The 1870’s

British Columbia Joins Confederation

October 15, 1871

All aboard in British Columbia — After Confederation in 1867, British North America's West Coast colony of British Columbia (the colony of Vancouver Island had joined it the year before) debated joining the new Dominion. In 1871, when the federal government promised to build a railway connecting the coast to Canada (a promise it kept in 1885), the 12,000 non-native residents of the colony agreed to request its admission to Canada. By a United Kingdom Order in Council, British Columbia became the sixth province on 20 July 1871. Sir Joseph Trutch was appointed the first Lieutenant Governor, and the Legislative Assembly elected John Foster McCreight as the first Premier.