Historic Purchases of Land?

Recently, I saw a TV ad promoting a landmark anniversary of the Louisiana Purchase. This started me to wonder…outside the US, has there been land passed or sold from one nation to another in a peaceful or diplomatic fashion - i.e.: without a war? - Jinx

During the 5 kingdoms (empires?) era of China. One of them (I forget the name) seceeded land to the Mongols for helping them in their revolution… Of course the Mongols took them over shortly thereafter but I think this would still count.

We’ve never had a civil war here in Canada. Simple colonization of the land and treaties with its immediately prior occupants seems to have done the job.

In 1890, Germany ceded its terrotirial claims in Zanzibar and parts of mainland Africa to Britain and got the island of Heligoland in exchange.

In New Zealand - The British government - or Crown - made a series of ten major land purchases of some 34.5 million acres in the South Island from 1844 driving a hard bargain sometimes accompanied by threats and undue pressure. http://www.ngaitahu.iwi.nz/office-culture.html

British Columbia - Thus, it was British colonial law to have lands negotiated and purchased from native peoples. This policy was started in B.C.under Governor James Douglas. When Douglas retired in 1864 however, new Land Commissioner Joseph Trutch ignored British Canadian law and unilaterally initiated widescale surveying throughout the province to satisfy the white settlers’ voracious appetite for land. http://www.schoolnet.ca/aboriginal/nisga1/hist-e.html

How about a whole country? The first shipload of freed slaves arrived in present day Liberia in January 1822, after a supposedly negotiated purchase of the Cape Mesurado area (Monrovia) by the leaders of the expedition and the chiefs who owned the area.

History of Melbourne

Being from Sydney, I’d consider that the Doutgalla ripped of Batman, big time. :stuck_out_tongue:

Certainly there have been innumerable examples of colonial powers purchasing land from tribes and bands, and previous posters have pointed some of them out. But if we restrict the question to transactions between organized state societies under the rule of written law, I can’t think of a single example outside of the United States. And the United States, oddly enough, has done this at least five times–the Louisiana Purchase, the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, the Gadsden Purchase, and the purchases of Alaska and the Virgin Islands.

The closest non-American case that I can think of would be Canada’s purchase of Rupert’s Land from the Hudson’s Bay Company in 1869. But the Hudson’s Bay Company was a private corporation with powers of government, not quite like anything that we would call a “nation” today. Certainly, also, there have been many cases in history of empires trading this for that–Louisiana itself, for example, passed from Spain to France in return for some concessions in the Italy. But can anyone come up with an example of a non-American transaction in which land was ceded from one sovereign state society to another in return for cash?

And the transfer of the Hudson’s Bay lands wasn’t even direct between the HBC and Canada; it was a three-cornered deal, with the British government acting as the intermediary. One of the reasons for this approach was to distinguish between the HBC’s claim to land, and its quasi-governmental powers as a propriety company.

Section 146 of the Constitution Act, 1867 authorised the Queen in Council to add Rupert’s Land and the North-Western Territory to Canada. To set out the rules for the proposed transfer, the British Parliament passed the Rupert’s Land Act, 1868, 31-32 Victoria, c. 105 (U.K.). It authorised the HBC to surrender its charter to the Queen, and for the Queen to accept the surrender. The statute required that the HBC and Canada would reach terms before the British government would accept the surrender.

Two years later, Canada and the HBC reached a deal, which resulted in the HBC surrendering its Charter to the Queen, the British government admitting the territories to Canada, and the Canadian government paying the HBC £300,000 within six months of the transfer. As well, Canada guaranteed that the HBC would continue to own a certain amount of land in the territories. This deal was implemented in the Rupert’s Land and North-Western Territory Order.

So technically, the HBC did not sell the land directly to Canada; it surrendered its charter to the U.K., which then transferred the territory to Canada, which paid compensation to the HBC.

hmmm - I posted that a few hours ago, but it never moved to the front page of the forum - why would that be? :confused: :confused: :confused:

I just remembered: in addition to the Hudson Bay territories, there was also the transfer of sovereignty over the Arctic archipelgo from Great Britain to Canada in 1880: Adjacent Territories Order. However, that wasn’t a cash transacation. Britain agreed with Canada to transfer the administration of the archipelgo, as a matter of colonial policy.

Not a purchase, but a 99-year lease: Most of Hong Kong, comprising what’s now known as the New Territories, but excluding Hong Kong Island and the tip of Kowloon.