"Tales of pioneer hardship and deprivation have been told many times. Yet still we remember in wonder, that people accomplished so much with so little; that men and women with simple tools, their bare hands, and their own inventiveness cleared the land, drained the swamps, made their own clothing and provided their own food. Through all these difficulties God was with them and they wanted their children educated intellectually and spritually." from Norfolk Street United Church history

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Remembering the Real Winnie: The World's Most Famous Bear Turns 100


Ryerson University to host new exhibition to celebrate Canada's connection to Winnie-the-Pooh
TORONTO, Ontario April 17, 2014 /Canada NewsWire/ - Did you know that the world's most famous literary bear - Winnie-the-Pooh - was inspired by a real Canadian bear? This fall, a new exhibition will celebrate the 100th anniversary of this remarkable true story.
At the onset of the First World War, a Canadian soldier and veterinarian named Harry Colebourn made a pit stop at the train station in White River, Ontario where he met a trapper that was selling a bear cub.  An animal lover, the Captain bought the cub for $20, and named her Winnie, after his hometown of Winnipeg. Winnie traveled overseas with Colebourn's regiment, becoming a proud mascot and beloved friend to the other soldiers.  When it became time to go to the front lines in France, Colebourn donated Winnie to the London Zoo in England, where she became the inspiration for author A.A.Milne's Winnie-the-Pooh.
"The story of Harry and Winnie is a love story set against a very dark time in history and is a powerful reminder of the impact that one small loving gesture can have in this world," said Lindsay MattickHarry Colebourn's great granddaughter.  "Winnie has played an important role in many people's childhoods and I am very excited to get to share the historical items that bring to life the real tale behind the fictional ones."
The new exhibition entitled, Remembering the Real Winnie: The World's Most Famous Bear Turns 100 will open to the public at Ryerson University on October 25th, 2014 and run until November 15th, 2014. It will explore the themes of veterinary practice during World War I; military life at camp and at the front; as well as the genesis and popular legacy of Winnie-the-Pooh. The central feature of the exhibition will be Harry's never before displayed wartime diaries which will provide the narrative through-line; they will be displayed at intervals throughout the exhibition in order to carry the viewer from 1914 when Harry leaves for England to 1919 when he donates Winnie to the London Zoo. The exhibition will also feature items from the Colebourn family collection such as Harry's veterinary tools and photographs.
"Literary and Canadian history were forever changed in a moment when Harry Colebourn made his historic purchase," said Ryerson President Sheldon Levy.   "We are thrilled to be exploring the cultural significance of that moment in a way that only Ryerson can - through an innovative approach that allows our various departments to collaborate and bring to this collection to life in a way that is thought provoking and meaningful." 
The exhibition, which will be hosted by the Ryerson School of Image Arts and the Modern Literature and Culture Research Centre, is the result of a multi-disciplinary team that has explored the history through multiple perspectives. 
Beyond the exhibition, the history of Harry and Winnie will be explored in an upcoming children's book (to be released in 2015 by Little Brown in the U.S., Harper Collins in Canada).  Film rights to the book have been acquired by Hollywood production company RatPac Entertainment. 
Exhibition Teaser Video: http://youtu.be/V5aOQfsCeU0

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Parks Canada and Canadian Canoe Museum Consider Potential Relocation of Museum to Peterborough Lift Lock


