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  • Two (Or Many More!) for Tea

    I have spent the last many months, with the help of a great group of Library Science students, transcribing the letters Marie (Maye) Steele wrote to her husband Sam. During the course of their twenty-nine year marriage, they had many opportunities to write letters to each other, due to Sam’s frequent absences from home. They were apart when Sam was in the Yukon heading up the policing of the Klondike Gold Rush; apart again wh ... read full post
  • Sam Steele Died 96 Years Ago Today

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  • Merry Christmas!

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  • An Ogopogo Sighting!

    Among the papers of Flora Steele, Sam and Marie Steele’s oldest child, is this wonderful sketch of Ogopogo, the lake monster reputed to live in Okanagan Lake, British Columbia. ... read full post
  • A Famous Sister

    Roger Pocock, a friend of the Steele family and whose papers were received with the Steele papers at the University of Alberta, is a fascinating individual in his own right. Adding to what makes Roger interesting, is the fact that he had a sister who was a very well known stage actress of her day. Her name was Lena Ashwell (nee Lena Margaret Pocock). ... read full post
  • The End of Summer

    I came across this unique photo-card recently in the Steele papers housed at Bruce Peel Special Collections Library at the University of Alberta. It is a lovely sepia-toned photograph of Sam Steele’s son Harwood walking down a country road in Vaudreuil, Quebec with his cousins. The photograph is mounted on a card stock with a pretty coloured maple leaf design on one side, the word ‘Canada’ written beneath the leaf, and a smal ... read full post
  • Report Card Time!

    For many Canadian students, the end of June means the school year is winding down, summer holidays are around the corner, and there is probably a report card being sent home. ... read full post
  • A letter from John George Diefenbaker

    Harwood Steele, Sam and Marie Steele’s son, was a military man (served in both World Wars I and II), a writer, lecturer, and historian. He was also involved in maintaining his family’s records, and was very protective of his father’s legacy and image. The Harwood Steele fonds, received at the University of Alberta alongside the records of Sam Steele and other family members, is diverse, extensive, and interesting for the many ... read full post
  • Shopping for Furniture ca. 1907

    Upon his return to Canada from England in 1907, Sam Steele was appointed commanding officer of Military District No. 13 (Alberta and the District of Mackenzie), with headquarters in Calgary.  While Sam moved to Calgary to assume his position, his wife Marie and the three children remained in Montreal to allow Marie time to prepare for this move across the country. She wanted to see her mother relocated with her younger brothe ... read full post
  • Honouring the Fallen

    Very shortly after the conclusion of the Second Boer (1899-1902), Sam Steele was intent on commissioning a monument to honour those men of Lord Strathcona’s Horse who had been killed in action during this war. An artist he consulted with, and whose designs he considered, was the French-Canadian artist and sculptor Louis-Philippe Hébert. Hébert, well-known at this time for his public monuments, wrote to Sam Steele on the 28th ... read full post

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