Conflict and Rebellion
Society in Lower Canada was seriously split…
a. merchants c. Loyalists and British immigrants
b. French-Canadian habitants d. American immigrants
► A) Merchants:
► sought to exploit the natural resources of
the colony by selling fur and timber
► B) Habitants
► favoured an agricultural society led by the
► C) Loyalists and British immigrants
► wanted government by an educated,
► government that was open to all the people
► Causes of tension:
► Economic crisis and ethnic rivalry
► The French had their fears about living
under the British
► They thought they would be deported like
the Acadians or buried in a wave of English
► The British responded with the Quebec Act
of 1774 to:
► Appease the French during the American
► Appease a culture that resisted
► The Quebec Act allowed for an elected
assembly, which was soon stocked with
► The French still feared for their way of life.
► After 1815 - huge increase in English Protestant
► This immigration brought disease that killed many
► They may become lawyers, farmers, or priests,
but the French could not succeed in the business
► The English governors would appoint English
people into powerful posts within the government,
excluding the French.
► English appointed legislative councils would often
veto elected assembly motions.
► So………..The French were angry
How was this anger expressed?
►A militant group called the Patriotes was
► Led by Louis Joseph Papineau
► They fought for greater French influence in
government against the English Party, a
group of British and Scottish business elites.
How did the British React?
► Instead of granting the
French more power, they
proposed to reduce French
influence over the colonial
► Often, thugs would
intimidate French voters
during elections (the
French Patriotes would
often do the same).
The situation deteriorates…
► May 21, 1832 – English thugs succeed in getting a
French pooling station closed in a by-election. A fight
► Governor calls in the 15th Regiment to restore order.
► They shoot three Canadiens.
► Three weeks later, the ship Carrick arrives from Ireland
carrying hundreds of poor Irish and one Cholera plague.
Which soon sweeps Montreal killing thousands.
► The Patriotes respond with a petition called the 92
Resolutions which they take directly to London.
► London rejects the Resolutions and the Patriotes
Monseigneur Jean-Jacques Lartigue
– Bishop of Montreal
► In a letter to Louis Joseph
Papineau October 24, 1837
► “Have you seriously thought
about the horrors a civil war
would bring? Have you
imagined the rivers of blood
flowing through the roads and
countryside, and innocent
people overwhelmed along
with the guilty in the same
streets of disasters? Have you
considered that every popular
revolution, almost without
exception, is a blood-letting?”
► November, 1837 – All British regular troops moved
from York (Toronto) to Lower Canada and the
► War breaks out – Patriotes win at St. Denis
► November 5, 1837 – 150 Patriotes killed at St.
Charles, Papineau and other leaders flee to United
► December 14, 1837 – The last remnants of the
Rebellion are killed when the British open fire and raid
the church of St. Eustache in Deux-Montagnes.
► The rebellion is over.
► Conflicting views on society
1. Conservative (Tory) –
stressed order, tradition,
democracy (mob rule)
believed that most people
were not capable of ruling
2. Reformers – opposed
special privileges to elite
-leader was William Lyon
Mackenzie, a newspaper
-wanted a more equitable
system for land distribution
The Ruling Elite – people critical of the ruling
elite were forced out of the assembly and
sometimes out of the colony
Clergy Reserves – reformers wanted to sell the
land and use the proceeds to support
education in the colony
Government Clique – laws passed by the
assembly could be thwarted or vetoed by an
appointed clique of government officials
Economic Problems – worldwide financial
crisis; blamed the banks and large merchants
Uprising in Lower Canada – Nov., 1837 –
uprising in Lower Canada – drew away British
soldiers and served as an example to
Mackenzie and his followers
► The rebellion in Upper Canada
was much smaller than the one
in Lower Canada.
► 1 week after the battle in St.
Charles, the Reformers, under
MacKenzie began to arm
themselves and drill in the
outskirts of town.
► By December 1st, Mackenzie had
created his headquarters at
Montgomery’s Tavern north of
Toronto and began to recruit
discontented farmers to his
► They decided that with the
soldiers all in the Richelieu
Valley, now was the time to
strike and seize power.
► MacKenzie led over 100
followers down Younge Street
to seize the town hall.
► After firing their first volley, the
rebels were thrown into
confusion by the response from
the guns of the militia that
were defending the town.
► The Reformers began to retreat
after the first shots were fired.
► Two days later, the militia
returned to take Montgomery’s
Tavern. The combat lasted a
few minutes and the rebels ran
at the first sign of cannon fire.
► The rebellion was over and
many of the leaders fled to the
U.S. Two Reformers were hung
and MacKenzie escaped.
Background to Confederation
Why was Lord Durham sent to BNA?
What was his main recommendation?
► Durham was sent to the
colonies to investigate
the causes of the two
► His main
recommendation was to
unite the colonies.
► A.k.a. – Confederation!!!!
Why did Britain abandon it’s
mercantile policies in the 1840’s?
► Hey Breeann, what’s MORKantilism anyway?
► Britain was finding that the mercantilist
system was too expensive to run.
► Britain wanted to expand trade with other
countries – especially America
What was the annexation manifesto?
► Signed by 325 businessmen from Montreal
► Recommended annexation with the United
States to increase trade and profits
► Become part of the United States?!?!?!?!?
How did revolutions in transportation
contribute to union of the colonies?
► The railways and canals
made trade and
between colonies easier
and more importantly -
► They grew closer – like
the internet lets strangers
hook-up who would
otherwise never “merge”
When did the Americans invade
► Once in 1775
► Again in
Why did Britain and some of it’s colonists
support the South in the American Civil War?
► The British textile industry relied heavily on
cheap American cotton (gee, I wonder why
SLAVERY American cotton was SLAVERY so
► Many also feared that the Northern Army
would turn on Canada after the war was
Were the colonies justified in their
fear of a U.S. invasion?
► Considering the Canadian support for the
South in the war, these fears were justified,
but it never happened.
Why did Britain encourage the
colonies to unite?
► Britainthought that a united colony would
make a better, cheaper defense against
► It would also be cheaper to run the colony if
it was united.
Summarize the two main reasons for
► Trade – the colonies were closely linked by
innovations in transportation.
► Defense – the threat from the U.S. forced
the colonies to unite.