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New Website on Winnipeg Architecture

On 11 April 2013, the Winnipeg Architecture Foundation will launch a new website on Winnipeg architecture: www.winnipegarchitecture.ca

The new website will feature information on Winnipeg’s modernist era architecture and landscapes, as well as the architects responsible for their design. The website includes virtual exhibits, events listing for WAF programmes, and a series of downloadable architectural tours. The first phase of tours include: Broadway Modern, Brutalist Architecture, Terra Cotta Architecture, University of Manitoba Modern, Monarch Life, University of Winnipeg Modern, and six others.

Posted: 7 April 2013


Manitoba Historical Society Announces Short Lists for 2012 Margaret McWilliams Awards

Today, the Manitoba Historical Society announces the short lists for the 2012 Margaret McWilliams Awards. The purpose of the McWilliams Awards, one of the oldest literary prizes in Canada, is to encourage the study and interpretation of the history of Manitoba. They were instituted in 1955 by the Manitoba Historical Society as a memorial to Margaret S. McWilliams. Books to be recognized have been published during the 2012 calendar year.

The winners will be announced on Manitoba Day (13 May).

See also:

2012 Short Lists

Past Award Winners

Posted: 16 March 2013


New Issue of Manitoba History Available Online

A special issue of Manitoba History (Number 71, Winter 2013), the proceedings of a symposium organized in 2012 for the bicentenary of the Selkirk Red River Settlement, is now available for download from the MHS Members Area. Current members of the Manitoba Historical Society can have immediate access to the digital edition, at no additional charge. MHS membership can be purchased by contacting the MHS Administrative Office at 204-947-0559 or info@mhs.mb.ca (Visa or Mastercard are accepted) or by visiting the online MHS Shop (www.mhs.mb.ca/shop). Printed copies have been mailed to MHS members and single copies are available for purchase at select locations.

The contents of this issue are available here.

Posted: 16 March 2013


Heritage Winnipeg Announces Nominees for 2013 Preservation Awards

On Monday, 18 February 2013, Heritage Winnipeg will hold its 28th Annual Preservation Awards Ceremony at the Millennium Centre (389 Main Street, Winnipeg). The awards recognize special efforts in projects completed in 2012 that protect, conserve, and reuse structures of high historic or architectural value. Conservation awards are given for commercial, institutional, or residential projects that involve the sensitive and adaptive use and/or re-use of these structures and provide for their long-term protection. A list of past award recipients is available here.

The award nominees for 2013 are as follows:

Nominee

Address

Owner

Metropolitan Entertainment Centre

281 Donald Street

Canad Inns

Paterson Global Foods Institute (former Union Bank Building)

504 Main Street

Red River College

The Avenue on Portage

265 Portage Avenue

Rick and Mark Hofer

Sussex Realty (former Abbott Clinic)

274 Osborne Street North

Sussex Realty

The Inglis (NWCTA) Building

291 Garry Street

John McDonald of Metric Marketing

Asper School of Business (former Great West Life building)

177 Lombard Avenue

Asper School of Business

Distinguished Service Awards recognize the contribution of individuals or organizations that have demonstrated a concerted effort and leadership in protecting, conserving, promoting or communicating the historic and/or architectural values of Winnipeg’s built heritage. This year’s recipients will be Rick Bel and Ida Albo, owners of the historic Fort Garry Hotel, which is commemorating its 100th anniversary in 2013, which a few weeks ago was presented with a Centennial Business Award by the Manitoba Historical Society.

Posted: 15 February 2013


Winnipeg Public Library Launches Digital History Website

On Tuesday, 12 February, in a ceremony at the Cornish Library (20 West Gate, Winnipeg), the Winnipeg Public Library will launch its new digital history website PastForward.

PastForward

PastForward: Winnipeg’s Digital Public History

PastForward will host digital copies of postcards, historical images, directories and documents, oral histories, and more. PastForward is a space to preserve and present digital information relevant to the public history of Winnipeg and the surrounding region. Through the collection and interactive display of these resources, the WPL is providing materials for research, for story-building, and contributing to a rich dialogue about our community – created by the community. Browse through history, look for familiar places or people, and add your own comments and information.

PastForward will launch with over 300 high resolution images from the private postcard collection of Rob McInnes. The site will grow to include the Winnipeg Henderson City Directories and will continue to evolve with new themes added regularly, from both the library’s collections and from the public. All contributions to the site will be for use for the public domain. All images will be available to download and print, including high resolution images.

The launch will include Rick Walker introducing the project, collector Rob McInnes speaking on the historical importance of postcards, demonstrations of the website, and a visual display. The WPL would also like to invite community and local history organizations to discuss ways they can work together to preserve and host digital content. Interested groups should contact Brianne Selman at bselman@winnipeg.ca with inquiries.

The WPL is also planning to host public digitization days. Those with historical postcards of Winnipeg who are willing to contribute digital scans of them to the collection can call 204-986-6489 to book a scanning appointment on Friday, 15 February 2013or Saturday, 16 February 2013, at the Millennium Library.

Posted: 5 February 2013


Public Lecture on Dresden Bombing

The Bombing of Dresden 1945: Memories and Debates in Postwar Germany
by Dr. Alexander von Plato, Canada Council Diefenbaker Fellow

On 13 and 14 February 1945, the British Royal and United States Air Forces bombed Dresden, the capital of Saxony and a cultural center of Germany. These air attacks were part of the aerial bombings during the Second World War and followed the German bombings of Wielun, Warsaw, Rotterdam, London, Coventry, and many others. Later, numerous cities in the East were bombed by the German Luftwaffe, like Belgrade and Minsk, which were totally destroyed. Millions of civilians were killed. During the years, the British Royal Air Force came to dominate the West European airspace.

After the war, discussions emerged about the question if the bombing of Dresden had made any military-strategic sense or if, on the contrary, it had strengthened the German people’s resolve to continue the fight against the Allies. There were also discussions about whether the carpet bombing of civilians was a war crime, and there were controversies about how many people had actually been killed by the air raids. Today, radical right wing groups from all over Europe gather in Dresden on every 13th of February, speaking about the “bombing holocausts” with more than 500,000 dead in Dresden alone, killed by the “Anglo-American terrorists.”

Alexander von Plato, the 2012-13 Canada Council Diefenbaker Fellow at the University of Winnipeg, served as a member of the “historian commission” in Dresden which was tasked with establishing the actual number of casualties and gathering all material, letters, diaries and interviews related to the bombing of Dresden. Dr. von Plato will present some of the results and will address the above questions.

This lecture is sponsored by the Chair in German-Canadian Studies and the Oral History Centre at the University of Winnipeg. For more information please contact the Oral History Centre at 204-786-9382 or oralhistorycentre@gmail.com.

Where: Convocation Hall, The University of Winnipeg, 515 Portage Avenue
When: Thursday, 31 January 2013, 7:00 pm

Posted: 28 January 2013


Lieutenant Governor Seeks Nominations for Historical Award

Lt.-Gov Philip S. Lee is encouraging the public to nominate a worthy Manitoban who has provided prolonged, meritorious service in the preservation and promotion of Manitoba history for an award, presented in consultation with the Manitoba Historical Society.

