King George VI and Queen Elizabeth at Toronto City Hall during their 1939 Canadian tour
My recent article in the Canadian Encyclopedia discussed the Letters Patent, 1947.
The Letters Patent Constituting the Office of Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada, usually shortened to Letters Patent, 1947, was an edict issued by King George VI that expanded the role of the governor general, allowing him or her to exercise prerogatives of the sovereign. While Letters Patent delegated Crown prerogatives to the governor general, the sovereign remains Head of State.
Click here to read Letters Patent, 1947 in the Canadian Encyclopedia
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh leaving the Royal York hotel in Toronto on a tour of Canada in 2010.
My latest article in the Canadian Encyclopedia discusses the role of the sovereign in Canada’s government.
Under Canada’s constitutional monarchy, the sovereign is head of state, the legal foundation of the executive branch of government and one part of Parliament — along with the Senate and House of Commons. The current sovereign of Canada is Queen Elizabeth II.
Click here to read my article on the Sovereign in the Canadian Encyclopedia.
Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh in Canada in 2010
My latest article in the Canadian Encyclopedia is about Monarchism in Canadian history, politics and culture. I discuss the role of monarchism in Canada’s Confederation, monarchist themes in Canadian literature, monarchist societies active in modern day Canada and critiques of monarchism. I also compare attitudes toward the monarchy in Canada with monarchism in other Commonwealth realms.
Click here to read Monarchism in the Canadian Encyclopedia
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh in Canada in 2010
This year, Queen Elizabeth II became the longest reigning monarch in British and modern Canadian history, surpassing the record set by her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria (1837-1901) My most recent article in the Canadian Encyclopedia discusses Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012, the second to be celebrated after that of Queen Victoria in 1897. I discuss the preparations for the celebrations, the Diamond Jubilee Medals in Canada, the Thames Diamond Jubilee river pageant and Commonwealth tours by members of the royal family including the Canadian tour by the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall in 2012.
Click here to read Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee – 2012 in the Canadian Encyclopedia
My latest article in the Canadian Encyclopedia is a profile of a little known Mother of Confederation. Elizabeth Lee (Owen) Macdonald was born into one of Prince Edward Island’s elite families and married Andrew Archibald Macdonald, a Father of Confederation. She assumed leadership positions in both Island society and women’s organizations within the Church of England. In later life, she wrote a nine-part series of articles on local history titled “Charlottetown Fifty Years Ago” for Prince Edward Island Magazine.
Click here to read my article on Elizabeth Lee (Owen) Macdonald in the Canadian Encyclopedia
My latest article in the Canadian Encyclopedia is about Mercy Anne Coles, a diarist and one of the key witnesses to the negotiations that preceded Canada’s Confederation in 1867. Mercy Coles was one of the daughters of George Coles, the first premier of Prince Edward Island. She attended the Charlottetown and Québec Conferences with her parents. Her diary, Reminiscences of Canada in 1864, is one of the most detailed sources about the events that preceded Confederation. The diary includes descriptions of the Fathers of Confederation and their personalities and brings light to the social politics of mid-19th-century Canada.
Click here to read my article about Mercy Coles in the Canadian Encyclopedia
Queen Victoria at the time of her Diamond Jubilee in 1897
My latest article in the Canadian Encyclopedia is about Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee in 1897. Queen Victoria (who reigned from 1837–1901) was the first monarch to celebrate 60 years on the throne. Celebrations to honour the grand occasion — the first Diamond Jubilee — showcased the Queen’s role as “mother” of the British Empire and its Dominions, including Canada. Prime Minister Wilfrid Laurier led the Canadian delegation to the London ceremonies, while communities across Canada held their own civic celebrations in honour of the Queen.
Click here to read “Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee – 1897” in the Canadian Encyclopedia
Queen Victoria, the Mother of Confederation
My most recent article in the Canadian Encyclopedia is about Queen Victoria and her role in Canadian history as a “Mother of Confederation.” Queen Victoria succeeded to the throne at age 18, following the death of her uncle, William IV, in 1837. She became an ardent imperialist and took an intense interest in her colonial subjects and her role as head of a vast British empire where “the sun never set.” Queen Victoria favoured Confederation and acted as a unifying influence for Canada’s provinces. While the Queen never visited Canada, five of her nine children spent time in Canada, where her name has been given to numerous public buildings, streets, communities and physical features. Queen Victoria also exerted a profound cultural influence, popularizing white wedding dresses, family Christmases and the use of anesthesia during childbirth.
Click here to read “Queen Victoria” in the Canadian Encyclopedia
The Duchess of Cambridge celebrates Canada Day in Ottawa, July 1, 2011
My latest Canadian Encyclopedia article is a profile of The Duchess of Cambridge née Catherine “Kate” Middleton. I discuss how Kate has become famous worldwide for her philanthropy and fashion since her marriage to Prince William, and is closely associated with the modernization of the monarchy. In 2011, she toured Canada with William.
The Middleton family has a connection to Canada. Kate’s paternal grandfather, Peter Middleton, served in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War, including two years of training at No. 37 Service Flying Training School in Calgary, Alberta (now part of the Calgary International Airport).
Click here to read my article on The Duchess of Cambridge in the Canadian Encyclopedia
Victoria Day celebrations outside Government House in Toronto in 1854
This Monday, Canadians celebrate Victoria Day, which is both Queen Elizabeth II’s official birthday in Canada and a holiday in honour of Queen Victoria as a “Mother of Confederation.” My article in the Canadian Encyclopedia discusses the history and significance of Victoria Day, which has been celebrated in Canada since 1845.
Click here to read my article on Victoria Day in the Canadian Encyclopedia