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How are Mexico's demographics? The growth of Altiplano due to European immigration probably would change the population a little.

My rough estimate is that Mexico is probably about 15-20% ahead of its OTL population at this point based on mass immigration. Less than the US's gangbusters number but ahead of the CSA and Canada. If it was at about 8.25 million in OTL 1865, and 15.16 million in OTL 1910 (based on Wikipedia's estimates), then that projects out to a growth rate of about 1.8% per annum averaged over 45 years.

Correct me if my math is wrong here:

OTL - average growth of 1.8% per year, based mostly on natural growth (immigration to Porfiriato-era Mexico being much more minimal than this TL)

1865 - 8,250,000
1866 - 8,398,500
1867 - 8,549,673
1868 - 8,703,567
1869 - 8,860,231
1870 - 9,019,715
1871 - 9,182,070
1872 - 9,347,347
1873 - 9,515,599
1874 - 9,686,880
1875 - 9,861,244
1876 - 10,038,746
1877 - 10,219,443
1878 - 10,403,392
1879 - 10,590,653
1880 - 10,781,284

If we split the difference and say that Mexico's pop is about 17.5% higher under Maximilian's Plan Nacional, then we come out to a population in 1880 of about 12,668,008, which with higher natural growth, immigration (both from Europe, higher numbers of Cantonese arrivals and fleeing slaves from the Confederacy) and the births of those immigrants, and less death due to stability in Mexico starting out in 1862/3 rather than 1867 and the following power struggles during the Juarez Presidency and early Porfiriato, I think that's a reasonable number. About 1.9 million more people, largely of European stock with small groups of black and East Asians sprinkled in.
 
I would like to see you do a Confederate version as well.

For Confederate demographics, the antebellum era had the more established border states growing from lows of 9% per decade (Virginia) to about 15% per decade (Kentucky or Tennessee), as the slave economy transitioned southwards. Of course, the devastation of the war really changed this, and migration from North to South would effectively cease postwar, but I can try to extrapolate this out by modifying growth rates a bit. Deep South states with their large black populations with high birth rates would obviously grow quicker than Upper South states, in my view. My presumption in this model is that most states grew approximately at a 75% rate compared to the 1860s due to the collapse of the Confederate economy in the 1870s during the Long Depression, the miniscule immigration, outmigration of many poor whites, freedmen and escaped slaves, and not-insubstantial numbers of fertility-age white men perishing in Cuba, though nothing on the scale of the devastation of OTL Civil War. With TTL War of Southern Independence ending two years early, and ending before the really brutal years of 1864 and 1865, the Southern demographics are not nearly as hammered.

State - 1860 Pop - 1870 Pop (% change) - 1880 Pop (% change)

Alabama - 964,201 - 1,108,831 (15%) - 1,247,433 (12.5%)
Arkansas - 435,400 - 669,427 (53.75%) - 939,206 (40.3%)
Florida - 140,242 - 187,000 (33.5%) - 233,750 (25.0%)
Georgia - 1,057,286 - 1,247,597 (18%) - 1,416,602 (13.5%)
Kentucky - 1,155,684 - 1,323,258 (14.5%) - 1,587,909 (20.0%) [1]
Louisiana - 708,002 - 902,700 (27.5%) - 1,088,656 (20.6%)
Mississippi - 791,305 - 971,722 (22.8%) - 1,137,886 (17.1%)
North Carolina - 992,622 - 1,122,655 (13.1%) [2] - 1,232,686 (9.8%)
South Carolina - 703,708 - 741,004 (5.3%) [3] - 770,644 (4.0%)
Tennessee - 1,109,801 - 1,258,520 (13.4%) - 1,542,359 (22.6%) [4]
Texas - 604,215 - 1,033,207 (71.0%) [5] - 1,583,906 (53.3%)
Virginia - 1,219,630 - 1,326,957 (8.8%) [6] - 1,454,345 (9.6%)

CS Total - 9,882,096 - 11,892,878 (20.3%) - 14,235,382 (19.6%)

