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Facts about Quebec for Kids


Quebec is the only Canadian province with a predominantly French-speaking population and the only one whose sole official language is French at the provincial level. Quebec is Canada’s largest province by area and its second-largest administrative division; only the territory of Nunavut is larger.

  • It is bordered to the west by the province of Ontario, James Bay and Hudson Bay, to the north by Hudson Strait and Ungava Bay, to the east by the Gulf of Saint Lawrence and the provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador and New Brunswick.
  • In 2006, the House of Commons of Canada passed a symbolic motion recognizing the “Québécois as a nation within a united Canada.”
  • The name “Québec”, which comes from the Algonquin word kébec meaning “where the river narrows”, originally referred to the area around Quebec City where the Saint Lawrence River narrows to a cliff-lined gap.
  • French explorer Samuel de Champlain chose the name Québec in 1608 for the colonial outpost he would use as the administrative seat for the French colony of New France.
  • The Quebec Act of 1774 expanded the territory of the province to include the Great Lakes and the Ohio River Valley and south of Rupert’s Land, more or less restoring the borders previously existing under French rule before the Conquest.
  • After the Constitutional Act of 1791, the territory was divided between Lower Canada (present day Quebec) and Upper Canada (present day Ontario), with each being granted an elected legislative assembly.
  • In 1840, these become Canada East and Canada West after the British Parliament unified Upper and Lower Canadainto the Province of Canada.
  • The Saint Lawrence Lowland (south) and the CanadianShield (north) are the two main topographic regions and are radically different.
  • Its access to the Atlantic Ocean and the interior of North America made it the base of early French exploration and settlement in the 17th and 18th centuries.
  • Quebec’s highest point at 1,652 meters is Mont d’Iberville, known in English as Mount Caubvick, located on the border with Newfoundland and Labrador in the northeastern part of the province, in the Torngat Mountains.
  • Further south lie the subarctic taiga of the Eastern Canadian Shield taiga ecoregion and the boreal forest of the Central Canadian Shield forests, where spruce, fir, and poplar trees provide raw materials for Quebec’s pulp and paper and lumber industries.
  • The main climatic influences are from western and northern Canada and move eastward, and from the southern and central United States that move northward.
  • Land speculators and settlers objected to the transfer of western lands previously claimed by the colonies to a non-representative government.
  • In 1848, Baldwin and LaFontaine, allies and leaders of the Reformist party, were asked by Lord Elgin to form an administration together under the new policy of responsible government.
  • In the 1860s, the delegates from the colonies of British North America (Canada, New BrunswickNova ScotiaPrince Edward Island, and Newfoundland) met in a series of conferences to discuss self-governing status for a new confederation.