East York Historical Society

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Singer notes Black history content in songs of the 1960s and ’70s

Rich Pearson learns more and more about the music he performs, especially this time of year.

When he recently sang Paul McCartney’s lyrics, “Blackbird singing in the dead of night, take these sunken eyes and learn to see; all your life, you were only waiting for this moment to be free,” he realized the song wasn’t about birds at all.

“(McCartney) was thinking about the civil rights movement at that time he wrote it; he wrote it at the 68,” Pearson said.

Former East York mayor slams amalgamation

Former East York mayor Alan Redway doesn’t mince words when it comes to his feelings about the 1998 amalgamation of six municipalities into the current City of Toronto.

“Amalgamation has caused destruction for Toronto,” he told those attending a forum Tuesday evening at the S. Walter Stewart library branch at 170 Memorial Park Ave.

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Exploring Toronto’s green space

“These ravines have captured and preserved the stories and relics of human history going back thousands of years,” author Jason Ramsay-Brown told the East York Historical Society meeting. “In many way they are our largest open-air museum.”

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Change of pace for amateur historians

“The greatest device that has happened to our deaf community is the Blackberry or the cellphone, the ability to text communicate over the phone or cellular network,” Derek said. “The ability to communicate without someone in between.”

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Archeologists unearth ugly reminder of War of 1812

“The doctors really didn’t have much to work with, in terms of tools,” said archeologist Dr. Ronald Williamson. “The soldiers would hold a musket ball between their teeth and would be given a dram of whiskey to ease the pain. Then their limb would be sawed off, and sometimes snapped to save time.”

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Toronto’s Scottish connection

Richard Fiennes-Clinton knows audiences don’t need to come from a Scottish background to take interest in the historical impact of Scotsmen. Many people who took interest in his local lecture last week about the Scottish…