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Digital Display: Community-Based Science

Monday, May 9, 2022

This week MacEwan University Library is hosting the True North Science Boot Camp, a professional development event for librarians who support research in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. This year, the theme of TNSBC is community-based scholarship, and in honour of that, we’ve put together this digital display of materials about community-based research in STEM. 

A big welcome to all of the librarians attending our virtual event! We hope these resources will foster your interest in community based scholarship in the sciences. 

Citizen Science for Coastal and Marine Conservation
H. L. Ballard and J. A. Cigliano

Citizen Science in the Digital Age: Rhetoric, Science, and Public Engagement
J. Wynn

Citizen Science: Innovation in Open Science, Society and Policy
S. Hecker et al.

 Citizen Voices: Performing Public Participation in Science and Environment Communication
L. Phillips, et al.

Conservation Education and Outreach Techniques
S. K. Jacobson et al.

Doing Community-Based Research: Perspectives from the Field
G. Halseth et al.

EcoJustice, Citizen Science and Youth Activism: Situated Tensions for Science Education
M. P. Mueller and D. J. Tippins 

Geographic Citizen Science Design: No One Left Behind
A. Skarlatidou and M. Haklay

Handbook of Citizen Science in Ecology and Conservation
O. D. Boyle, et al.

The Incidental Steward: Reflections on Citizen Science
A. Busch

Indigenous Resilience and Indigenous Knowledge Systems in the Context of Climate Change
H. M. Tsai et al.

Knowledge, Democracy and Action: Community-University Research Partnerships in Global Perspectives
J. M. Fontan et al.  

Learning Through Citizen Science: Enhancing Opportunities by Design
K. A. Dibner and R. Pandya.

The Morehouse Model: How One School of Medicine Revolutionized Community Engagement and Health Equity
R. L. Braithwaite, et al.

(Participatory) Action Research: Principles, Approaches and Applications
J. Calder and J. Foletta

Participatory Forestry: Involvement, Information and Science
A. Paletto

Research Design: Quantitative, Qualitative, Mixed Methods, Arts-Based, and Community-Based Participatory Research Approaches
P. Leavy  

Science by the People: Participation, Power, and the Politics of Environmental Knowledge
A. H. Kimura and A. J. Kinchy

The Science of Citizen Science
K. Vohland


Digital Display: Quick Reads

Thursday, May 5, 2022

These short and quick reads are all available online and ready for you to enjoy along with the beautiful Spring weather!

Coconut Dreams by Derek Mascarenhas

Desert Gothic by Don Waters

Dubliners by James Joyce

Fat and Queer: An Anthology of Queer and Trans Bodies and Lives by Bruce Owens Grimm, Miguel M. Morales, and Tiff Joshua TJ Ferentini

Lovecraft's Monsters by Neil Gaiman, Joe R. Lansdale, and Ellen Datlow

Moccasin Square Gardens: Short Stories by Richard Van Camp

Nineteenth-Century Southern Gothic Short Fiction: Haunted by the Dark by Charles L. Crow and Susan Castillo Street

Short Fiction of Flannery O'Connor by Robert C. Evans

Short Stories: A Selection of Interesting Tales by Samuel G. Goodrich

Short Stories by Fyodor Dostoyevsky and Constance Garnett

The Decadent Short Story by Kostas Boyiopoulos, Yoonjoung Choi, and Matthew Brinton Tildesley

The Rebels and Other Short Fiction by Richard Power and James MacKillop

The Short Stories Of Kate Chopin by Kate Chopin

The Short Stories by Langston Hughes and R. Baxter Miller

Digital Display: MacEwan Authors (50th Anniversary)

Wednesday, Apr 13, 2022

As MacEwan celebrates its 50th Anniversary, we thought we’d share some of the materials published by MacEwan authors over the years! Below is a sample of some of the things our faculty have written or created—from graphic novels to surgical nursing and everything in between! You can see our entire MacEwan Authors collection here

Among All These Dreamers: Essays on Dreaming and Modern Society (Print)
Kelly Bulkeley and Jayne Gackenback 

Anthropology: What Does it Mean to be Human? (Print)
Robert H. Lavenda, Emily A. Schultz, and Cynthia Zutter

Beyond the Victorian/Modernist Divide: Remapping the Turn-of-the-Century Break in Literature, Culture, and the Visual Arts (Print)
Anne-Florence Gillard-Estrada & Anne Besnault-Levita, eds.
Kathryn Holland, contributor