Collaboration would boost tourism and sustainability
OTTAWA, Ontario April 9, 2014 /Canada NewsWire/ - Parks Canada and the Canadian Canoe Museum are exploring an innovative idea of relocating the museum to the Peterborough Lift Lock National Historic Site on the Trent-Severn Waterway as a way to boost the tourism and revenue potential for both organizations.
The construction of a new museum at this location would consolidate two significant tourism and recreation destinations in the region and offer enhanced opportunities for Canadian families, including the opportunity to better explore the canoe's history in Canada and enjoy the diverse water-related programming and associated activities that can be offered by the museum at this historic location.
Parks Canada and the Canoe Museum will now enter into detailed negotiations to determine the terms of the potential partnership. This joint project would aim to increase visitation and offer new opportunities that would support each organization's mandate and their financial sustainability.
This project demonstrates the Government of Canada's commitment to work with partners and communities to help canals be a premier tourism destination, generate revenue, foster recreation and economic development, and ultimately build strong communities and support Canadian families. For the Canoe Museum, this initiative represents the potential fulfillment of a long-cherished aspiration - the relocation to a new water-based site that will enable wider and more extensive programming.
Quick Facts
  • Parks Canada and the Canadian Canoe Museum have signed a Letter of Intent to formalize their collaboration.
  • The Canadian Canoe Museum Redevelopment Project Feasibility Study identified the Parks Canada location as the preferred destination for the new Museum.
  • This initiative would bring new economic growth with new construction projects as well as create additional employment and business opportunities for the Trent-Severn Waterway. The construction of the new museum may include a building of 80,000 square feet and space for a gift shop, a restaurant and a meeting room facility to accommodate up to 250 people.
  • The relocation of the museum at the Lock 21-Perborough Lift Lock historical site would unite two of Peterborough'smajor tourism attractions, providing water access for the museum's programming activities as well as preserve Canadian heritage of canoes and other related watercraft.
Quotes
"The collaboration of Parks Canada with the Canadian Canoe Museum demonstrates our government's support for creating quality tourism and recreation opportunities on the Trent-Severn Waterway that will lead to stronger communities, opportunities for families and ultimately more sustainable canal operations."
Leona AglukkaqCanada's Environment Minister and Minister responsible for Parks Canada
"We are delighted to be collaborating with Parks Canada to bring the Canadian Canoe Museum and its nationally significant collection and related programs to the water. The Peterborough Lift Lock location allows us to unite two ofPeterborough's major tourism attractions, providing water access and preserving the heritage of Peterborough as the national 'shrine' celebrating canoes and other related watercraft."
Ken Powell, Chair, Board of Directors, Canadian Canoe Museum

Friday, March 21, 2014

Commemorating a Father of Confederation


Government supports project that pays tribute to local historical personality Sir Charles Tupper
PARRSBORO, Nova ScotiaMarch 21, 2014 /Canada NewsWire/ - The Government of Canada has provided $385,000 through the Building Communities through Arts and Heritage program to support the restoration and renovation of the Ottawa House By-the-Sea Museum.
Scott Armstrong, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment and Social Development and Member of Parliament (Cumberland-Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley), announced the funding today on behalf of Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages Shelly Glover.
With this support, the Parrsborough Shore Historical Society will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the death of Sir Charles Tupper by updating the Museum, which was once his summer residence.
Quick Facts
  • Sir Charles Tupper purchased the Ottawa House for his summer home in 1871.
  • In 1981, the Parrsborough Shore Historical Society purchased the historic property built in the 1770's to preserve and restore it. It now houses a museum with over 450 artifacts.
  • It will be converted into an interactive museum dedicated to retelling the region's history.
Quotes
"Our government is committed to supporting commemorative projects that provide communities with lasting reminders of the people and events that have been instrumental in shaping our country as we know it today."—Shelly Glover, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages
"As a Father of Confederation, Sir Charles Tupper has made an important contribution to this province and to Canada, and it is fitting that he be remembered through the transformation of his summer home."
—Scott Armstrong, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment and Social Development and Member of Parliament (Cumberland-Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley)
"Dedicated volunteers have been working diligently for the last four years on the restoration of the Ottawa House and the modernization of its associated By-the-Sea Museum. The generous grant from the Building Communities Through Arts and Heritage Program has given us a great boost—we can now complete this worthy community project."
—Colin Curleigh, President, Parrsborough Shore Historical Society

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Parks Canada Investing in Future of Historic Rideau Canal

