Happy Holidays / Joyeuses fêtes / Minawaangozwin

All of us in the department wish you and your families Happy Holidays / Joyeuses fêtes / Minawaangozwin!

See you in the new year!

Faculty Member Contributes to New Book on Aspects of the African Diaspora from Latin America

Ronald Harpelle's latest publication "Transplanted West Indians: Forgotten People on the Western Shores of the Caribbean Sea” appears in the book Another Black Like Me: The Construction of Identities and Solidarity in the African Diaspora. The book explores the complexities of the lives of Black people over various periods of history, as they struggled to build lives away from Africa in societies that, in general, denied them the basic right of fully belonging, such as the right of fully belonging in the countries where, by choice or force of circumstance, they lived.

Ronald Harpelle's contribution is a survey of West Indian immigration and settlement in Central America. The migration to the Central American isthmus began in 1850 with the construction of the Panama Railroad and it all but ended in the 1920s and 1930s, when factors like the end of the major construction projects, political agitation by Hispanic Central American nationalists, and the onset of Great Depression closed what were once open doors to foreign labour. French attempts to construct the Panama Canal in the 1880s and 1890s attracted labourers from across the Caribbean, as did the U.S. phase which lasted from 1904 to 1914. Throughout Central America, railways, along with opportunities in and around the banana and mining industries, and access to land attracted many thousands more in the same period. Most of those who ventured to the region moved on in search of greener pastures elsewhere when employment opportunities dried up, but hundreds of communities were built along the coast from Panama to Belize and they are still home to many thousands of people of West Indian descent.

More information about the collectoon can be found at http://www.cambridgescholars.com/another-black-like-me


Department Welcomes Visiting Scholar

13 October 2015 - Thunder Bay, ON

The Department of History is pleased to welcome Dr. Róbert Győri, Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, Hungary, as a Visiting Scholar.

Dr. Győri is associate professor and Chair of the Department of Social and Economic Geography at Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, and head of the Tibor Mendöl Geography and Earth Sciences Workshop at the Eötvös József Collegium of ELTE. His research fields include historical geography, urban geography, and the history of geographical knowledge. His current research focuses on how science was controlled and managed by a totalitarian regime, and how Hungarian geography in particular was crushed as a result of Soviet- era transformations.

Over the next couple of weeks he will be working with Dr. Steven Jobbitt on a number of projects and meeting department members to explore collaborative undegraduate and graduate program and research opportunities.

New Book by Faculty Member Examines the Economic Development and the Environmental Impact of the Colonial Encounter on India.

2 October 2015 - Thunder Bay & Orillia

The Department of History is pleased to announce the publication of Pallavi Das' book Colonialism, Development, and the Environment: Railways and Deforestation in British India.

While colonial encounters have been seen by scholars more or less in economic and political terms, what is largely missing is the metropole's economic development strategies that had definite ecological consequences for the colony. Focusing on the colonial encounter between Britain and India, Das looks at the economic development, including scientific and technological changes, and the environmental impact of the colonial encounter on India.

Examining the railways and deforestation, Das shows how deforestation jeopardized railway expansion, which led to state implementation of forest conservation in order to maintain timber supplies. Das' book demonstrates how the history of colonialism has both economic (and political) as well as ecological dimensions.

A book launch and presentation will be held on Wednesday, 7 October at The Embassy (314 Bay Street above the Hoito) at 6 pm.

Snacks and refreshments will be provided.

Please contact Dr. Das for more information about her book at pvdas@lakeheadu.ca.

New Book by Alumni and Faculty on Prisoner of War Camp Released

Cover of the Little Third Reich on Lake Superior

15 September 2015 - Thunder Bay & Orillia

The Department of History is pleased to announce the publication of The Little Third Reich on Lake Superior: A History of Canadian Internment Camp R, published by the University of Alberta Press.

Written by the late Ernest Zimmermann and completed and edited by alumni and faculty Michel S. Beaulieu and David Ratz, The Little Third Reich explores the eighteen months during the Second World War that the Canadian military interned 1,145 prisoners of war in Red Rock, Ontario (about 100 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay).

Camp R interned friend and foe alike: Nazis, anti-Nazis, Jews, soldiers, merchant seamen, and refugees whom Britain feared might comprise Hitler’s rumoured “fifth column” of alien enemies residing within the Commonwealth.

For the first time and in riveting detail, the conditions in one of Canada’s forgotten POW camps is illuminated.

Book launches and presentation will be held on Sunday, Sept. 20 at the Nipigon-Red Rock District High School at 3 pm and at the Thunder Bay Museum on Tuesday, Oct. 27 at 7:30 pm.

Please click below for more information:
- This is the publisher's information.
- This is the Research Matters Story on the topic and it will soon run as a 50th anniversary story.

Canadian Forces Liaison Council Recognizes Department

11 March 2015 - Thunder Bay

At a luncheon hosted by the Thunder Bay (Port Arthur) Rotary Club, the Department of History was awarded a Canadian Forces Liaison Council's Award of Excellence for Best Practices in Employer Support: Educational Institution, Manitoba, in recognition and appreciation of its support to Reservists of the Canadian Armed Forces. CFLC Logo

The Canadian Forces Liaison Council is a group of Canada-wide civilian business and educational leaders who volunteer their time and efforts to promote the Primary Reserve Force by highlighting the benefits of Reserve Force training and experience to the civilian workplace. They also support individual Reservists as well as Reserve Units, in matters related to employer support.

