2017 CUMBERLAND HERITAGE FAIRE

2017 CUMBERLAND HERITAGE FAIRE

Jon Ambler, our Volunteer Coordinator and Programme Manager wants to thank the volunteers who participated in this year’s Cumberland Heritage Faire.  “Once again we participated and once again had a great day, delivering the ‘Ejection Experience’. Many thanks to Gary W, Mel, Rodney, Jed, Mike O and Len who ran the show with great energy and enthusiasm.   We displayed new photos of the Museum (thanks Mike O) videos of ejections (thanks Len) and hauled a lot in Jed’s truck (thanks Jed).  Steve M ensured we had lots of rack cards. We also had cool artifacts (thanks Mel) and the story of the RCAF tartan (thanks Gary W).  As in all our successes, it was a true team...
NOW IN OUR LIBRARY ~ BLACK HISTORY MONTH ~ AN INTRODUCTION

NOW IN OUR LIBRARY ~ BLACK HISTORY MONTH ~ AN INTRODUCTION

Since this is Black History Month, I thought we should look at how they have served Canada in peace and in war.  I have selected a few individuals to show their stories although it is not possible to include all those who have served.  There are many who showed enormous bravery and service who are not mentioned here. The first reference is about the many who served to defend Canada in 1780.  A number were offered their freedom if they fought against the Americans.  Then in 1812, they formed a “Company of Coloured Men” who fought at Queenston Heights. During the rebellion in Upper Canada 1837-1839, about 1000 black militia formed 5 companies and helped put down the uprising. In World War I, military enlistment personnel made it difficult for black Canadians to join up but in spite of these barriers many wanted to serve. Reverend William White played a large role in the formation in Pictou, N.S. of No. 2 Construction Battalion.  The Rev. White was the Battalion chaplain who was given the Honorary rank of Captain, one of the few black commissioned officers to serve.  The unit served in a non-combat role in France. In World War II, Michael Manley served as aircrew in the RCAF and subsequently in 1972, he became Prime Minister of Jamaica. Lincoln Alexander, Leonard Braithwaite and Lloyd Perry all became lawyers.  Lincoln Alexander became the first black Member of Parliament and later, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario.  Eric Watts served in the RCAF and rose from airman to squadron leader.  He served as Wing Air Armaments Officer with 1 Wing Merville France and...

JOIN US AT THE CUMBERLAND HERITAGE FAIRE FOR AN EJECTION SEAT EXPERIENCE!

The 13th annual Cumberland Heritage Faire takes place this coming weekend, Saturday, February 18th.  The Comox Air Force Museum will offer visitors the “Ejection Seat Experience”.  Along with our ejection seat, we will have helmets, life jacket, and a parachute harness for a great photo opportunity.  Along with a placard that explains the experience, we will have videos of actual ejections. Special thanks to Len, Mike, Jed, Gary, and Rodney for their participation!  We hope you’ll come out and meet...
NATIONAL FLAG OF CANADA DAY ~ FEBRUARY 15th

NATIONAL FLAG OF CANADA DAY ~ FEBRUARY 15th

    February 15th is National Flag of Canada Day. The national flag of Canada was inaugurated on February 15, 1965.  The anniversary of this date is officially called the “National Flag of Canada Day”, often shortened to “Flag Day”.  The red-white-red flag with the maple leaf in the centre replaced the Canadian red ensign on that day.   George F.G. Stanley designed our current flag, which is inspired by the Royal Military College of Canada’s flag.  A multi-parliamentary committee formed to select a new flag unanimously chose the design on October 29, 1964; the House of Commons passed the design on December 15, 1964.  Queen Elizabeth II proclaimed the new flag on January 28, 1965, and it was inaugurated on February 15, 1965. Our Canadian national flag, sometimes referred to as the “maple leaf flag”, is flown on many buildings, including private homes on National Flag of Canada Day.  Some people wear pins in the form of the flag; schools often have special lessons on the Canadian national flag and its history around this time of year. Special public events have been held in some years.  For example, one million flags were distributed in the “One in a Million National Flag Challenge” in 1996 so Canadians could display them on Flag Day in 1997.  In 2005, celebrations were held to honour the 40th anniversary of the flag’s inauguration.  Some businesses gave out flags or decorated buildings with large versions of the red and white maple leaf flag. The image of the red maple leaf is not only used on flags, but also on Canadian postage stamps and pins.  Since...
“A SWASHBUCKLING ADVENTURER” ~ JOSEPH W. BOYLE

“A SWASHBUCKLING ADVENTURER” ~ JOSEPH W. BOYLE

Every war produces mysterious characters, some good, some bad, and some swashbuckling adventurers.   One such man was Joseph Whiteside Boyle, born in 1867 in Toronto.  At the age of 17, he went to sea for three years.  Later on he was among the first to travel the White Pass route to the Klondike where he laid claim to a huge stretch of the Klondike River, and, as a result of his gold mining activities, he became quite rich.  He organized a hockey team, the Dawson City Nuggets, who travelled by sled, train, and boat to Ottawa to play the Ottawa Senators in the Stanley Cup.  At the outbreak of WWI, at his own expense, he equipped a machine gun company, even making their insignia in gold.  In today’s market these insignia would be priceless. Being too old for active service, he was made an honorary Lt.Col.  He made his way to Britain where he eventually went to Russia and was appointed to Kerenski to help re-organize their railways which were in total chaos.  He found there were 10,000 rail cars of supplies waiting to go to the front and in order to get things moving, he had whole trains, which were blocking the movement of the rail cars, pitched over an embankment to get them out of the way.  This enabled the other supply trains to be on their way to the front allowing Russia to keep 300,000 men in the front line.  In cooperation with a British agent he was involved in operations against both the Germans and the Bolshevik forces. During this time he ran a...

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