J O U R N A L 

It is never too late to be what you ought to have been. George Eliot


Canada West 1841–1867  (Upper Canada 1791–1841, Ontario, 1867–)

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 reviewed elsewhere on this site.) Kelsay’s research is comprehensive. Her style is readable. She… Read more …

Joseph Thayendanegea Brant by Gilbert Stuart sells for $7.5 million

Joseph Thayendanegea Brant (and his Volunteers) and John Butler (and his Rangers) pretty much save Canada/British North America for the Crown during American revolution. Artistic and/or historical worth to Canada of Gilbert Stuart‘s portrait of Thayendanegea is priceless. If value were a cow the painting would jump over the silvery moon. The Haudenosaunee’s Mohawk Pine Tree Chief wears… Read more …

Bloody Assize Revisited

Bloody Assize revisited, 17 May 2012: 3 articles from The Hamilton Spectator  Artist Lori LeMare speaks about the paintings she did for the War of 1812 exhibit at Fieldcote Museum. The legs of the men hanged for being traitors are seen behind her. Hamilton Spectator By Mark McNeil  It must have been an incredible spectacle… Read more …

The Canadian Horse

In the Mohawk trilogy Cap’n [Ed de Cap Rouge] and Poco are Canadians. Squire Tehawennihárhos Davis purchases the horses in Reach Township and brings them to Gould’s lumber mill in Uxbridge. He surrenders the valiant Poco to the Fergusons. Jennet learns fast and proves to be an accomplished rider. Squire never relinquishes his horse, Cap’n, who is… Read more …

The Markham Gang, 1845-46

“Gang members took an oath of secrecy. They vowed to support each other in any way possible. They pledged to provide alibis in case they were arrested, and to back each other in court. This was a homegrown, nineteenth century Canadian ‘Mafia,’ a ‘mob,’ one of the earliest known cases of organized crime in British… Read more …

Late Loyalists and the Markham Gang of Ontario

From Wikipedia: “The Markham Gang was a notorious criminal organization located primarily in Ontario, Canada, in the middle of the 19th century. Evolving from organizations founded to support the Upper Canada Rebellion of 1837, the Markham Gang used its private communications network of couriers across what was then Canada West to build a criminal empire that spread into neighbouring states. Like the organization that spawned… Read more …

Grand River Saga

For a Canadian story read the Mohawk Trilogy It’s all about the characters. Struggling outliers have run-ins with their wild environs. They dodge lawless American and European settlers. Protagonists are helpless to stop the dirty deeds of rapacious land speculators. Characters can hardly stand up to let alone push back against the people who take… Read more …

Death of Huronia. Arrival of United Empire Loyalists (1784). Jennet’s Uxbridge

“When the first white settlers arrived in Pickering and Whitby, Uxbridge and Reach, nothing of two hundred years of Huron, Iroquois and French occupation remained. Only the Mississauga ‘stood in the way’.” Leo A Johnson Disease and civil war smash and forever destroy Huron’s great civilization covering the upper country–variously Québec, Upper Canada, Canada West,… Read more …

AS IT WAS IN THE BEGINNING by E Pauline Johnson

Johnson’s tale (and her performance of it) would be grist for a Kent Monkman satirical painting or a Quentin Tarrentino revenge film.          The stage performance They account for it by the fact that I am a Redskin, but I am something else, too–I am a woman. I remember the first time I saw him…. Read more …