Browse "History/Historical Figures"

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Editorial

Paul Chomedey de Maisonneuve, Jeanne Mance and the Founding of Montreal

Radiant sunshine bathed the Island of Montreal on the morning of May 18th, 1642. The hawthorns and wild cherry trees were in blossom and the meadow, where a group of French colonists had set up an altar, was dotted with trilliums and violets. Father Vimont celebrated mass, and declared that the new settlement, which they called Ville-Marie, was "only a grain of mustard seed... I have no doubt that this small seed will produce a tall tree that will bring forth wonders some day."

Article

Cowboys and Cowgirls in Canada

Cowboys and cowgirls are people employed to tend cattle or horses. The first cowboys to work on the Canadian prairies arrived in the 1870s. The traditional cowboy lifestyle has since given way to a more contained, corporate model of ranching. But the romanticized image of the cowboy on the “open range” lives on as a symbol of the prairies. Today, the terms cowboy and cowgirl can refer to ranch workers or rodeo competitors.

Editorial

Editorial: Baldwin, LaFontaine and Responsible Government

The BaldwinLaFontaine government of 1848 has been called the “great ministry.” In addition to establishing responsible government, it had an incomparable record of legislation. It established a public school system and finalized the founding of the University of Toronto. It set up municipal governments and pacified French-Canadian nationalism after a period of unrest. Responsible government did not transform Canada overnight into a fully developed democracy. But it was an important milestone along the road to political autonomy. Most importantly, it provided an opportunity for French Canadians to find a means for their survival through the British Constitution. The partnership and friendship between Baldwin and LaFontaine were brilliant examples of collaboration that have been all too rare in Canadian history.

Article

Buckam Singh and Sikh Canadians in the First World War

Buckam Singh, labourer, soldier (born 5 December 1893 in Mahilpur, Punjab, India; died 27 August 1919 in Kitchener, ON). There is little information published about the role of Sikhs in Canadian military service during the First World War. The discovery of Buckam Singh’s Victory Medal led to his reclamation by his community, which commemorates him with an annual Remembrance Day service

Editorial

Editorial: William Lyon Mackenzie and the Rebellion in Upper Canada

At 8:00 p.m. on Monday, 4 December 1837, William Lyon Mackenzie set out by horse down Yonge Street to scout the route for his attack on Toronto. At the top of Gallows Hill (below St. Clair Ave.) he met Tory alderman John Powell, himself on patrol from the city. Mackenzie and his men took Powell prisoner. “Do you have a gun?” Mackenzie asked Powell. “No,” Powell replied. Mackenzie took his word as a gentleman and sent him back toward the rebel headquarters at Montgomery’s Tavern.

Article

Andrew Hamilton Gault

Andrew Hamilton Gault, army officer (born in England 18 August 1882; died at Montréal 28 November 1958). Of Canadian parents, he attended McGill University. Commissioned in the 2nd Canadian Mounted Rifles, he served in the South African War and joined the Canadian Militia on return to Canada.

Article

Andrew Mynarski, VC

The crew took off on its 13th sortie on 12 June 1944 to bomb a German supply line at Cambrai, France. Just after midnight, they were fired on by a German JU-88 fighter, sustaining heavy damage. The pilot ordered the crew to bail out.

Article

Andrew Jackson

Born in the backwoods of the Carolinas, Jackson was the son of Scottish Irish colonists. At the young age of 13, Jackson served in a local militia as a courier during the American Revolution. It was a dangerous job.

Article

Andrew Graham

Andrew Graham, fur trader (b probably near Edinburgh, Scot c 1733; d at Prestonpans, Scot 8 Sept 1815). Graham worked for the Hudson's Bay Company at Churchill, York Factory and Ft Severn (1749-75).

Article

André Nault

André Nault, Métis leader (b at Point Douglas, Red River Colony 1829; d at St Vital, Man 1924). Although a kinsman of Louis Riel and always considered a Métis, Nault was not of mixed blood.

Article

Saint André

Saint André (né Alfred Bessette), faith healer, religious counsellor (born 9 August 1845 in St-Grégoire-d'Iberville, Canada East; died 6 January 1937 in Montréal, QC).

Article

Angus McAskill

Angus McAskill, the Cape Breton giant (b at Harris, Scot 1825; d at Englishtown, NS 8 Aug 1863). The tallest nonpathological giant on record, at maturity he was 236 cm (7´9´) tall, weighed 193 kg (425 lbs) and had a shoulder width of 112 cm and palms measuring 20 cm by 30 cm.