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Readers Theatre

Narrator: Isnt it exciting having many people involved in Canadian History in


one room! Like we all know, in 1860, the Province of Canada needed to make
changes! And no changes could be made because the French and the English
could NOT get along. Not only were the Americans fighting a war just South
of us but those Americans just bought Alaska. Imagine if America expanded
into the land we live today we were forced became American? And now with
Trump! HA!

Narrator: Lets start with sharing our stories of how Canada came to be.
We must discuss this in an orderly fashion with stimulating conversations
and parties. Wait, talking about conversations and parties remind me of
something didnt you go to the Charlotte Town Conference Sir Charles
Tupper?

1. Charles Tupper: Yes, I was at the Charlotte Town Conference and can I say
that I saw a lot of positives in joining the British Colonies! The men sat in the
Province House Chamber for a week discussing what a country would look
like for each colony. We were all interested in joining together and becoming
a country. But I must be honest with all of you and say, that the Grand Ball
was my favourite part where we ate and danced until 5 in the morning! But I
wasnt allowed to be tired for very long because I had to start preparing for
the next Conference in Quebec.

Narrator: Oh right! How could I forget the Quebec Conference! Did someone
else here get to attend that conference?

2. George Brown: Um, I was at the Quebec conference. My name is George


Brown, some of you may know me as one of the Fathers of Confederation! In
Quebec we passed 72 resolutions for the country we now live in! 36 men sat
together and discussed what are the most important things that must be
included in our country. We eventually narrowed our list down to the top 72!
We decided that there would be both a provincial and federal government!
We also talked about starting a Railway to connect our country together. We
had long conversations, so forgive me but I may have doodled on my copy of
the 72 Resolutions.

Narrator: You were drawing in one of Canadas historical events! George


Brown that seems very unprofessional of you! Now what do we have next in
our timeline? The London Conference?

3. British Representative: Next was the London Conference and I was there! I
was a British Representative listening to these Fathers of Confederation
convince us to let them have their own country. They needed our British
consent before they could make it official! We discussed their original
resolutions and came to an agreement (finally) on the British North America
Act in 1867! So you are welcome Canada because if it wasnt for people like
me you may not be a country! The Queen had to approve the Act as well, I
saw it!

Narrator: And how lucky are we to have the Queen here herself! Your
majesty! Thank-you for coming here today! What an honour! And might I say
you look lovely on this sunny Canadian afternoon!

4. Queen Victoria: Why thank you! The honour is all mine to be surrounded
by Canadas history! When I was involved in Confederation, I took the
deepest interest in it! For I believed it will make the provinces great and
successful! All the people involved in Confederation were loyal to both me
and to the provinces across the sea. If you didnt know, I actually choose
Ottawa to be Canadas capital city and if I am not corrected I believe it is still
the capital today? Confederation was the works of very determined men that
saw a potential for prosperous country!

Narrator: Then as we all know July 1 is Canadas birthday! We finally became


a country! Prime Minister MacDonald anything you would like to say?

5. John A. MacDonald: Hello, I am also a Father of Confederation and am the


first Prime Minister of Canada! Some may even say I am the strong mind
behind the BNA Act. I wanted to expand Canada from coast to coast you are
now welcome because we are the second biggest country in the world!
Thats why we bought Ruperts Land and the North Western Territory from
the Hudson Bay Company! Sure it caused some backlash and people got
very angry but I believe that I made important decisions to make Canada the
country we are today! I was the prime minister till I died for a reason!

Narrator: Mr. Prime Minister we have people you affected here today so
maybe watch what you say I dont want to break up any big fights or
battles today! Right John Norquay we wont start any fights!

6. Metis: Yes I promise no fights! But, there is something I want to say! Us,
Metis and First Nations people were not thought about when our land was
purchased by Canada. We were against English settlers moving on our land
and taking our land from us! The North Western Territory was home for
people before it was even called Canada! Our lives were not considered at
all! That is why we had to take extreme measures to protect our land, our
people, and ourselves. Someone needed to be the face to our rebellion.

Narrator: The face himself is here! Louis Riel anything you would like to say
to your fellow Canadians?
7. Louis Riel: I am Louis Riel and I am a Metis leader and I created the
province of Manitoba. Oh yes, and I was the face to the resistance movement
called the Red River Rebellion! I assembled the Metis, First Nations, and
Francophone together to demand rights for us! I have had my words with
people of the Canadian government a few times, Hello Prime Minister
MacDonald. Not allowing the government into our colony was to show that
our demands needed to be taken seriously! Thats why I shot Thomas Scott, I
needed to be taken seriously! I helped Manitoba become a province didnt I?
I had to run away from my land so I was not arrested even after all I did for
Manitoba!

