In this week’s Canadian news roundup, a beloved politician passes, a minute launches, and Lily of the Mohawks gets canonized in Rome. It’s Canada Soup!
Lincoln Alexander, Canada’s first black MP and former Ontario lieutenant governor, has died at the age of 90. The son of a hotel maid and a railway porter, Alexander overcame racism to become a lawyer, a politician and Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario, a post he held from 1985 to 1991. In the video above, he calls himself the “Obama of Canada” and praises Canada as “the greatest country in the world, bar none.” Alexander is survived by his wife Marni, his son Keith and his extended family. [Globe & Mail]
On Sunday, Pope Benedict XVI will make history by conferring the church’s highest honour on Kateri Tekakwitha (also know as Lily of the Mohawks), the first native from North America to be canonized. Tekakwitha was a Mohawk woman who was born in the U.S., but who lived in Kahnawake, Quebec until her death in 1680. Rows of white and grey chairs have been set up in St. Peter’s Square in Rome for more than 2,000 visitors expected to attend Sunday’s service. [CBC]
Got a minute? The Historica-Dominion Institute has one for you! A new Heritage Minute on Richard Pierpoint, a former U.S. slave who petitioned the British to let him join the fight against U.S. invaders, launched on Monday. [Historica-Dominion Institute]
Canada’s largest museum, The Canadian Museum of Civilization, will undergo a rebranding effort that will see the museum renamed the Canadian Museum of History. The transition is expected to be completed by 2017 to mark 150 years of Confederation. [Toronto Star]
Enjoy an excerpt on NHL defenceman Tim Horton and the doughnut franchise that carries his name from the book, Double Double: How Tim Hortons Became a Canadian Way of Life, One Cup at a Time. [National Post]
A recent poll reveals that Canadians don’t know much about the War of 1812. What’s the extent of our national ignorance?
“The Harper government has been highlighting a war with our American neighbours 200 years ago, but the relevance of commemorating the event seemed lost on almost all of those who participated in a comprehensive survey for National Defence.” [CBC]
Yikes! If you find yourself clueless about the War of 1812, check out The Canadian Encyclopedia. Happy history reading!