Brunner & Suddarth’s Textbook of Medical-Surgical Nursing (Print)
Rene A. Day, ed. 
Margaret Milner, contributor

Culture on Two Wheels: The Bicycle in Literature and Film (Print)
Jeremy Withers & Daniel P. Shea, eds.
Dave Buchanan, contributor 

Education & Society: Canadian Perspectives (Print)
Wolfgang Lehmann, ed. 
Emily Milne, contributor

Familiar and Foreign: Identity in Iranian Film and Literature (Print)
Veronica Thompson and Manijeh Mannani, eds.
Mostafa Abedinifard, contributor 

Fundamentals of the Psychiatric Mental Status Examination: A Workbook (Print)
Cheryl Webster Pollard

Hong Kong and Bollywood: Globalization of Asian Cinemas (Print)
Joseph Tse-Hei Lee and Satish Kolluri, eds. 
Sony Jalarajan Raj, contributor. 

In the News: The Practice of Media Relations in Canada (Print) 
William Wray Carney, Colin Babiuk, Mark LaVigne

Innovative Business Education Design for 21st Century Learning (Print)
Peter Daly, Kristen Reid, Patrick Buckley, and Elaine Doyle, eds.
Rickard Enstroem and Lyle Benson, contributors 

International Developments in Research on Extended Education: Perspectives on Extracurricular Activities, After-School Programmes, and All-Day Schools (Print)
Sang-Hu Pae, Joseph L. Mahoney, Sabine Maschke, and Ludwig Stecher, editors
Emily Milne, contributor 

Kiyâm: Poems (Print)
Naomi L. McIlwraith

L’Etoile: For Brass Quintet (Musical Score) 
Marco Katz, composer 

Memory in Mind and Culture (Print)
Pascal Boyer and James V. Wertsch, editors
Craig W. Blatz, contributor

One Year in America (Print)
Elisabeth Belliveau

O Music: For Wind Ensemble and Choir (Musical Score) 
Allan Gilliland, composer
Text b y Kahlil Gibran 

Oxford Handbook of Synesthesia (Print)
Julia Simner and Edward M. Hubbard, eds. 
Michelle Jarick, contributor 

Philosophy of Social Work (Video)
Duane Massing and Richard Day
Grant MacEwan Social Work Program
Grant MacEwan Instructional Media and Design 

Revisiting Multiculturalism in Canada: Theories, Policies, and Debates (Print)
Shinao Guo & Lloyd L. Wong, eds. 
Kalyani Thurairajah, contributor 

The Broadview Introduction to Literature: Literary Non-Fiction (Print)
Lisa Chalykoff, Neta Gordon, and Paul Lumsden, eds. 

The Heavy Bear (Print)
Tim Bowling 

Today’s Youth and Mental Health: Hope, Power, and Resilience (Print)
Sohelia Pashang, Nazilla Khanlou, and Jennifer Clarke, eds. 
Hellen Gateri, contributor

Turning the Medicine Wheel Towards Health (Video)
Louise Bureau
Grant MacEwan Child & Youth Care Program
Grant Macewan Instructional Media and Design 

Violence Interrupted: Confronting Sexual Violence on University Campuses (Print)
Diane Crocker, Joanne Cheryl Minaker, and Amanda Nelund, eds. 

Writing the Body in Motion: A Critical Anthology on Canadian Sport Literature (Print)
Angie Abdou & Jamie Dopp, eds. 
Paul Martin, contributor 


From the Archives: The Move is On!

Thursday, Apr 7, 2022

Downtown Bound 

The move is on! That anticipated Tuesday arrived March 4, as Dick Johnston, Minister of Advanced Education announced the finalization of a lease agreement for a major interim facility for the college. The new campus will be 150,000 square feet of space located in the north tower of the Seventh Street Plaza, 10030 107 St. The tri-campus shuffle will see the Plaza housing the entire Business Division and Business Outreach, Advertising and Public Relations and Library Technician programs, a Learning Resource Centre, a full range of college and student services, and the offices of the President and Vice Presidents, the GMCC Foundation, Community Relations, Research Development and Evaluation, Instructional Development, Faculty Development and Computers and Systems. 