[1] Kentucky gets a higher growth rate in the 1870s due to its industrial base and minimal slave economy making it more attractive to what European immigrants are arriving, especially in coal country and the Ohio River Valley. Of course, this figure is still lower than OTL Kentucky's 1880 pop
[2] Extrapolated down from North Carolina's previous two decade growth rates of 15.3 and 14.2
[3] SC had a weirdly low growth rate from 1850-60. I just repeated that growth rate once again.
[4] Tennessee's OTL growth rate. Unique among Southern states in not getting completely blitzed for a decade by the Civil War. Why mess with it, that seems realistic to me for TTL seeing as the Nashville-Louisville-Birmingham and Nashville-Knoxville-Memphis railroad axes, along with the Cumberland River are the heartland of Confederate industry.
[5] Texas being the closest thing the CSA has to the vast open lands of Kansas or Nebraska, and one of the few parts of the south that seriously attracted European immigration, it would have similar growth rates. Simply doubled the 1860-70 growth rate of 35.5% here. The 1880 pop number ironically slightly underruns OTL's but we can chalk that up to decreased immigration, the collapse of the CS economy in the 70s depression, and lack of Northerners who IOTL came South
[6] Virginia's 1870 number is derived from just extrapolating down its pop growth from 1850-1860 by 0.2%, and then I gave it a bump for the 1870s presuming commercial growth in Richmond and Norfolk. That said, with slaves being increasingly sold southwards in the Confederacy, minimal inmigration and being a border state with a large and poor white population that would seek opportunities in the Union or in the West, Virginia is a demographically mature state compared to many of its peers and by 1880 has slipped from the largest to the fourth largest state in the Confederacy.
 
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Ficboy

Banned
For Confederate demographics, the antebellum era had the more established border states growing from lows of 9% per decade (Virginia) to about 15% per decade (Kentucky or Tennessee), as the slave economy transitioned southwards. Of course, the devastation of the war really changed this, and migration from North to South would effectively cease postwar, but I can try to extrapolate this out by modifying growth rates a bit. Deep South states with their large black populations with high birth rates would obviously grow quicker than Upper South states, in my view. My presumption in this model is that most states grew approximately at a 75% rate compared to the 1860s due to the collapse of the Confederate economy in the 1870s during the Long Depression, the miniscule immigration, outmigration of many poor whites, freedmen and escaped slaves, and not-insubstantial numbers of fertility-age white men perishing in Cuba, though nothing on the scale of the devastation of OTL Civil War. With TTL War of Southern Independence ending two years early, and ending before the really brutal years of 1864 and 1865, the Southern demographics are not nearly as hammered.

State - 1860 Pop - 1870 Pop (% change) - 1880 Pop (% change)

Alabama - 964,201 - 110,883,000 (15%) - 1,247,433 (12.5%)
Arkansas - 435,400 - 669,427 (53.75%) - 939,206 (40.3%)
Florida - 140,242 - 187,000 (33.5%) - 233,750 (25.0%)
Georgia - 1,057,286 - 1,247,597 (18%) - 1,416,602 (13.5%)
Kentucky - 1,155,684 - 1,323,258 (14.5%) - 1,587,909 (20.0%) [1]
Louisiana - 708,002 - 902,700 (27.5%) - 1,088,656 (20.6%)
Mississippi - 791,305 - 971,722 (22.8%) - 1,137,886 (17.1%)
North Carolina - 992,622 - 1,122,655 (13.1%) [2] - 1,232,686 (9.8%)
South Carolina - 703,708 - 741,004 (5.3%) [3] - 770,644 (4.0%)
Tennessee - 1,109,801 - 1,258,520 (13.4%) - 1,542,359 (22.6%) [4]
Texas - 604,215 - 1,033,207 (71.0%) [5] - 1,583,906 (53.3%)
Virginia - 1,219,630 - 1,326,957 (8.8%) [6] - 1,454,345 (9.6%)