image credit: Collections Canada

Rehabilitation of Poonamalie Dam to support continued animation of historic infrastructure
SMITHS FALLS, OntarioMarch 20, 2014 /Canada NewsWire/ - Gord Brown, Member of Parliament for Leeds-Grenville, on behalf of Environment Minister Leona Aglukkaq and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, announced today that Parks Canada is supporting communities and businesses along the Rideau Canada by investing up to $7.5 million over the next two years to rehabilitate the Poonamalie Dam and for ongoing preventative maintenance projects and visitor facilities across the Rideau Canada system.
For the Poonamalie project, Parks Canada is investing $4.3 million to rehabilitate the existing earth dam and reconstruct a waste weir to improve dam stability, visitor safety, and improve a service vehicle lane. Up to $3.2 millionwill also be invested over the next two years across the Rideau Canal for preventative maintenance projects and visitor facilities. The funding announced today is in addition to the 2014 Economic Action Plan to invest $391.5 million in funding for highways, bridges and dams in national parks and along historic canals. Details on this funding will come later.
These investments connect communities and ensure the infrastructure is safe and available to those who need it.
Quick Facts
  • Planning for the Poonamalie Dam Rehabilitation Project has now begun. A contract for the design of this project will be awarded shortly.
  • The Poonamalie Dam, in the Rideau Lakes Township near Smiths Falls, has been continuously maintained and monitored since the 19th century. Parks Canada identified the dam for rehabilitation as part of its ongoing asset monitoring and recapitalization program on the Rideau Canal.
  • The work will be completed by April 2017 and will not affect vessel traffic during the Rideau Canal's navigation season.
  • The reconstruction of the canal cut walls at Minnow Creek Waste Weir will reuse stone facing salvaged from the existing wall to correspond with the current aesthetic look.
  • The Poonamalie Earth Dam retains water from the Big Rideau and Lower Rideau Lakes and contributes to ParksCanada management of the water heading north from Poonamalie Lockstation to Ottawa Locks.
  • Parks Canada is gearing up for a new summer season along its historic canals by offering boaters early bird special rates for their permits, which they can buy on-line until March 31, 2014, at www.parkscanada.gc.ca.
Quotes
"Our Government has made record investments to canals and we continue to work with our partners and communities to maintain the Rideau Canal as a navigable waterway, providing world-class experiences to visitors, which benefits communities and local businesses. These investments are integral in supporting economic development and families in the region."
Mr. Gord Brown, Member of Parliament for Leeds-Grenville
Additional links:

Friday, March 14, 2014

National Historic Sites of Canada

Prince of Wales Fort - Churchill Manitoba


The National Historic Sites of Canada has designed this website as a way for historians, geographers, and tourists to explore the unique heritage of Canada.

Currently, over 1,500 places, persons, and events have been formally commemorated by the Canadian government. These dedications fall into five broad themes, including Peopling the Land and Governing Canada.

Visitors can use the Explore feature on the site to browse through the register of historic places or learn about ongoing archaeological digs at some of these sites
.
Within the National Historic Sites section, detailed information on over 160 of the unique sites dotting the landscape from Newfoundland to Yellow Knife can be found. Additionally, visitors can learn more about the nation's historic lighthouses and sites that are under consideration for addition to this impressive list.

Visit the site at: http://www.pc.gc.ca/progs/lhn-nhs/index.aspx

>From The Scout Report, Copyright Internet Scout 1994-2012. http://scout.wisc.edu/

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Treasures of Napoléon: A Rendez-Vous with History


