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Royal Proclamation of 1763 facts for kids

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The Royal Proclamation of 1763 was issued October 7, 1763, by King George III after Great Britain gained French territory in North America after the end of the French and Indian War/Seven Years' War. The purpose of the Proclamation was to organize Britain's large North American empire, and to make relations with Native Americans better and more stable by controlling trade, settlement, and land purchases on the western frontier. Parliament also wished to gain trust from the natives so they could place forts there.

The war had brought large new western territories to the British Empire but the Proclamation stated that American colonists could not settle or buy land west of a line along the Appalachian Mountains. This angered colonists. Settlers continued to flow into the Ohio River Valley, and Great Britain was unable to provide adequate protection for them. Also, the Proclamation gave Great Britain a monopoly in land bought from Native Americans. The later Quebec Act, 1774 extended the rights of French Catholics, thus further angering English Protestant settlers.

Opposition to the Proclamation

French

  • Boundaries of Qu├ębec were very limited.
  • Catholics not permitted to run for office.
  • Did not think the proposed assembly would represent the views of the population.
  • Were concerned about the future of the Roman Catholic Church.
  • Could not fur trade outside the proclaimed boundaries.

British

  • Did not like the restrictions placed on fur trade.
  • Colonists wanted to continue going west. Many veterans of the war against France had been given land beyond the line, and the Proclamation took it away.
  • Were not satisfied by the proposal for an elected assembly.
  • They did not have a say in it.

New colonies

NorthAmerica-WaterDivides
The Eastern (orange line) in the southern areas, and St. Lawrence (magenta line) watershed boundaries in the northern areas of this map more-or-less defined almost all of the Royal Proclamation's western boundaries

The Proclamation of 1763 dealt with the management of former French territories in North America that Britain acquired following its victory over France in the French and Indian War. Iy also regulated colonial settlers' expansion.

It established new governments for several areas: the province of Quebec, the new colonies of West Florida and East Florida, and a group of Caribbean islands, Grenada, Tobago, Saint Vincent, and Dominica, collectively referred to as the British Ceded Islands.

250th anniversary celebrations

In October 2013, the 250th anniversary of the Royal Proclamation was celebrated in Ottawa with a meeting of Indigenous leaders and Governor-General David Johnston. The Aboriginal movement Idle No More held birthday parties for this monumental document at various locations across Canada.

United States

USA Proclamation of 1763 Silver Medal 1970
USA Proclamation of 1763 Silver Medal: Franklin Mint Issue 1970

In the United States, the Royal Proclamation of 1763 ended with the American Revolutionary War because Great Britain ceded the land in question to the United States in the Treaty of Paris (1783). Afterward, the U.S. government also faced difficulties in preventing frontier violence and eventually adopted policies similar to those of the Royal Proclamation. The first in a series of Indian Intercourse Acts was passed in 1790. It prohibited unregulated trade and travel in Native American lands.

In 1823, the U.S. Supreme Court case Johnson v. M'Intosh established that only the U.S. government, and not private individuals, could purchase land from Native Americans.

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