As a constitutional monarch whose powers were quite limited, Queen Victoria was able to use her influence in colonization and to occasionally effect positive change, particularly for the poor. Queen Victoria herself was known as a conservative monarch whose 64-year reign was the longest in the history of the United Kingdom.
Queen Victoria tended to use her considerable influence to promote causes that interested her personally:
- She was in favor of the Housing Commission and other efforts to help the poor.
- She supported British imperialism and was crowned Empress of India in 1876.
- She took an interest in the Canadian colonies, which led to the establishment of elected government there, signing the British North America Act in 1840.