Yippee ki-yay! Summer is upon us, and in Canada that means festivals, parades, cabin dwelling, hiking, biking, barbecues, cool lemonade and outdoors sporting events like the Calgary Stampede, which turns 100 this year! Although the stampede may seem quintessentially Canadian, it was conceived by an American vaudeville performer, Guy Weadick, who convinced four wealthy Calgarians to invest in the “Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth.” And here’s his dream realized and going strong 100 years later! [Toronto Star]
The War of 1812 is a big deal in Canada. It was a significant battle in which Canadians successfully repelled invading American troops. While Canada plans big celebrations for the War’s bicentennial, Americans are less eager to remember, much less acknowledge the history of their failed invasion. US publication, Slate magazine seeks to fill this knowledge gap with what they describe as “a primer on America’s most bumbling, most confusing, and most forgotten conflict.” [Slate]
Winnipeg’s first baby born to Chinese immigrants, Winifred Paktong (named after the city of her birth) turns 100 this week. She escaped the Nanking Massacre, and the Viet Cong, raised five children as a single mother in the Prairies, struggled as a seamstress in a garment factory, and somehow saved up to buy a house, watch her children grow and thrive, and celebrate her 100th year of life in the city of her birth. Winifred’s is a quintessential immigrant success story. [National Post]
Fans of the Royals can sate their curiosity now that Queen Victoria’s journals are online. Britain’s longest-serving monarch recorded more than 40,000 pages in her diaries, including records of dinner parties, pen and ink sketches of her children, and a mention of the rebellions in Upper and Lower Canada. Snoop on her Majesty at Queen Victoria’s Journals.
Librarians, archivists and historians are sounding a battle cry against recent cuts to their budget, what they call a “war on culture, history, and ultimately, Canada.” Library and Archives Canada is expected to cut 10% of it budget and almost 20% of its staff while the National Archives Development Program has been completely eliminated. [Dominion Paper]