so in the late 1660s they imported women from France. A couple years later, they passed an ordinance requiring bachelors to marry them.

When the Articles of Confederation were adopted as the governing instrument of the former British colonies after the Revolutionary War, the British colony of Canada was invited to become a member of the Confederation, the only colony outside the original thirteen that was invited to do so. She decided not to become a part of the new nation.

When Scottish explorer Alexander Mackenzie reached the Pacific Ocean on July 22, 1793, he became the first recorded human to complete a transcontinental crossing of Canada. It was also the first east to west crossing of North America north of Mexico and predated the Lewis and Clark expedition by ten years.

The United States invaded Canada in 1812. Many Americans also believed that the invasion would be a cakewalk, and that ordinary Canadians were keen to shake off their British overlords. The "acquisition of Canada," predicted former President Thomas Jefferson, "will be a mere matter of marching." However, the campaign went terribly, and after a few months the entire Michigan territory had fallen.

The United Kingdom and the United States signed on October 20, 1818 the Convention of 1818. the treaty settled the Canada–United States border on the 49th parallel between the Rocky Mountains and Lake of the Woods.

Lower Canada, now Quebec, gave black men the right to vote on March 24, 1837. In addition, it was decreed they would be referred to as African-Canadians, not African-Americans.

On December 31, 1857, Queen Victoria chose Ottawa, Ontario, then a small logging town, as the capital of Canada.

Upon Confederation in 1867, the name Canada was officially adopted for the new Dominion. Alternative names proposed were Tuponia, Borealia, Cabotia, Transatlantica, Victorialand and Superior. It was commonly referred to as the Dominion of Canada until after World War II.

The first census of the Dominion of Canada on April 2, 1871 listed the population as 3,689,257.

The Canadian Parliament established the North-West Mounted Police, the forerunner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police - dubbed the Mounties - on May 23, 1873. They were established to bring law to its untamed north-west. Canadian leader John A. Macdonald first announced the force as the North West Mounted Rifles, but changed the name because of U.S. fears of a military build-up.

North-West Mounted Police officers, 1898

The first performance of O Canada, the song that would become the national anthem of Canada, took place at the Congrès national des Canadiens-Français on June 24, 1880.

Construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway, the first transcontinental railroad across Canada, concluded with the driving of the "last spike" by CPR railroad financier Donald Smith in Craigellachie, British Columbia on November 7, 1885.

Donald Alexander Smith drives in the Last Spike

Canada's original parliament buildings in Ottawa burned down in a fire on February 3, 1916

Canada declared war on Germany on September 11, 1939. Other than the Second World War, there has never been a declaration of war by Canada.

PM Mackenzie King's request to King George VI for approval of war declaration

The only known armed German military operation on North American soil in World War 2 was the installation of a covert weather station in northern Canada. Wetter-Funkgerät Land-26 was erected by a German U-boat crew in Northern Labrador in October 1943.

The 1946 Canadian Citizenship Act converted British subjects into Canadian citizens. Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King became the first Canadian citizen on January 1, 1947.

The current design of the Flag of Canada was chosen by an act of Parliament on January 28, 1965.

The actress Pamela Anderson was the first baby born on July 1, 1967, Canada’s 100th birthday. She was referred to in the press as Canada’s “Centennial Baby.”

Pamela Anderson on Oct. 11, 2009. By Toglenn - Wikipedia Commons

In Canada, the Official Languages Act came into force on September 9, 1969, which gave English and French equal status in the government.

"O Canada" officially becoame the national anthem of Canada on July 1, 1980.

Canada declared national beauty contests cancelled as of 1992, claiming they were degrading to women.

In a 1995 referendum, 50.58 percent of voters supported the province of Quebec remaining a part of Canada, narrowly averting sovereignty.

When Canada’s Northwest Territories was subdivided to create Nunavut to the east, the people who remained in the territory voted to keep the old name. The runner-up was ‘Bob’.


1 in 7 Canadian workers have a career directly linked to agriculture and food.

The reason why the Canadian Arctic is called the "Land of the Midnight Sun" is because during the summer many communities have light 24 hours of the day.

Canada is the second largest country in the world - only Russia is bigger.

The border between Canada and the U.S. is the world's longest frontier. It stretches 3987 miles (6416 km).

The majority of the Canadian population lives south of Seattle.

Two-thirds of Canadians live in Quebec and Ontario.

90% of Canadians live within 100 miles of the US border.

Canada has over 230 islands.

Canada has more inland waters and lakes than any other country in the world.

Canada has more than half of all natural lakes in the world.

Canada has the third largest oil reserves of any country in the world after Saudi Arabia and Venezuela.

The province of Alberta has been completely free of rats since 1905.

Canadians consume more macaroni and cheese than any other nation on earth.

The only walled city remaining in the United States or Canada is Quebec City. It has signs on it that tell you to keep out in French and English.

Canada's official phone number is 1-800-O-CANADA.

Canada ranks first in the world when it comes to Internet usage.

More than half of Canada's population has a college degree, making it the most educated country in the world.

Source Isaac Asimov’s Book Of Facts

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