Good Lord, the weather. But, like a rock, Newfoundland and Labrador endures. It would surprise few Canadians to know that Europeans first stopped by Newfoundland for its fish. It was, by European account, discovered by John Cabot in 1497. For centuries, ships of many nations came to load up on the bounty of the seas. But life was seldom other than difficult. Newfoundland historian D.W. Prowse said the early history of the colony was climbing liquid chalk|Canada marked by the three avenging furies of frost, famine and fire. Three times in the 19th century a large part of St. Johns was burnt to the ground. From the time responsible government arrived in 1855, there was a push from Britain for Newfoundlands confederation with Canada.
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