[1] Kentucky gets a higher growth rate in the 1870s due to its industrial base and minimal slave economy making it more attractive to what European immigrants are arriving, especially in coal country and the Ohio River Valley. Of course, this figure is still lower than OTL Kentucky's 1880 pop
[2] Extrapolated down from North Carolina's previous two decade growth rates of 15.3 and 14.2
[3] SC had a weirdly low growth rate from 1850-60. I just repeated that growth rate once again.
[4] Tennessee's OTL growth rate. Unique among Southern states in not getting completely blitzed for a decade by the Civil War. Why mess with it, that seems realistic to me for TTL seeing as the Nashville-Louisville-Birmingham and Nashville-Knoxville-Memphis railroad axes, along with the Cumberland River are the heartland of Confederate industry.
[5] Texas being the closest thing the CSA has to the vast open lands of Kansas or Nebraska, and one of the few parts of the south that seriously attracted European immigration, it would have similar growth rates. Simply doubled the 1860-70 growth rate of 35.5% here. The 1880 pop number ironically slightly underruns OTL's but we can chalk that up to decreased immigration, the collapse of the CS economy in the 70s depression, and lack of Northerners who IOTL came South
[6] Virginia's 1870 number is derived from just extrapolating down its pop growth from 1850-1860 by 0.2%, and then I gave it a bump for the 1870s presuming commercial growth in Richmond and Norfolk. That said, with slaves being increasingly sold southwards in the Confederacy, minimal inmigration and being a border state with a large and poor white population that would seek opportunities in the Union or in the West, Virginia is a demographically mature state compared to many of its peers and by 1880 has slipped from the largest to the fourth largest state in the Confederacy.
We do know mentions of Black migration into the North albeit different from OTL. Considering the lack of opportunities after slavery and competition in the job market from yeoman and poor Whites in the South respectively it would cause ex-slave Blacks to go to the United States to escape the societal stigma they suffer of course things wouldn't automatically be better in the North given the existing prejudices. Immigration is going to occur in the Confederate States but at lower rates for the reasons you just mentioned. Texas would gain the most European immigration because of the vast cheap land out west and prior patterns in OTL especially compared to the other Southern states.
 
Now that we've done Censuses on the three North American powers, I should note: I'm assuming a higher birth rate in the Confederacy than in Mexico at this time due to the large number of enslaved persons who didn't exactly have a choice on when they were going to have kids, if you follow my meaning, and a baby boom following the victory in the war in the 1860s which has echoes deep into the 1880s.

Mexico's annual growth rate between 1865 and 1880 TTL would be 53.5% over 15 years, or 3.56% per annum, versus a Confederate growth rate of 44.0% over 20 years, or 2.2% per annum. Adding that note just since we've had some q's on Mexican vs. Confederate growth rates before.

Of course, the US is dramatically outpacing both, adding basically the entire population of Mexico between 1870 and 1880 alone despite being the original epicenter of the Great Depression.
 
We do know mentions of Black migration into the North albeit different from OTL. Considering the lack of opportunities after slavery and competition in the job market from yeoman and poor Whites in the South respectively it would cause ex-slave Blacks to go to the United States to escape the societal stigma they suffer of course things wouldn't automatically be better in the North given the existing prejudices. Immigration is going to occur in the Confederate States but at lower rates for the reasons you just mentioned. Texas would gain the most European immigration because of the vast cheap land out west and prior patterns in OTL especially compared to the other Southern states.

Don't disagree. It's just harder for Black families to move en masse in the way they could OTL since its not one country and there's the Ohio River they have to deal with to escape North. It's primarily freedmen who are part of that migration, with escaped slaves a decent component as well. I might do another update on the continuing Underground Railroad here soon, speaking of.
 

Ficboy

Banned
Don't disagree. It's just harder for Black families to move en masse in the way they could OTL since its not one country and there's the Ohio River they have to deal with to escape North. It's primarily freedmen who are part of that migration, with escaped slaves a decent component as well. I might do another update on the continuing Underground Railroad here soon, speaking of.
Free blacks stayed in the South for the most part given that they were in better economic standing compared to their slave counterparts. Do the Underground Railroad please.
 
