Newfoundland and Labrador: The Province and People


Newfoundland and Labrador is the most eastern Canadian province and is composed of two geographic divisions. Newfoundland and Labrador comprises the island of Newfoundland and the mainland of Labrador (northwest of the island). The Strait of Belle Isle divides the two sections of this state. Labrador is the easternmost part of the Canadian Shield.

Formerly a colony and dominion of the uk, Newfoundland became the tenth province of Canada on March 31, 1949. The state joined Canada as”Newfoundland,” but since 1964, the state’s government has referred to itself as the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador. On December 6, 2001, an amendment was made to the Constitution of Canada to change the state’s official name to”Newfoundland and Labrador.” Yet most people still refer to the island as “Newfoundland” and the mainland as “Labrador.”

As of January 2010, the state’s population was estimated to be 510,805. About 94 percent of the state’s population resides on the Island of Newfoundland (including more than 7000 tiny islands). Nearly 50 percent of those residents live on the Avalon Peninsula. According to the 2001 Canadian census, the biggest ethnic group in Newfoundland and Labrador is Language (39.4percent ), followed by Irish (19.7%), Scottish (6.0%), French (5.5%), and First Nations (3.2percent ).

The Island of Newfoundland is famous for its different dialects, which can differ from area to area, and are based on the English, French, and Irish languages. Along with these dialects, Labrador has its own dialects of Innu-aimun and Inuktitut.

Marine Atlantic provides inter-provincial ferry services. Auto/passenger ferries run from Sydney, Nova Scotia, to the Newfoundland cities of Port aux Basques, and Argentia in southern Newfoundland

The first inhabitants of Newfoundland and Labrador can be traced back over 9,000 years into the people of the Maritime Archaic Tradition. This group was displaced after by the Palaeo-Eskimo individuals of the Dorset Culture (the L’nu or Mi’kmaq), as well as from the Innu and Inuit in Labrador, and the Beothuks on the island. Over 1000 years ago, the first European presence happened with the coming of the Vikings in L’Anse aux Meadows.

Five hundred years later, European explorers (John Cabot, Gaspar Corte-Real, Jacques Cartier, and many others ), fishermen from England, Ireland, Portugal, France and Spain, and Basque whalers researched the area. John Cabot (Giovanni Caboto, a citizen of Venice, Italy) is credited with discovering Newfoundland on June 24, 1497.

In 1583, Sir Humphrey Gilbert took possession of Newfoundland in the name of England. At that stage, the town of St. John’s was established but new settlements were launched in Cupids, Ferryland, and other areas. Basques fishermen who were fishing off Newfoundland since the 15th century based Placentia (Plaisance in French).

In 1655, France appointed a governor in Plaisance. This formal French colonization period in Newfoundland lasted until the Treaty of Utrechtin 1713. According to the terms of the treaty, France handed over its claims to Newfoundland to the British (as well as its promises to the shores of Hudson’s Bay). Additionally, the French possessions in Acadia were moved to England. Afterwards, under the oversight of the French governor, the French inhabitants of Plaisance moved to Île Royale (now Cape Breton Island) that was under French control.

Modern Newfoundland is a diverse and vibrant state and its people are known for their friendliness. Each year, tens of thousands of tourists discover that the island’s magic. Plan an Atlantic experience.

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