What's Your Canadian History IQ?


By: Bambi Turner

6 Min Quiz

Image: History Class

About This Quiz

Do you know when Toronto, Ottawa and Canada's other great cities were established, or what the original names were for these population centers? Know how the country fared in WWI or WWII, or what major event occurred in Canada on July 20, 2005? If you think you know everything about the history of this nation, prove it with this Canadian history quiz!

The world's second largest country has so much more to offer than maple leaves, poutine and top-notch hockey players. The nation also has a rich and storied history that dates back well over 10,000 years, when the earliest people migrated from Alaska and the Yukon into what is now known as Canada.

Like its southern neighbor, the United States, Canada's story begins with a rich native culture which pre-dated European colonization by centuries. Since the first European settlements were established in Canada around the 16th century, the First Nations people have faced many of the same struggles seen by Native Americans further south.

Over time, people flocked to cities like Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal, which became global centers of finance, food, fashion and culture. The country gained its independence from Great Britain and became a world power in its own right.

Do you know the events that shaped Canada into the country it is today? Take our quiz to find out!

Which group of Europeans were the first to attempt to settle in Canada?

Five hundred years before the Cabots and Cartiers, Viking Leif Ericsson became the first European in Canada. He founded a settlement known as L'Anse aux Meadows in what is now Newfoundland.


The Battle of Vimy Ridge took place during this war.

Canada experienced one of its most significant military victories at the Battle of Vimy Ridge during WWI. More than 100,000 Canadians fought in this battle in France, defeating the Germans during an April snowstorm in 1917.


Who did Canada fight against in the War of 1812?

As part of an ongoing battle with Britain, the U.S. invaded Canada in June 1812. The Canadians and First Nation people united to fend off the Americans, and went on to capture the city of Detroit.


What is John Macdonald famous for?

When Canada became a Dominion in 1867, Scottish lawyer John Macdonald became the new country's first prime minister. Today, his picture can be found on the country's ten-dollar bill.


Which of these events took place in Canada starting in 1929?

After the U.S. stock market crash of 1929, Canada was plunged into a decade-long economic depression. By 1933, 27 percent of the work force was unemployed. In 1934, the Bank of Canada was established in an attempt to begin to stabilize the economy.


What year was Hudson Bay Company granted a corporate charter?

Hudson Bay Company is older than Canada as a nation. Granted a corporate charter by the British government in May 1670, the fur trading firm served as a de facto government in the area before more permanent systems of government were established.


Which Canadian province was the first to offer universal health care starting in 1947?

Saskatchewan led the charge toward Canada's modern system of universal health care. The province made hospital visits universal in 1947, then expanded this program to include regular doctor visits in 1962. The 1984 Canada Health Act consolidated provincial programs and serves as the basis for Canada's current system.


What was the first Canadian city to host the Olympics?

Montreal had the honor of hosting the first Olympic Games on Canadian soil in 1976. The country hosted the winter games in 1988 in Calgary, then again in Vancouver in 2010.


How many Canadians fought in WWII?

Canada elected to enter WWII to support its ally Great Britain after the Brits declared war on Nazi Germany in 1939. About a million Canadians fought in the War, and 44,000 were killed.


Which city was founded by Samuel de Champlain?

Samuel de Champlain founded Quebec City in 1608 on the site of the Iroquoian settlement of Stadacona. By 1665, more than 500 people called Quebec City home.


What year did Canada Confederation occur?

Canadian confederation occurred on July 1, 1867, when New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and the Province of Canada united to form the Dominion of Canada. The event is celebrated by Canadians each year on July 1 as Canada Day,


Which city is home to the CN Tower?

The 1,815-foot CN Tower soars above the city of Toronto. It's not only Canada's tallest structure, but also the tallest structure in the western hemisphere.


What year did John Calbot claim portions of eastern Canada for England?

