G’day there!

And Merry Christmas! Or, to be as politically correct as possible, “Happy non-denominational-all-inclusive-festive-occasion-of-your-choice”! (Can’t recall exactly, but I know I stole that from somewhere). I’m not entirely certain there’s much point to making a post today of all days; however, it is Friday, and I’d hate to break the once-a-week-blogging routine that I’ve (surprisingly) managed to establish as of late. Rather atypical for me.

Since it’s Christmas, I thought I’d share with you a couple of related articles from the annals of Island history. And because it’s a time for giving, you’ll note that neither is very content heavy. That’s my present to you (you’re welcome).

The first article is one I recently wrote for a new e-magazine, Backstory, created by a couple of King’s College journalism grads from Halifax. It’s dedicated to all things Maritimes history (so Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick). I love its informal style, which greatly plays to my strengths, and the editors have graciously given me column space to write up a couple of features (I hope more will be forthcoming). For its latest issue, a Christmas compilation, I submitted a piece entitled: “No Partridge in the Pear Tree: The Christmas Bird Census of 1902” (all credit to my girlfriend for the clever title – you’ll understand when you read it). It examines the first ever Christmas Bird Count held on the Island, and the story of its originator, John MacSwain.

The second article is a bit of an oldie now, but a goodie all the same (but really, can you have an “oldie” when it comes to history?). It was written by David Goss way back when in 2005 for Saltscapes Magazine and takes a look at the Christmas of 1885, which almost ended up being cancelled. Yes, cancelled. Find out why in “A Season of Care“.

Well, I’ll leave you with that. If (and I stress the if) you can manage to get a few minutes to yourself on this joyously hectic day, grab a drink of something good, light a roaring fire (if you haven’t already done so), put those feet up, and enjoy a bit of Island Christmas history. If not, or if you’ve fallen victim to a turkey coma like me, no worries. The site, and this post, will still be here when you come to.


PEI History Guy

P.S. – News of a Christmas miracle yesterday. The Journal-Pioneer reported that, earlier this week, the current owners of the Holman Homestead (see my last post) have asked the City of Summerside to rescind the demolition permit they’d recently obtained for the house. I nearly wept for joy. You can find the article here.