C M Russell: Amazement and Apprehension

Mohawk trilogy

Canadian folkways lean on immigrants’ and Indigenous’ stories. In Minsos’ Mohawk trilogy “the complexities of the era are thoroughly researched and accurately imparted, as evidenced by the detail in both the book and its lengthy introduction. These historical trials are never intrusive in the text; they are always incorporated in a relatable way.” Lillian Brown… Read more …

The Grand River Navigation Company: The Grand Theft

Speaking of not paying . . . The [Grand River Navigation Company] of colonial and confederate Canada never paid the Six Nations for non-surrendered expropriated land nor returned a single penny of investment but most remarkable was this turnaround: the canal company was forever in need of cash infusions and used up Six Nations’ capital monies in… Read more …

United Empire Loyalists, Late Loyalists and Their Different Folkways

OUTSIDE OF TORONTO, WHY DOES THE REST OF CANADA SHOW ONLY TEPID SUPPORT FOR THE BRITISH MONARCHY? Background ENGLISH in Canada – Canadian English is a latecomer “lingo” in post-revolutionary British North America (BNA). The Thirteen Colonies were gone. After the American Revolution, 1783, that which was left of English “claims” and settlements in North… Read more …

Trumpeting the Mohawk trilogy

Lillian Brown: Minsos tackles the intricacies of gender inequality and social relationships in a relatable manner, tying the struggles of its characters to contemporary issues. (Book 3. Sky Walker Tehawennihárhos: Charter). Jane Ainslie: Charter ought to find a forever home with Canadians. If you want to learn how the past impacts the present, this is the book to… Read more …

James Paxton on Joseph Brant Thayendanegea

There is much to love in James Paxton’s Joseph Brant and His World: 18th Century Mohawk Warrior and Statesman (2008) – exceptional writing and heart-rending illustrations and even the book’s silky pages. More to love is Paxton’s thesis: Joseph Brant is an 18th-century Mohawk warrior and Pine Tree Chief who understands as well as any modern Canadian the… Read more …

Isabel Thompson Kelsay’s Joseph Brant 1743-1807: man of two worlds

To date Isabel Thompson Kelsay has written the definitive study of Joseph Brant.  (See, however, James Paxton’s brief and shiny tome Joseph Brant and His World: 18th Century Mohawk Warrior and Statesman for a better thesis than Kelsay’s on Brant’s view of a sovereign Grand River territory. Paxton’s book is reviewed elsewhere on this site.) The Wikipedia entry on… Read more …

Colour-coding, 1901 census

THE STORY In the midst of chaos, baby Isabella Davis is born. The year is 1860. Daughter of the Haudenosaunee’s Squire (Albert? Richard?) Davis (1825-1886) and Scottish immigrant Jennet/Jenett/Janet Ferguson Davis (1825-1905), Isabella has a steady and healthy existence for most of her adult life – but her early years have their share of tumult… Read more …

Loyalism births Idle No More

Royal is a Canadian millstone. Especially when royal and loyal turn fanatical. Canada’s being a monarchy acts to the detriment of the Rest of Canada’s (ROC) enduring relationship with Québec. Canada’s relationship with the United States is complex enough without our government’s clinging to the crazy outdated ideal that we owe primary loyalty to a foreign country. Our not moving out… Read more …

BROOKLEA-Davisville-Brantford

Davis Hamlet or Davisville is on the farm of Mohawk Chief Thomas Tehonwawenkaragwen Davis. Currently the site of Laurier University and Professor Gary Warrick’s archaeological dig, Davisville is situated northwest of Ohsweken and Brantford, and south of Paris. Davisville is there some time before the European villages of Brantford or Paris exist. And before Davisville, Haudenosaunee… Read more …

Huronia and the plague(s)

“After first contacts with Europeans and Africans, some [anthropologists and epidemiologists] believe that the deaths of 90–95% of the native population of the New World was caused by Old World diseases. It is suspected that smallpox was the chief culprit and responsible for killing nearly all of the native inhabitants of the Americas. For more… Read more …