The Effects of and Views on the Civil War in Canada Throughout most traditional history classes, we are given only the perspective of people directly involved in events or of people that were in the near region where the events occur. This often narrows our insight, giving us an allusion that said events only affected one region unless otherwise said so which gives us a slight bit of outsight. By opening our views, we must explore not only one event in particular but all reaches of these events, no matter how far they expand.
Though learning about the effects of the Civil War in Canada as well as how they viewed the war is only gives us a little more insight, it’s a step towards diversifying and expanding our knowledge. During the Civil War, which lasted from 1861 to 1864, the region north of the United States of America was not known as Canada until 1867 but rather as the United Providence of Canada. Though Canada had yet to become a federated nation, the citizens of the soon-to-be Canada viewed the war in such eyes and were affected by the Civil War, both economically and politically.
The Civil War was also key to shaping Canada’s future. It’s important to remember that though the Civil War was an internal struggle between Americans, it affected its neighbors to the North and South of them as well. Many Canadians had mixed views of the Civil War that was going on America even though they remained neutral due to Britain claiming that they and their colonies would remain neutral through the American Civil War. A large majority of Canadians had opposed slavery; in fact, quite a number of Canadians crossed the border to even serve in the Union army.
There was still a small amount of French Canadians that had a pro-Southern view, they opposed slavery as well but admired the South’s attempt to keep their identity. Belligerence from Lincoln due to Britain’s neutrality made for anti-Northern opinions to form as well. The Civil War dealt a great deal of damage on both the North’s economy as well as devastating the South’s economy; however it had quite a profound effect on the Canadian economy to flourish for a time. Both the Union and
Confederacy were constantly desperate for manufactured and agricultural goods to support their troops which the Canadians happen to have, though most it these goods when to the Union. Yet as the war continued on with many Americans fleeing to either escape being drafted or to desert their army, Union or Confederate, and brought their quite literally worthless money along with them. This took its toll on the Canadian economy. Canadian banks and businesses started to reject the American currency due to the inflation that it was causing.
And with so many immigrants looking for a job, wages began to decline at a steady rate, which ironically enough led Canadians to emigrate to the U. S. in search of jobs where they were often lack of men due to the fact that a large majority of them were serving in the army. An effect even more profound than the fluctuating economy were the political effects that the Civil War time period had on the Canada. The United States and the United Providence of Canada relations were strained, partially due to Lincoln’s belligerence towards Canada.
There were many attempts to bring Britain out of neutrality by invading Canada, however all of these attempts ended with failure. These failed invasions struck fear within some Canadians; they believed that the states within America had been given excessive amounts of power, of democracy, and even of republicism , thus creating the leading cause of the Civil War. Many political leaders, such as John A. MacDonald and many other Fathers of Confederation, in Canada were keen on seeing that this wouldn’t happen, thereby creating a more centralized federation.
With so many precedents set up, the Canadian Constitution was born, bearing more checks and balances to eliminate the problem of “excessive” amounts of democracy, also ensuring that it complies to the British North American Act in which you must provide “’peace, order, and good government’”. This was the first step towards creating the country that we now know as “Canada”. Canada has been affected by the American Civil War greatly, both by their eyes and by politics. Canada viewed the war with mixed feelings, though in total they all opposed slavery itself.
Their economy had fluctuated with the flow of immigrants that held their own money that would ground the flourishing economy. Canada may not have been Canada had the American had not made for the Civil War, they were the ones that managed to depict apart the Civil War, analyze it and seen how they can make a constitution that avoid as those with the issue. The views and effects of the Civil War effects not only America, they reach out quite far, and Canada being only one of many that’s affected by those “internal” events.