Narrator: Thank you for your words! You were a face for fighting against
inequality! We have other rebels here! Would you like to speak?

8. Red River Rebel: Yes, I joined the Rebellion in 1869, I am a Metis man who
had made a promising life in Fur Trading and then I bought my own land to
start a farm! I did not want English European Settlers coming to my land and
using my resources just because I am a Canadian now? How is that fair? I
could not lose my farm to others! I had a find life as a farmer and I have a
family to feed! Louis Riel wanted the best for the people of the Red River
Colony! That is why I joined the Red River Rebellion

9. Red River Rebellion: Not only was there the possibility to lose our land but
also the possibility of losing our French language and our Catholic Religion.
With English speaking protestant moving West we could face judgement of
our culture! We may be forced to speak English and stop practicing our faith
because we would become the minority! I did not want to lose my culture to
others that do not understand. I joined the Rebellion because I wanted to
pass my language and faith down to my children and them to their children!

Narrator: I am sorry that you felt like you had a threat to you lives! I couldnt
even imagine but immigration is why we are the country we are today!
Would you like to talk about your experiences Catherine?

10. Catherine OHare Schubert: My name is Catherine OHare Schubert and I


was the first woman to immigrate to Western Canada! My husband and I
joined the Overlanders in search of the Canadian Gold Rush! We travelled
through the mountains with our three children and I was pregnant at the
time! We finally made it to the Fraser Valley to search for gold! Yes, our
search for gold was unsuccessful but we were able to buy a farm in the
Valley to start a life as new Canadians!

Narrator: Gold! What a good reason to move west! But it wasnt always that
appealing for settlers to move to the west! At one point Europeans were
scared to settle here in the West! Is it not it fortunate that a North Western
Mounted Police here to talk about his experience!
11. North Western Mounted Police #1: Yes, you are correct! The West was not
always a place that was appealing to newcomers even with the farmland,
mining, and gold rush. When the NWMP was created the Whiskey Trade was
in full force in Canadas West. We men were trained and had to stop the
whiskey traders after many died in the Cypress Hills. Me and 300 other men
walked for two months to Manitoba! Yes, I was in the Great March West! I still
remember how cold it was, how hungry I was, and how many other brave
police died.

Narrator: Oh right! The Whiskey Trade! Those Americans coming into our
country operating illegal activities! Those Americans. Wait, um sorry I
didnt mean to offend! We have an American Whiskey Trader here, wait how
did you get invited?

12. Whiskey Trader: I am here to talk about my role in Canadas History! Yes,
I was involved in some illegal trading activities! I was a trader operating out
of Fort Whoop-Up selling fur, weapons, but most profitable whiskey! We
travelled from the States to make profit on selling whiskey to the fur traders
and First Nations people of the West! Oh, I should add, we made so much
money! We would have gotten away with it if it werent for the North Western
Mounted Police who arrived at our ports! Canada was better when it had a
wild west!

Narrator: I dont know about that! We are quite proud of our North Western
Mounted Police!

13. North Western Mounted Police #2: We are proud to have govern
Canadas West! Our presence in the West made it more stable and more
desirable to move here! Not only did we stop the illegal Whiskey runner
coming over the American border but we also fought against the North West
Rebellion in 1885! Many of our men died in battle against the Rebellion! The
NWMP warned Ottawa with the potential troubles in Saskatchewan! We
stopped the rebellion forcing them to surrender to end the rebels and enforce
Canadian Law in the west!

Narrator: How could I forget the North West Rebellion! Louis? You look much
different than last time you spoke? Did you do something with your hair?
When you fled to the United States did something change about you?

14. Louis Riel #2: No, I dont know what you mean! But I was asked back to
be the leader North West Rebellion by the Metis peoples! The rebellion
spread when Canada tried to force us to settle on our demands! We took
arms against the Canadian government and fought in many battles for our
rights. The rebels here would agree with me! But I was not insane! It was not
my idea to plead for insanity! My peoples struggles and demands were
legitimate and we could blame the Canadian government! I am not insane. I
made the choices I did for my peoples and I used self-defence when we were
oppressed.

