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Over centuries, elements of Indigenous, French, British and more recent immigrant customs have combined to form a Canadian culture that has also been strongly influenced by its linguistic, geographic and economic neighbour, the United States.
Since the conclusion of the Second World War, Canadians have supported multi-lateralism abroad and socioeconomic development domestically.
The inlets and valleys of the British Columbia Coast sheltered large, distinctive populations, such as the Haida, Kwakwaka'wakw and Nuu-chah-nulth, sustained by the region's abundant salmon and shellfish.
There are reports of contact made before the 1492 voyages of Christopher Columbus and the age of discovery between First Nations, Inuit and those from other continents.
The colony of New France was established in 1534 and was ceded to the United Kingdom in 1763 after the French defeat in the Seven Years' War.
The now British Province of Quebec was divided into Upper and Lower Canada in 1791 and reunified in 1841.
After the Constitution was patriated in 1982, the final vestiges of legal dependence on the British parliament were removed.
In the reign of King James I, the English established additional colonies in Cupids and Ferryland, Newfoundland, and soon after established the first successful permanent settlements of Virginia to the south.
In 1867, the Province of Canada was joined with two other British colonies of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia through Confederation, forming a self-governing entity named Canada.
The new dominion expanded by incorporating other parts of British North America, finishing with Newfoundland and Labrador in 1949.
The Na-Dene language group is believed to be linked to the Yeniseian languages of Siberia.
The Interior of British Columbia was home to the Salishan language groups such as the Shuswap (Secwepemc), Okanagan and southern Athabaskan language groups, primarily the Dakelh (Carrier) and the Tsilhqot'in.