Recently in class last week, we had an interesting activity, where, in groups, we had to come up with one thing for each letter of the alphabet that we thought make us proud to be Canadian and that war relevant in the 1950s. This lead to lots of examples like names and government legislation in the era.
I found this activity rather enjoyable as I’m very interested in the history of Canada, as my podcast can attest to. For this reason, I thought that I should come up with my own list, but far more broadly focused on the history of Canada, and more based on importance to Canadian identity, or importance to the world rather than what would be popular. Here is the general list I came up with. Items like insulin are ones invented or made practical to use by Canadians. I’ve tried to avoid areas of bias in my examples that may have came up due to my own family’s experience and history in Canada since the 1700s.
A: Agricultural History (Because of immigrants and the World Wars)
B: British Common Law
D: David Thompson
E: Étienne Cartier (Father of Confederation)
F: First Nations
G: Gold Rushes
H: Hudson Bay Company
J: John A. MacDonald
L: Laurier (Prime Minister)
M: MackenZie King (Prime Minister)
N: Northwest Passage
Q: Queen Victoria & Elizabeth
R: Rebellions of 1837–1838 and Responsible Government which resulted from them.
S: St. Lawrence River
T: Tommy Douglas
U: Uranium (Mining and development of nuclear technology)
V: Vancouver (explorer)
W: World Wars
X: Camp X (Covert military training facility)
Z: /Zed/ (pronunciation)
I ran into several possibilities for several of the letters, so I had to cut some things out. I think that that list gave a very well rounded sample of important people, places, inventions etc from all eras of Canadian history, and all areas of Canada.
One thing I noticed that was consistent with the in class activity was the dropping of many historical names, which I think reflects the importance of certain individual, but also people’s strong interest and admiration for leaders in key periods.
After writing the list, one interesting thing I’ve seen lacking in my own is examples from the 1950s, which was the topic of the original activity, and I’m not quite sure the reason.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this post and look into historically important things to Canada, and connecting it to my learning in class for the last week.