Showing the Flag: The Mounted Police and Canadian Sovereignty in the North, 1894-1925 (Google eBook)

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UBC Press, Nov 1, 2011 - History - 256 pages
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Under their various names the Mounted Police have played a vital, colourful, but often controversial role in Canadian history, and nowhere has this been truer than on the northern frontier. The police were the agents through which the central government asserted sovereignty over the Yukon and the Northwest Territories, just as it had done earlier on the Prairies.

This book describes to what extent the RCMP shaped the northern frontier -- a frontier which steadily shifted, separating territory under actual government control from that in which it was nominal. The chapters treat each new spurt in this expansion and the period of contact and transition which followed.

As agents of the government the police imposed on the Canadian North a system largely alien to it which was designed not to express the aspirations of the north but to regulate and control it. Through the enforcement of laws and in other public services the RCMP demonstrated that the land and its people including the Indians and Inuit, belonged to Canada. This political nature of the force was of the highest importance. In assessing their performance of often harsh and dangerous duties, Morrison refers to them as "group heroes" in the "Canadian tradition of collective heroism."

In view of the current concern over Canada's sovereignty in the Polar Seas, this book is a timely explanation of how the territory was originally brought into the orbit of Canadian control in what was thought to be the final chapter in Canada's "manifest destiny."

  

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Contents

1 The Mounted Police
1
The Early Period
10
3 The Police and the Gold Rush
28
4 The Police as Civil Servants
50
5 The Police and Yukon Politics
61
6 North of the Arctic Circle
72
7 To Hudson Bay and the Eastern Arctic
87
8 Expanding Activities in the Mackenzie Delta
102
10 Patrols and Patrolling
132
11 The Police and the Native Peoples of the Northern Frontier
142
12 Ultima Thule
162
13 The End of the Frontier
174
Appendix
181
Notes
187
Bibliography
209
Index
217

9 Hudson Bay
120

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About the author (2011)

William R. Morrison is a professor of history at Brandon University.

Bibliographic information