Launch! Prince Arthur Hotel! Sept.5. Cake, beverages. Launch 7:15 pm. (NOWW AGM 6:30.)

Launch! Prince Arthur Hotel! Sept.5. Cake, beverages. Launch 7:15 pm. (NOWW AGM 6:30.)
Prize Winning Stories from NOWW

Sunday, January 13, 2008

THUNDER BAY MUSEUM

A heads up. Some of the best recent writing in Thunder Bay can be found at the Thunder Bay Museum.

First up is the account of the Red Rock World War II prison camp known as Camp R featured in Papers and Records Vol. XXXV. The author, Dr. E. Zimmerman, describes the camp and four prominent inmates including a German Jewish refugee who had fled to Britain who was, no surprise, a fervent anti-Nazi. Nevertheless, mysteriously, the Brits classified him as an enemy and he wound up in northwestern Ontario. Some of the prominent Nazis in the camp had stories no less incredible. Boys as young as fifteen were incarcerated there. And why did bungling bureaucrats put Jews and Nazis in the same camp?

During the war, Thunder Bay was surrounded by uncounted internment camps. Some housed German troops but others imprisoned Japanese internees, civilians deemed to be Nazi sympathizers and, at Montreal River on the north shore, Canadian conscientious objectors, many of them Mennonites. Anyone interested in our plethora of prisons should pick up the Papers and Records magazine at the museum gift shop.

Secondly, a book, Waking Nanabijou: Uncovering a Secret Past by Jim Poling. Old time Thunder Bayers may recall the widely publicized trial of 18-year-old Jim Poling who, in 1960, accidentally shot John Bowie while hunting deer in the Copenhagen Road area. This is Jim’s memoir which includes his childhood in Thunder Bay, the court case, his career as a journalist and his discoveries about his mother’s past. Interesting stuff indeed.

Third pick from the museum is Schoolmarm, A Memoir by Penny Petrone but more about that book later.

If any reader would like to review a local story or book, please send your (short) review by attachment to joanbaril@gmail.com

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