The Cromdale Campus will be used for community education projects and special projects such as English as a Second Language, and the CPR project. Addition of the new space will make room for a staff lounge on each campus, and will alleviate the overcrowding evident on all three campuses. An additional 1,000 full time and 1,000 part time students will be accommodated each semester, and renovations will be finished in time for the college to move in for September 1. 

"We're very fortunate in Alberta that we can still make announcements concerning expansion in the area of education. It's very high priority for us," said Mr. Johnston. 

The Seventh Street Plaza will be the newest addition to GMCC as of September 01, 1986. 

Source: MacEwan Today, March 18, 1986 

For other stories from our past, visit the University Archives

Black and white photo of a bus that says "Grant MacEwan Community College - Downtown Bound" on the side.

Digital Display: National Poetry Month

Friday, Apr 1, 2022

April is National Poetry Month, and we have created a Digital Display full of books to help you get into the spirit. From ancient Greek poetry to contemporary political poems, poetry has something to offer for everyone. Happy reading! 


Affirmation of Poetry
Judith Balso, translated by Drew Burk

Attribute of Poetry
Elisa Galgut 

Campaign in Poetry: The Emma Press Anthology of Political Poems 
Rachel Piercey and Emma Wright, editors 

English Poetry in Quebec: Proceedings from the Foster Poetry Conference October 12-14, 1963. 
John Glassco, editor 

Faith in Poetry: Verse Style as a Mode of Religious Belief
Michael D. Hurley  

French Poetry: From Medieval to Modern Times
Patrick McGuinness, editor 

Killing Poetry: Blackness and the Making of Slam and Spoken Word Communities 
Javon Johnson 

Left of Poetry: Depression America and the Formation of Modern Poetics
Sarah Ehlers 

Oral Poetry: Its Nature, Significance, and Social Context
Ruth Finnegan 

Organising Poetry: The Coleridge Circle 1970-1798
David Fairer 

Philosophy and Poetry: Continental Perspectives
Rajan Ghosh 

Jennifer Joline Anderson 

Poetry & Geography: Space & Place in Post-War Poetry
Neal Alexander and David Cooper 

Poetry: A Survivor’s Guide
Mark Yakich 

Poetry: The Literary Agenda
David Constantine 

Poetry: The Ultimate Guide
Richard Bradford

Poetry and Animals: Blurring the Boundaries with the Human
Onno Oerlemans 

Poetry and Freedom: Discoveries in Aesthetics, 1985-2018
Paul Oppenheimer

Poetry and Language: The Linguistics of Verse
Michael Ferber 

Poetry and Mind: Tractatus Poetico-Philosophicus
Laurent Dubreuil

Poetry for Beginners
Gabeba Baderoon 

Poetry for Historians: Or, W.H. Auden and History
Carolyn Steedman

Poetry in America
Julia Spicher Kasdorf 

Poetry in Exile
Josef Hrdlička

Poetry in Fragments: Studies on the Hesiodic Corpus and its Afterlife 
Christos Tsagalis, editor 

Poetry Matters: Neoliberalism, Affect, and the Posthuman in 21st Century North American Feminist Poetics
Heather Milne 

Poetry Unbound: Poems and New Media from the Magic Lantern to Instagram
Mike Chasar 

Poetry’s Afterlife: Verse in the Digital Age
Kevin Stein

Powerful Poetry: Read, Write, and Recite Poetry All Year Long
Adrienne Gear

Reading Poetry
Peter Barry

Stubborn Poetries: Poetic Facticity and the Avant Garde 
Peter Quartermain  

Talk Poetry: Poems and Interviews with Nine American Poets
David Baker 

The Only Poetry that Matters: Reading the Kootenay School of Writing
Clint Burnham 

The Poetry Experience: Choosing and Using Poetry in the Classroom
Sheree Fitch and Larry Swartz

What is Poetry: Language and Memory in the Poems of the world
Nigel Fabb 

Women’s Poetry: Poems and Advice
Daisy Fried 


Digital Display: Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion Week

Wednesday, Mar 23, 2022

This week is Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion Week at MacEwan University. This digital display was created to help celebrate! To learn more about the workshops, panel discussions, and networking events taking place at MacEwan this week to promote diversity and equity, visit this page

Alliances: Re-Envisioning Indigenous-non-Indigenous Relationships by Lynne Davis

Cultural Diversity, Inclusion, and Justice: Being a Community Activist by George Henderson