Free blacks stayed in the South for the most part given that they were in better economic standing compared to their slave counterparts. Do the Underground Railroad please.

Well, there were discussions in some Confederate states about re-enslaving all freedmen (taking Dred Scott to its natural logical conclusion), so it would probably depend on where in the South they were.
 

Ficboy

Banned
Not off the top of my head, unfortunately. I know I've read that somewhere, unlike the unsourced claim that planters wanted to enslave poor whites too! (But if the latter is possibly true, that lends much more credence to the former)
Can you name a single source.
 
1880 World Population Numbers and Estimates
For fun, let's sprinkle in some estimates on global population figures, since I'm on the subject already.

Germany - 44,234,500 [2]
France - 41,100,000 [1]
United States - 37,500,716
United Kingdom - 34,934,500
Italy - 28,953,480
Spain - 21,092,982 [3]
Confederate States - 14,235,382
Mexico - 12,668,008
Brazil - 11,884,796

Don't have enough information to estimate the population of Russia, Austria-Hungary or Ottoman Empire

[1] Higher growth rate due to not getting as hammered in the Franco-Prussian War, not losing Alsace-Lorraine, and the generally more optimistic and thriving situation in France ITTL
[2] Reduced by 1 million to account for no Alsace-Lorraine
[3] 18,184,130 in metropolitan Spain, 1,600,500 in Cuba (assuming less death and slightly heightened in-migration with a shorter war), 764,352 in Puerto Rico, and 544,000 in Santo Domingo
 
Queen Min
"...the 1881 mission of Kim Hongjip to study Japan's rapid modernization and industrialization in the 1870s came into contact with Chinese counselor Huang Tsu-hsien, who presented him with a book called "Korean Strategy." It proposed a strategy for Korea to balance itself between Japan and China, learning about what practices from the West could best be absorbed from each, and suggested a dramatic re-evaluation of Korea's military strategy. The transformation of Japan's cities compared to Seoul and Busan, now poor backwaters, was lost on few.

With Japan seen as having economic and potentially territorial ambitions in Korea, China's hegemony in decline even as Korea was still formally a tributary, and French and Russian activities in the area only increasing every year, the Court of Queen Min saw this book, when presented to them, as a straightforward way to rapidly modernize the Korean state. New bureaus were to be established, cooperation with both Japanese and Western interests "on equal terms" were to be pursued, with French and Japanese concessions to be maintained at Busan and Wonsan but new commercial rights would be granted out of Inchon. The alternative, in the view of the reformers, was to eventually be consumed by one of the great powers - to either have France extend her "protectorate" over Korea to a full colony, absorption by Russia to the North in the Bear's long-sought quest for warm water ports on the Pacific, or the culmination of Japan's longstanding ambitions across the Eastern Sea. For the yangban class that dominated the government, this meant a collapse in social order, the total overthrow of the Korean way of life, and the potential reintroduction of subversive ideologies, most prominently Catholicism, which had begun to slowly reclaim its toehold in Korea thanks to new and more frequent Catholic missionaries, almost exclusively French, arriving since the early 1870s. Indeed, the years 1879 and 1880 saw record conversions and Catholic marriages, and many French merchants took Korean wives home to France with them. In their view, the old order was crumbling and their Korea - isolated but rigidly Confucian - was under attack.

The Queen would have to go..."

- Queen Min
 
One Party, One Nation: Canada's 19th Century Tory Dynasty
"...but for Tupper, now reelected in the spring of 1881 with a reduced but still substantial majority in Ottawa over the hapless, free-trade supporting Edward Blake, the completion of the Canadian Pacific to Vancouver would lead to a new dawn for his young nation of only four million souls [1], one in which they would become the lynchpin of a global trade network. Within a decade British Columbia would have been transformed as Canada's door to the East, linked to Sydney, Hongkong and Singapore via the critical harbour on Oahu. But the Tory government under Tupper had other interests - namely, to prevent any restiveness in the provinces, and to populate the Prairie territories as rapidly as possible.

