Books

Did you know that the Archives Store sells an assortment of local history books? Many of the authors are from Alberta and have done a lot of the heavy lifting for you on a variety of research topics - often right here at the PAA!

 

Check out our collection of books covering topics with wide ranging interests: Francophone history - counterfeit currency schemes - escapes from Germany - oh my!

7 SLEEPS UNTIL CHRISTMAS

Every holiday season, children everywhere write letters to Santa. Well, what if he wrote back? Stuart Adams, local author and Edmonton Downtown Christmas Light-Up Santa from 1989 to 2004, seeks to answer that very question in this heart-warming story book.

 

A JOYFUL HARVEST

A Joyful Harvest tells the story of Jewish life in southern Alberta from 1889 to 2005, beginning with the early pioneers who came from distant lands to the southern most reaches of what was then the Northwest Territories.

AFTER THE FUR TRADE: LIVING ON THE LAND

This book is an in-depth look at four of the original homesteader families of Edmonton who staked river lots in about 1870 in the area now known as Highlands. It is a story of Edmonton as it moved from a fur trading post into a farming settlement and eventually into a small city.

Author: Carol Snyder

 

ALBERTA HISTORY: LESSER SLAVE LAKE REGION: NEWS REVIEWS VOLUME 1: 1880-1896

Colonial & Indigenous relationships, the fur trade, methods of transportation. From 1880 to 1896, these changes were happening faster than ever before in Northern Alberta!

Containing an overview of these transformations, this book documents several news stories from the time. Through it, you can relive one of the greatest expansion periods in Alberta s history!

From starvation, epidemics and land surveys primarily affecting the Indigenous people, to the beginnings of missions and the exploding gold rush, this book documents key events that helped shape the Lesser Slave Lake Region.

During this time, life in the North was being tested. Settlers were moving into the area and the fur trade was considered an economic driver to place Edmonton as a commercial centre. At the same time, the old ways of life, transportation methods and cultural activities were still taking place.

While the focus of this book is the Lesser Slave Lake Region, other areas are included. Northern Alberta which is now about half the province   is a vast geographical space. People were bound to each other through travel routes and the fur trade. What happened in one community often affected the next, even if they were several hundred kilometres apart.

Four themed commentaries give timelines and information on the following subjects: Fur Trade, Travel, Settlement/Development and Indigenous Impacts. An index of names, places and other information containing brief descriptions of events is available in the back of the book. The included articles offer newsworthy highlights and present a snapshot of the people and events in the region.

ALBERTA, FORMERLY A PART OF THE NORTHWEST TERRITORIES: AN INDEX TO BIRTH, MARRIAGE AND DEATH

An Index to Birth, Marriage and Death Registrations Prior to 1900.

 

ALBERTA'S FRANCOPHONES

This collection of photographs culled from various archival holdings throughout the province is animated by the author's desire to pay homage to the French-speaking men and women who have left their imprint on the history of Alberta.

ALBERTA'S GOVERNMENT HOUSE

In October of 1913, George Hedley Vicars Bulyea, Alberta's first lieutenant governor, celebrated the completion of Government House by throwing a grand fete, to which he invited Albertans from all walks of life. It was easy to imagine in those early days that the stately mansion, arguably the most imposing in the relatively new province of Alberta, would always serve as a vice-regal residence, given its luxury and grandeur. A mere 25 years later, however, this role ended and the world events would cast their shadow on Alberta, and the building would be called into a less glamourous kind of duty.

AT FIRST GLANCE

These portraits offer a close-up view of people who, in point of fact, are impossibly distant from us. More than thirty years of day after day has long since transformed them into whatever they were to become. Yet here they are in clear black and white, still mysteriously present. The images in Denis Wall's album expose flashes of tenderness and self-absorption, desire and love, optimism and pain. As you walk these streets with him, you are certain to find yourself in the frame.

 

BOOZE AND BARS

Booze and Bars: A Brief History of Pub Culture in the Crowsnest Pass

 

Welcome to the Crowsnest Pass!

 

In a region shaped by industry and tragedy, the Crowsnest Pass survived and has created one of the most vibrant and beautiful  watering holes  in the Canadian Rockies. Surviving amazing hardships in the Crowsnest Pass was an accomplishment in itself. How did those early residents do it? To be honest, they had a little help from a few libations now and then.

 

BRUTINEL: LE REMARQUABLE DESTIN D'UN FRANCAIS, BRIGADIER-GENERAL DE L'ARMEE CANADIENNE

L'extraordinaire chronique d un citoyen français, Brigadier-Général dans l armée canadienne. Brutinelest la biographie fascinante d un immigrant français en Alberta, Canada, relatée par des amis intimes de la famille, Dominique et Jacques Baylauq. Au début des années 1900, avant de s engager dans l Armée canadienne et de mettre sur pied la Brigade motorisée de mitrailleuses, une force tactique nouvelle de la guerre moderne, il apporta une contribution importante à la jeune province, travaillant comme éditeur de journal, arpenteur et bâtisseur de chemin de fer. Le livre contient des transcriptions d entrevues de la Canadian Broadcasting Corporation avec Brutinel à propos de son service durant la Première Guerre mondiale.