“In every community, in every city and town, there are individuals who devote their time and expertise to preserving documents, creating historical studies, restoring or maintaining historical buildings and artifacts, bringing the past to life in schools, museums and historic sites, and advocating for historical understanding” said Lee. “These are the individuals who should be nominated for the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Historical Preservation and Promotion.”

The MHS will receive nominations from the public and will recommend up to five persons to receive awards this year. Nominations to be considered for 2013 must be received by 1 March 2013. The selected award recipients will be presented at Government House on 9 May 2013. The award ceremony has been held annually since 2011 around Manitoba Day (12 May), which is the date when the Manitoba Act received Royal Assent n 1870 and Manitoba became a province. A list of past recipients of the award is available on the MHS website.

Further details of the award program, along with a nomination form, are available on the websites of the Lieutenant Governor of Manitoba and the Manitoba Historical Society.

Posted: 19 January 2013


From Paper to Tablet: Digitizing Manitoba’s Local History Books

On 11 February 2013 at 2:00 PM, the Manitoba Library Consortium will launch a website with a free, searchable collection of nearly 200 Manitoba local history books. The collection, the first phase in an ongong project, makes detailed historical information available for communities around the province. Previously, many of these books were hard to find or difficult to search.

The collection is available at www.manitobia.ca under the heading “Books”.

The publication of histories of the towns and municipalities in Manitoba goes back to the 1880s, with an estimated 1200 known to exist in print, and more added all the time. These publications, often a labour of love for the communities, record the stories, memories and development of towns across Manitoba. The availability online through Manitobia brings them to desktops and tablets of genealogists, historians, researchers and former Manitobans anywhere, anytime.

This local history book digitization project is managed by the Manitoba Library Consortium, a group of government, public, school, college and university libraries across the province and generously supported by The Winnipeg Foundation, the Legislative Library of Manitoba, and the University of Manitoba Libraries. Major partners in this initiative include the University of Manitoba, the University of Winnipeg, the Manitoba Historical Society, and the Legislative Library of Manitoba.

The collection will be launched at a ceremony in the Reading Room of the Manitoba Legislative Building (450 Broadway, Winnipeg, Manitoba). There is no charge to attend this event, at which Lieutenant Governor Philip S. Lee will speak.

For more information, please call Gordon Goldsborough at 204-782-8829.

Posted: 19 January 2013, updated 29 January 2013


New Book on Winnipeg Monuments

A new book by writer Kathy Francis features photos monuments around Winnipeg. Entitled Conservations with Monuments in Winnipeg, it features such sites as The Famous Five, Gandhi, Selkirk Settlers, Timothy Eaton, and Louis Riel.

The book will be launched at McNally Robinson Booksellers (Grant Park Mall, Winnipeg) on Thursday, 10 January 2013 at 7:00 PM.

Copies of the book may be purchased from the author’s website:

www.conversationswithmonuments.com

Posted: 4 January 2013


Move of East Rosser School is Postponed

East Rosser SchoolThe Headingley Headliner reports that the planned move of the former East Rosser School building to the site of the Prairie Dog Central Railroad has been postponed. RM of Rosser Reeve Frances Smee attributes the delay to an inability to find a company to do the move. She expects the move will be completed by Spring 2013.

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: East Rosser School No. 594 (1889-1958)

Posted: 29 December 2012


Twelve (Heritage) Days of Christmas With Reid Dickie

Winnipeg heritage writer Reid Dickie continues his annual tradition of paying tribute to noteworthy heritage buildings around Manitoba, this year with six heritage houses and six heritage churches. Each day, starting on Friday, 14 December, Reid will reveal one more heritage highlight. See them here:

http://readreidread.wordpress.com/category/12-days-of-christmas-2012/

  1. Johnson House (446 - Seventh Street, Brandon)
  2. Sts. Peter and Paul Ukrainian Orthodox Church (PR 201, Sundown)
  3. Demonstration Farm House (44 Water Street, Killarney)
  4. Emerson Baptist Church (Third Street, Emerson)
  5. Brick Italianate House (Ninga)
  6. Ste. Anne Roman Catholic Church (162 Central Avenue, Ste Anne)
  7. Shaver House (RM of Killarney-Turtle Mountain)
  8. Holy Eucharist Ukrainian Catholic Church (Rosa)
  9. B. J. Hales House (1312 Tenth Street, Brandon)
  10. St. Andrew’s United Church (338 Hamilton Street, Manitou)
  11. Christ Anglican Church (505 Curwen Street, Cartwright)
  12. A. G. Hay House (402 Clark Avenue, Killarney)

Posted: 11 December 2012, updated 25 December 2012


Mysterious Tombstone at St. Francois Xavier

A group at St. Francois Xavier is trying to solve a mystery around a tombstone that showed up at a local landfill in late September.

Measuring about one foot by two feet, the stone is inscribed for Frederick James, an engineer with the Canadian Expeditionary Force during the First World War. According to the stone, James died on 7 September 1955 at the age of 71. It is alleged the stone was discovered about 12 years ago, buried five feet deep at Delta Beach north of Portage la Prairie. The discoverer contacted several branches of the Royal Canadian Legion, hoping to learn how the stone had ended up buried in the beach. He had no responses so stored it at his home near St. Francois until recently, when he discarded it in the landfill.

Anyone having information about the identity of Frederick James should contact Mr. Rudy Friesen of the St. Francois Xavier Historical Society at 204-864-2285.

See also:

Group hoping to solve tombstone mystery in St. Francois”, The Headliner, 30 November 2012.

Posted: 1 December 2012


Winnipeg Museums in Gingerbread

The City of Winnipeg Museums Board has announced that, as part of its sponsorship of the Gingerbread Village at the forthcoming 25th Annual Festival of Trees and Lights, each of its member museums, including the Manitoba Historical Society’s Dalnavert Museum and Ross House Museum, are rendered in gingerbread. Each gingerbread museum meaures 18 inches by 18 inches with an additional landscape around it, with construction taking in excess of 100 work hours. Five schools have taken part in the program: Red River College, Winnipeg Technical College, Kildonan-East Collegiate, Tec Voc High School, and Miles Macdonell Collegiate.

People can buy raffle tickets for the gingerbread museums with the proceeds going to the Great-West Life Rooftop Garden at the Misericordia Health Centre, for the primary use of long-term care residents, and for the purchase of furniture for the Millennium Library Garden.

The Festival runs daily from 27 November to 9 December between 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM. The Gingerbread Village is located in the lobby of the Manitoba Hydro building at 360 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg.

Dalnavert Gingerbread

The MHS’s Dalnavert Museum in gingerbread, sponsored by Tec-Voc High School, decorated by Paye Altura and Kaitlyn Stevenson.
Source: Maria Zbigniewicz

Ross House Gingerbread

The MHS’s Ross House Museum in gingerbread, sponsored by Red River College Professional Baking and Patisserie, decorated by Dia, Natasha, Jordan, and Trudy.
Source: Maria Zbigniewicz

Posted: 24 November 2012, updated 8 December 2012


Noted Journalists Reminisce on WPC’s Beer & Skits

In 1977, noted Winnipeg journalist Eric Wells interviewed the three surviving cast members from the Winnipeg Press Club’s first Beer and Skits show in 1934: Bill Metcalfe, George Waight and Neil LeRoy. In the first of a four-part series, they discuss the confusion once surrounding the year of origin, and reminisce about the people, skits, and shenanigans of the show’s early years. There are no photos or video clips from those first years, so this audio recording is mostly a collection of images from the 1950s and 1960s. The other three parts of the series will be available soon.

