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Gwen Tuinman

Novelist Speaker Advocate

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1800s

Nova Scotia’s Bessie Hall: Mariner and Heroine

I’ve been reading Women at Sea in the Age of Sail by Donal Baird, a fascinating account of seafaring women from Canada’s east coast in the 1800s. For reasons I didn’t understand at the time, I was drawn to the book at a Halifax book store in 2018.

Gender roles of the Victorian era barred women’s aspirations taking to the sea for the purpose of being part of a ship’s working crew. None the less, a number of women in the 1800s travelled along with their husbands for some semblance of family life rather than be left behind to raise children alone. They often gave birth at sea without the care of doctor or midwife, suffered the lack of female companionship, and endured stormy weather and shipwrecks.

Continue reading “Nova Scotia’s Bessie Hall: Mariner and Heroine”

Curating Wonder–School Days

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Continue reading “Curating Wonder–School Days”

Pioneer Christmas and New Years

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What better way for an author to brush up against the hardships and daily lives of pioneers, than to participate in a living history event? Before the snow flew this winter, I visited Pickering Museum Village to experience Christmas and New Years traditions as celebrated by some of the earliest settlers in our region. History was brought to life throughout the village by museum staff, volunteers, and a group of performers known as The Backwoods Players.
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Delving Deeper — Early Emigrants to North America: Trials on Departure

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In 1830, my earliest Irish ancestors arrived Bytown, Upper Canada, now known as Ottawa, Ontario. I’ve often wondered what the experience must have been like, leaving a known country for one entirely unknown. Continue reading “Delving Deeper — Early Emigrants to North America: Trials on Departure”

Curating Wonder — Off to the Sawmill

b2ef592c980032e29d3cda48cca03217 Continue reading “Curating Wonder — Off to the Sawmill”

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