BRUTINEL: THE EXTRAORDINARY STORY OF A FRENCH CITIZEN BRIGADIER-GENERAL IN THE CANADIAN ARMY

Raymond Brutinel was born into an old family from Alet-lesbains, in South-East of France. At the age of 16 he abandoned his studies to travel around the world on some of the last sailing ships. After his military service in Tarbes in the South-West of France, he left with his wife and son and settled in Edmonton, Alberta, in 1905. He quickly prospered, pursuing numerous activities in journalism, prospecting and finance. His keen interest in military strategy, coupled with his passion for history, inspired him to create, in Canada, at the outset of the WWI, the first autonomous motorized machine gun unit.

 

DAIRIES OF EDMONTON 1905-1955

A historical account of the dairies of Edmonton from 1905 to 1955.

EDMONTON HOUSE JOURNAL 1806-1821

In 1795, the Hudson's Bay Company established Edmonton House and the North West Company Fort Augustus a few kilometers downstream from the present-day city of Edmonton. Although both posts were moved several times, they operated side by side as the major administrative, trade, and provisioning centres on the North Saskatchewan River from 1795 to 1821, when the companies merged.

The post journals and district reports from Edmonton House for the period from 1806 to 1821 are reproduced verbatim in this volume.

 

EDMONTON HOUSE JOURNAL 1821-1826

During the 1820s, Edmonton House re-emerged as the headquarters of a much larger Saskatchewan trading district of the Hudson's Bay Company. Its fur-gathering hinterland extended from the southern edges of the boreal forest near present-day Westlock, Alberta, south to the Missouri and Yellowstone Rivers, and from the confluence of the North and South Saskatchewan Rivers west to the Rocky Mountains - in short, it contained virtually all of what is now central and southern Alberta, and parts of Saskatchewan and Montana as well.

The principal clients who came to trade at Edmonton House were bands of the various First Nations who occupied these territories, including Cree, Blackfoot, Iroquois, Peigan, Sarcee, Stoney and Gros Ventre, and the growing population of Metis.

 

EDMONTON HOUSE JOURNAL 1826-1834

As Edmonton entered its fourth decade, its future as one of the most profitable Hudson's Bay Company posts seemed secure, but were its best days behind it? In the late 1820s and the 1830s, John Rowand, the imposing figure in charge of the fort, struggled to adapt to the rapidly changing circumstances on the northwestern plains. American traders operating from the Missouri river began to draw off much of the trade of the Plains people, even as the relations among and within Plains nations grew ever more acrimonious. Closer to home, and much to Rowand's frustration, Metis families grew increasingly assertive and independent. Rowand could not find peace been within the fort's palisades. Company servants chafed under the heavy hand of an increasingly irascible Rowand. The Edmonton House Journals published here offer a fascinating glimpse at the day-to-day life at one of the HBC's most important trading centres.

ESCAPE FROM GERMANY

Out of the ten thousand British Air Force prisoners who were in permanent camps in Germany in the Second World War, less than thirty ever reached Britain or neutral territory, despite the most energetic and highly-organized attempts. Even so, for many prisoners of war, the arguments in favour of trying to escape were overwhelming.

This book contains the true and often incredible stories of the heroic efforts of the members of the RAF and the Army who tried to escape from prisoner of war camps in Germany.

This authoritative account of their many exploits, drawn from the narratives of the men themselves, makes compelling reading.

 

EVER-WIDENING CIRCLES

A history of St. Stephen's College, this book tells the stories, not only of the college and the theological students and the faculty who have worked there, but also of the high school, university and nursing students who, for many years, called the college residence home.

GAVIN BRECKENRIDGE (1870-1946)

This book is an in-depth research report about Gavin Breckenridge, his family, and the Hazelwood Dairy.

Author: Bob Snyder

 

HER VOICE, HER CENTURY

Celebrate the trailblazing women of Alberta's past! Pick up a copy of Her Voice, Her Century, written by three local authors, including one of our very own Reference Archivists -  Karen Simonson! This book of four short plays draws from a rich variety of articles, private letters and court transcripts   enhanced by a variety of photographs from the Archives collection.

 

JAMES BOND STEELE DIARIES

Published in 2018 to commemorate the thirtieth anniversary of the Highlands Historical Society of Edmonton, the James Bond Steele Diaries follow the daily life of the one room schoolteacher who taught the children of settlers in early Edmonton, including what is now the Highlands neighbourhood.

 

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