In the oeuvre of the day, Tupper was more of an Anglican chauvinist than even MacDonald had been, and as the Land Wars in Ireland heated up and commanded the attention of the British establishment in Whitehall, in Canada the feud between Orangemen and Fenians darkened. In this virgin land, the Order positioned itself into ever-further positions of power, particularly in the commercial and political establishments of Toronto and Montreal, thus alienating not only the growing Irish working class but also the French-speaking majority in Quebec, which despite sharing an ultramontane worldview [2] with the Irish lay and clergy were grappling for control over the Church infrastructure in Canada with the arrivals from Eire. The ugliest incident came in April, but a month after the election, when after an incident in which two Irishmen were accused of non-fatally knifing four members of the Dominion Police [3] leaving a tavern in Toronto, which resulted in a lynch mob forming on the 19th to kill not just the two "Fenian savages" who had attacked the Policemen but snowballed into what can best be described as a pogrom in Toronto leaving twenty-one dead, dozens of Irish homes and businesses burned to the ground and a drunken revelry at Queen's Park shortly thereafter. The Queen's Park Riot, as it was called, resulted in a severe retaliation, first with a string of assassinations of Dominion Police members - the police had stood by or participated in the pogrom and many of the rioters were thought to be off-duty policemen or even Canadian Militia soldiers - in both Ontario and Quebec followed by the Orange parades on July 12th in Toronto, London (Ont.) and Montreal being bombed by Fenian supporters, killing dozens. The Orange Summer was the nadir in sectarian relations in Canada and poisoned debates in England as well, and would only harden the Tupper Ministry's opposition to yielding to Fenians, who they viewed as being a fifth column supported by the United States government and Irish community in tandem, perhaps as a mechanism to weaken and seize all of Canada. It was the worst violence since the shockwaves of the 1868 Sydney Affair, and it had the effect of arresting Irish immigration to Canada for much of the next decade and even encouraged many Catholic families already in Canada to cross the Great Lakes to the comparatively friendlier lands of the United States. [3]

It was for this reason that Tupper and his administration continued to press against the funding of parochial schools with public funds, and took a firmer stance on the settlement of the prairies primarily by Anglophone, and Protestant, newcomers - bringing Ottawa directly into conflict with the Metis who already lived there, and their exiled leader Louis Riel..."


- One Party, One Nation: Canada's 19th Century Tory Dynasty (University of Toronto, 1967)

[1] Kind of remarkable how few people lived in Canada before the big immigration wave kicked in
[2] Big difference in Canadian Catholicism here; without laicite and a more staunchly Catholic French government to take cues from, I posit that the French-Canadian Catholic clergy would have taken more and earlier conservative stances than IOTL. They'd still have been rivals with Irish arrivals for control of Church institutions, of course
[3] A Canada - and Australia - with a smaller Irish population, and a Union with a bigger one, has some big knock-on effects
 
The Eaglet Takes Flight: The Reign of Napoleon IV 1874-1905
"...Maria Pilar's miscarriage devastated both Emperor and Empress, and Napoleon IV would remark near the end of his life that 1881 was indeed his "annus horriblis." His already-frail wife coming so near death, and the fear that they could never attempt to have a child again, even led the Eaglet to establishing his cousin Prince Victor as his heir - secretly, to avoid outraging his father's cousin and former advisor Prince Jérôme, whom Napoleon IV regarded as absolutely incapable of taking the throne and whose anti-clerical liberalism he despised. His mood darkened from its usual curious, sunny disposition and he spent several long nights wandering the Tuileries in a drunken stupor as he waited for his wife's convalescence to end. The near-death of Maria Pilar brought him closer again to his mother, who spent most of every day praying, and further split him from his brother-in-law Don Alfonso, whose new wife Blanca de Bourbon [1] demanded much of her husband's attention away from the family crisis. But, to the joy of Napoleon and the nation, Maria Pilar recovered and survived the dangerous late miscarriage. In his extensive diaries, Napoleon remarked, "I have never felt greater happiness than this day. Not my wedding day, not the day of my coronation - it is the day that my beautiful wife survived her terrible ordeal and returned to my side, stronger and braver than before, that I cherish the most." The tragedy brought the two ever closer together, and after that it was thought that they seemed almost like consorts in the fashion of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, or of Kaiser Freidrich and Empress Viktoria in Germany. Of course, that would never be the case - Maria Pilar, though always affable and delightful in company, detested politics and preferred to read, write and paint to the type of public role that a fully equal consort would have taken..."

