New Work by Alumni and Faculty in the 2018 Papers & Records

The 2018 issue of the Thunder Bay Historical Museum Society's journal Papers & Records features articles by alumni exploring aspects of Northwestern Ontario's history.

In recognition of the hundredth anniversary of the construction of the “Outlaw Bridge” over the Pigeon River in 1917, alumna and part-time faculty member Beverly Soloway explores how it enabled the “Scott Highway” to connect the Lakehead with Minnesota providing a link to American personal and business interests, opportunities for a growing automobile service industry, and new ventures in travel and tourism. 

Alumnus Richard Mastrangelo examines how newsletters like The Steep Rock Echo and Steep Rock Features can be used to illustrate relationships between manager and miner for most of SRIM’s four-decade long operation. He argues that, together, the papers frame questions which go beyond records of mineral production and consumption. How did various groups negotiate and express positions on socially sensitive topics? Did the newsletters support free worker expression or manager dictation? How was control maintained and destroyed by broader political, social, and economic realities?

Alumnus Mark Chochla investigates the efforts of Dr. Edward Oliver, of Fort William’s Medical Officer of Health, to build a professional department of health that worked systematically to save the lives of infants and children during the early twentieth century. As Chochla demonstrates, Oliver was fearless in advocating policies to modernize the city and to improve the health of residents and had the courage to persist with public health reforms even when many opposed him.

The issue also features an interview with former Métis Nation of Ontario Senator the late Bob McKay (1935-2018). One of his life-long passions was the region’s lighthouses; having worked as a light keeper and caretaker for lighthouses on the Great Lakes until 1979. In 2014, Bob was one of the founders of what has now become Canadian Lighthouses of Lake Superior.

Papers & Records is a peer-reviewed journal co-edited by Beth Boegh and Department Chair Michel S. Beaulieu. Submissions on any aspect of the history and heritage of Northwestern Ontario are welcome (email