THE HISTORY OF CANADA
It was clear that these United Empire Loyalists who had come to the western wilderness of what was still part of Quebec would not long be satisfied with the limited rights and French laws established by the Quebec Act. Accordingly, in 1791 the British Parliament enacted the Constitutional Act, whereby Quebec was split into the two provinces of Upper and Lower Canada. Each of these was to be governed by a legislative council appointed for life and a legislative assembly elected by the people.
The right to be represented in a lawmaking assembly was something new for the French-speaking inhabitants of the lower province. Legislative assemblies had been in existence in Nova Scotia since 1758, in Prince Edward Island since 1773, and in New Brunswick since 1786. Representative government, however, was not responsible government, as was to be demonstrated before another 50 years had passed.
|Discovery of Canada|