|Canada's earliest inhabitants arrived via the Berling land bridge 15,000 years ago. The first Europeans were the Vikings who established a short-lived colony in New Foundland. In 1608 a French trading post was established at Quebec. In 1663 New France was organized as a French colony. The French lost Canada to the British in the French and Indian war which lasted from 1756-63. During the US Revolutionary War 40,00 loyalist fled the American colonies for Canada. The US failed to capture Canada during the War of 1812. After the war of 1812 Britain e3ncouraged large scale immigration to Canada from Great Britain. In 1867 the Dominion of Canada a self-governing body within the British Empire was established. Sir J.A. Macdonald became the dominions first Prime Minister.