Diversity and Inclusion: Valuing the Opportunity by Elizabeth McIsaac and Carrie Moody

Diversity and Inclusion Matters: Tactics and Tools to Inspire Equity and Game-Changing Performance by Jason Thompson

Diversity Matters: The Color, Shape, and Tone of Twenty-First-Century Diversity by Emily Allen Williams

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Action: Planning, Leadership, and Programming by Christine Bombaro

Ensouling Our Schools: A Universally Designed Framework for Mental Health, Well-Being, and Reconciliation by Jennifer Katz and Kevin Lamoureux

Homophobia in the Hallways: Heterosexism and Transphobia in Canadian Catholic Schools by Tonya D. Callaghan

Inclusive Conversations: Fostering Equity, Empathy, and Belonging Across Differences by Mary-Frances Winters

Indigenous Economic Reconciliation: Recommendations on Reconciliation and Inclusive Economic Growth for Indigenous Peoples and Canada by Dawn Madahbee Leach and Clarence Louie

It's Time to Talk About Race at Work: Every Leader's Guide to Making Progress on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion by Kelly McDonald

Promoting Diversity and Social Justice: Educating People From Privileged Groups by Diane Goodman

The Racial Healing Handbook: Practical Activities to Help You Challenge Privilege, Confront Systemic Racism, & Engage in Collective Healing by Anneliese A. Singh

Understanding and Navigating Discrimination in America by Jamie Maniloff

Women's Influence on Inclusion, Equity, and Diversity in STEM Fields by Ursula Thomas and Jill Drake

Digital Display: Pride Week

Tuesday, Mar 8, 2022

It's Pride Week here at MacEwan! To celebrate, we've made this list of items in our collection that you can read or watch that feature LGBTQ2S+ voices, stories, and scholarship. We also have a physical book display in our library that we invite you to check out the next time you're here! 

To Read: 

A Recent History of Lesbian and Gay Psychology: From Homophobia to LGBT
Peter Hegarty 

Are You Two Sisters? The Journey of a Lesbian Couple
Susan Krieger 

Awakening: How Gays and Lesbians Brought Marriage Equality to America
Nathaniel Frank 

Beyond the Politics of the Closet: Gay Rights and the American State Since the 1970s
Jonathan Bell 

Categorically Famous: Literary Celebrity and Sexual Liberation in 1960s America
Guy Davidson

Coming Out: The New Dynamics
Nicholas A. Guittar 

Creating Safe and Supportive Learning Environments: A Guide for Working with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning Youth and Families
Emily S. Fisher and Karen Komosa-Hawkins

Drag Queens and Beauty Queens: Contesting Femininity in the World’s Playground
Laurie Greene 

Geisha of a Different Kind: Race and Sexuality in Gaysian America
C. Winter Han 

Global Encyclopedia of LGBTQ History
Anjali R. Arondekar and Howard Chiang, editors 

Global Gay: How Gay Culture is Changing the World 
Frederic Martel, translated by Patsy Baudoin

Historical Dictionary of the Lesbian and Gay Liberation Movements
Jo Ann Myers 

Legislating Love: The Everett Klippert Story: A Play
Natalie Meisner 

LGBT Milwaukee
Michail Takach 

LGBTQ Stats: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer People by the Numbers
David Deschamps and Bennett L. Singer 

Out in Theory: The Emergence of Lesbian and Gay Anthropology
William Leap and Ellen Lewin

Persistence: All Ways Butch and Femme
Ivan Coyote and Zena Sharman 

Pride Parades and LGBT Movements
Abby Peterson, Mattias Wahlström, Magnus Wennerhag

Queer Festivals: Challenging Collectibe Identities in a Transnational Europe 
Konstantinos Elftheriadis 

Queer Images: A History of Gay and Lesbian Films in America 
Harry M. Benshoff, Sean Griffin 

Queer People of Colour: Connected But Not Comfortable
Angelique Harris, Juan Battle, Antonio Jay Pastrana, Jr. 

