Books – History

  • St. John’s College

    Faith and Education in Western Canada

    J.M. Bumsted (Author)

    Winnipeg’s St. John’s College is one of the oldest educational institutions in western Canada. Its roots go back to the Red River Settlement in the 1850s when it first began as a school for the English-speaking children of the employees of the Hudson’s Bay Company. Following the college through its many permutations, J.M. Bumsted provides a fascinating history of the birth and growth of post-secondary education in western Canada.

    Published December 2005 | History

  • Winnipeg 1912

    Jim Blanchard (Author)

    At the beginning of the last century, no city on the continent was growing faster or was more aggressive than Winnipeg. No year in the city’s history epitomized this energy more that 1912, when Winnipeg was on the crest of a period of unprecedented prosperity. From the excited crowds at the summer Exhibition to the turbulent floor of the Grain Exchange, Blanchard gives us a vivid picture of daily life in this fast-paced city of new millionaires and newly arrived immigrants. Richly illustrated with more than seventy period photographs, Winnipeg 1912 captures a time and place that left a lasting impression on Canadian history and culture.

    Published October 2005 | History

  • Travelling Passions

    The Hidden Life of Vilhjalmur Stefansson

    Gisli Palsson (Author), Keneva Kunz (Translator)

    Vilhjalmur Stefansson has long been known for his groundbreaking work as an anthropologist and expert on Arctic peoples. His three expeditions to the Canadian Arctic in the early 1900s, as well as his expertise in northern anthropology, helped create his public image as an heroic, Hemingway-esque figure in the annals of twentieth-century exploration. Travelling Passions sheds new light on Stefanssonís life and work, focussing on the tension between his private life and the theories that brought his name to the halls of fame.

    Published September 2005 | History

  • History, Literature and the Writing of the Canadian Prairies

    Alison Calder (Editor), Robert Wardhaugh (Editor)

    The Canadian Prairie has long been represented as a timeless and unchanging location, defined by settlement and landscape. Now, a new generation of writers and historians challenge that perception and argue, instead, that it is a region with an evolving culture and history. This collection of ten essays explores a more contemporary prairie identity, and reconfigures “the prairie” as a construct that is non-linear and diverse, responding to the impact of geographical, historical, and political currents.

    Published May 2005 | History, Literary Criticism

  • Rural Life

    Portraits of the Prairie Town, 1946

    James P. Giffen (Author), Gerald Friesen (Editor)

    In the 1940s, the Manitoba Royal Commission on Adult Education investigated directions for the modernization of the province in the post-war era of change. The commission engaged Jim Giffen, then a young sociologist from the University of Toronto, to undertake a detailed field study of three rural Manitoba towns — Carman, Elgin, and Rossburn — in this context. Giffen looks at characteristics such as leadership in the community, ethnic differences, hierarchy of roles, participation in organizations, and aims and activities of young people. Friesen’s postscript provides a wider context to this study, and an assessment of what these differences and commonalities meant to the province.

    Published October 2004 | History

  • Formidable Heritage

    Manitoba’s North and the Cost of Development, 1870 to 1930

    Jim Mochoruk (Author)

    Although climate and geography make our northern condition apparent, Canadians often forget about the north and its problems. Nevertheless, for the generation of historians that included Lower, Creighton, and Morton, the northern rivers, lakes, forests, and plains were often seen as primary characters in the drama of nation building. Jim Mochoruk shows how government and business worked together to transform what had been the exclusive fur-trading preserve of the Hudson’s Bay Company into an industrial hinterland.

    Published June 2004 | History

  • Reporting the Resistance

    Alexander Begg and Joseph Hargrave on the Red River Resistance

    Alexander Begg (Author), J.M. Bumsted (Editor)

    Reporting the Resistance brings together two first-person accounts to give a view “from the ground” of the developments that shocked Canada and created the province of Manitoba. In 1869 and 1870, Begg and Hargrave were regular correspondents for the Toronto Globe and the Montreal Herald. They describe, often from very different perspectives, the events of the resistance, as well as give insider accounts of the social and political background. Largely unreprinted until now, this correspondence remains a relatively untapped resource for contemporary views of the resistance. These are the Red River’s own accounts, and are often quite different from the perspective of eastern observers.

    Published December 2003 | History

  • Providence Watching

    Journeys from Wartorn Poland to the Canadian Prairies

    Kazimierz Patalas (Editor), Zbigniew Izydorczyk (Translator)

    At the start of the Second World War, Poland was invaded by both the German and the Soviet armies. After the war, Canada accepted over 4000 Polish immigrant soldiers and their families who did not want to return to a communist regime in their country. This book is a moving oral history of the experiences of forty-five individuals during that transition period between the outbreak of war and their eventual relocation in Canada.

    Published December 2003 | Ethnic Studies, History

  • Making Ends Meet

    Farm Women’s Work in Manitoba

    Charlotte van de Vorst (Author)

    Based on hundreds of interviews with Manitoba farm men and women, Making Ends Meet reconstructs the common history shared by modern farm women as well as by their mothers and grandmothers. It explores women’s changing roles on the farm, from the early days of the Red River settlement to the twentieth-century farm community.

    Published December 2002 | History, Women’s Studies

  • A Very Remarkable Sickness

    Epidemics in the Petit Nord, 1670 to 1846

    Paul Hackett (Author)

    Although new diseases had first arrived in the New World in the 16th century, by the end of the 17th century shorter transoceanic travel time meant that a far greater number of diseases survived the journey from Europe and were still able to infect new communities. These acute, directly transmitted infectious diseases – including smallpox, influenza, and measles — would be responsible for a monumental loss of life and would forever transform North American Aboriginal communities. Historical geographer Paul Hackett meticulously traces the diffusion of these diseases from Europe through central Canada to the West.

    Published November 2002 | Critical Studies in Native History, History, Indigenous Studies, Medical History