Author Archives: Tom Peace

Old Chieftain or Old Charlatan? Assessing Sir John’s Complex Legacy through Political Cartoons

By Thomas Peace This week ActiveHistory.ca has focused our attention to the legacy of Sir John A. Macdonald. In less than a week’s time, Canada will be in the throes of one big Sir John love-in. On 11 January, this country’s first prime minister will be celebrating the 200th year since his birth in Glasgow, Scotland. Over the course of… Read more »

The Nation-State is not what we think it is: Teaching Canadian History from a non-national perspective

By Thomas Peace At the beginning of November I was asked to join a panel entitled “No One is International” as part of Huron College’s Centre for Global Studies‘s symposium “Critically Engaging: Global Awareness in the Academy.” As I considered the panel’s title, and the broader purpose for the conference (to critically engage with the meaning of “internationalization” for the college),… Read more »

Towards an Active History

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By Thomas Peace Over the past couple of weeks, the Active History editorial collective has begun the initial planning for a stand-alone conference to be held in late 2015 or 2016. Agreed that there was a need for a conference, we set about to determine the conference’s overall purpose and goals. What quickly became apparent was that we had slightly divergent views… Read more »

Where have all the censuses gone? A Problem with Digital Data

By Thomas Peace This post is a little late in coming, but hopefully it will be useful for those of us working in pre-twentieth century North American history or with online resources. About a year ago, I discovered that one of the most useful reference resources I use, Statistics Canada’s E-Stat tables of the Censuses of Canada, 1665-1871 had been… Read more »

What does Canadian History Look Like? Impressions from the Periodical Room

By Tom Peace This morning, as you read this post, historians from across the country have gathered at Brock University in St. Catherines, Ontario for the Canadian Historical Association’s annual meeting (click here to read the program). The CHA’s annual meeting is one of the most important forums to hear about new and emerging research on Canada’s past or by… Read more »

Lessons from the Past, Promises for the Future: Reflections on Historical Thinking in Canadian History

By Thomas Peace “Our historians have almost wholly ignored the existence of slavery in Canada.” Two weeks ago these words echoed through Fountain Commons here at Acadia University.  Historians, educators and activists had gathered for Opening the Academy: New Strategies for Exploring and Sharing African Nova Scotian Histories. The message those of us in the audience heard was that African-Canadian… Read more »

Canadians and their Pasts on the Road to Confederation

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By Thomas Peace 2014 has begun and it looks like another banner year for historical commemoration. The government of Canada has been clear: we’re now on the road to commemorating Confederation. But as the new year begins, the metaphorical road we’re headed down better resembles the roads at the time of Confederation than anything we’re familiar with today (Montreal and… Read more »

The politics of proclamation, the politics of commemoration

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By Tom Peace October 7th 2013 marks the 250th year since King George III issued what is, for Canadians, the Crown’s most famous Royal Proclamation.  Over the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, the English monarch released over a hundred royal proclamations.  Some of these proclamations declared war (usually against France), others – such as the Royal Proclamation of October 23rd 1759 –… Read more »

Open-Letter calling for the release of all relevant documents related to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission

Last week Adele Perry, a historian at the University of Manitoba, spearheaded an open-letter by historians in Canada calling on the Government of Canada to ensure the release of all records related to residential schools and the work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The letter builds on similar letters and demonstrations by First Nations communities, librarians, archivists and museum… Read more »

Digital History isn’t for everyone

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Digital History isn’t for everyone. In Canada, according to the 2010 Canadian Internet Use Survey, one-fifth of all households remain without access to the internet in the home.