Why did British Columbia join the Canadian Confederation?
Credit: Mark C Stevens Moment Getty Images
Q:

Why did British Columbia join the Canadian Confederation?

A:

Quick Answer

British Columbia entered the Canadian Confederation in 1871 because financiers in Ottawa agreed to build a railroad through the territory within a decade, took on the territory's massive debt and provided government subsidies to help British Columbia become more solvent. The United States wanted British Columbia as reparations from the British following the American Civil War and because America purchased Alaska in 1867. The British refused the United States' demands.

  Know More

Full Answer

Amor de Cosmos was a leading proponent of British Columbia joining the confederation. His support for joining Canada was opposed by the area's elite, who still wanted to be a part of Britain. Cosmos used his influence as a newspaper owner to further the cause of joining Canada.

The British appointed Sir Anthony Musgrave as the colony's governor with the mandate that he would make this western territory part of Canada. He helped convince local residents that joining Canada was the best course of action for this sparsely populated region.

The delegation sent to Ottawa had several demands, one of which was to alleviate British Columbia's $1.5 million debt. Another major concern was transportation, so the delegation wanted a wagon trail stretching eastward. George Cartier, representing the Canadian government, surprised the British Columbians by offering to build a railroad and supplying more than $200,000 per year to finance public work projects.

Learn more about US History

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is British Columbia's GST rate?

    A:

    As of July 2015, the goods and services tax rate is 5 percent in British Columbia, according to the Retail Council of Canada. This rate is the same for all other provinces without a harmonized sales tax and is paired with a 7 percent provincial sales tax.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What are the statutory holidays in British Columbia?

    A:

    Statutory holidays in British Columbia are made up of five national holidays and four provincial holidays, as of 2015. The provincial holidays are Victoria Day, British Columbia Day, Thanksgiving and Remembrance Day, and Family Day. Federal holidays are New Year's Day, Good Friday, Canada Day, Labour Day and Christmas Day.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Why did Manitoba join the Confederation?

    A:

    Manitoba joined the Confederation as a proactive way to protect their rights and land. Canadians hoped to expand west to prevent the United States from expanding upwards and downwards, soon after the U.S. had purchased Alaska.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What are the fire issues in the forests of British Columbia, Canada?

    A:

    One of the most significant fire-related issues in British Columbia's forests is mountain pine beetle infestation. These beetles, also commonly called bark beetles, kill trees in large numbers and create a large amount of dry, dead wood that poses a significant fire hazard.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore