Tag Archives: Canadian history

Reclaiming History Through Photographs

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By Krista McCracken Historical photographs can be used to serve a variety of research, personal, and community interests.  Images can be used for genealogy, legal testimony, supplementing written historical accounts, and providing windows into the past. Photographs can also be used as important tools in healing, reconciliation, and in the reclamation of lost history.The use of photographs in the reclamation… Read more »

The Smokescreen of ‘Modernization’ at Library and Archives Canada

By Ian Milligan The government claims that Library and Archives Canada needs to be modernized so all Canadians can access archival services. Yet the state of Canada’s online collections are small and sorely lacking when compared to their expansive on-site collections. LAC does need to modernize, and the goal of expanding access beyond just Ottawa is actually a laudable one. But what… Read more »

Seizing Canada’s Past: Politics and the Reinvention of Canadian History

The federal government’s latest round of “austerity”cuts threaten to undermine Canadian history research and limit the capacity of the public to know this country’s past. While the recent federal budget slashes funding for Library and Archives Canada, Canadian studies programs, and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, it also redirects funds for history research into the political control of individual ministers. Within the Conservative Party of Canada’s ideological agenda to reduce the role of government in the lives of Canadians lies a contradictory policy initiative for direct cabinet control over the financing, research, and production of knowledge about Canadian history.

Illusionary Order: Cautionary Notes for Online Newspapers

By Ian Milligan Online digitized newspapers are great. If you have access (either through a free database or via a personal or library subscription), you can quickly find the information you need: a specific search for a last name might help you find ancestors, a search for a specific event can find historical context for it (i.e. the Christie Pits… Read more »

A Small Spark, a Big Flame: Two Wildcat Vignettes from the Summer of ’66

By Ian Milligan Today’s Air Canada wildcat strikes, which led to widespread delays and cancellations at Toronto’s Pearson and Montreal’s Dorval airports, surprised many Canadians. That it could all begin with a seemingly minor issue – the suspension of a number of workers who sarcastically applauded Labour Minister Lisa Raitt as she debarked from a flight last night – is, however,… Read more »

War Resisters Conference Report Back Looking Back, Moving Forward: War Resisters in North America

By: Luke Stewart The conference Looking Back, Moving Forward: War Resisters in North America took place at Steelworkers Hall in Toronto, Ontario, on Friday September 23 and Saturday September 24, 2011. The gathering addressed the plight of American war resisters who fled to Canada from 2004 to the present by providing a historical context for the roots of war resistance… Read more »

New Paper: Alan MacEachern’s “A Polyphony of Synthesizers: Why Every Historian of Canada Should Write a History of Canada”

ActiveHistory.ca is happy to announce its first paper of 2012: “A Polyphony of Synthesizers: Why Every Historian of Canada Should Write a History of Canada,” by Alan MacEachern. Here is Alan’s introductory blurb: The following was my contribution to a 2010 Canadian Historical Association roundtable, “So What IS the Story? Exploring Fragmentation and Synthesis in Current Canadian Historiography.” In it,… Read more »

Too Much Information: The Case for the Programming Historian

Depending on your vantage point, we have a looming opportunity – or a looming problem. Historical digital sources have reached a scale where they defy conventional analysis and now call out for computational analysis. The Internet Archive alone has 2.9 million texts, there are 2.6 million pages of historical newspapers archived at the Chronicling America site of the US Library… Read more »

Active History on the Grand: Heritage Trees in Ontario

I think that I shall never see, A poem as lovely as a tree. – Sergeant Joyce Kilmer (1886-1918) While many of us may be familiar with the designation of built heritage properties under the Ontario Heritage Act, recently municipalities have been using the Ontario Heritage Act to designate individual trees as heritage trees.  Municipalities like Burlington, Pelham, Thorold, Cambridge,… Read more »