Beer and Skits - Eric Wells interviews 1934 cast members in 1977 (part 1)

Beer and Skits - Eric Wells interviews 1934 cast members in 1977 (part 2)

Beer and Skits - Eric Wells interviews 1934 cast members in 1977 (part 3)

Beer and Skits - Eric Wells interviews 1934 cast members in 1977 (part 4)

See also:

Manitoba History: 125 Years of the Winnipeg Press Club

Posted: 21 November 2012, updated 22 December 2012


New Book on Hutterite History

Inside the ArkThis month, the CPRC Press of Regina, Saskatchewan launches a new book on the history of Hutterites. Entitled Inside the Ark: The Hutterites in Canada and the United States, and written by two noted scholars, the book examines the historical process of change within Hutterite society and considers the ways in which the leadership has developed strategies to successfully manage it.

Co-authors Yossi Katz and John Lehr based their analysis on extensive fieldwork over many years with the Schmiedeleut branch of the Hutterites, who gave access to their Conference Letters and Regulations. These provide invaluable insights into the Hutterites’ strategies for successfully managing change and for finding a balance between stability and vibrancy within their society.

The book will be launched at McNally Robinson Booksellers (Grant Park, Winnipeg) on Monday, 26 November 2012 at 7:00 PM. All are welcome to attend this free event. Dr. Lehr will be on hand to present the book.

See also:

Inside The Ark The Hutterites in Canada and the United States
by Yossi Katz and John Lehr
ISBN: 9780889772823
$39.95

Mapping Hutterite Colony Diffusion in North America
Manitoba History, Number 53, October 2006

“Graven Images of a Closed Society:” The Huron Hutterite Colony, 1920s
Manitoba History, Number 54, February 2007

Posted: 16 November 2012


Vote for Winnipeg as Canada’s Paranormal Capital?

The Reader's Digest is holding a contest on Canada’s “Most Interesting Towns” and Winnipeg has been nominated on the basis of its reputation as a place for paranormal invesetigation, based on the 1920s work of physician and politican T. G. Hamilton. People are asked to vote for this story so it will be featured on the Reader's Digest website.

Go here to learn more about the Hamilton collection at the University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections and to vote for it in the Reader's Digest contest:

http://www.readersdigest.ca/cmit/submission-details?submission_id=473

Posted: 15 November 2012


Site of Historic Fort Ellice Purchased by Nature Conservancy

Fort ElliceThe Nature Conservancy of Canada has purchased a 3,500-acre parcel of land in the Assiniboine River valley of western Manitoba, including the site of historic Fort Ellice.

Fort Ellice was established as a fur trade post in 1831, on Beaver Creek near the present-day Manitoba-Saskatchewan border. It replaced earlier posts in the region of the Hudson’s Bay Company and North West Company where it could sell supplies to local trappers. The fort was rebuilt at this site in 1862.

In recent years, the historic fort site had been owned privately, with restrictions on public access. Failed attempts by the local municipality to expropriate the land led to prolonged, acrimonious debate about the future of the site.

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Fort Ellice Cairn (RM of Ellice)

Memories of Fort Ellice by A. B. Baird
Manitoba History, Number 54, February 2007

Posted: 13 November 2012


Video Commemorates 100th Anniversary of Winnipeg’s Union Station

In commemoration of the centenary of Winnipeg’s Union Station, VIA Rail Canada commissioned the production of a documentary exploring the historical significance of trains and train travel, from station to railway, in Winnipeg as well as in the building of Canada. It can be viewed on YouTube:

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Union Station (123 Main Street, Winnipeg)

Posted: 6 November 2012


New Historical Articles on MHS Website

The Manitoba Historical Society announces today that it is providing free, public access to a collection of historical articles on its website. Published in its Manitoba History journal in February 2007 and formerly available only to MHS members, the articles include:

To Brew or Not to Brew: A Brief History of Beer in Canada by Derrek Eberts

Remembering John J. Conklin by Michael Dupuis

Memories of Fort Ellice by Andrew Browning Baird

National Designation for William Hespeler by Parks Canada

Victorian Virtual Reality by Gordon Goldsborough

Bull in a China Shop: Making Fiction at the Archives by Margaret Sweatman

Macdonald Papers at the Archives of Manitoba by Barry Hyman

“Graven Images of a Closed Society:” The Huron Hutterite Colony, 1920s by Roy Ward, John Lehr, and Brian McGregor

The Architectural Legacy of Charles Wheeler by Giles Bugailiskis

Posted: 6 November 2012


New Issue of Manitoba History Available Online

A special issue of Manitoba History (Number 70, Fall 2012), commemorating the 125th anniversary of the Winnipeg Press Club, is now available for download from the MHS Members Area. Current members of the Manitoba Historical Society can have immediate access to the digital edition, at no additional charge. MHS membership can be purchased by contacting the MHS Administrative Office at 204-947-0559 or sending email to info@mhs.mb.ca. Visa or Mastercard are accepted.

There will be a launch ceremony for the issue on Thursday, 8 November, 7:00 PM, at the Dalnavert Visitors Centre (61 Carlton Street, Winnipeg). Printed copies will be mailed to MHS members and delivered to bookstores in early November. Single copies of Manitoba History are available for purchase at select locations.

Completion of this special issue—the first ever in full colour—was made possible by the generous support of The Winnipeg Foundation.

Articles in this issue:

How Winnipeg Invented the Media
by Ken Goldstein

Usually Live, Sometimes Local, Not Always First: Radio Journalism in Manitoba, 1922-1950
by Garry Moir

Toasts and Tumult: The First 35 Years of the Winnipeg Press Club
by Sheilla Jones

Reaching for the Stars: The Middle Years of the Winnipeg Press Club
by Sheilla Jones

Beer & Skits and the Winnipeg Press Club: A Marriage Made in a Smoky Room
by Scott Edmonds

Winnipeg Women Journalists Have Always Led the Way
by Shirley Muir and Penni Mitchell

The Walrus and the Journalist
by James A. Burns

Churchill, the Queen and the Press Club
by Sheilla Jones

Founding The Nor'Wester
by William Coldwell and introduced by Scott Stephen

Batsford Hits the Big Time
by Kevin Rollason

Cool Things in the Collection
“Signing In” - The Press Club Guest Books
by Garry Moir

Cool Things in the Collection
Chapel Board: In Reverse and Backwards
by Sheilla Jones

Posted: 23 October 2012


New Book: Thoughts of Our Canadian Soldiers at War

Ontario author Brian Jones has written a book entitled Thoughts of Our Canadian Soldiers at War, a collection of short stories that pay tribute to the men and women who went off to war: the Boer War, two World Wars, the Korean War, our peacekeeping duties that Canadians have played a leading role to maintain peace in the world, and our recent role in Afghanistan. He says that his motivation in writing the book was “to help act as a catalyst to encourage lifelong learning by our citizens of all ages for what our brave soldiers and veterans have done for us. .. to capture the human side of war, the effect on our brave soldiers and their families.”

