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This is a great chance to see some wonderful historic buildings in Toronto.

Free Admission

Cultural Services is proud to present the annual Doors Open Toronto — one weekend, once a year — when 175 buildings of architectural, historic, cultural and social significance open their doors to the public for a city-wide celebration.

The program allows visitors free access to properties that are either not usually open to the public, or would normally charge an entrance fee. Many locations have organized guided tours, displays and activities to enrich the visitor experience.

City Hall and Nathan Phillips Square

From heritage landmarks to modern structures, hidden gems, green roofs, places of worship, halls of learning, boardrooms, bedrooms, breweries, lighthouses, mansions, museums, theatres, national historic sites, centres of rail travel, cemeteries, factories, banking halls, architects' offices and more.

Doors Open Toronto invites you to get to know the city, whether you've lived in Toronto all your life or you're visiting for the first time. See Toronto like you've never seen it before!

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Most of Canada today is celebrating Family Day, or if you live in Manitoba Louis Riel day. Now for the average Manitoban who doesn't know too much about this man, it seems logical enough. One of the largest figures in Canadian History, and what's more Manitoban than a Metis, right?

I remember the first Louis Riel I had a Canadian History professor who bristled every time someone mentioned it because, he said, "I just know too much about him I think." There is a lovely article on CBC this morning called Rethinking Louis Riel Day, and though I haven't checked yet, if previous years are anything to go by the editorials of my local newspaper and the Winnipeg Free Press will be filled with people arguing over whether or not this madman deserves his own day or not.
continue reading for Riel's storyCollapse )
Current Location:
Current Mood:
accomplished accomplished
Current Music:
One Last Final Push - They Shoot Horses Don't They?
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I found it a captivating read, at times touching, at times salacious, and at times derisive to the point of offense.

Before reading this, the limited impressions I have of John A. Macdonald and Isabella Clark's marriage was that of a tragic romance, after reading Private Demons, the impression I came away with was that it was like something out of Stephen King's Pet Sematary, "Even now, I wake up and I think, is Zelda dead yet? Is she?". Still, I don't believe that Isabella Clark's illness belonged within quotations, a mental condition is still an illness, as is the unfortunate opium addiction she has unfortunately enter into.

Ms. Phenix also rose my eyebrows when she referred to Native Canadians first as Indians, and then as Native Indians, this book was published in 2006. I also find offensive her derision of Riel having legitimacy as a representative of his region, "government", Queen Vic did not approve of Riel, but that time that region was in a limbo between being legally owned by Canada and the Hudson Bay, who was granted the rights to that area in spite of that people already having lived there.

In whole, though it was a captivating read, and I will certainly track down the books listed in her sources, I don't find it very respectable at all. The fangirl part of me was most amused when in her Author's Note at the very beginning, Ms. Phenix advertised that she had "uncovered a series of startlingly passionate love letters from Frank Muttart, the teenaged son of Dr.Ephraim Muttart, Conservative member of Parliament from Nova Scotia, to an elderly John A."...in the book, that account amounted to less than two pages in Chapter X: His Final Race, pages 279-280. No mention was made of where she has uncovered those letters in her source notes for that chapter, who kept those letters and was the last one with the disturbing threat even sent?
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69,000 who LOST their LIVES.

Join in a national tribute


webcast live from the National Memorial in Ottawa

November 4--11, 2008

Current Mood:
thankful thankful
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So, I was on Facebook one day while avoiding my thesis and I came across a group that was petitioning to make the brand-spanking new Louis Riel Day in Manitoba a National Holiday. Personally, I think the cause is a little silly, but the ensuing and heated debate in the Facebook tradition was very fascinating. Apparently, Canada is still very divided about Riel and his role in Canadian history.


Oh, and if you want to discuss this topic, here's the Wikipedia article. If you're going to throw in your two cents, it's worth knowing a bit of background, especially on the whole furor around Thomas Scott's execution. Basically, you should be prepared. Incidentally, the book, Thomas Scott's Body provides a good essay on how confusing this whole situation was.
Current Mood:
curious curious
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I am writing a thesis about first expeditions to Canadian North and first observations of the Inuit. Have you ever read George Best. If yes, I am just curious, what do you think about him and his study, and entirely about Frobisher expedition to Baffin Island. Just your impression, may be something you remember, something that caught your attention.
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Not sure how many of you are aware of this, but Paul Gross (of "Due South" fame) is writing and directing a movie based around the WWI battle of Passchendaele


Not sure if I'll be able to see it down south when it comes out next year, but any person interested in the History of Canada should go see this movie when it comes out

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Kevin Annett & The Truth Commission...
1 hr 48 min 56 sec - Mar 19, 2007

(Cross-posted to canpolitik, canadianleft, canadianatheist, canadianhistory)
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Today isn't just Canada Day.

For the people of Newfoundland and Labrador, it's Memorial Day. Or Beaumont Hamel Day.

Beaumont Hamel is a sleeply little town in France.

It was also the site of a horrifying massacure.

801 Newfoundland man rushed across field, smack dab into barbed wire and machine guns.

Less than a half hour later, only 69 were left standing and uninjured.

Every single officer died.

Every soldier was equipped with a small tin triangle on their backs, the better for friendly aircraft to identify them and plot the advance. That it gave the Germans something to aim at was not considered. I can't even imagine what that most have been life - to wait in a bloody muddy field all day, hoping for night, a chance to slip back to safety. Feeling the heat of the metal, knowing what it represented.

The Newfoundland Regiment was awarded the title "Royal" in World War 1, but such honours can't compare to the impact on the island. The first 800, the Blue Puttees, came from every part of the province, represented every facet of our population. They were amongst the best and brightest we had. The bravest. Every community and every family felt the loss. And we still do, decades later.
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On the front page of Wikipedia today they have this awesome GIF.

Happy Canada Day for those of you in Newfoundland! (And the rest of you shortly) (And a happy birthday to one of awesome mods, uncut_diamond

(xposted to canadakicksass.)
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