Beginning with brief accounts of the origins of Confederation and the economic, social, and political characteristics of late nineteenth-century Canada, Stevenson recounts the major issues that occupied the intergovernmental agenda. Liquor regulation in Ontario, land reform in Prince Edward Island, reluctant acceptance of Confederation in Nova Scotia, chronic financial problems in Quebec, controversy over Catholic schools in New Brunswick, and the roots of Western alienation in Manitoba and British Columbia are all described in detail. Stevenson then examines the process of intergovernmental relations and the significance of particular practices and institutions such as disallowance, reservation, federal-provincial conferences, and judicial review. In the final chapter he summarizes the evolution of Canadian federalism up to 1896 and briefly relates it to the current state of Canadian federalism. Based on extensive archival research, this book will interest political scientists, historians, and anyone curious to know the background of Canada's federal crisis.