Thursday, January 11, 2018

McDonald's Pulls Negative Museum Ad




McDonald's Negative Museum Ad Pulled

OTTAWA, Ontario, January 11, 2018 — Effective immediately, McDonald’s Canada has pulled an offending national ad campaign.
The campaign suggested that a $5 hamburger was better value than the lifelong learning offered by Canada’s museums.
The Canadian Museums Association (CMA) learned of the offending ad last night and immediately contacted McDonald’s requesting the ad be removed. CMA also requested that McDonald’s consider beneficial ways to work with the museum sector.
The Senior Vice-President of Marketing for McDonald’s Canada called CMA’s John McAvity this morning to apologize to Canadian museums, and to confirm the ad has been cancelled.
About the Canadian Museums Association
The Canadian Museums Association is the national organization for the advancement of Canada's museum community. The CMA works for the recognition, growth and stability of the sector. Canada’s 2,600 museums and related institutions preserve our collective memory, shape our national identity and promote tolerance and understanding. Learn more at

For more information:
John McAvity
Executive Director and CEO
Canadian Museums Association
613-567-0099 ext. 226

Disponible en français

Canadian Museums Association
280 Metcalfe Street, Suite 400 | Ottawa | Ontario | K2P 1R7 | Canada

Monday, January 1, 2018

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Influenca 1918 on PBS January 2

‘Influenza 1918’ on PBS
Gail Dever, Genealogy à la carte
As part of its American Experience series, PBS will air the documentary, Influenza 1918, on January 2nd, likely to mark the 100th anniversary. A bit of Googling indicated this 60-minute program was first broadcast in 1998.

In September of 1918, soldiers at an army base near Boston suddenly began to die. The cause of death was identified as influenza, but it was unlike any strain ever seen. As the killer virus spread across the country, hospitals overfilled, death carts roamed the streets and helpless city officials dug mass graves. It was the worst epidemic in American history, killing over 600,000 — until it disappeared as mysteriously as it had begun.

The Spanish influenza of 1918 has been cited as the most devastating epidemic in recorded world history.  The first outbreaks of the Spanish influenza occurred in the spring of 1918. The infection travelled back and forth between Europe and North America on the ships carrying troops fighting in World War I. These troops then introduced the disease into Asia and Africa.

Caused by a viral infection that attacked young, healthy bodies, the influenza killed more people than the First World War. An estimated 20 to 50 million people died from the flu worldwide. In Canada, more than 50,000 people died, and all parts of the country were affected.

A 2001 issue of Legion Magazine noted, “In Toronto, 1,682 people died between Oct. 9 and Nov. 2, 1918. Montreal was hit so hard that it had to adapt a trolley car to carry bodies because the city’s hearses could not meet the demand. By October 1918, influenza was claiming 1,000 Canadian lives a day. During the same period, the country’s battlefield losses averaged about 100 deaths a day.”

From the OGS newsletter December 30, 2017  

Monday, December 25, 2017

The Twelve Days of Christmas

This is one of my personal favourite Christmas songs.  My Grandmother, Marion (Davy) Foreman taught me all the Christmas carols and we would start practicing them in November.  She played the piano and we both sang.  When I could read music, I was in charge of turning the pages.  With The Twelve Days of Christmas I would sing the numbers as fast as I could to see if I could sing them all before she could play them all on the piano.  I always won the race and we would laugh and laugh.  These are some of the best Christmas memories.  

The twelve days of Christmas lie between December 25 and Epiphany, January 6.  it was on January 6 that the Three Magi brought gifts to the Christ Child in the manger - the first Christmas gifts!  It was a common folk belief that on the even of January 6 animals were given the power of speech.  

The Twelve Days of Christmas is an English Christmas carol that enumerates in the manner of a cumulative song a series of increasingly grand gifts given on each day.  The song, published in England in 1780 without music as a chant or rhyme, is thought to be French in origin.  The tunes of collected versions vary. The standard tune now associated with it is derived from a 1909 arrangement of a traditional folk melody by English composer Frederic Austin, who first introduced the now familiar prolongation of the verse "five gold rings".

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of you from all of us at Backus-Page House Museum and Tyrconnell Heritage Society.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

The Holy City

A few years before she passed away, my Grandmother, Marion (Davy) Foreman gathered by Aunt and I at the piano on Boxing Day to teach us this song.  She said it was her mother's favourite (Ida Mae Wilton Davy).  I had never heard it before and the sheet music she used was old and frayed at the edges.  My Aunt remembered hearing it ages ago.  I have since heard it sung at a couple church services, but it isn't one of the more well known Christmas carols.  I've included a link with this one so you can hear it. 
The Holy City is a religious ballad dating from 1892, with music by Michael Maybrick writing under the alias Stephen Adams, with lyrics by Frederic Weatherly.
The song is mentioned in James Joyce's Ulysses, published 1918-1920.  It gained renewed popularity when it was sung by Jeanette MacDonald in the 1936 hit film San Francisco.
 - Angela Bobier

Saturday, December 23, 2017

What Child Is This?

The lyrics were written by William Chatterton Dix, in 1865. At the time of composing the carol, Dix worked as an insurance company manager and had been struck by a severe illness. While recovering, he underwent a spiritual renewal that led him to write several hymns.  The words of this carol are sung to the old English tune "Greensleeves".  The lively tune has been popular since the time of Elizabeth I; "Christmas comes but once a year" is also sung to this air.  Shakespeare mentions it twice in "The Merry Wives of Windsor".  Sir John Stainer arranged this version.