Quebec had once been inhabited by indigenous peoples. During the age of colonization, the French colonists had claimed modern-day Quebec as well as a majority of North America. It had been lost, however, during warfare with Great Britain. Quebec had been under English control for 75 years, until a rebellion by Canadiens from Lower Canada, with assistance from France and the United States, paved the way for independence by 1850 after the Springtime of Nations.
After England had gained control of New France, Quebec had been organized into the Province of Quebec, which had encompassed Ontario and the Northwest Territory. The American Revolution saw the conquest of the Northwest Territory, and Englishmen who were loyal to the crown retreated back to Quebec, their only colony in the area. The territory was divided along the Ottawa River to satisfy the English-speaking population.
By the 1830s, Frenchmen in Quebec were becoming increasingly tired of English control, because of unfairness of colonial governing and frustrations in political reform. Many Canadiens wanted to govern themselves, and were inspired by the successful revolution of the French against the monarchy. In the late 1840s, when people faced world-wide revolutions against governments, monarchism, and sought reformation, approximately 4,500 Patriotes, with military support from about 10,000 Americans and 5,000 French soldiers, revolted in Lower Canada. This also resulted in uprisings in its English-majority neighbor, Upper Canada, and the two eventually gained their independence with the help of foreign powers.
Quebec is made up of six provinces: