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sir john a macdonald
Sir John A. Macdonald

sir John A. Macdonald: Une «fripouille» indispensable est à peu près la perception qu’avaient de nombreux Canadiens de John A. Macdonald

Lorsqu’une délégation de Canadiens se rend à Washington en 1887 pour négocier un traité avec les États-Unis, leurs hôtes les invitent à faire une promenade en bateau sur le Potomac. Arrivé plus tôt, un des délégués canadiens entame une conversation avec une dame en attendant ses collègues. C’est la femme d’un sénateur américain.

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English
History
People//Personnes
macdonald-sir john a

January 11, Sir John A. Macdonald’s birthday, is an opportunity for Canadians to celebrate Macdonald’s vision of unity and a North American destiny independent of the United States.

Canada Soup
In the News
harkvagrant-header
Hark! A Vagrant

A comic from Kate Beaton's website, Hark! A Vagrant.

This week, Canadian history buffs across the nation celebrated Sir John A. Macdonald‘s 197th birthday, remembering the contributions of our country’s first prime minister and great uniter. We celebrated our early history even as one of our most storied publishing houses, McClelland and Stewart, was taken over by the German-owned Random House, leaving a big question mark as to the future of Canadian publishing and, in many ways, the question of Canadian identity.

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Education
History
john-a-header

If a news reporter tests your knowledge on the street, asking you to identify an old, fluffy-haired man, you’ll want to be ready. “Why, that’s Sir John A. Macdonald,” you’ll say with an easy smile. Want to knock that reporter off his feet? Check out these resources and build up an arsenal of knowledge on the Old Chieftan in time for his 197th birthday on January 11!

John A. Macdonald

The Canadian Encyclopedia

Founded in 1985, the Canadian Encyclopedia is a free, bilingual resource on all things Canadian. It’s also our mother site! Check out its articles on:

Sir John A. Macdonald
Confederation
Fathers of Confederation
The Conservative Party
The Pacific Scandal
Election 1891: A Question of Loyalty
Book Review: John A. Macdonald’s Tragic Life
The Canadian Pacific Railway

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Canada Soup
In the News
Canadacy
Sir John A. Macdonald

The CBC asks regular Canadians, "Who is this man?"

With 2012 comes the bicentennial of the War of 1812, the US presidential election, and a question mark about the Canadian economy. This week’s Canada Soup touches on all of these as well as an intriguing story about John Diefenbaker’s possible paternity, the influence of the King James Bible on the English language, and survey results that are both good news and not-so-good-news about Canadians’ knowledge of their own history. Ready or not, here we come, 2012!

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Canada Soup
In the News
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S(Torsten Silz/DAPD/Associated Press)

This week we discovered that Canadians don’t like history, don’t understand how Google works, and have abandoned the Kyoto Protocol. But it’s not all bad news – the NFB sees Oscar love and Veteran Affairs makes plans to commemorate significant war heroes. Good week? Bad week? You decide.

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History
John A. Macdonald

Poster published by the Industrial League to appeal to the old ways on which Macdonald built the power of the Conservative Party (courtesy Library and Archives Canada/C-6536).

Tonight, get ready for the premiere of John A: Birth of a Country, airing on CBC Television. The two-hour political thriller follows the fight for power between charismatic Conservative leader John A. Macdonald and his opponent George Brown, leader of the future Liberal Party and founder of the Globe and Mail newspaper. Covering the years between1856 and1864, John A. shows both men spurred into action by intense hatred towards one another and wildly different visions for Canada.

As the English in Upper Canada (Ontario) are pitted against the French in Lower Canada (Quebec), the country threatens to crumble under the watchful, covetous eyes of the United States, who fancy annexing Canada’s northern land. England, meanwhile, has no desire to fight for Canada. During this tumultuous time, two men – John A. Macdonald and George Brown – butt heads as they fight to control Canada’s future.

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History
Labour Day Parade
Labour Day Nine Hour March

On 15 May 1872, Hamilton's "nine-hour pioneers" defied opposition with a procession of 1500 workers (Canadian Illustrated News, courtesy NAC/C-58640).

In a time when the news of labour “strife” is dominated by disputes between millionaire athletes and billionaire owners, history provides a useful perspective on a time when working people had to fight to work less than 12 hours a day. The “Nine-Hour Movement” began in Hamilton, Ontario, and then spread to Toronto where its demands were taken up by the Toronto Printer’s Union.

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History
In the News
John A. Macdonald

The Historica-Dominion Institute’s new website, Sir. John A. Day, brings the country’s first Prime Minister to life with videos, a timeline, teacher and student resources, and a printable party hat!