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Location: Masterton, New Zealand

I survived school history despite the best efforts of the education system to bore me to death. Many years later, I discovered Treaties, dates, the movement of nations, are mere context. The fascination is in the details.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Canadian Rebellion
"Had the country bordering on the Red River been an unpeopled wilderness, the plan of transferring the land of the Northwest from the Hudson Bay Company to the Crown, and from the Crown to the Dominion of Canada, might have been an eminently wise one. But, unfortunately, it was a country which had been originally settled by the Earl of Selkirk in 1812 with Scots from the Highland counties and the Orkney Islands, and subsequently by French voyageurs from Lower Canada.
There were 15,000 persons living in peaceful possession of the soil thus transferred, and these persons very naturally objected to have themselves and possessions signed away without one word of consent or note of approbation. Hence began the rebellion led by Louis Riel, who, with his followers, seized Fort Garry, with all its stores of arms, guns, provisions, dominated the adjacent village of Winnipeg, and established what was called a Provisional Government.
The rebels went steadily from violence to pillage, from pillage to robbery, much supplemented by drunkenness and dictatorial debauchery; and, finally, on March 4, 1870, with many accessories of cruelty, shot to death a loyalist Canadian prisoner they had taken, named Thomas Scott."
The Great Lone Land, Sir William Butler, 1872.

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