July 1: British North America Act: four provinces join to form Canada
1870 Canada acquires the Northwest Territories

British Columbia joins Canada on the promise made by Sir John A. Macdonald to link B.C. to the rest of Canada by railroad within 10 years

Sir Sandford Fleming preliminary survey of the railway routes: 7 possible destinations on the Pacific coast

1876 Prime Minister John A. Macdonald introduces his "National Policy", including a series of tariffs on imported goods and a renewed focus on a national railway
1880 October 21: Contract for the completion of the Pacific Railway is signed

February 15: Canadian Pacific Railway is officially incorporated; search for an alternative passage through the Rocky Mountains begins

May 29: Discovery of the Rogers Pass

1884 Railway reaches Kicking Horse Pass

North West Rebellion

November 7: Last spike at Craigellachie, B.C.; the CPR is officially finished


CPR builds Field Hotel (later renamed Mount Stephen House) and receives its first guests
in the summer

July 4: The first passenger train from Montreal/Toronto arrives in Monroe, B.C.

Creation of Mount Stephen Dominion Reserve on October 10

Summer: First collections from the Trilobite Beds

CPR publishes first tourist pamphlet

Black and white photograph of steam train in front of Field Hotel

Train arriving in front of Field Hotel, British Columbia, 1887 or 1888.

© Whyte Museum of the Rockies

1888 Charles Walcott’s first publication on fossils from the area
1892 Whiteaves publication of Anomalocaris canadensis from the Trilobite Beds
1897 First excursion by the German-Austrian Alpine Club up the Yoho valley

June: First arrival of Swiss guides

Black and white photo of Swiss Guide helping woman walk along glacier

Swiss guide helping woman cross snow bridge, Selkirk Mountains? British Columbia, 1900?

© Whyte Museum of the Rockies

1901 Mount Stephen Dominion Reserve is renamed Yoho National Park

CPR builds two log cabins on the shore of Emerald Lake

Black and white photo of cabins by edge of lake

Log cabins for tourists at Emerald Lake, British Columbia, 1900.

© Whyte Museum of the Rockies

1906 March 27: Creation of the Alpine Club of Canada; first annual camp at Yoho Pass in July
1907 Walcott’s visits the Trilobite Beds
1908 Walcott publishes an account of his discoveries in the Canadian Alpine Journal
1909 Walcott's discovery of the Burgess Shale; Spiral Tunnels are completed replacing the Big Hill

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