Category Archives: Commemoration

Problems in Remembering the Underground Railroad in Southwestern Ontario

By Erin Isaac In Canada, and Ontario in particular, we love to celebrate the Underground Railroad during Black history month. We celebrate Freedom Seekers, Black Underground Railroad Conductors, and walk or drive “Freedom Trails” with little mind to the Black histories that came before or after this period—a period that spanned the early 19th century, but most notably the years… Read more »

The Right Man for the Job: Gordon Lightfoot and the “Canadian Railroad Trilogy”

Chris Hemer On this day, 56 years ago, Canadian folk singer-songwriter Gordon Lightfoot and his song “Canadian Railroad Trilogy”—a tune steeped in national mythology—became the focal point of a CBC-produced centennial television special, 100 Years Young, on New Year’s Day, 1967. While his work is now largely synonymous with Canadian identity, Lightfoot did not always hold this esteemed position within… Read more »

Marking the 100th Anniversary of the Victoria Chinese Students’ Strike

Timothy J. Stanley On September 5, 2022, over 600 people in Victoria, BC, commemorated the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the Chinese Students Strike. Participants included a Chinese Canadian veteran of the Second World War, the Police Chief who helpfully stopped traffic, two BC Government ministers–one of whom, the Attorney General, read the Premier of British Columbia’s message of… Read more »

A Historian’s Collection, or Understanding my obsession with royal commemoratives

China cups and saucers with royal portraits on them.

Gillian Leitch I have always collected things.  I think it is a part of what has made me a good researcher, the desire to see and have many examples of something that interests me and from which I can create a larger narrative. Certainly, as a historian I have collected documents, information and knowledge about my research interests of immigration,… Read more »

Harvard and Slavery: The Moral Responsibility of History

By Andrew Nurse On April 26, 2022, Harvard University announced “that it will spend $100 million” as part of a plan to address what it’s president called “profoundly immoral” practices in the university’s past.[1] At issue is Harvard’s relationship to slavery, racism and colonialism. Harvard is not the first university to grapple with a deeply problematic past, but its response… Read more »

Does a Single Building Matter? A Case for the Fugitive Slave Chapel

By Thomas Peace There is a small house in downtown London, Ontario that looks ready for the wrecking ball. If you walk by, it would stand out only for its state of disrepair. A security fence surrounds it. About a year ago, the London and Middlesex Heritage Museum – of which I am currently the Board Chair – received a… Read more »

Historia Nostra: Hear, Here Underrepresented History

      No Comments on Historia Nostra: Hear, Here Underrepresented History

Katrina Bjornstad and Erin Isaac Hear, Here is a postmodern heritage project that began in La Crosse, Wisconsin in 2015 with the aim to make hidden histories visible in public space. Based in part on Shawn Micallef, James Roussel, and Gabe Sawhney’s [murmur] project, the concept behind Hear, Here is simple: within a particular community, project organizers post an orange sign… Read more »

Family Story, a Heritage Home, and Munsee-Delaware Histories

In the early 1970s, a one and a half story log structure was relocated from the Munsee-Delaware Nation to Ska-Nah-Doht or Longwoods Conservation Area. By this time, the building was well over one hundred and twenty years old and had provided a home for many generations of two families of the Munsee-Delaware community. The Logan home, built in the mid-1800s,… Read more »

A Peace Resembling War

      No Comments on A Peace Resembling War

W. George Lovell December 29, 2021, marks the 25th anniversary of the signing of a peace accord that, under the auspices of the United Nations, brought a formal end to thirty-six years of armed conflict in Guatemala. At the time the accord was signed, Guatemala’s was Latin America’s most prolonged internal strife, during which acts of genocide occurred. A quarter-century… Read more »

Science as Vocation and Life

      No Comments on Science as Vocation and Life

By Dimitry Zakharov Gerhard Herzberg was a man of science. His life revolved around his office, where he spent countless hours, often working six days a week going over spectrograms, interpreting and writing results, and familiarizing himself with the latest research in his own field and quantum physics in general. Spectroscopy and the scientists involved in this field were his… Read more »