Those interested in purchasing a copy should contact Jones at the address below. The cost is $8.00 per book (hard copy) plus postage. Those interested in purchasing multiple copies should contact him for a quote.

For more information:

YNH Books
c/o Brian Jones
10 McConnell Lane
Newmarket, Ontario L3Y 7M1
Email: brian.jones6@sympatico.ca

Posted: 22 October 2012


PBS Documentary to Feature History of Agriculture in Manitoba since 1812

Posted: 21 October 2012


Sigtryggur Jónasson Named a National Historic Person

At a ceremony to be held at the Riverton-Hnausa Lutheran Church (53 Reggie Leach Drive East, Riverton, Manitoba) on Saturday, 20 October 2012 at 1:00 PM, Mr. James Bezan (MP for Selkirk-Interlake) and the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada will unveil a plaque commemorating the national historic significance of Sigtryggur Jónasson. All are welcome to attend.

See also:

Memorable Manitobans: Sigtryggur Jónasson (1852-1942)

Posted: 11 October 2012


New Book on Manitoba’s Movie Theatres

Winnipeg historian and author Russ Gourluck will launch his latest book at McNally Robinson Booksellers (Grant Park, Winnipeg) on Sunday, 28 October 2012, at 2:00 PM. Entitled Silver Screens on the Prairie, and published by Great Plains Publications, the book looks at Manitoba’s early movie theatres.

For more than a century, Manitobans have gathered in theatres across the province to thrill to the magic of motion pictures. In larger centres, movie houses ranged from luxurious “picture palaces” to convenient neighbourhood cinemas. Most towns and villages, some with only a few hundred residents, had their own theatres or commandeered community halls that beckoned farm families to town on Saturday evenings. Beginning in the 1950s, drive-in theatres dotted the prairie and provided steamy-windowed memories that have outlived the sometimes-precarious screens. Silver Screens on the Prairie is a tribute to those theatres and what they have meant to generations of Manitobans.

Drawing on the memories of dozens of owners, staff members and theatre-goers, this book explores the enchantment of “going to the show” and the joys and challenges of being an exhibitor from the early days of motion pictures until the present time. The book celebrates movie houses of all kinds – from Winnipeg’s palatial Capitol and Metropolitan to Clear Lake’s distinctive log-cabin Park Theatre; from the unique fourth-generation Lido in The Pas to Brandon’s cherished Strand; from flickering silent movies screened by itinerant projectionists in darkened dance halls to today’s eye-tingling digital 3-D in stadium-seated multiplexes.

Silver Screens on the Prairie
ISBN 978-1-926531-21-2
294 pages
$29.95 plus tax

Posted: 11 October 2012


Journalist and BU Chancellor Champ Dies

Veteran journalist Henry Champ died suddenly, at his home in Washington, DC, on 23 September 2012, at the age of 75. His long career had started as a print reporter at the Brandon Sun then progressed through stints at CBC, CTV, and NBC. Most recently, he was the CBC’s Washington correspondent.

Posted: 24 September 2012


Appointment to Heritage Foundation

Historian Greg Thomas has been appointed the Manitoba governor on the Heritage Canada Foundation, succeeding outgoing governor Cindy Tugwell. Retired from Parks Canada, where he had 30 years of experience in cultural resource management, Thomas was involved in the planning, development and operation of national historic sites across western and northern Canada. He served as a President of the Manitoba Historical Society and was a member of Winnipeg’s Historic Buildings Committee.

Posted: 24 September 2012


Selkirk Bicentenary Commemorated by Exhibit at Manitoba Archives

Culture, Heritage and Tourism Minister Flor Marcelino is inviting all Manitobans to visit the Archives of Manitoba and the Legislative Library at the Manitoba Archives Building to explore historical records and original publications dating back to the establishment of the Red River Settlement and the arrival of the first wave of Selkirk settlers 200 years ago.

“People in the Red River Settlement created records and published newspapers,” Marcelino said. “Books, photographs, maps, journals and records of church and government provide evidence of the kind of lives settlers lived 200 years ago. Fortunately, this documentary heritage has survived and is yours to explore at the Archives of Manitoba and the Legislative Library.”

Some of the archives and library holdings featured in the exhibit include:

  • photographs of Humphrey Lloyd Hime, a surveyor and photographer who accompanied the Assiniboine and Saskatchewan Exploring Expedition in 1858 and took what are probably the first photographs of the Canadian West
  • paintings of Peter Rindisbacher, an artist known for his depictions of the lives of settlers and Aboriginal people in the Red River Settlement
  • the will and testament of Saulteaux Chief Peguis, one of five chiefs who signed a treaty with Lord Selkirk to provide land for settlement
  • a copy of an early Red River census conducted by the Council of Assiniboia in 1828
  • a post journal which recorded a graphic description of the great Red River flood of 1826 as told by the Upper Fort Garry Hudson’s Bay Company clerk Frances Heron
  • records of the Matilda Davis School in St. Andrews, representing the development of Red River schools
  • a plan of the Red River Colony surveyed in 1836 by George Taylor
  • excerpts of baptism, marriage and death from Rupert's Land registers sent to the governor and committee of the Hudson’s Bay Company around 1820
  • a copy of The Nor’Wester from 14 February 1860, containing an article by Chief Peguis
  • an image from Bishop David Anderson’s flood journal title page, Notes of The Flood at Red River, 1852

The Archives of Manitoba, including the Hudson’s Bay Company Archives and the Legislative Library of Manitoba, are commemorating the 200th anniversary of the Red River Settlement with this exhibit of selected archival records and library materials. Public viewing of the material is available Monday to Friday, 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM at 200 Vaughan Street (at St. Mary Avenue) in Winnipeg. A related exhibit The Selkirk Settlement: 200 Years can also be seen at the Manitoba Museum.

Guided tours of this exhibition will be offered for a limited time. For scheduling details, please contact the Archives of Manitoba at 204-945-7586.

Posted: 13 September 2012


Ukrainian Labour Temple a National Historic Site

On Saturday, 29 September 2012, the Historic Sites and Monuments Boards of Canada will unveil a plaque recognizing the Ukrainian Labour Temple (591 Pritchard Avenue, Winnipeg) as a Site of National Historic Significance. The free public ceremony will start at 3:00 PM and all are welcome.

Constructed by volunteer labour through 1918 and 1919, the Temple was a focus for Ukrainian culture and worker and farmer political activism. As a rallying centre for the trade union movement, it was raided by the police during the 1919 Winnipeg General Strike.

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Ukrainian Labour Temple (591 Pritchard Avenue, Winnipeg)

Posted: 12 September 2012


New Book Features Early Photographs of Winnipeg

Later this month, the University of Manitoba Press will publish the book Imagining Winnipeg: History through the Photographs of L. B. Foote.

In an expanding and socially fractious early twentieth-century Winnipeg, Lewis Benjamin Foote (1873-1957) rose to become the city’s pre-eminent commercial photographer. Documenting everything from royal visits to deep poverty, from the building of the landmark Fort Garry Hotel to the turmoil of the 1919 General Strike, Foote’s photographs have come to be iconic representations of early Winnipeg life. They have been used to illustrate everything from academic histories to posters for rock concerts; they have influenced the work of visual artists, writers, and musicians; and they have represented Winnipeg to the world.

