The creation of the Canadian Confederation by the 1867 British North America Act, initiated a flurry of territorial assimilation. The Crown purchased the vast Northwest Territory from the Hudson’s Bay Company, promptly assigning it to the Confederation. This was initially unorganized apart from a ‘postage stamp’ province of Manitoba. British Columbia, having previously absorbed the short-lived colonies of Vancouver Island and Stickeen, joined the Confederation in 1871. In 1873, Prince Edward Island joined up, and the Crown began organizing the Northwest Territory by carving out the District of Keewatin (reallotting its southern borders to Manitoba in 1880). The Arctic Islands were transferred to Canada in 1880. In 1882, there was the establishment of the districts of Saskatchewan, Assiniboia, Alberta, and Athabaska. Newfoundland, however, remained resolutely aloof, and would be self-governing until 1934. An area of disputed territory between Manitoba and Ontario would finally be resolved in 1889.
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