CFLC AwardThese awards are given out as part of the recognition that Reservists are members of communities across Canada who contribute to the missions of the Canadian Armed Forces locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally while also balancing civilian careers, their families and military training and service. Today’s Reservists are the face of the Canadian Armed Forces in communities across Canada, and they perpetuate a national tradition of voluntary service and are proud to represent their local area, their nation, and by extension, the institutions they are employed.

The Department of History is proud to be a a supportive and well-informed employer as they are key to sustaining a highly-trained and capable Reserve Force who can be made available to train and to serve. As the CFLC's letter of award states, "Organizations like yours that maintain progressive human resource policies and practices such as military leave for training and service merit the gratitude and recognition of all Canadians."

Professor Emeritus Nominated for City of Thunder Bay Arts and Heritage Award

2014 City of Thunder Bay Arts and Heritage Award Poster4 February 2015 - Thunder Bay

Congratulations to Professor Emeritus Ernie Epp for his recent nomination for a 2014 City of Thunder Bay Arts and Heritage Award! Ernie has been nominated in the Cultural Heritage (Individual) Category. Ernie is well-known Canadian historian and former Member of Parliament with a strong interest the city's history, Aboriginal history, the environment, local culture, Canadian multiculturalism, and the industrial and fur trade history of Northwestern Ontario. Over the years he has shared his passion by teaching and publishing numerous books and articles on these topics. Winners will be announced at the gala event to be held at 5:30 pm on 19 February at the Prince Arthur Hotel.

Alumni and Faculty Receive Awards

The Department of History is pleased to announce that alumni and faculty have received three of the Thunder Bay Historical Museum Society’s Publications Awards at the annual President’s Reception held on Sunday, Jan. 4. 2015 TBHMS Publications Awards

Beverly Soloway (HBA 2006, MA 2007) received the J.P. Bertrand Award for her article “The Fur Traders’ Garden: Horticultural Imperialism in Rupert’s Land, 1670 – 1770,” which appeared in Irish and Scots Encounters with Indigenous Peoples, edited by David A. Wilson (McGill-Queen’s University Press).

Michel S. Beaulieu (HBA 2001, BEd 2001, MA 2003) received the Gertrude H. Dyke Award for his book Celluloid Dreams: An Illustrated History of Early Film at the Lakehead, 1900-1931 (Thunder Bay Historical Museum Society), and he received the M. Elizabeth Arthur Award for his book Labour at the Lakehead: Ethnicity, Socialism, and Politics, 1900-35 (University of British Columbia Press).

Congratulations also to alumni Mark Chochla (BA 1967, BEd 1974, HBA 1975, MED 1987), Roy Piovesana (BA 1965, MA 1969), John Potestio (HBA 1970, MA 1981), and faculty member C. Nathan Hatton (MA 2007) who were also nominated in various categories.

Adjudicated by an independent panel of jurors, the awards are given out every two years for the best publications dealing with the history of Northwestern Ontario. Please click here for more information about the awards.

Image: Front row (l-r): Sara Janes and Beth Boegh (presenters). Back row (l-r): Jim Foulds (winner of the George B. Macgillivray Award for best popular articles); Michel Beauleu (winner of the Elizabeth Arthur and the Gertrude H. Dyke Awards for best  academic and popular books); Ernie Epp (presenter); Bev Soloway (winner of the J.P. Bertrand Award for best academic article); and Jesse Roberts (presenter/juror)

History Professor Appointed to Editorial Board of Prestigious Journal

Dr. Steven Jobbitt, Assistant Professor of Eastern European History, has been invited by László Mari, head secretary of the Hungarian Geographical Society, to sit on the editorial board of the Földrajzi Közlemények. Established in 1872, it is one of Hungary's oldest and most prestigious academic journals.

Dr. Jobbitt is both the first Canadian and also the first non-Hungarian English speaking scholar to serve on the journal’s editorial board in its 143 year history. As current editorial board member Dr. Győri Róbert writes, his appointment “adds to the prestige of the journal through his expertise in the history of Hungarian geography.”

Dr. Jobbitt’s appointment adds to Lakehead University’s reputation for producing high-quality research and the Department of History’s growing international reputation.

Award-winning Slam Poet, Matt Sedillo, Performs and Speaks in Thunder Bay

The Department of History and the Resource, Economy, and Society Research Group (RESRG) at Lakehead University, is pleased to welcome Los Angeles-based Slam Poet, Activist and Author, Matt Sedillo, to Thunder Bay for a series of events running January 14-16, 2015.Sedillo Poster

Sedillo is the Grand Slam Champion of Damn Slam L.A. 2011 and was the Guest of the city of San Francisco for the San Francisco International Poetry Festival 2012. He has been featured in The Los Angeles Times, Brooklyn and Boyle, Art! The Magazine, Russell Simmons All Def Digital, on KPFK 90.7 FM in Los Angeles, and preforms throughout the U.S. at universities and political events. He is the author of "For What I Might Do Tomorrow".

Sedillo will be featured at the following events in Thunder Bay:

  • Spoken Word Workshop: Brodie Resource Library, Wednesday, January 14th, 2015, 6:30-8 PM (open to the public)
  • Lecture: Lakehead University, Thursday, January 15th, 2015 at 10 AM (open to public - room to be determined)
  • Slam Poetry Performance: Finnish Labour Temple, Thursday, January 15th, 2015 (open to the public)

Sedillo PosterThese events are sponsored by the Lakehead University Department of History and RESRG.

More information can be found on the Department of History and Lakehead University Events pages.

For more information on any of these events, please contact:

Barbara Gauthier, Coordinator: 807-285-2225, bgauthie@lakeheadu.ca


Dr. Steven Jobbitt, Assistant Professor, Lakehead University: 807-343-8305