Canada's Road to Independence

Feb 5, 1841- Province of Canada created by merging Upper and Lower Canada, some powers delegated to elected Legislative Assembly.

Feb 14, 1853- The Canadian Currency Act allows Canada to adopt her own Currency

Jan 1, 1867- British North America Act:
-Dominion of Canada created
-Parliament of Canada created

-Position of Prime Minister of Canada created
-Four Provincial governments created
-Governor of Canada is now styled "Governor-General"
-Canada's supreme political authority rests with the Queen and her British Government.

Jun 16, 1891- John Abbott becomes first Canadian-born Prime Minister.

Oct 1899- Canadian regiment deployed to fight for Britain in South African Boer War.

Aug 19, 1914- Prime Minister Borden declares war, pledging Canada's support to "The Empire"

1919- Nickle Resolution passed. Canadians can no longer receive knighthoods, or other peerage titles from Britain.

Jan 10, 1920- Canada is permitted to join the League of Nations as an independent, free-voting member.

1922- King George signs a proclaimation granting Canada its first national symbols: a coat of arms and the national colors red and white.

1923- The UK government allows Canada to conduct an independent fishing treaty with the United States without British representatives.

1927- The Royal Style and Titles Act is passed. It recognizes that the British monarch is a "separate" king in each different dominion.

Dec 11, 1931- Statute of Westminster / Founding of "Commonwealth":
-British Parliament can no longer make laws for Canada.
-Canada can modify or repeal past British-made legislation
-Canada has right to it's own foreign policy.
-Virtual political independence from Britain

The Statute of Westminster also mandates that Canada (and all the other dominions) must approve any changes to the monarchy or the British royal family in the future.

1936- The Canadian Parliament votes to approve the abdication of King Edward VIII.

Sep 1939- World War II: One week after Britain declares war, Prime Minister Mackenzie King declares war, pledging Canada's "voluntary" support to Britain

Nov 9, 1945- Canada joins the United Nations as an independent, free-voting member

1947- Canada opens first independent embassy, in Washington, DC.

1947- King George VI issues Letters Patent which states that the Governor-General will always be considered the supreme political authority in Canada, unless the monarch is specifically consulted.

Jan 1, 1947- Canadian Citizenship Act gives all Canadians Canadian citizenship.
Before, they were considered British subjects.

Jun 22, 1948- King George VI abandons the title of "Emperor", formally ending the concept of the "British Empire"

1949- Supreme Court of Canada given supreme powers, cases can no longer be appealed to Britain.

Feb 6, 1952- Queen Elizabeth II is proclaimed "Queen of Canada", the first British monarch to receive such a title.

Feb 29, 1952- First Canadian-born Governor General is appointed by Prime Minister St. Laurent

Around this time the use of the official name "Dominion of Canada" begins to be phased out in favor of just "Canada."

1956- Britain invades Egypt in response to Suez crisis. The government of Lester Pearson does not support the move, marking the first time Canada opposed a British foreign policy initiative.

Feb 15, 1965- Canada adopts its own national flag, turfing the Red Ensign and Union Jack.

1967- The Order of Canada is created and becomes the highest award granted to Canadians

Apr, 1971- Governor General Roland Michener makes a state visit to the Caribbean, the first time a Canadian Governor General visits a foreign nation in a Head of State capacity.

1972- Unique Canadian medals for military bravery, courage, and valour are created, to replace British honors such as the Victoria Cross.

1975- British citizens living in Canada are no longer able to vote in Canadian elections.

1977- The Canadian Citizenship Act is revised.
-The phrase "A Canadian citizen is a British subject" is removed from passports.
-Canadian Citizenship becomes the only legal form of citizenship in Canada.

1977- The Governor General assumes nearly all diplomatic duties from the Queen, including receiving foreign ambassadors to Canada and accepting their letters of credence.

Jul 1, 1980- "O Canada" is officially adopted as Canada's national anthem, replacing "God Save the Queen."

Apr 17, 1982- Constitution Act is Revised.
-The British Parliament can no longer amend Canada's Constitution.

Oct 27, 1982- "Dominion Day" is renamed "Canada Day"

1988- Canadian Heraldic Authority is established, granting Canadians the right to issue their own Coats of Arms.

1999- The phrase "and that I will uphold my duties as a Canadian citizen, and obey the laws of Canada" is added to the Canadian oath of citizenship, along with the oath to the Queen.

2004- All letters of credence from foreign ambassadors are now formally addressed to the Governor General of Canada, and not the Queen.