Important Dates


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All dates appearing on these lists can be found in the "Discover Canada, The Rights and Responsibilities of Citizenship" official Study Guide and are intended to be used in conjunction with the study guide. These lists are not exhaustive.


Looking for a CHRONOLOGICAL List of these dates?

Listed in the order found in "Discover Canada"

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1215 The signing of the Magna Carta. (Great charter of Freedoms)

1982 The constitution of Canada was amended to entrench the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

1867 The British North America Act. Canada's original constitutional document.

1800's- 1980's Federal Government placed many Aboriginal children in residential schools.

2008 Ottawa formally apologized to the former students of residential schools.

1970's The term First Nations began to be used.

1937 John Buchan stated that “immigrant groups should retain their individuality and each make its contribution to the national character”.

1604 French colonists began settling.

1755-1763 Britain and France at war. During this time more than 2/3 of Acadians were deported from their homeland – the Great Upheaval.

2006 House of Commons recognizes that the Quebecois form a nation within a United Canada.

1600's to the 20th Century English, Welsh, Scottish & Irish settlers arrived.

1497 John Cabot expedition. First person to draw maps of Canada's East coast.

1534 – 1542 Jacques Cartier made three voyages across the atlantic.

1550 Canada started appearing on maps.

1604 First European settlement north of Florida was established by Pierre de Monts and Samuel de Champlain.

1608 Champlain built a fortress at what is now Quebec City.

1701 French and Iroquois made peace.

1670 King Charles II of England granted the Hudson Bay Co. Exclusive trading rights over the watershed draining into Hudson Bay.

Early 1600's English colonies along the Atlantic seaboard.

1700's England and France battled for control of North America.

1759 British defeat the French in the battle of the Plains of Abraham at Quebec City.

1774 The British Parliament passed the Quebec Act.

1776 13 British colonies to the south of Quebec declared independence and formed the United States.

1792 Some black Nova Scotians moved on to establish Freetown in Sierra Leone.

1690 Count Frontenac refused to surrender Quebec to the British.

1775 Sir Guy Carleton defeated an American invasion attempt of Quebec.

1782 – 1783 Loyalist migration to Nova Scotia and Quebec.

1758 First representative assembly elected in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

1773 First representative assembly in P.E.I.

1785 First representative assembly in New Brunswick.

1791 Constitutional Act.

1793 Upper Canada becomes first province to move towards abolition of slavery.

1807 British Parliament bans the buying and selling of slaves.

1833 Britain abolishes slavery throughout the Empire.

1832 Montreal stock exchange opened.

1853 May Ann (Shadd) Carey became first woman publisher in Canada.

1812 The fight for Canada, when America tried to invade Canada.

1813 Lt. Col. Charles de Salaberry and 460 soldiers turned back 4,000 US invaders.

1813 Americans burned down Government House & Parliament buildings in York (Toronto).

1814 Canadians burn down the White House.

1814 Duke of Wellington sends soldiers to defend Canada.

1813 Laura Secord travels 19 miles by foot to warn of US invasion.

1837-38 Rebellions. Some Canadians believed they should adopt US republican values or even to try and join the US. Defeated by British troops and Canadian volunteers.

1812-1814 Mjr. Gen. Sir Isaac Brock and Chief Tecumseh fought together to beat the US invasion.

July 1, 1867 Fathers of Confederation established the Dominion of Canada.

1840 Upper and Lower Canada were united.

1847-48 First British North American colony to attain full Responsible Government was Nova Scotia.

1848-49 Lord Elgin introduces Responsible Government to United Canada

1867 The British North America Act now known as the Constitution Act of 1867.

1921 King George V assigns Canada's national colours of red & white.

1864 Sir Leonard Tilley suggests the term Dominion of Canada.

1849 Sir Louis-Hippolyte La Fonatine becomes the first head of Responsible Government in Canada.

1867 Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia & New Brunswick form the Dominion

1870 Manitoba & Northwest Territories (NWT) join.

1871 British Columbia joins after promise of a Railroad link.

1873 PEI joins.

1880 Transfer of the Arctic Islands to NW.T.

1898 Yukon Territory joins.

1905 Alberta and Saskatchewan join.

1949 Newfoundland and Labrador join.

1999 Nunavut joins the confederation.

1867 Sir John Alexander Macdonald becomes Canada's first Prime Minister.

Jan. 11th 1815 Sir John Alexander Macdonald born on Scotland. Jan 11th Sir John Alexander Macdonald day.

