A study of borderlands and state formation in nineteenth-century Newfoundland.
Nineteenth-century Newfoundland was an archetypal borderland - a space where changes in the authority of imperial, national, and indigenous territorial claims shaped the opportunities and identities of a socially diverse population. Conflicted Colony elucidates processes of state formation in Newfoundland through a reassessment of key moments in the country's history.
Kurt Korneski closely examines five conflicts from the late nineteenth century - the Fortune Bay Dispute of 1878, the St George's Bay Dispute of 1889-92, the 1890s Lobster Controversy, the Battle of Foxtrap, and disputes over salmon grounds in Hamilton Inlet, Labrador - to explain how local regimes received, challenged, and reworked formal and informal diplomatic and commercial arrangements, as well as policies set out by the colonial and imperial government. The chapters examine antagonisms and divisions that grew out of clashes between the distinct commercial and social identities of regions in the borderlands and the sensibilities of merchants, politicians, and working people on the Avalon Peninsula. Providing new insight into the social history of Newfoundland and Labrador, these disputes illuminate contending perspectives driven by informal systems of governance, political movements, and local economic, social, demographic, and ecological circumstances.
Conflicted Colony broadens, deepens, and clarifies our understanding of how Newfoundland became an integrated Dominion in the British Empire.