Paul W. Bennett, Ed.D. Director, Schoolhouse Institute, Halifax, and author of Turning Points: 15 Pivotal Moments in Nova Scotia’s History (2019)
Abstract:The romance of Nova Scotia being shaped by the sea tends to dissolve when we confront the historical realities of the ‘hard slog’ of navigating the ups and downs, twists and turns that come with being the easternmost appendage of the Dominion. Since the 1860s, that history has been played out along the shifting axis of Canadian east-west development — and the Scottish Canadian tradition of ‘tartanism’ was supplanted by a more diverse, tolerant and accepting Maritime society and culture. This short lecture, based upon Turning Points (2019), will analyze the historiographical trends and seek to stimulate informed discussion.
Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2020, 7:00 pm, Nova Scotia Archives
Mr. Mathias Rodorff
Abstract: In Nova Scotia, the roads leading to Confederation were from the beginning marked by heated debates in the press, the legislature and at public meetings. Although, most people are familiar with the controversial role and achievements of the tribune of Nova Scotia, Joseph Howe, other highly influential persons like John G. Marshall or William Annand are almost forgotten.
Mathias Rodorff will discuss the contribution of William Annand, the owner of the strongest newspaper of Nova Scotia and premier of the Anti-Confederate government, and other members of the Annand family, who changed the debate culture and public sphere of Nova Scotia.
Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2020, 7:00 pm, Nova Scotia Archives
Dr. S. Karly Kehoe
Abstract: Apart from the Culloden battlefield, there are few landscapes more evocative in Jacobite memory than the Glenfinnan monument, a striking 18-metre high column upon which a lone ‘kilted Highlander’ sits to memorialize the spot where, in 1745, clans loyal to the Stuarts raised the Jacobite standard in support of Bonnie Prince Charlie. In 2018 alone, this site attracted over 350,000 visitors – few would have had any idea that it had been at the centre of a property deal in the early 1770s that linked the Western Highlands and Islands with Jamaica, Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia. Research focused on uncovering the links between Black African enslavement in the Caribbean and the Scottish Highlands and Islands is well underway. What we do not yet understand is how these places were linked with or enabled Scottish Highland settlement in the Maritimes. This paper will explore the colonial privilege of the Highland Scots by linking Maritime settlement with Caribbean money.
Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019, 7:00 pm, Nova Scotia Archives
Mr. Bob Sayer
Abstract: Laurent’s career that included being a hostage, leader of armed resistance, negotiator, peacemaker and Treaty signer makes him a towering figure. As an adolescent, he was a hostage in Boston, where his father was hanged. Head of the E’se’katik/ Mirligueche/ Lunenburg band, he became a leader of the Mi’kmaw forces based in the Baie Verte area. He is mentioned in various dispatches and minutes. Casteel, in his infamous survival story, features Laurent. Spokesman for his people, Laurent met with the Halifax Council and proposed partition in 1755. He fought in the Beausejour and other campaigns, and became prominent in the Mi’kmaw leaders’ debate and dispute about peace and war. Laurent appeared before the Halifax Council again in the French-Mi’kmaw “Scare” of 1762. He had signed the 1760 treaty that became a go-to document in later landmark provincial and Supreme Court decisions.
Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2019, 7:00 pm, Nova Scotia Archives
Ms. Stefanie R. Slaunwhite, PhD Candidate, University of New Brunswick
Abstract: In 1964, when Graham Creighton High School in Cherry Brook, Nova Scotia, opened its doors for integration, many of its feeder communities were relatively rural and isolated. Racial tensions emerged, creating a legacy of conflict. Graham Creighton was the predecessor to Cole Harbour District High School, which has received considerable attention in the media related to racial tensions. While racism was undoubtedly a contributing factor to tensions between the communities, it must be considered that integration at Graham Creighton was not simply an integration of two races; rather, it was an integration of several very distinct and relatively rural communities. This article examines the nuances of community and integration, considering factors such as class, socio-economics, and geography.