Queer Voices From the Classroom
Hidehiro Endo, Paul Chamness Idia 

Queer Wars: The New Global Polarization Over Gay Rights
Dennis Altman and Jonathan Symons 

Rainbow Warrior: My Life in Colour 
Gilbert Baker and Dustin Lance Black 

The Gang’s All Queer: The Lives of Gay Gang Members
Vanessa R. Panfil 

Ugly Differences: Queer Female Sexuality in the Underground 
Yetta Howard 

Way to Go
Tom Ryan 



A Chance to Dress: The Complexity of Gender Expression

A Drag King Extravaganza

After Stonewall: America’s LGBT Movement

Gender Matters - Transgender Youth

Hollywood Gay Pride: Parades and Festivals from 1970-1978

I Am the Queen

Queer Japan

Southern Pride

The Rice Queen Diaries: A Memoir


Textbook Alternatives

Tuesday, Mar 8, 2022

This Open Education Week, MacEwan Library encourages faculty and students to visit our new Textbook Alternatives Guide.

The Library has created this guide to help students and instructors find textbook alternatives that are more affordable while still supporting student learning. 

If you have questions about possible options, connect with your Subject Librarian.

Digital Display: Women's History Month

Monday, Mar 7, 2022

March is Women's History Month! To help celebrate, MacEwan Library has created a physical book display which you can visit in-person as well as this digital display.

To Read:

A Gentlewoman in Upper Canada: The Journals, Letters and Art of Anne Langton by Barbara Williams

A Tangled Web by L.M. Montgomery and Benjamin Lefebvre

Agnes Macphail: Champion of the Underdog by Rachel Wyatt

Blowing up the Skirt of History: Recovered and Reanimated Plays by Early Canadian Women Dramatists, 1876-1920 by Kym Bird

Canadian Women in Print, 1750–1918 by Carole Gerson

I'm Not Myself at All: Women, Art, and Subjectivity in Canada by Kristina Huneault

Madeleine Parent: Activist by Andrée Lévesque

Mapping Our Selves: Canadian Women's Autobiography by Helen M. Buss

Paddling her Own Canoe: The Times and Texts of E. Pauline Johnson (Tekahionwake) by Veronica Jane Strong-Boag and Carole Gerson

Settler Feminism and Race Making in Canada by Jennifer Henderson

The Peacemaker: Thanadelthur by David Alexander Robertson and Wai Tien

This Wild Spirit: Women in the Rocky Mountains of Canada by Colleen Marie Skidmore


To Watch:

Mary Two-Axe Earley: I Am Indian Again

Pauline Julien, Intimate and Political

The Incomparable Rose Hartman

They Called Us "Les Filles du Roy"

Black History Month Student Project: Amazing Albertans

Thursday, Feb 17, 2022

Amazing Albertans is a series about influential Black Albertans, created by MacEwan University Students Elaine Tran, Lauren McMullen, Jasleen Kang, Sarah Green, Samantha Diluvio, and Sarah Higgins.

Originally produced for Sustainability 301 with Dr. Tai Munro in Fall 2021, we are happy to share their work and celebrate these important Albertans during Black History Month. 

A screen-reader friendly version is below. 


Brief bio of John Ware.

Brief bio of John Ware, Part 2.

Bio of Annie Saunders

Brief bio of Joseph Lewis.

Brief bio of Violet King.

Brief bio of Violet King, Part 2.

Brief bio of Virnetta Anderson

Brief bio of Virnetta Anderson, Part 2.

Amazing Albertans Reference List

Amazing Albertans Reference List, Part 2.

Thank you for sharing your work with us Elaine, Lauren, Jasleen, Sarah G., Samantha, and Sarah H.



Amazing Albertans: Text-Only Version 

Amazing Albertans is a series about influential Black Albertans, created by MacEwan University Students Elaine Tran, Lauren McMullen, Jasleen Kang, Sarah Green, Samantha Diluvio, and Sarah Higgins.

Originally produced for Sustainability 301 with Dr. Tai Munro in Fall 2021, we are happy to share their work and celebrate these important Albertans during Black History Month. 

Amazing Albertans: John Ware

John Ware was born into enslavement circa 1845 to 1850 on a cotton plantation near Georgetown, South Carolina. He became a free man after the American Civil War in 1865 and found work on a ranch in Fort Worth, Texas where he refined his skills as a cowboy. During the late 1870s with his improved ranching abilities, he worked to drive herds of cattle from Texas to Montana.

Ware met Tom Lynch in 1882 in Idaho. Lynch came from Canada to purchase more than 3,000 cattle, and he was in search of skilled cowboys to herd the cattle back to the Rocky Mountain foothills for Sir Hugh Allan's North-West Cattle Co., also known as Bar U Ranch.

