Canada’s first inhabitants arrived 30.000 years ago. The first Europeans were Nordsmen, or Vikings, from Scandinavia. In 1497, an Englishman, John Cabot, set out to try to reach the Far East, and, instead, landed in Newfoundland. In 1534 a French explorer, Jaques Cartier, mapped the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The Europeans began trade with the Native people. In 1608 groups of French and English were starting permanent settlements. Canada’s first census was taken in 1667: there were 3215 non - Native inhabitants in 668 families. In the 1750s, the tensions between the French and the English in the colonies spread to the two groups in Canada and fighting frequently broke out. A major difference between the groups was religion: the British were mostly Protestant and the French were Catholics. After the USA won independance in 1776, many English - speaking colonists came to Canada. The separate British colonies began to grow. On July 1, 1867, Canada East, Canada West, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, under the British North America Act, joined together to become one nation: the Dominion of Canada. New provinces were created from these territories: Manitoba in 1870 and later on, in 1905, Alberta and Saskatchewan. The remaining land became the Northwest Territories. At hte end of the 19thcentury, thousands of immigrants were still arriving in Canada. The world was beginning to see Canada as an independant country. After World War II Canada was the fourth largest industrial country in the world. Newfoundland became Canada’s 10th province in 1949. At mid - century, Canada’s population had reached 14009429. 1960 Canada made international headlines when the first Canadian satellite was launched. 1967 over 55 million visitors came to Montreal to visit Expo 67. Alberta’s economy grew very quickly in the 1970s. the 1970s also saw the beginnings of the Greenpeace ecology movement. Hig technology spread into all elements of life in the 1980s. Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which became law in 1982, included a guarantee of equality between men and women.

Facts about Canada

Climate: Highly varied.
Mountain ranges included: e.g.: West Rockies; highest mountain: Mount Logan, 5951 metres, Yukon
Principal lakes included: e.g.: Ontario, largest lake entirely within Canada, Great Bear, 3128 square kilometres, Yukon
Principal rivers included: e.g.: St. Lawrence ( 3864 kilometres long carries deep - shipping from the Atlantic Ocean to the head of the Great Lakes)
System of governement: Canada is a federal state with democratic parliamentary representation.
National emblem. The meaple leaf.
Currency: The Canadian dollar
Population: 25 million
Native peoples: 491.460 - includes Inuit, Indian and M├Ętis.
Religion: Roman Catholic and Protestant
Official languages: English and French
Mother tongue: English 14.9 million; French 6.2 million; other 3.1 million
Ethnic origin: British and Irish 44.6 per cent; French 28.7 per cent; other European 23 per cent; Asiatic 1.3 per cent
Culture: Canadian society is composed of many races and is considered to be multicultured.
Education: Eight years primary; four to five years secondary and three to four years of high education.
Sports: e.g.: ice hockey
Natural resources include: natural gas, crude oil, coal, gold, iron ore, silver, molybdenum, uranium, zinc, for water
Principal industries include:Petroleum refining, motor vehicle production, pulp and paper milling, meat processing, iron and steel milling, machinery and eequipment manufacturing

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