||April 17, 2009
History Notes in Perspective
The following are some miscellaneous
items that may be of interest to history buffs.
Ottawa River Heritage Designation
I recently spoke
to Dan Gibson the National Manager of the Canadian Heritage River System.
He indicated that the heritage designation nomination for the Ottawa River has
finally gone ahead and will hopefully be approved in
2009. The joining of the Mattawa Heritage River with a Heritage Ottawa River
would be a watershed moment, so to speak, and could be recognized in Mattawa in
2009 during their 125th anniversary.
Mattawa Councillor Gary
Thibault is on the designation committee and had
several local people working with him in a Mattawa sub group. Local historian
Jack Whalen wrote a fine piece on Mattawa in the Background Study for
Nomination. This remarkable 268 page study is online at
The designation provides many
Community and many River benefits as outlined under “The Ottawa River
Designation Project” online at the address above.
Museum will host a visit from northern museum people for their annual meeting
May 2 at the Museum. They are meeting this year in Mattawa as a part of
Mattawa’s 125th Anniversary. They have their Annual General Meeting
and there are various workshops.
Former RCMP Commissioner Maurice
Nadon with Queen Elizabeth. Submitted photos
The Museum will be celebrating its 25th
anniversary on June 13 with the opening of the Maurice
Nadon is a former Mattawa boy who became The
Commisioner of the RCMP. He is expected to attend.
My biography on Canada’s
First Black Mayor, Dr. S.F. Monestime, Mattawa’s long time mayor in the 1960-70s
will be available May 1 in book stores and on line at
www.pastforward.ca. The book is called Where Rivers Meet.
Speaking of Where Rivers Meet the
Mattawa Voyageur Days (July 23-26) has a Where Rivers Meet section of their
event and have added 2 great acts to it-- Sass Jordan and 54/40, along with
their long list of other groups playing over the weekend. Tickets are available
at 705 744-6222.
Historica Heritage Fairs Association coordinates History Fairs like the
better known Science Fairs we hear about. The fairs feature research projects
by students. North Bay has one at Nipissing
University on Friday, May 1, 2009. I have attended a couple and they are an
outstanding example of the nurturing of an interest in history. The Fair
includes many things besides the student projects Museums,
historical associations, businesses and multicultural groups offer displays and
there are demonstrations, food, entertainment, workshops and speeches (including
me). There are open hours when guests are welcome to look at the student
displays and hear the students discuss their projects. Plan to drop in for an
interesting history making experience. For further info log on to
Bennison display at last year’s Historica
Fair at Nipissing University.
Historica Fair photo
a Grade 8 student at St. Hubert School in North Bay who is a typical researcher
contacted me recently about his project on his
g.g.grandfather Henry Morel who was our area MPP from 1908-1919 and from
1923-1930. Mathew participated last year and made it to the Regional Fair at
His project last year was on the Otto Holden Generation Station on the
Ottawa River,8 kilometres above
Mattawa ,which coincidentally is an article I am
currently working on.
Extraordinary Canadian Books
As a follow up to my article on the
Penguin Extraordinary Candians book on Norman
Bethune last week I want to note that I have not been able to get the book yet
in North Bay. There is an excellent review of
the book on amazon.ca and in a Customer Review by
Dr. A.W. Howard a Professor of Surgery at the U.of
T. he calls Bethune “the world’s most famous surgeon” who was “decades ahead of
You would think that
Macleans magazine writer Brian Bethune would have
been assigned the Bethune book to review but he got the Penguin Pierre Elliott
Trudeau one. An excellent 3 page review with photos appears in the April 13
Heritage Perspective Home Page