But in Imagining Winnipeg, historian Esyllt W. Jones takes us beyond the iconic to reveal the complex artist behind the lens and the conflicting ways in which his photographs have been used to give credence to diverse and sometimes irreconcilable views of Winnipeg’s past. Incorporating 150 stunning photographs from the more than 2,000 images in the Archives of Manitoba Foote Collection, Imagining Winnipeg challenges our understanding of visual history and the city we thought we knew.

Esyllt W. Jones is a history professor at University of Manitoba and is the author of the award-winning Influenza 1918: Death, Disease and Struggle in Winnipeg.

The book will be launched at a free public event:

Where: Atrium, McNally Robinson Grant Park (1120 Grant Avenue), Winnipeg
When: Wednesday, 26 September 2012, 7:00 PM

The launch will include light refreshments in addition to a slideshow of images from the book and a short talk by author Esyllt W. Jones.

Posted: 5 September 2012


Lord Selkirk Unveils Plaque Commemorating Selkirk Settlers

Today, in a ceremony on the south steps of the Manitoba Legislative Building, the visiting Lord Selkirk of Douglas in Scotland, along with Premier Greg Selinger and Minister Eric Robinson, unveiled a plaque for the 200th anniversary of the arrival of settlers recruited by his ancestor, Thomas Douglas, the Fifth Earl of Selkirk. The plaque will be mounted inside the building as a lasting commemoration to the establishment, in 1812, of a permanent agricultural settlement in the area now known as the Province of Manitoba. Text on the plaque appears in English, French, and Scottish Gaelic (the predominant language spoken by the Settlers).

The present-day Lord Selkirk offers remarks during a ceremony to unveil a new plaque
commemorating the 200th anniversary of the Selkirk Settlers (4 September 2012)
Source: Dave McKnight, Photographer

Lord Selkirk with Premier Greg Selinger in the Legislative Building (4 September 2012)
Source: Dave McKnight, Photographer

See also:

Memorable Manitobans: Thomas Douglas, Fifth Earl of Selkirk [Lord Selkirk] (1771-1820)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Selkirk Wheat Monument (Winnipeg)

Red River 200 - Commemorating the Bicentenary (1812-2012) of the Red River Settlement and the Lord Selkirk Settlers

Posted: 4 September 2012


New eBook on Red River Settlement

Former Winnipegger Ken Medd, a descendant of Manitoba pioneer Peter McArthur, has prepared an electronic book entitled Images of Red River: A Selection of Readings Concerning the Period from 1790 to 1870.

The book is a collection of historical readings about the Red River Settlement and some of the events that occurred there during the period from about 1790 to 1870. The events are interesting in themselves and, when read in sequence, illustrate many of the changes that took place in the settlment during the period. The readings offer glimpses into the competitive and highly aggressive relations between the North West Company and the Hudson’s Bay Company before the companies merged in 1821. They reveal a complex human environment, including delicate and challenging relationships among the European occupiers, the French Canadian, Scottish and English Metis of Red River, the local Saulteaux and the neighbouring Cree, Assiniboine and Sioux. The readings also include census counts and several physical descriptions of the settlement, which extended for miles along the banks of the Red and Assiniboine rivers.

The ebook is available at the Barnes and Noble (Nook) online store, the Lulu website, and the Apple ibookstore at a cost of around $2.

Posted: 3 September 2012


New Issue of Manitoba History Available Online

A Summer 2012 issue of Manitoba History (Number 69) is now available for download from the MHS Members Area. Current members of the Manitoba Historical Society can have immediate access to the new issue, at no additional charge.

Printed copies will be mailed to members and delivered to bookstores later in August.

Articles in this issue:

The Construction of a Regional Identity: From Homeland to Industrial Frontier
by Jim Mochoruk

The Red River Jig Around the Convention of “Indian” Title: The Métis and Half-Breed Dos à Dos
by Darren O’Toole

The Selkirk Settler Bicentenary
by Harry Duckworth

1912 Remembered: In Pursuit of an Idea
by Jasper McKee

Titanic - The Manitoba Story
by Michael Dupuis

Commemorating Ralph Connor House
by Parks Canada

Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee in Manitoba
by Gordon Goldsborough

Book Reviews

Joan Sangster, Transforming Labour: Women and Work in Post-war Canada. University of Toronto Press, 2010
by Marlene Epp

Dan Azoulay, Hearts and Minds: Canadian Romance at the Dawn of the Modern Era, 1900-1930. University of Calgary Press, 2011.
by Greg Thomas

Shannon Stunden Bower, Wet Prairie: People, Land and Water in Agricultural Manitoba. University of British Columbia Press, 2011
by Graham MacDonald

Jim Blanchard, Winnipeg’s Great War: A City Comes of Age, University of Manitoba Press, 2010
by Henry Trachtenberg

Cool Things in the Collection:
The Manitoba Pool Elevators Pamphlet Collection
by Marianne Reid

Single copies of Manitoba History are available for purchase at select locations.

Posted: 21 August 2012


New Book Commemorates Selkirk Bicentenary

A new book on the early Red River Settlement will be published later this month by Winnipeg publisher Great Plains Publication. Entitled Red River Remembered: A Bicentennial Collection of Stories and Recipes, its author is Noni Campbell-Horner, a direct descendant of the Red River Settlers.

Red River Remembered: A Bicentennial Collection of Stories and Recipes
by Noni Campbell-Horner
ISBN 978-1-926531-28-1
255 pages
$24.95

Posted: 10 August 2012, updated 21 October 2012


Photographer Documents Abandoned Prairie Sites

Western Canadian photographer Dion Manastyrski has spent the past nine years crossing the prairies, taking thousands of photographs of abandoned homesteads, barns, machinery, and other artifacts left behind from a time when the rural population was higher. He has also interviewed 70 people in the rural prairies, asking them the question, “what can you tell me about rural life several decades ago, and about how things have changed?” Manastyrski hopes to eventually amass this material in a richly illustrated book. In the meantime, he has submitted a collection of 20 photos to an international competition and is asking for people to visit his online entry:

http://dionmanastyrski.see.me/onelife2012

Photos can be viewed at the above link, along with more information on the project. To vote for Manastyrski’s portfolio, click the “Collect Me” button at the top of the page. Voting is anonymous but requires verification in the form of an email address or Facebook login, or the vote will not count.

Posted: 5 August 2012


Final Volume of Northern Memoir Published

The second and final volume of memoirs by Prentice G. Downes, describing his travels through northern Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and the NWT from 1936 to 1947, has just been published by McGahern Stewart Publishing. Entitled Distant Summers: P. G. Downes’ Journals of Travels in Northern Canada, 1936-1947, the book is illustrated with 13 maps and nearly 80 photographs. Copies of the first volume are also available.

In 1943, Downes published Sleeping Island: The Story of One Man’s Travels in the Great Barren Lands of the Canadian North about his experiences, and these two books continue Downes’ narrative. Edited by Robert H. Cockburn, this final volume contains the Sleeping Island journal of 1939; the 1940 account of Downes’ attempt to canoe to Kasba Lake on the Kazan River; and the journal of his final canoe voyage, in 1947, from Amisk Lake to Lac La Ronge. The volume includes introductions to each of the journals, numerous notes, and twelve appendices.