Experienced cowboys were in demand on the Canadian range during the 1880s, so Ware took the opportunity to stay at Bar U. In1884, he began working at a newly established Quorn Ranch to manage imported and expensive horses. His position at both Bar U and Quorn earned him a well-respected status.

During the springs of 1884 and 1885, Ware joined hundreds of cowboys to gather cattle from Montana to Calgary. In May 1885, he registered his own brand, "9999'' or the "walking-stick brand," to mark livestock identifying its owner. It was later re-registered as 999 on January 3, 1898. 

In 1890, Ware began his own ranch by Millarville, where he met his future wife, Mildred Lewis. They were married in February of 1982 in a Calgary Baptist church. She was the daughter of Daniel V. Lewis, a black homesteader and cabinet-maker who moved from Toronto to Calgary. They had three sons and two daughters; a fourth son died in infancy. 

Ware and his family moved near Red Deer River. Their 300 head of cattle were relocated to the new ranch site as well. In 1902, their home was destroyed by heavy floods, so they moved to higher ground. 

Lewis passed away due to pneumonia in March 1905. Most of his family were sent to Baltimore to live with her grandparents. Shortly after, on September 13, 1905, Ware was killed when his horse tripped in a badger hole and fell on him. The property was sold. 

Ware was a major contributor to pioneering ranching in Western Canada. His funeral in Calgary was well attended by ranchers who mourned one of the most respected members of their community. 


  • Official recognition of Ware Creek on December 8, 1943
  • Appellation of John Ware Ridge in 1970
  • Designation of Mount Ware on September 6, 1951
  • John Ware Junior High in Calgary
  • John Ware Building and 4 Nines Dining Centre at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology
  • John Ware Cabin restored by Parks Canada reopened in June 2001 and was officially unveiled on Parks Day in July 2002. 
  • Canada Post stamp in February 2012 during Black History Month
  • John Ware Reimagined: a play that premiered in 2014 by Albertan director Cheryl Foggo
  • John Ware Reclaimed: a documentary film by Foggo for the National Film Board 


Amazing Albertans: Annie Saunders

Annie Saunders was born in 1836 in the United States. She was enslaved until the Emancipation Proclamation. In 1877, she was a steamboat stewardess on the Missouri River. There she met Mary Macleod, who was headed west to join her husband, Colonel James Macleod of the North-West Mounted Police, in the Fort Macleod outpost named after him. Mary asked Saunders on the spot to join her in Canada as the children’s nanny, to which Saunders responded yes. She lived with the Macleod family from 1877 until 1880. 

The family moved to Pincher Creek in 1880, though Saunders chose to live separately while still working for them. Around that time, Saunders began running her own businesses. She successfully ran a restaurant, catering service, laundry service, and children’s boarding room service. 

In an 1891 Pincher Creek census, she was listed as a member of the Methodist Church. Not much else is known about her social life. In 1884, a physical assault on Saunders by Mrs. Broulette was reported. It is not known whether it was racially motivated, but it should not be ruled out. 

In 1894, the Macleod family settled in Calgary, but Saunders decided to stay in Pincher Creek. She passed away on July 19, 1898, and she was buried at Pincher Creek cemetery. Her funeral was attended by local citizens. 

Saunders pioneered Black-owned businesses. She provided essential services to her community, yet there is a lack of record of her history. 


Amazing Albertans: Joseph Lewis

Joseph Lewis, who was also known as Levy Johnston, was born in 1772 in Manchester, New Hampshire. When he was 20 years old, he moved to Montreal working as a voyageur in the fur trade, and joined the Northwest Company. 

Four years later, he signed a three-year contract with Hudson’s Bay Company. In 1799, he arrived near Lac La Biche, Alberta, by canoe and portage. There he helped Peter Fidler found the Greenwich House Trading Post. Lewis is believed to be one of the first Black American people to arrive in Edmonton. In 1806, he married a First Nations woman, whose name is undiscovered in historical records. They had a son, James, and two daughters, Margaret and Polly. 

He joined Joseph Howse on a mapping expedition across the Rockies west of Columbia River. It was the first HBC expedition west of the Rockies. They returned to Edmonton House, now known as Fort Edmonton, in 1811. 

Lewis left HBC in 1814 to work as an independent businessman, then retired by 1814. He settled in Saskatchewan District until 1820 when he was killed by a young Blackfoot man. His children moved to Red River where they became part of a Metis community. 

