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British Columbia History 50.4 | Winter 2017

British Columbia History chronicles British Columbia’s unique story through the words and images of community writers, archivists, museum professionals, academic historians and more. Fresh, engaging, personal and relevant, every issue is packed with articles, photographs, maps, illustrations, book reviews and insights into local archives and historic sites.

British Columbia Historical Federation
$7.88(Incl. tax)
$26.25(Incl. tax)
4 Issues

in this issue

2 min

I remember the afternoon that Rick Hansen rolled through Chilliwack in 1987. I was working at Chuck & Ev’s Hobbies in downtown Chilliwack. Owners Chuck and Ev closed the store and we walked up Mill Street to join the crowds on Wellington Avenue. We cheered him on as his group traveled to events at the Coliseum and then we returned to work. Hansen’s journey was only the beginning of his work in raising funds and awareness for spinal cord research and changing attitudes towards people with disabilities. However, some days it still feels that we have a long way to go. I know that when my daughter was small and we were navigating the world with the stroller I often thought how frustrating it must be for people in wheelchairs. As…

1 min
letters from readers

Fall Issue Hi Andrea and Jane, A note to say how much I enjoyed the new issue of British Columbia History. The locals are very proud of the Donato article and the one on stops of interest/garbage gobblers was very interesting – I’ve been collecting bits of information about them and photos for years on my Vanishing BC webpages. Michael Kluckner Congratulations on a well-written article Donato, I was impressed by your thoroughly-researched and poetically-written article about your parents’ homes, that was published in this fall’s issue of the British Columbia History magazine. This article is quite an achievement and it will give your restored property a secure place in Vancouver’s architectural heritage. Peter Moogk We love to hear from you Email us at bcheditor@bchistory.ca or write to: British Columbia History PO Box 21187, Maple Ridge, BC v2x 1p7 Letters may…

15 min
he’s not heavy, he’s my brother

In the rural backwoods of British Columbia where Rick grew up, a boy’s strength and ability determined his status among his peers. Rick was an athlete, a natural leader, a stalwart adventurer. Even as a toddler he ignored boundaries. His mother was forever out looking for him, asking, “Have you seen little Ricky?” Search parties would find him on the river with a stick and a string, trying to capture a salmon. One time he found a dead whopper and dragged it home; it was bigger than he was. It was that same intrepid spirit that led Rick to urge friends to join him on a camping and fishing trip to the remote coastal community of Bella Coola in 1973. He was just 15 years old, and his mother thought the plan…

9 min
pauline johnson canadian poet

Every Canadian school child used to know about Pauline Johnson. My brother, born in 1936, recalled learning “The Song My Paddle Sings” from his grade two reader. My son, born in 1976, never heard of her. People today are more likely to confuse Johnson with west coast artist Emily Carr, or Ontario heroine and brand of chocolates Laura Secord than remember her as one of Canada’s most famous poets and performers. Recently she was one of the finalists considered for the new Canadian ten dollar bill. In a little grove of trees in Stanley Park, not far from Siwash Rock and the Pacific Ocean, sits a small monument with the silhouette of a woman carved on it and an inscription that reads “E. Pauline Johnson 1861–1913.” What should Canadians know…

2 min

1. Sheila M.F. Johnston, Buckskin and Broadcloth: A Celebration of E. Pauline Johnson-Tekahionwake 1861-1913 (Toronto: National Heritage, 1997), 224. 2. John Mackie, “Metro Vancouver man a living legend in chocolate,” Vancouver Sun, December 22, 2015, http://www.vancouversun.com/life/metro+vancouver+living+legend+chocolate/11597159/story.html. 3. Dictionary of Canadian Biography—Emily Pauline Johnson. Retrieved from http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/johnson_emily_pauline_14E.html 4. http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/pauline-johnson/ 5. A number of thoroughly researched biographies are available with in-depth details of Johnson’s life. See Pauline Johnson: First Aboriginal voice of Canada by B. Keller (1999), National Library of Canada; Flint and Feather: The life and times of E. Pauline Johnson, Tekahionwake by C. Gray (2002), Toronto: HarperCollins Canada; Paddling her Own Canoe: The Times and Texts of E. Pauline Johnson (Tekahionwake) by V. Strong-Boat Boag and C. Gerson (2000). Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 6. https://www.poemhunter.com/poem/the-lost-lagoon/ 7. Canada’s Poetess Laid to Rest. (1913). Vancouver Daily Province.…

15 min
the day cec merritt won the victoria cross

August 19, 2017 was the 75 Anniversary of the Dieppe Raid during the Second World War and the scene of one of Canada’s worst military defeats. Lieutenant-Colonel Cec Merritt, the commanding officer of the South Saskatchewan Regiment, was the first Canadian to be chosen to receive the Victoria Cross for valour during the Second World War for his brave actions during the Dieppe Raid. Charles Cecil Ingersoll “Cec” Merritt was born in Vancouver just inside the boundary of Vancouver’s famed Stanley Park on November 10, 1908, the son of Sophie Almon Tupper and Cecil Mack Merritt, both of whom were from distinguished families. Sir Charles Tupper, the Father of Confederation for Nova Scotia, was his maternal great-grandfather. The town of Merritt, BC is named after a relation of Cec Merritt,…