Why Did New Brunswick Join the Confederation?

did-new-brunswick-join-confederation Credit: Dennis Jarvis/CC-BY-SA 2.0

New Brunswick entered the Canadian Confederation in 1867 because the settlers thought that joining with Canada would be good for the economy and out of fear that the United States would want to expand northward into the colony.

Though the economy of New Brunswick as a colony of Britain was excellent, the settlers believed that in joining with Canada, there would be a bigger market for the goods that the colony produced. In entering the Confederation, citizens of New Brunswick would also have access to the Intercolonial Railway, which would provide easy transportation to the other colonies. In the 1860s the United States was proving itself to be a powerful young nation. The colonists feared that the country would seek to expand north and take over their territory. Joining with Canada gave them protection against this threat. New Brunswick was one of the first four colonies to join the Canadian Confederation. The colony was added to the Dominion of Canada at the Confederation held on July 1, 1867. The other three colonies were Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland. Prior to being a colony of Britain, New Brunswick was a part of Acadia, which was controlled by the French.