MONTREALMarch 13, 2014 /Canada NewsWire Telbec/ - From May 16 to September 1, the Crypt of the Notre-Dame Basilica (Espace B),ordinarily closed to the visitors, will open to house the Treasures of Napoléon exhibition. More than 350 art objects that once belonged to the famous emperor will be on display, allowing the public an intimate look at the "Empire" style which characterized that historic era. Organized by Exhibits Development Group in cooperation with the Chalençon Collection in France, the exhibition is the largest of its kind ever to cross the Atlantic. For the occasion, the Hon. Serge Joyal will also be lending items from his personal collection.
"We are thrilled to be the hosts for this exhibition. Nothing like this has ever been seen on such a scale in North America," said Yoland Tremblay, executive director of the Fabrique de la paroisse Notre-Dame de Montréal, at a press conference announcing the exhibition's arrival. The choice of the Crypt of the Notre-Dame Basilica to house the pieces is not without significance, as this masterpiece of architecture in Montreal was built in Napoléon's time and, like him, it has stood the test of time as a privileged witness to history."
"I hope visitors will have as much pleasure as I do in discovering these aspects of the life of Napoléon I," said theParis collection's owner, Pierre-Jean Chalençon, who was in Montreal for the occasion. "Ever since my childhood, I've been fascinated by this figure of mythical proportions. To enter into the world of Napoléon is also a way to understand the origins of the society we live in today."
"The figure of Napoléon has long stimulated Quebecers' imaginations, and continues to do so. Even nowadays, in various areas, in advertising and video games for instance, his image is exploited, as are his qualities as a military leader," said the Hon. Serge Joyal, author of Le mythe de Napoléon au Canada français.
"It's quite a challenge to present this outstanding exhibition in an environment that's so full of history. It's an honour to be able to realize this project here in Montreal," said the exhibition's designer, Geoffrey C. Curley of Exhibits Development Group.
Paintings, sculptures, designs, prints and decorative art, including furniture, porcelain and tapestries, will combine to offer an authentic journey through the day-to-day environment of Napoléon. Four main areas illustrating the most significant aspects of the life of the little corporal who became Emperor will be presented:
ARCHITECTUREIt was Napoléon's ambition to make France an empire in which grandiose architecture would express the scale and magnitude of his power. He was quick to appreciate that architects could assist in asserting his power both in the present and in the future. To make this vision a reality, he turned to the architects Pierre-François-Léonard Fontaine and Charles Percier, who published their Recueil de decorations intérieures in 1801. The present exhibition includes a number of of their sketches and drawings.
SCULPTUREDuring this period, the Italian artist Antonio Canova was the standard-bearer of the international neo-classical style. The Empress Joséphine and Grand Admiral Murat, Napoléon's brother-in-law, made it a point of honour to acquire some the most sumptuous works by the great Italian master, several which appear in this exhibition.
DECORATIVE ARTSAlthough Napoléon's policy had viewed the arts primarily as a tool in propaganda promoting an official image of his regime after 1796, as emperor he succeeded, by encouraging artists and craftsmen, in restoring the arts to their former glory, which the years of revolution had eroded.
PAINTINGNeo-classicism also thrived in painting. The pre-eminent French painter of the era, Jacques-Louis David, created one of the world's most important schools of painting, and under his influence the Empire style spread throughout Europe.
These outstanding artworks will be on display in galleries and environments recreated to bring visitors into intimate contact with this larger-than-life figure. The exhibition will be divided into five sections:
I.
JOSEPHINE AND THE CORONATION
II.
MARIE-LOUISE AND THE KING OF ROME
III.
NAPOLÉON AND HIS FAMILY
IV.
THE ARTS AT THE NAPOLEONIC COURT
V.
NAPOLÉON ON SAINTE-HÉLÈNE ISLAND
The Treasures of Napoleon: A Rendez-Vous with History.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Inconvenient Indian: A Curious Account of Native People in North America.


GUELPH, Ontario February 25, 2014 - University of Guelph Campus Bulletin - Thomas King, professor emeritus in English at the University of Guelph, has won the $40,000 British Columbia National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction.
The award was announced at a ceremony in Vancouver on Friday afternoon. The award recognizes Canadian literary non-fiction and is one of the most prestigious prizes in Canadian literature. King’s book was selected from 140 submissions.
King, a writer and broadcaster and the first aboriginal Massey lecturer, was recognized for The Inconvenient Indian: A Curious Account of Native People in North America.
He says he tapped into his own background — from his study and teaching of native history to his experience as a native affairs activist — to write the book.
“I know that people have generally very little bits and pieces of native history that they understand, but they really do not understand the arcs of native history,” he told CBC News.
“Whenever you go back into your past and look at the history that you’ve been part of, when you look at history that happened before you were born to the people you’re a part of, it hits spots that are fairly painful.”
King is one of Canada’s most well-known and respected authors. In 2004, he won the Trillium Book Award, Ontario’s premier prize for literary excellence, for The Truth About Stories, published from his Canada Massey Lectures. The lectures were presented in fall 2003 over nine days in five provinces. They were recorded and broadcast on the CBC Radio program Ideas.
He has been short-listed twice for the Governor General’s Award and has won the Canadian Authors’ Award for fiction and the American Indian Film Festival Best Screenplay award for Medicine River. He received the Aboriginal Media Arts Radio Award for Dead Dog Café Comedy Hour, a popular CBC Radio show he starred in and created. In January 2003, he received the National Aboriginal Achievement Award for arts and culture.
The Inconvenient Indian was also one of five books shortlisted from 124 nominees for the $25,000 RBC Taylor Prize, which recognizes outstanding Canadian non-fiction. The winner will be announced March 10.
King began teaching at U of G in 1995, after completing his PhD at the University of Utah.