15. North West Rebellion: I was a rebel in the North West Rebellion and that
because the great bison we had once hunted had disappeared pushing our
people near to starvation! Our once wild and grand prairies were
disappearing along with the buffalo we depended so greatly on! Our people
with negatively affected by the changes happening in Canada. The North
Western Mounted Police create ties with our people but treaties took away
land that once was ours with new railroads, towns of immigrants and farms
that do not belong to us. We did not deserve to get arrested and Louis did
not deserve to be executed!

Narrator: Oh right, the hanging of Louis Riel. Sorry to bring it up Louiss but is
important to Canadian History! NWMP why were such extreme measure
taken with Louis Riel? He was trying to protect his people?

16. North Western Mount Police #3: The rebellion became extreme and it
became violent. Major crimes were committed across the West and many
lives were taken both in the rebellion group and NWMP officers. Louis Riel
was charged with high treason, for trying to overthrow the government! Yes
his execution was extreme measures! I sympathise with Riel because he was
a fighter for the minority and he had defended his people but the violence
needed to end. He publically executed a man and then this rebellion caused
violent battles over 5 months. When he surrendered the violence ended and
many people already what would happen to Louis.

Narrator: But there were active participants of the rebellion that did not
agree with the violent path of the rebellion! Would you like to speak to that
Chief?

17. Big Bear: I am Chief Big Bear of the Cree. I tried to solve my peoples by
talking with the government! I did not agree with the extreme violent
measures that were taken! I tried to stop the violence of my people but when
we defeated the NWMP at Duck Lake warrior societies took measures into
their own hands! The warriors continued to act violent to express the need
for change in government. I was fighting for rights of my people with words
not with arms! I even warned the NWMP that warriors were coming because I
wanted the violence to stop! I did not participate I stayed with the women
and children.

Narrator: But you were seen as an active participant! Wow, we all learned
something very new today! So Prime Minister, you expanded west what else
did you do during your time as Prime Minister? Also you look VERY different
might I add!

18. John A. MacDonald #2: As Prime Minister I promised British Columbia a


railway that connected the east to the west! British Columbia then joined
Confederation in 1871. Yes, because of one small tiny scandal the building of
the railway was. paused but we finished the railway in 1885 connecting the
coast of Canada! The railway was important to expanding to and Developing
Western Canada! The Railway tracked 11,200 km across Canada; it was the
largest of that time! It became one of the largest and most powerful
companies in Canada!

Narrator: Yes, an impressive track but to the expense of Chinese workers! We


have some workers from the Railway to talk about the conditions of their
work!

19. Chinese Railway Worker: I worked on the Railway; I was one of 15,000
men that were imported to help build this national railway. I worked in very
bad and harsh conditions for very little pay! After 2 months of hard labour we
might earn as little as 16 dollars after we paid for food, mail, medical care,
and transportation! This barely left any money to send back home. This was
not enough money for me to return to my family back home in China when I
was done working on the track.

21. Chinese Railway Worker: There were Chinese workers as young as twelve
working on the track in the worst conditions doing very dangerous work. I
had a friend that brought Nitro down into the tunnel to light a charge and
create an explosion to clear tunnels of rocks. He poured nitro in the hole and
the tiniest movement caused an explosion. This one of many friends that I
had lost on the railway! They say there is one dead Chinese many for every
mile of the track and I believe it. Our people suffered to the expense of this
railway they said there is at least 600 dead from working in these conditions

Narrator: That is terrible! I am so sorry! But eventually things started to


settle in the West! Frederick would you like to speak to your influence on
Canada?.
22. Frederick William Haultain: I am Frederick William Haultain and I had
influence on giving Alberta and Saskatchewan provincial status as they join
Canada in Confederation! When the railway reached Alberta and
Saskatchewan we had to pull for people to move to the prairies! We wanted
provincial status for stability, insurance, and to be involved in the democratic
government. The land first proposed was too large so we split that area into
two giving us Saskatchewan and Alberta!

Narrator: Thank you Frederick for sharing! I would like to thank all of our
history makers here in the room for coming to share your stories with us!
Canada is such an interesting place and we are so lucky to be Canadian!
Give everyone a round of applause! Oh wait! We have one more person that
needs to talk! Our Prime Minister Today! Justin Trudeau thank you for coming
today!

23. Justin Trudeau: Thank you to everyone from coming today! I would like to
report back to all people in Canadian History that Canada is a great play to
live! We are known to be nice, to always say sorry, we were voted the second
best place to live in the world, and are the second largest country in the
world. I would like to thank every for affecting Canadas history and also
extend my apologies for those whom we have hurt in the past! Everyone
should be proud of Canada today as we are celebrating our 150th birthday
this July 1st!

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