Richard from Elk Grove, California asks:

In 19th Century USA there was a political slogan: "54' 40" or fight." What was the British North American view on this issue?

Bob Bothwell responds:

This was James K. Polk's slogan in the 1844 election. In the event Polk preferred to fight the Mexicans and settled on extending the line of the 49th parallel to the Pacific, with a bit of a dip around Vancouver Island. The British North Americans, being British, supported the British position (whatever it was) on the issue. But they had their own local troubles and in 1844 the Pacific was a very long way away. ContinueSo it was not really a major issue in the settled, eastern colonies.


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