During his travels, Downes interacted with an amazing array of characters from the “Old North” of Manitoba: George Douglas, Charles “Eskimo Charlie” Planinshek, Charles Schweder, Corporal Marcel Chappuis, Father Egenolf, Jim Cumines, Del Simons, John Albrecht, Adam Ballantyne, Solomon Merasty, Harry Moody, Norman Lathlin, Ragnar Jonsson, Paul “King” Beaulieu, and many more.

Distant Summers: P. G. Downes' Journals of Travels in Northern Canada, 1936-1947
by Prentice G. Downes
edited by Robert H. Cockburn
McGahern Stewart Publishing, Ottawa, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-9868600-3-4
$26.00

For more information:

McGahern Stewart Publishing
Suite 301 - 368 Dalhousie Street
Ottawa, ON K1N 7G3
mcspublishing@gmail.com
613-230-2275

A new look at the “Old North”, Canadian Geographic

Prentice G. Downes (1909-1959) by Robert H. Cockburn
Arctic, University of Calgary

Posted: 29 July 2012


University Digitizes Vintage Shanghai Restaurant Menu

Though hope of saving the historic Shanghai Restaurant Building in downtown Winnipeg is waning, the University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections has preserved a small piece of it, in the form of one of its old menus. They have posted the menu online here:

Vintage Shanghai Restaurant Menu

 

Posted: 25 July 2012


Campaign to Restore Winnipeg’s Oldest Church to Launch in September

On 8 September 2012, the current Lord Selkirk of Douglas, visiting Winnipeg from Scotland, will attend the launch of a conservation project for Kildonan Presbyterian Church, the oldest stone church in the city.

The project is being undertaken by The Friends of Historic Kildonan Church Committee. The committee was formed in June 2011 and was given a mandate to organize and plan for the restoration of the Old Church by its owners, Kildonan Community Church. A grant from The Winnipeg Foundation will support a feasibility study to investigate new uses for the structure.

Wins Bridgman of Bridgman Collaborative Architecture will provide a talk on the Old Kildonan Church, its place in history, an approach toward restoration, and the feasibility of new uses. A reception will be at held at Kildonan Community Church after his presentation.

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Kildonan Presbyterian Church and Cemetery (201 John Black Avenue, Winnipeg)

Brochure on Kildonan Presbyterian Church (PDF)

Posted: 25 July 2012


Museums Association to Hold Conference in Winnipeg

The Association of Manitoba Museums will commemorate its 40th anniversary this fall with two-day conference in downtown Winnipeg. The Association represents numerous community museums around Manitoba.

The conference will begin with a reception at the Manitoba Museum on Thursday, 11 October 2012. Sessions on Friday, 12 October and Saturday, 13 October will be held at the Delta Winnipeg. The roster of speakers will include Pat Bovey and Joanne DiCosimo.

Pat Bovey is a Winnipeg-based art historian, writer and management consultant in the arts and not-for-profit sector. She is with the Buhler Gallery and was the director of The Winnipeg Art Gallery (1999-2004) and the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (1980-1999). She has curated many exhibitions and lectured widely on a variety of topics, specializing in the contemporary and historical art of western Canada.

Joanne DiCosimo is originally from Winnipegosis, Manitoba. She was the Executive Director of the Manitoba Museum for nine years and went on to join the Museum of Nature in Ottawa in 1997. Her major achievement, while there, was the founding of the Alliance of Natural History Museums of Canada in 2004. This dynamic network now comprises 16 natural history museums, zoos and aquariums that work in concert to preserve and interpret the natural world and to educate and inspire people about Canada’s remarkable natural environment.

Further conference registration information, along with online registration and payment, will be available soon on the AMM’s website.

Posted: 25 July 2012


Telecommunications Pioneer David A. Golden Dies

Noted telecommunications pioneer David A. Golden died on 20 July at Victoria, BC. Born at Sinclair, Manitoba in 1920, Golden attended the University of Manitoba Law School, graduating in 1941 and being selected a Rhodes Scholar. Rather than take up his scholarship, he enlisted in the Canadian Army and ended up spending nearly four years in a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp.

Golden served many years as a lawyer with the Canadian federal government before joining private industry as President of the Air Industries Association of Canada. He became the first President of Telesat Canada and received the first long-distance telephone call carried by satellite in Canada, from Resolute to Ottawa, in 1972.

In recognition of his service to Canada, he was inducted into the Order of Canada in 1977. He received honorary doctorates from the University of Manitoba (1986), Carleton University, and University of Winnipeg (2011). He was inducted into the Canadian Telecommunications Hall of Fame and received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal (2012).

See also:

Memorable Manitobans: David A. Golden (1920-2012)

The Remarkable Career of David A. Golden by Hugh Grant
Manitoba History, Number 67, Winter 2012

Posted: 25 July 2012


First Phase of Renovations to Historic Railway Station Completed

The Winnipegosis Historical Society reports that phase one in the renovations to their historic railway station building are now complete. The building, which is a part of the Winnipegosis Museum, had been suffering structural damage due to deterioration of the wooden blocks on which it had been sitting. The building has now been moved onto a concrete foundation and its floors are all level. The second and final phase of renovations will include some remedial work inside the building and refinishing of its exterior. The Society is currently fundraising and expects the building to reopen to the public in 2013. Photographs and reports on the project are available at www.winnipegosis.org.

Donations for the project are welcome. Tax receipts for all donations over $20 will be issued, and the names of all donors will be recognized permanently on a plaque to be unveiled inside the museum. Send donations (cheques payable to “Winnipegosis Historical Society”) to:

Winnipegosis Historical Society
PO Box 336
Winnipegosis, Manitoba R0L 2G0

Posted: 25 July 2012


New Book on Manitoba Historical Figure

For Elise: Unveiling the Forgotten Woman on the Criddle Homestead by Winnipeg historian Oriole Veldhuis examines the life and times of her great-grandmother, Elise Vane. The 512-page book contains numerous pictures, letters, documents, and maps to illustrate this relatively unknown historical figure, who lived for much of her life on the western Manitoba homestead of Percy Criddle. The book is available from the author for $24.95 per copy.

Opportunities to meet the author and purchase a book include a launch at Treesbank, Manitoba on Sunday, 5 August 2012 (2:00 PM), at the Annual Picnic at the Criddle/Vane Homestead Heritage Provincial Park on Sunday, 12 August 2012, the ‘Welcome to Glenboro’ event at the Burrough of the Gleann Museum on Sunday, 26 August 2012 (1:00 PM), and at McNally Robinson Booksellers Grant Park on Tuesday, 18 September 2012 (7:00 PM).

For Elise: Unveiling the Forgotten Woman on the Criddle Homestead
by Oriole Veldhuis
ISBN 978-1-896150-72-7
512 pages
$24.95

See also:

The Biography of Elise Vane

Posted: 14 July 2012, updated 21 July 2012


New Issue of Manitoba History Available Online

A special issue of Manitoba History (Number 68, Spring 2012), commemorating the 100th anniversary of the expansion of Manitoba’s northern boundary to its present location, is now available for download from the MHS Members Area. Current members of the Manitoba Historical Society can have immediate access to the new issue, at no additional charge.

