Time to face north and salute: Canada is turning 150 and we have 150 pictures

On July 1, 1867, after three years of populist revolt and bloody battle, the Dominion of Canada was born.

Just kidding. Modern Canada’s birth on that day 150 years ago was mostly a matter of polite conferences and prudent compromises among colonial leaders in Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, along with a discreet nod from the Queen of England.

There had been plenty of blood, sweat, tears and conflict before that, and there would be more after. But in the 1860s, confederation seemed like an urgent idea.

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If they didn’t knit themselves more closely together, some Canadian leaders worried, the U.S. (which had just waged its own Civil War and bought Alaska from Russia) might just try to grab up more of North America.


So the Canadians made themselves into a more perfect union while still retaining ties to the United Kingdom. By 1885, the country had added the province of British Columbia and built a rail route to underline its coast-to-coast identity.

But of course there’s more to the Canadian story than that. There are now 10 provinces and three territories. There’s Justin Trudeau. There’s Justin Bieber.

In honor of the 150th Canada Day on July 1, here are 150 things to know and 150 transporting images from above the 49th parallel.

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