Five years after Columbus sailed the ocean blue, King Henry VII of England sent John Cabot to find a passage to Asia. Instead, Cabot stumbled on Newfoundland and Labrador, claiming the land for England.


Which of these water bodies did Jacques Cartier famously explore?

In 1534, Jacques Cartier sailed along the St. Lawrence River, claiming the surrounding lands for France. He was seeking passage to Asia, as well as gold to bring home to King Francis I.


What huge medical breakthrough occurred in Canada in 1922?

In 1922, a pair of researchers at the University of Toronto injected insulin into a human patient for the first time, saving his life and changing the lives of diabetes patients forever. Their work earned them the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1923.


Which Canadian city was once named York?

Way back in the day, the Iroquois chose the name Toronto, which means "place where trees stand on water." When Europeans came to Canada, they called this city York. It got its original name back in 1834.


Which of these milestones occurred after British Columbia elected to become a province of Canada?

After British Columbia became a Canadian province, the nation was able to extend the Canadian-Pacific Railroad from coast to coast. By 1885, it was the longest railway in the world, and played a huge role in helping to grow and populate western Canada.


Which Canadian city was formerly known as Bytown?

In 1855, the town of Bytown was renamed Ottawa. Two years later, Ottawa became the capital of Canada. The name is Algonquin for "to trade."


What year did Canada pass the Civil Marriage Act, allowing same-sex couples to wed?

Canada passed the Civil Marriage Act on July 20, 2005, allowing unions between same-sex couples. The Act made Canada the third country in the world and the first in the Americas to recognize gay marriages.


What kind of animal is on a loonie?

Canada's one-dollar gold-colored coin was introduced in 1987. Known as a loonie because it has an image of a common bird known as a loon on one side, it's also decorated with an image of Queen Elizabeth II on the other face.


Prime Minister Stephen Harper gained global attention with this 2008 action.

Just like Native Americans in the U.S., the First Nations groups in Canada faced extreme difficulties brought on by European colonization. In 2008, Prime Minister Stephen Harper made an official apology to these groups for the way they had been treated in the past.


What year did the maple leaf become Canada's official flag?

In 1965, Canada officially adopted the red and white maple leaf as its national flag. Before that, the country used the Canadian Red Ensign, which featured both the British flag and the Canadian coat of arms.


Which city hosted a successful World's Fair in 1967?

The Montreal Expo, or Expo 67, took place in the French-Canadian province in 1967. Over 60 nations participated, and it was a huge success in terms of attendance from around the globe.


Which of these provinces became part of Canada in 1905?

Both Alberta and Saskatchewan became provinces in 1905. They were both carved out of land that previously belonged to the Northwest Territories.


Which of these wars was ended by the Treaty of Ghent?

The U.S. and Britain ended the War of 1812 with the Treaty of Ghent. The Treaty helped to establish many of the modern borders between the U.S. and Canada.


Which of these provinces was affected by the 1791 Constitutional Act?

The 1791 Constitutional Act divided the province of Quebec in half. The upper region became the modern province of Quebec, while the lower region became modern Ontario.


Which of these groups was not part of the Iroquois Confederacy?

Five groups formed the Iroquois Confederacy, including the Mohawks, Oneidas, Onondagas, Cayugas and Senecas. Because the date was passed down orally, it is not clear if the Confederacy was established in 1442 or 1451.


Rich oil deposits discovered in this province in 1875 changed the Canadian economy forever.

In 1875, the Canadian Geological Survey found oil sands in Alberta. They were first subject to commercial extraction in the 1930s, and by 2004, the oil sands of Alberta were producing a million barrels a day.


What did the Statute of Westminster do?

In 1931, the British Parliament passed the Statute of Westminster. This declaration freed Canada from its status as a British Dominion, making it an independent nation for the first time.


Which Canadian territory was added in 1999?

In 1999, a third Canadian province was carved out of the Northwest Territories. It was named Nunavut, which means "our land" in the Inuktitut language.


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