Wednesday, October 23, 2019, 7:00 pm, Nova Scotia Archives
Dr. Heidi MacDonald, University of New Brunswick
Abstract: This presentation highlights key moments in the women’s suffrage campaign in Nova Scotia, from the 1830s through the 1960s. It will examine the important roles played by groups such as the Women’s Christian Temperance Union, the Halifax Local Council of Women, and the Nova Scotia Equal Suffrage Association, as
well as individuals such as Eliza Ritchie, Edith Archibald, and Mary Chesley.
Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2019, 7:00 pm, Nova Scotia Archives
Phyllis R Blakeley Memorial Lecture
Ms. Sara Hollett, Gorsebrook Research Institute
Abstract: In 1962, the Nova Scotia Travel Bureau hired advertising firm, Dalton K. Camp & Associates (DKCA) to design and distribute tourism promotional materials across North America. This paper argues that the ideas presented in the advertising of DKCA represented a significant shift away from earlier ways of seeing identity and history in tourism promotion. These new ways of seeing reflected consumerism, as well as a more modern understanding of how history could be used to sell a destination.
Note: This lecture will follow our Annual General Meeting
Wednesday, May 15, 2019 — 7:30 p.m., Nova Scotia Archives
HMS Jervis Bay – the Nova Scotia and Maritime connections
Harold E. Wright, retired Saint John historian
Abstract: HMS Jervis Bay, an Armed Merchant Cruiser, was sunk in November 1940 while protecting convoy HX84 outbound from Halifax. The ship had recently been refitted at the St. John Drydock. A large number of her crew was from the Maritimes. This presentation will give a brief overview of the ship and crew but focus on Convoy HX84 and her Nova Scotia crew.
Women and the War at Home: Pictou County Women in Industrialized Work, 1939 to 1945: The New Woman Worker of Shipbuilding
Kirby Ross, Halifax Women’s History Society and Saint Mary’s University
Note: This lecture takes place at our Annual Banquet at the Dalhousie University Club – 6:00 for 6:30.
Abstract: As Canada entered the Second World War, the opportunities for women had to change drastically, as a vast number of men were sent across the world to fight against the Axis powers. World War Two provided newfound opportunities for women to join work forces which had previously been closed off to them. Particularly, these new jobs were found in the industrial settings that men left. Employers in Pictou County needed to replace the missing men, and women filled these positions. Industrial roles clearly differed from the domestic work that women primarily performed before the war years. Some of these jobs were in fields that women had worked in during World War One while others represented new opportunities. In Pictou County, women began working in different industrial fields, such as shipbuilding. With labour shortages, the attitude towards women working in this field changed as demand grew for these jobs to be filled. In examining Pictou County, an important industrial center in Nova Scotia but relatively small by Canadian or global standards, the presentation will analyse not only the new work opportunities that opened to women in shipbuilding but also illustrate the ties between these new industrial opportunities and women’s prior experience and the social and economic networks that shaped their industrial employment.
Wednesday, March 20, 2019 — 7:30 p.m., Nova Scotia Archives
Invisible Victims: The Trial for the Murders of the Emoneau Family of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia in 1791
Kenneth S. Paulsen
Bunker Hill Community College
This paper will explore the murders of the Emoneau Family at Lunenburg, Nova Scotia in 1791. On 19 March 1791, Frédéric Emoneau, his wife Juliana Elisabetha Frankin and their granddaughter Catherine Elizabeth Emoneau were murdered by their godson George Frederick Boutelier and his brother John Boutelier. The murders were the first to occur in the township of Lunenburg since its founding in 1753. The trial for the murders is unusual in that the Boutelier brothers were tried for the murder of Frédéric Emoneau. Elisabetha and Catherine Elizabeth Emoneau are not mentioned by name during the trail. Elisabetha Emoneau and her granddaughter are obliquely mentioned during the trial without naming them. They are largely invisible despite the acknowledgement that they had been murdered along with Frédéric Emoneau. Under British common law, women had no legal personality. The paper will examine the circumstances of the disappearance and invisibility of these two women in the trial.
Join us next week, Wed. November 16, 2022 @ 7pm (Atlantic) online or at the Halifax Central Library for "Early White Audience Reactions to Blackface Performances on Halifax Stages (1830s-1860s) presented by Dr. Nicole Neatby with @HistorySmu
More info at