- The Eaglet Takes Flight: The Reign of Napoleon IV 1874-1905

[1] A Carlist! Not just any Carlist, but the daughter of Carlos himself! This was apparently IOTL Isabella's preferred match for Alfonso to help defuse the Carlist/Isabelline divide. Here, with both branches in exile, a rapprochement in Paris is perhaps likelier than Alfonso marrying either an Austrian archduchess or Montpensier's daughter (who would presumably survive longer than 18 ITTL), as Montpensier likely doesn't want to give up his Spanish political privileges despite being passed over for the throne in favor of Leopold I. One can presume this marriage did *not* go over well in Madrid, presumably adding fuel to the Spanish Insult fire back when that was going on (Alfonso if you can't tell is a minor player moving forward, the House of Bourbon basically teetering on the edge of irrelevancy at this point)
 
Well I can tell you now, this world will not be home to the “friendly upstairs neighbor” Canada we all know and love from OTL

I just politely request that any xenophobic asshole tendencies be a mere phase. Because while a meaner Canada is interesting I hope someone smacks some sense into them somewhere between the current year ITTL and the present day.
 
Strategic Waterways of the World: A Guide and History
"...in the early 1880s, Emperor Maximilian of Mexico coined a new term for a certain euphoria in the air: Canalismo, the ideology of preferring built waterways to the more easily built and maintained railroads for transport. The human toils and labors that went into building the critical Suez Canal, and its revolutionary effect on global commerce - and the balance of power in Europe and upon the high seas, birthing the French Colonial Empire into existence and completely redrawing the British mercantile economy and naval priorities [1] - gave rise to a new era, one in which the great powers sought to not only secure nature's most important marine passages but create new ones, via the technological innovations of canal building.

Some of these projects were straightforward in scale, following on the great American traditions of canals to connect rivers, such as the famous Erie Canal that opened up America's Midwest to settlement. Of particular focus in Germany, for instance, was the construction of the Kiel Canal to cross the Jutland Peninsula, connecting the North Sea to the Baltic - and perhaps more critically, avoid being bottled in by hostile Denmark and thus avoiding the Kattegat in event of war. [2] In Canada, discussions were underway with British investors to use the French River and Lake Nipissing, and canals where water did not yet flow, to connect Georgian Bay and the Great Lakes directly to Montreal and bypass the perceived-hostile United States entirely. [3]

But other more ambitious projects were taking on new life as well. The idea of a canal across the Central American Isthmus had existed since the Spanish conquest. Now, with the advents of modern technology, there was the ability to do it. Ferdinand de Lesseps, the mind behind Suez, had formed a new venture - the Panama Canal Company, registered on the Paris Bourse, and which had not only the full backing of France's largest banks but also the French government, which salivated over the ability to command two chokepoint canals between Europe and Asia. American investors were generally amenable when de Lesseps visited New York and Philadelphia in 1881 to fundraise, though a competing canal controlled by US interests began to rise as a priority for Washington, and led to the leasing of Mole St. Nicholas in 1883 to give the US even more presence in the Windward Strait [4]. German engineers had their own project in mind, both a proposal to join with American investors to build a sea-level canal across Nicaragua before France could construct theirs through the Panama Isthmus, as well as tentative designs on a canal across the Kra Isthmus in Siam, thus allowing European ships to reach Asia without having to traverse the pirate-filled - and British-controlled - Straits of Malacca. [5]