Printed copies will be mailed to members and delivered to bookstores later in June.

Articles in this issue:

Manitoba Expands Northward: A Special Edition of Manitoba History
by Jim Mochoruk

Developing a Better Model: Aboriginal Employment and the Resource Community of Leaf Rapids, Manitoba (1971-1977)
by Sarah Ramsden

High Stakes and Hard Times: Herb Lake and Depression-Era Mining in Northern Manitoba
by Will Steinburg

W. J. Waines, the IUN Crisis of 1978, and the Development of Post-Secondary Education in Northern Manitoba
by Jennifer Marchant & Tom Mitchell

A Trapper’s Diary from Northern Manitoba, 1928-1946
by Rosemary Malaher

Roblin City: A Gleaming Metropolis on the Bay
by James Burns & Gordon Goldsborough

James Isham (c1716-1761): How an Eighteenth Century Fur Trader is Influencing Canada Today
by Scott Stephen

Book Reviews

P. G. Downes, Sleeping Island: The Narrative of a Summer’s Travel in Northern Manitoba and the Northwest Territories. Edited with a new Introduction and Notes by R. H. Cockburn
by Graham A. MacDonald

Frances Swyripa, Storied Landscapes: Ethno-Religious Identity and the Canadian Prairies
by Peter J. Melnycky

Hugh A. Dempsey, Always an Adventure: An Autobiography
by W. B. Yeo

Cool Things in the Collection:
Spotlight on Northern Manitoba, Photographs in the Hudson’s Bay Company Archives
by Debra Moore

Single copies of Manitoba History are available for purchase at select locations.

Posted: 8 June 2012


Videos Commemorate 125th Anniversary of Winnipeg Law Firm

The Winnipeg law firm of Thompson Dorfman Sweatman is commemorating its 125th anniversary with a corporate history and a five-part series of videos. Details can be found on their website (www.tdslaw.com/125) and the first two videos can be seen below:

The Early Years: 1887-1939

The Formative Years: 1940-1969

A Time of Change: 1970-1989

Posted: 6 June 2012, updated 21 October 2012


Memorial for Unmarked Graves in St. Andrew’s-on-the-Red Cemetery

Since St. Andrew’s-on-the-Red Anglican Church celebrated its 160th anniversary in 2009, plans have been on going to construct a permanent memorial in memory of the over 2000 people in unmarked graves in the cemetery. The memorial has been designed and constructed and will be dedicated on Sunday, 24 June 2012 at the 11:15 AM service.

Anyone who believes they have relatives in these graves are encouraged to attend and peruse the book that has been printed that lists the names, and birth/burial dates of the people in these graves. Following the service, tea/coffee and dainties will be served and visitors will have a chance to meet each other and perhaps even locate long-lost relatives.

For more information please contact Barbara at 204-338-7483. Anyone still wishing to donate to this project may do so by sending a cheque payable to the Parish of St. Andrew c/o 3 St. Andrews Road, St. Andrews, Manitoba R1A 2Y4.

St. Andrew’s-on-the-Red is the oldest church in Western Canada in continuous use. Services are held every Sunday at 11:15 AM.

Posted: 5 June 2012


Photos of Portage and Main for 150th Anniversary

In commemoration of this weekend’s 150th anniversary of the famous intersection of Portage Avenue and Main Street in Winnipeg, The University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections has posted a collection of photos on Facebook:

Portage and Main Hits the Big 1-5-0

See also:

The Man Who Created the Corner of Portage and Main by George F. Reynolds
MHS Transactions, Series 3, Number 26, 1969-70 season

Posted: 1 June 2012


University Launches Gay and Lesbian Archives

In celebration of the 25th anniversary of the inclusion of protections from discrimination on the basis of gender identity under The Human Rights Code of Manitoba, and the 25th anniversary of Pride Winnipeg, The University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections is officially launching the archives of the Manitoba Gay and Lesbian Society with a website:

http://umanitoba.ca/libraries/archives/digital/gay_lesbian

The website includes over 500 images scanned from the collection as well as an extensive history and finding aid to the records of this society. Dating from the 1960s to the 1990s, the archives includes records about the University of Manitoba student organization Gays for Equality, the Oscar Wilde Memorial Society, the Council on Homosexuality and Religion, and Project Lambda among others. Approximately 40 episodes of the local cable access program Coming Out were digitized as part of this project.

This project was partially funded by the National Archival Development Program.

Posted: 31 May 2012


Manitoba Archivists Recognize Noteworthy Historical Projects

On Thursday, 10 May 2012, the Association for Manitoba Archives presented its 6th Annual Manitoba Day Awards, recognizing users of archives who, during the past year, completed an original work of excellence which contributes to the understanding and celebration of Manitoba history. Thirteen awards were presented in a ceremony at the Mennonite Heritage Centre Gallery (600 Shaftesbury Blvd, Winnipeg), as follows:

Recipient(s)

Project

Dale Barbour

Book: Winnipeg Beach: Leisure and Courtship in a Resort Town, 1900-1967 by University of Manitoba Press

Grace Evans,
Donna Royer
& Sally Ito (Editors)

Book: A Manifest Presence 100 Years at St. Margaret’s

Audrhea Lande

Book: With Love to You All, Bogga S: Stories and Letters from the Remarkable Life of Sigurbjorg Stefansson by Your Nickel’s Worth Publishing

Joe Mackintosh

Book: Andy Dejarlis: The Life and Music of an Old-Time Fiddler by Great Plains Publications

Arnie Neufeld &
Bruce Wiebe

Project: Stones and Stories, a collection of 335 obituaries and life stories from Winkler and area

Dr. Arthur J. Ray

Book: Telling it to the Judge, Taking Native History to Court by McGill-Queens University Press

John K. Samson

Musical Album: Provincial, a thematic album focused on Manitoba

Gail Sawatzky &
Bev Friesen

Project: Mennonite Women Evolving

Danny Schur

Film: Mike’s Bloody Saturday

Prof. Jaroslav Z. Skira &
Dr. Karim Schelkens

Book: The Second Vatican Council Diaries (1960-1965) of Met. Maxim Hermaniuk, C.Ss.R by Peeters Publishers

Ron Stevens

Book: Much Ado About Squat: Squatters and Homesteaders Ravage Riding Mountain Forest by Heartland Associates

Robert Sweeney

Book: Portraits of Winnipeg, the River City in Pen and Ink by Turnstone Press

Andrew Wall

Film: The Paper Nazis

Posted: 28 May 2012


Internationally Renowned Speaker Reunited with Winnipeggers

The Winnipeg Chinese Cultural and Community Centre (WCCCC), in partnership with the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, Friends of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights and B'Nai Brith Canada, are sponsoring a special keynote address by internationally renowned speaker, Manli Ho, at the Millienium Library tonight, 24 May 2012. Special guests will be the two remaining known Winnipeggers whose families escaped Austria for Shanghai, during the Second World War, with the help of Manli’s father, Dr. Fengshan Ho.

Miriam (Gellert) Feierstein and Judith (Schaffer) Lavitt will reunite with their hero’s daughter at a special presentation of Winnipeg Shanghai Connection II. This exhibition traces the memories of two Jewish Winnipeggers who lived as refugees in China.

