In 1763, King George III of the United Kingdom issued a royal proclamation as an initial statement of British law and policy concerning it’s territory in the New World, both the old British Colonies along the Atlantic Coast and the newly conquered lands of New France. Remember the Plains of Abraham? Also, the Royal Proclamation declared clearly the Crown’s understanding of the status of the aboriginal people of the New World. To be clear, the Royal Proclamation is a statement of Canadian Constitutional law which remains in force today, both on its own and through the Constitution Act (1982).
The Royal Proclamation is the legal reason that Quebec continues to have a distinct Constitutional position as a Nation within Canada and as a Nation with distinct, constitutionally guaranteed legal institutions.
The First Nations are very clearly described in the Royal Proclamation as “Nations” and British Subjects are told that the people of these Nations are “not be molested or disturbed in the Possession of the lands (the vast majority of the continent)] not having been ceded to Us”.