1869 Canada took over the northwest region from Hudson Bay Co.

1870 Ottawa sent soldiers to retake Fort Garry from Louis Riel.

1885 Second rebellion in present day Saskatchewan which led to Riel's trial and execution.

1873 North West Mounted Police formed.

Nov. 7th 1885 Canadian Pacific Railway completed. Symbol of Unity.

2006 Canadian Government apologizes for the discriminatory policy of the Chinese head tax.

1890's-1900's Canada's economy grew from an economic boom.

1899-1902 South African war, known as the Boer War.

1900 Canadians took part in the battles of Paaderberg & Lillefontein.

1914 Britain declared war when Germany attacked Belgium and France.

April 1917 Canadian Corps captured Vimy Ridge.

April 9th Vimy Day.

Aug.8th 1918 Battle of Amiens.

Nov. 11th 1918 The First World War ended.

November 11th Remembrance day.

1916 Manitoba became first province to grant voting rights to women.

1917 Sir Robert Boden gave women the right to vote in Federal elections. First to nurses at the battle front.

1918 Most Canadian female citizens over 21 were granted the right to vote in Federal elections.

1921 Canada's first female member of parliament, Agnes MacPhail.

1940 Quebec women granted the right to vote.

1850's Canada's soldiers began using the Maple leaf cap badge.

1915 The poem “In Flanders Fields” is composed.

1929 Stock market crash. Unemployment reached 27% in 1933.

1934 Bank of Canada created.

1928, '32, '36 Phil Edwards wins bronze medals for Canada in the Olympics.

June 6th 1944 D-Day invasion.

1943-44 Liberation of Italy.

1944-45 Canada liberates the Netherlands.

May 8th 1945 Germany surrenders.

1939 Second World War began.

August 14th 1945 Japan surrenders.

1988 Canadian Government apologizes for the treatment of Canadians of Japanese origin, during World War Two.

1947 Discovery of oil in Alberta.

1951 For the first time, the majority of Canadians are able to afford adequate food.

1945-1970 During this time Canada draws closer to the USA.

1940 Employment Insurance was introduced.

1927 Old age security was devised.

1965 Canada and Quebec pension plans devised.

1950-53 Korean War.

1960 Quebec experiences the Quiet Revolution.

1969 The Official Languages Act.

1970 Canada helped found La Francophonie organization.

1980 & 1995 Referendum dates in Quebec.

1948 Japanese Canadians given the right to vote.

1960 Aboriginals given the right to vote.

1956 Canada welcomed 37,000 people from Communist Hungary.

1975 Canada welcomed 50,000 people from Communist Vietnam.

1960's 1/3 of Canadians had origins that were neither British or French.

1920's Group of Seven founded.

1950's Quebec was pioneer in modern abstract art.

1891 James Naismith invents basketball.

1996 Olympic medal winners Donovan Bailey & Chantal Petitclerc.

1979-1988 Wayne Gretzky played for the Edmonton Oilers.

1980 Terry Fox began his cross country run.

1985 Rick Hansen circled the globe in a wheelchair.

Since 1989 Canadian space agency have participated in space exploration.

1952 Queen Elizabeth II has been Queen of Canada since this date.

2002 The Queens Golden Jubilee.

2012 The Queens Diamond Jubilee.

1965 The new Canadian Flag raised for the first time.

1700's When the French Canadians first started using the Maple Leaf as a symbol. Have appeared on Canadian uniforms since 1850.

496 The year that the Fleur-de-Lys was adopted by the French King.

1860's When Parliament buildings in Ottawa were first completed.

1916 Centre block of Parliament was destroyed in a fire and rebuilt in 1922.

1927 Peace Tower was completed in memory of the First World War.

1800's Ice hockey developed in Canada.

1892 Stanley Cup donated by Lord Stanley.

2005 Clarkson Cup donated by Adrienne Clarkson.

1980 O Canada proclaimed as the National Anthem.

1880 O Canada first sung in Quebec City.

1967 Canada starts its own honours system.

1854 The Victoria Cross has been awarded to 96 Canadians since this date.

1988 Canada enacted a free trade agreement with the USA.

1994 Mexico joins USA and Canada to form NAFTA.

1857 Ottawa selected as Capital by Queen Victoria.

1885 Banff National Park established.

1890's Gold rush in the Yukon.

1842-1869 Geological survey of Canada by Sir William Logan.

1576 Martin Frobisher penetrated the uncharted Arctic.


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