Lewis is one of the few Black people in Alberta to be documented by name who freely worked at the beginning of the Northwest fur trade. He was also the first recorded black person to settle in the Prairie provinces. 


Amazing Albertans: Violet King

Violet King was born on October 18. 1929, in Calgary. Her grandparents moved from Oklahoma to Keystone, now known as Breton, in 1911 after a call from the Canadian government for American farmers to occupy land. However, the Government immediately halted the call to ban Black immigrants from entering the Canadian Prairies. 

In 1919, her parents, John and Stella, moved to Calgary, where they resided in Hillhurst-Sunnyside. King was one of four children. She attended Crescent Heights High School and was an active member of the student body. In Grade 12, she became president of the Girls’ Association. In her high school yearbook, she wrote, “Violet wants to become a criminal lawyer,” and she later did. 

She pursued post-secondary education at the University of Alberta in 1948, and she was one of three women studying in the Faculty of Law while being the only Black female student. She worked as a piano teacher in Edmonton to finance her schooling. 

King became a member of the Blue Stocking Club, a history and political discussion group. Her activities did not stop there. She was the vice president of the students’ union and representative to the National Federation of University Students. In 1952, King was chosen as class historian and representative to the International Student Services Conference in Hamilton, Ontario. At the same time, she received an Executive “A” gold ring among three others. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1952 and earned her LLB degree in 1954.

After graduation, King articled in Calgary with Edwards J. McCormick, QC, a criminal trial lawyer. In June of 1954 she was called to the Alberta Bar and went on to become the first Black female lawyer practicing law in Canada. In 1956. King moved to Ottawa to take on a federal job at the Department of Citizenship and Immigration. She became a non-practicing member of the Law Society of Alberta in order to take the federal role. 

She later moved to New Jersey in 1963. King became the executive director of the Newark YMCA’s community branch, assisting Black employment seekers. In 1969, King transferred to a YMCA in Chicago as a director of planning, then later as director of manpower, planning, and staff development. In 1976, she became the first woman to hold an executive position in the National Council of YMCA’s Organizational Development Group, holding the executive director title.

King married Godfrey C. Henry in 1965, and in 1966, King gave birth to their daughter, Jo-Anne Henry. 

King developed cancer and passed away on March 30. 1982, in New York. She openly and honestly spoke of racial prejudice in Canada. She also highlighted the challenges and discrimination women faced in the workplace. King overcame barriers and paged the way for women and Black people in Alberta. 


Amazing Albertans: Virnetta Anderson

Virnetta Nelson Anderson was born on October 29,1920, in Monticello, Arkansas. She was educated in a public high school in Hot Springs, Arkansas. She attended A. M. and N. College in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and the Metropolitan School of Business in Los Angeles, California. 

In 1952, Anderson moved to Calgary with her husband Ezzrett “Sugarfoot” Anderson. He was drafted by the Calgary Stampeders and was one of the first Black professional football players. In 1955, he retired and became a mechanic, as she shifted to politics.

Anderson actively participated in church and community service in Calgary:

  • Served various roles in the United Church
  • Member of the Mount Royal College Ladies’ Auxiliary
  • Co-founder and president for Meals on Wheels
  • Volunteer board member for United Way, Calgary Tourist and Convention Association, and Calgary Centre for the Performing Arts. 

In October 1974, Anderson was elected to Calgary’s city council. She served on the City Council until October 1977. She was the first Black alderwoman in Calgary and in Alberta. In her time on council, she proposed a light rail system for public transit, similar to the present-day CTrain. 

At the end of her Council term, former mayor Ralph Klein appointed her to join his Citizen Advisory Committee. The mayor needed an independent woman’s point of view about issues threatening the quality of life. 

In 1988, she was chosen as the Paul Harris Fellow by the Calgary Rotary Club. She was also nominated for the YMCA’s Women of Distinction Lifetime Achievement Award for community service in 1992. She was also awarded the Canada 125 Commemorative Medal. 

Anderson passed away on February 11, 2006. Her legacy as an exemplary role model lives on as her contributions to the community are recognized. In September 2020, the City Council’s newly renovated great hall was named the “Virnetta Anderson Hall.” 

Thank you for sharing your work with us Elaine, Lauren, Jasleen, Sarah G., Samantha, and Sarah H.