Quebec Act (Great Events from History: North American Series)
Article abstract: Britain grants limited civil rights to Catholics and extends the boundaries of Quebec province into the Ohio Valley.
Summary of Event
In 1774, through the efforts of Lord Frederick North, England’s prime minister, the British Parliament produced “An Act for Making More Effectual Provision for the Government of the Province of Quebec in North America,” the first of several eighteenth and nineteenth century acts to govern the relationship between England and Canada. Among the principal provisions of the act were the assertion of trans-Allegheny power by the Crown, rule of the province through a governor and council, and, most significant, a modicum of religious freedom for the Catholics of Quebec.
When France had ceded New France to Great Britain by the Treaty of Paris in 1763, England suddenly found itself with a province of sixty-five thousand Canadian Catholics. The Articles of Capitulation provided for the continuation of the status quo with regard to religion: Catholics in the province could continue to worship in their traditional way, the French king would still appoint the bishop, and the clergy could continue to receive the tithes of the faithful. However, the treaty also included the proviso, “As far as the laws of Great Britain allow.”
During the next ten...
(The entire section is 1421 words.)
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