If there was one power that was leery of "canalismo," it was Britain - even though the Suez Canal Company allowed her ships to transit the canal at leisure, in case of war with France, they would be entirely cut off from India and Hong Kong. A canal transiting the Central American isthmus would make Britain's valuable Tehuantepec Railway obsolete, damage her investments in Canada's railroads and overturn its new "Three Capes" strategic realignment. And a Siamese Canal, impractical as it was for Germany to pursue such a project until decades later, would eradicate the supremacy of Singapore as a port and naval base in the Far East. [6] It was critical, then, for Britain to either control whatever canals emerged - or stop them entirely."

- Strategic Waterways of the World: A Guide and History (US Naval War College, 1997)


[1] The aforementioned "Three Cape Strategy" of Britain to prevent any other boxing out of their interests on other major sea lanes
[2] IOW, the Kiel Canal will be opened years early
[3] Got this idea from a post in the post-1900 forum the other day. Sounds like the Canadian government was actually pushing this at one point, according to the linked article! It's a cool idea
[4] Haiti offered this to the US IOTL and Chester Arthur turned it down; Blaine would not. Between Mole St. Nicholas and Navasso Island, this now gives the US a naval presence on both ends of the Windward Passage and effectively allows them to control the quickest route of access to Central America along with Spain out of Guantanamo.
[5] I believe de Lesseps pitched this in OTL but was not allowed to pursue it by Chulalongkorn. With Germany being pretty tight with Siam here, that could potentially pan out differently
[6] Idea stems from this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thai_Canal
 
I just politely request that any xenophobic asshole tendencies be a mere phase. Because while a meaner Canada is interesting I hope someone smacks some sense into them somewhere between the current year ITTL and the present day.

Can't promise anything either way! It'll be a different Canada, for better or worse, much like the rest of the world (I'm hedging a bit since I haven't planned things out toooo far, anyways)
 
The African Game: The European Contest for the Dark Continent
"...Brazza's expedition to the Congo Basin was generally considered a success, and an important step in asserting further French dominance over Africa. Brazza was feted in Paris as "le conquérant pacifique", or peaceful conqueror, for his establishment of protectorates over local kingdoms without waging war. And indeed, a general war over Africa was a concern in 1881 - Belgium's shocking transfer of the Congo to King Leopold's personal control effectively handed tiny Belgium dominion over much of the continent's center. Not everyone opposed this turn of events. Britain, effectively confined to the Cape and Natal in the South unless they wanted to wage a war on scale that the British public was unlikely to support, was beginning to lose appetite for direct imperialism in new territories and instead sought commercial opportunities in extant realms - perhaps most prominently, by reestablishing her position in Istanbul to exploit commercial opportunities in the Ottoman's vast northeast African holdings, and to build up the Sultanate of Zanzibar to create a reliable British client on the continent's east coast, thus making the Indian Ocean a "British Lake" between the Raj, Australia and East Africa. Portugal also preferred not to have to contest French expansionism even further south into her Zambezi holdings, and growing German interest in small colonies in West Africa were rapidly being pushed not for their commercial value but in order to provide reliable coaling stations to reach Cambodia and Melanesia in the event the Suez was unavailable to them. And so the dance of the Dark Continent began, with the powers pirouetting around one another - France in the northwest, her erstwhile Ottoman allies in the northeast, Britain controlling the Cape, and everyone else jockeying for the remainder - to position themselves for long-term advantage..."

- The African Game: The European Contest for the Dark Continent


(I'll admit I don't know a *ton* about colonialism in Africa, but I'm intrigued how a "no Urabi revolt/British occupation of Egypt" counterfactual could play out. Britain choosing not to take on tons of new territory to administer I could see as likely, appointing Residents instead with protectorates, but other powers? I'm open to ideas, is what I'm saying)
 
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