The American War of Independence• Britain was in debt after the Seven Years’ War and wanted to save money.• It wanted to keep their troops in the Thirteen Colonies but decided to make the colonies pay for it.• Britain raised the taxes, but the colonist refused to pay – They believed that they had no right to be taxed because they had no elected representative in the British parliament. – They came up with the slogan “No taxation without representation.”
• In 1775 the protested turned into a rebellion.• George Washington took command of an army raised in the Thirteen Colonies to fight the British rule.• In 1776, the United States declared themselves independent from Britain and began a war called The American war of Independence, or the American Revolution.• Lasted until 1783.
• The war dived the people of the thirteen colonies in to two groups: The “Patriots” and the “Loyalists”.• The Patriots supported the rebellion and the Loyalist opposed it.• The Loyalist wanted to remain with the British empire and loyal to the crown.
The Loyalist Migration• The War of Independence caused people to take a side, whether or not they supported the British.• During and after the war, many people who supported Britain fled, seeking refuge in other British colonies in Quebec and Nova Scotia.• These people called themselves Loyalist and had British ancestors. They included: – 3000 Black Loyalists – 2000 Haudenosaunee – 3000 German Mennonites
Challenges of the Loyalist Migration• Impacts on Canadiens – Increased the number of British people in Quebec – Before the migration there were very few British settlers living in Quebec but by 1790 the population had increased to 10%. – The British Settlers wanted British laws and customs – The Canadiens were worried about the rights they had obtained in the Quebec Act and how the British had affected this.
• Impacts on the First Nations – Loyalists were mostly farmers and their arrival marked a shift in the agreements Britain made with the First Nations. – Before the loyalists arrived Britain negotiated treaties of “peace and friendship.” – These were signed to gain the support of the Mi’kmaq during the American war of independence – After the Loyalists arrived Britain negotiated treaties as a way to give loyalists land – First Nations people lost a lot of land between 1781 and 1792
Loyalist Press for Changes• Nova Scotia – Many Loyalists joined existing settlements when they arrived – People migrated here after the Seven Year War – A large group of Loyalists established settlements along the St. John River in what is today New Brunswick • These people felt separated from the people of Nova Scotia because of geography and politics
• Quebec – English settlers in Quebec petitioned Britain to allow them to use British laws and customs instead of French laws and customs – This caused Britain a problem because they owed these loyalists for helping Britain during the war, but they had already passed the Quebec Act of 1774 to help secure the help of the Canadiens
Britain’s Response to Loyalist Concerns• Because of Loyalist settlers around the St. John River, Britain divided Nova Scotia into several new colonies in 1784• This gave the St. John Rive settlers their own colony, New Brunswick – This also created the colonies of Cape Breton Island and St. John Island• In 1791 Britain passed the Constitutional Act of 1791
The Constitutional Act of 1791• Divided Quebec into Upper and Lower Canada• Established British civil and criminal law in Upper Canada – It also reaffirmed the arrangements under the Quebec Act of 1774 in Lower Canada• They set aside land for Protestant Churches, and guaranteed the Canadiens rights to the Catholic Church• Established officials and legislative council that was appointed by Britain in each of the colonies – This meant that Upper and Lower Canada had “representative government.”