WCCCC president Dr. Joseph Du states, “We are so happy to have Manli Ho return to Winnipeg. She was here for the original Winnipeg Shanghai Connection exhibit in 2001. We showcased the incredible work the late Dr. Fengshan Ho did in Vienna. As the Chinese Consul General in Austria during the 1940s, he risked his own life to issue thousands of Chinese visas to Jewish families, so they could go to Shanghai and escape the Nazis. It is believed that his efforts saved an estimate of 18,000 Jews. It was an emotional and monumental exhibition, and we are excited to revisit this exhibition.”

The exhibition is held at the Blankstein Gallery of the Millennium Library until 31 May 2012. The exhibition and speaking engagement are opened to the public and free of charge.

Posted: 24 May 2012


Lord Selkirk Settlers Honoured by Manitoba Legislature

Yesterday, members of the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba voted to honour the Lord Selkirk Settlers on the bicentenary of their arrival at The Forks. A resolution, introduced by MLA for Selkirk Greg Dewar, called for the recognition of the role of the Settlers in the creation of the Province of Manitoba. “These people took great risks to come here and faced so many challenges that we can’t imagine today,” he said. “By settling here and establishing an agricultural community, they played a crucial role in the creation of Manitoba.”

The resolution recognizes Lord Selkirk, whose goal was to help the disadvantaged people of Scotland, Ireland and other countries by bringing them to the Canadian Prairies. Chief Peguis was honoured for his role, among others, in saving many of the settlers from starvation. “It’s the story of many people coming together to help each other. That’s the history we want Manitobans to know about and celebrate,” says Lawrence Prout, Co-Chair of the Bicentenary of the Red River Selkirk Settlement Committee.

Events celebrating the bicentennial include an exhibit at the Manitoba Museum on from now to September and a series of events in September planned by the Bicentenary of the Red River Selkirk Settlement Committee. “We also want to thank the volunteers who are working so hard to raise awareness about this important event in our history,” says Dewar.

See also:

Text of the Dewar Resolution, NDP Caucus

Posted: 23 May 2012


Manitoban Appointed to Historic Sites and Monuments Board

Dr. Richard A. “Rick” Wishart has been appointed to a three-year term as the representative for Manitoba on the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada. The position had been vacant for several months, having been formerly occupied by Dr. Robert O’Kell of the University of Manitoba.

Wishart, who holds a doctorate in zoology from the University of Manitoba, has worked with Ducks Unlimited Canada in a number of research and management roles over the last 30 years. Since 1996 he has been National Director of Education and most recently is also responsible as Director of the Oak Hammock Marsh Interpretive Centre near Winnipeg. He is a board member with the Canadian Forestry Association, was founding chair of the Manitoba Education for Sustainable Development Working Group, serves on the steering committee for ESD Canada, volunteers with the Save Our Seine community conservation initiative, and acts as an adjunct professor with the Department of Education at the University of Manitoba. He is the author of many scientific publications and book chapters, and has presented numerous papers and briefs to diverse audiences.

See also:

Dr. Richard Wishart appointed Manitoba representative to the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Parks Canada

Members of the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Parks Canada

Posted: 21 May 2012


Duckworth Receives Kemp Award for Meritorious Service

Dr. Harry Duckworth, President of the Manitoba Historical Society from 2008 to 2011, has received the 2012 Douglas Kemp Award in recognition of his meritorious service to the society. In the course of his term, Duckworth integrated office operations of the society at Dalnavert Museum, and assisted in several new initiatives, including the Homes of Memorable Manitobans plaque program and the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Historical Preservation and Promotion. He is an active member of the 2021 Selkirk Bicentenary Committee, for which he helped to organize an exhibit at the Manitoba Museum, and an academic symposium.

MHS President Annabelle Mays presents the Douglas Kemp Award to
Past-President Harry Duckworth
(May 2012)
Source: Gordon Goldsborough

Posted: 16 May 2012


Winners of 2011 Margaret McWilliams Awards Announced

Today, for Manitoba Day 2012, the Manitoba Historical Society announces the recipients of its 2011 Margaret McWilliams Awards for excellence in writing about Manitoba history, in three categories: scholarly history, local history, and popular history. Books nominated for the award have been published in the 2011 calendar year.

The award recipients are as follows:

Scholarly History:
Community and Frontier: A Ukrainian Settlement in the Canadian Parkland
by John C. Lehr & published by University of Manitoba Press

Local History (tie):
Winnipeg Beach: Leisure and Courtship in a Resort Town, 1900-1967
by Dale Barbour & published by University of Manitoba Press

Local History (tie):
Much Ado About Squat: Squatters and Homesteaders Ravage Riding Mountain Forest
by Ron Stevens & published by Heartland Associates

Popular History:
The Home Front: Hopscotch and Heartache While Daddy was at War
by Margaret Dennis Owen & published by Heartland Associates

The awards will be presented to authors and publishers in a ceremony on Saturday, 9 June 2012, at Dalnavert Museum (61 Carlton Street, Winnipeg).

The Manitoba Historical Society congratulations the award recipients and extends its thanks to the authors of other fine books short-listed this year.

The award, one of Canada’s oldest literary prizes, was created in 1955 to honour noted Manitoba feminist, historian, and author Margaret Stovell McWilliams. She was first President of the Canadian Federation of University Women in 1919, President of the Women’s Canadian Club in 1922, President of the Manitoba Historical Society from 1944 to 1948, and Winnipeg’s second female Alderman from 1933 to 1940. McWilliams was the author of Manitoba Milestones (1928), If I Were King of Canada (1931), and This New Canada (1948).

Posted: 12 May 2012


Bridge Renovations Reveal Remains of Streetcar System

Ongoing renovation of the road leading to the Osborne Bridge in Winnipeg has revealed iron rails from the former streetcar system. The rails, which had been buried under layers of asphalt during past street repairs at the corner of Osborne and Broadway, were exposed when the material was removed in preparation for road resurfacing. Samples of the rail will be salvaged by a group interested in restoring an old Winnipeg streetcar, and the rail and car will eventually be put on display.

Remains of the former Winnipeg streetcar rail system were exposed during renovation of the Osborne Bridge system. Samples were recovered for future use in a museum display (May 2012).
Source: Vaibhav Banthia, TetraTech.

Posted: 11 May 2012


Lieutenant Governor Recognizes Five With Historical Award

In a ceremony at Government House on 10 May, Lieutenant Governor Philip S. Lee recognized five Manitobans for their contributions to the preservation and promotion of Manitoba history. Those recognized were as follows:

Barbara Pettinger (Shoal Lake)
Robert Porth (Whitemouth)
Bernice Still (Isabella)
Jack Templeman (Winnipeg)
Joan Wheeler (Crystal City)

Front (L-R): Annabelle Mays (MHS President), Philip Lee, Anita Lee, Philip S. Lee, Gordon Goldsborough (MHS Secretary). Award recipients (L-R): Barbara Pettinger, Joan Wheeler, Jack Templeman, Bernice Still, Robert Porth
Source: Michele Bouvier - News Media.

See also:

Award Citations

Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Historical Preservation and Promotion

Posted: 10 May 2012

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