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Article

Black Fur Traders in Canada

The role of Black people within the history of the fur trade is rarely considered. Black people were rarely in a position to write their own stories, so often those stories went untold. This owes to a complex set of factors including racism and limited access to literacy. Black people are also not the focus of many historical documents. However, historians have identified several Black fur traders working in different roles, and even an entire family of Black fur traders who left their mark on history.

Article

Battle of Vimy Ridge

The Battle of Vimy Ridge was fought during the First World War from 9 to 12 April 1917. It is Canada’s most celebrated military victory — an often mythologized symbol of the birth of Canadian national pride and awareness. The battle took place on the Western Front, in northern France. The four divisions of the Canadian Corps, fighting together for the first time, attacked the ridge from 9 to 12 April 1917 and captured it from the German army. It was the largest territorial advance of any Allied force to that point in the war — but it would mean little to the outcome of the conflict. More than 10,600 Canadians were killed and wounded in the assault. Today an iconic memorial atop the ridge honours the 11,285 Canadians killed in France throughout the war who have no known graves.

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Joy Kogawa

Joy Nozomi Kogawa (née Nakayama), CM, OBC, poet, novelist, activist (born 6 June 1935 in Vancouver, BC). Joy Kogawa is one of the most influential Canadian authors of Japanese descent. She is celebrated both for her moving, fictionalized accounts of the internment of Japanese Canadians and her work in the Redress Movement to obtain compensation and reparation for her community. She is a Member of the Order of Canada and the Order of British Columbia, as well as Japan’s Order of the Rising Sun.

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Alfred Garson

Alfred (Henrik) Garson. Violinist, teacher, composer, author, b Berthier-en-Haut, (Berthierville), north-east of Montreal, 22 Oct 1924; B MUS (Cape Town) 1950, FTCL 1953, M MUS (Cape Town) 1954, PH D (Montreal) 1970. During his childhood he toured as a violinist in Europe and in South America.

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Ephrem A. Brisebois

Ephrem A. Brisebois, soldier, mounted policeman, registrar of land titles (b at South Durham, Qué 7 Mar 1850; d at Minnedosa, Man 13 Feb 1890). He served briefly in the Union Army during the American Civil War, and from 1868-70 with the Canadian Pontifical ZOUAVES in Rome.

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Damis Paul

Damis Paul. Organist, pianist, choirmaster, violinist, b St-Hyacinthe, Que, 9 Mar 1827, d South Bend, Ind, 13 Dec 1913. He studied at the seminary at Ste-Thérèse, Que, with Father Charles-Joseph Ducharme, at the same time as the organ builders Joseph Casavant and Louis Mitchell. L.

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Jack Diamond

Abel Joseph (Jack) Diamond, OC, O.Ont, architect (born 8 November 1932 in Piet Retief, South Africa). An Officer of the Order of Canada and multiple winner of the Governor General’s Medal in Architecture, Jack Diamond is one of the most significant and successful Canadian architects of his generation.

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Pierre Bertrand

Pierre Bertrand, author and philosopher (b at Montréal, 1946). Pierre Bertrand, earned a PhD (Philosophy) from the Université de Paris VIII et Paris I. He had a career teaching philosophy at the CÉGEP Édouard-Montpetit in Longueuil on Montréal's south shore, and was a prolific and productive writer.

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Islam

Islam is one of the major religions of the world and is estimated to be the fastest-growing religion in Canada and worldwide. Its 1.6 billion adherents are scattered throughout the globe, though concentrated most densely in South and Central Asia, the Middle East, and North and East Africa.

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John Neilson

John Neilson, newspaperman, publisher, editor, politician (born 17 July 1776 in Balmaghie, Kirkcudbrightshire, Scotland; died 1 February 1848 in Québec City, Canada East). A staunch moderate, John Neilson supported a greater balance of power in the colony. Sympathetic to French-Canadians, he was a deputy with the Parti canadien in the Legislative Assembly – which later became the Parti patriote – and broke away when the party radicalized in the 1830s. Though he opposed the party’s republican and nationalist policies, Neilson continued to fight for French-Canadians, heavily condemning the Union of the Canadas in 1841.

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Lord Dufferin

Frederick Temple Hamilton-Temple-Blackwood, 1st Marquess of Dufferin and Ava, governor general of Canada from 1872 to 1878 (born 21 June 1826 in Florence, Italy; died 12 February 1902 in Bangor, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom). Dufferin and his wife, Lady Dufferin, were the first viceregal couple since Confederation to become prominent figures in Canadian society, touring all provinces and meeting with Canadians from a wide variety of regions and social backgrounds. Dufferin set key precedents for future governors general with his extensive travel and granting of academic and athletic honours to Canadians.

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Thomas Kwok Hung “Tommy” Wong (Primary Source)

Thomas Kwok Hung Wong was one of the first Chinese Canadians accepted into the Royal Canadian Air Force. Wong applied in 1939 but was not accepted until two years later when Canada declared war on Japan. Despite enduring discrimination, Wong achieved the highest groundcrew promotion and worked as an aircraft inspector. Listen to Wong’s testimony of service and his contributions to the enfranchisement of Chinese Canadians.

Please be advised that Memory Project primary sources may deal with personal testimony that reflect the speaker’s recollections and interpretations of events. Individual testimony does not necessarily reflect the views of the Memory Project and Historica Canada.

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Roland "Rolly" Gravel (Primary Source)

Roland “Rolly” Gravel served as a gunner with The Fusiliers Mont-Royal regiment during the Second World War. He was among the 6,000 troops who landed at the coastal port of Dieppe, France, on 19 August 1942. The attack was a disaster, and Gravel was taken prisoner. Learn all about the hardships Gravel faced as prisoner of war.

Please be advised that Memory Project primary sources may deal with personal testimony that reflect the speaker’s recollections and interpretations of events. Individual testimony does not necessarily reflect the views of the Memory Project and Historica Canada.

Article

Wayne Johnston

Wayne Johnston, novelist (born at Goulds, NL 22 May 1958). Born in a small community just south of St John's, Wayne Johnston spent most of his childhood moving from place to place within the St John's area - a fact reflected in his semi-autobiographical first novel, The Story of Bobby O'Malley.