On Exhibit: The HMS General Hunter

The Welland Historical Museum has a new, interactive shipwreck exhibit about the HMS General Hunter. The British Royal Navy 10-gun brig (built in 1806) played an active role in the War of 1812, including in the capture of Detroit and the pivotal Battle of Lake Erie, where it was captured by the Americans. The General Hunter was used as a US Army transport ship until it was washed ashore in 1816 by a fierce Lake Huron gale. Later, the ex-warship was ransacked and burned. 185 years later, the General Hunter was rediscovered as a shipwreck on the Southampton Beach in Ontario.

Ken Cassavoy was the marine archaeologist who led the excavation and identification process. In addition, he was also heavily involved in designing the museum exhibit that brings the story of the General Hunter to life. I spoke with Cassavoy about the ship’s fighting days, how he went about identifying the shipwreck, and why the exhibit may remind you of an episode of CSI. Continue reading

Is Anyone Actually Sad 2016 is Ending?

Usually I end off the year with a Christmas-related picture, but somehow this just seems so much more appropriate…

To all the people who read my blog regularly or came here looking for some research help, thank you! I hope you found this blog insightful in some way and had as much fun reading as I did writing.

I will be back January 10th will all new content and will be fulfilling a number of readers’ requests throughout 2017. ๐Ÿ˜€

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

– Carmen.



U of T, I Wish I Knew How to Quit You

In 1847, the Provincial Normal School (above) was created because Upper Canadians realized that it was high time their teachers were formally trained. (Normal schools are what teachers colleges used to be called). Several name changes plus a full-on relocation and merger later, it’s now called the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. It’s also where I’ll be earning a Master of Teaching over the next two years. Yup, I’m one of those crazy people who want to become a teacher in Ontario.

Unfortunately, due to the heavy course load, four practicums, and a major research project, after September 6th I will be switching to posting once every two weeks.

Aside from wanting to be a teacher for years, this blog is part of the reason why I finally said to hell with being practical and decided to go through with it. As much as I enjoy researching and writing about history, the most fulfilling thing about this blog is knowing that people actually learn stuff from it. (Shout out to all the Google Classrooms who come here, I see you!) Even if teaching doesn’t pan out I know that education is where I belong, so I’m looking forward to seeing where the next two years leads me!



100 Posts Later

I honestly don’t know where the time went. One minute I was thinking about how it would be fun to start a blog. Next thing you know, I’m sitting here scratching my head, trying to figure out how to mark reaching 100 posts. I was going to do a retrospective, but then I had a better idea…

It has been a while since I changed things up. Also, I have made things easier to find now by totally revamping my menu section. Readers can browse through old posts based on my various blog series or by chronology. I will be tinkering with the menu over the next while, but my goal is to make it super easy for new and old readers to find exactly what they’re looking for. Let me know what you think of the changes!

Finally, I want to thank all my readers, supporters, and those who keep coming back week after week. Thank you for sticking with me over the past two years. Think I can reach 200 posts? ๐Ÿ˜›



Busy Beaver

“Keep All Canadians Busy,” a 1918 victory bonds propaganda poster by the Wartime Information Board, Ottawa.

I work at a college in the continuing education department and this time of year marks the beginning of our spring/summer courses. Due to an unusually busy “Start-Up,” I will be taking a two break from this blog, but I will be back in the swing of things by mid-May.

See you then!

Merry Christmas!

“Santa Claus was spotted in Canada’s north preparing for his busiest day of the year.” [Source] (Saw this on Twitter and had to use it!)

Happy Holidays!

I just wanted to thank everyone who took the time to visit and read my blog over the past year. I am both overwhelmed and very grateful to all of you who took an interest because I never thought many people would read this blog! I hope you all had as much fun reading as I did writing. I’m looking forward toย bringing you all new content in 2016. ๐Ÿ˜€

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

– Carmen.

See You in a Week!

Pre-1965 Trans-Canada Air Lines Poster

Please note that there will be no new blog post this week. For my 25th birthday I decided to set my wallet on fire and spend a few days in New York City. I will be back in time for Remembrance Day though.
Have a great week! ๐Ÿ™‚

See You in Three Weeks!

A Trans-Canada Air Lines stewardess sits inside the turbine of a new Douglas DC-8-43 jet on June 1, 1960. (This jet was revolutionary; establishing two world records: Ottawa to London in 5 hrs, 55 min and Montreal to London in 5 hrs, 44 min). Trans-Canada Air Lines was founded in 1937 and was renamed Air Canada in 1965.

Tonight I will be boarding a red-eye flight bound for Heathrow for a long-awaited trip to the United Kingdom and Ireland. Hence, I will be taking a mini break from this blog, but I’ll be back on September 15th with all new material.

See you in September!