maple leaf Today's Canadian Headline...
1987 BELL RINGS MVP TITLEToronto Ontario – Blue Jays slugger George Bell named the American League’s Most Valuable Player (MVP); first Blue Jay to win the honour, as well as the first player from a Canadian-based baseball team and the first native of the Dominican Republic.

Also On This Day...

Norway House Manitoba – James Evans 1801-1846 invents a nine-character syllabic alphabet for the Cree and Inuit people, still in use today; he later prints birch-bark hymn books in Cree; Evans is General Superintendent of the Northwest Indian Missions.


And in Today's Canadian Birthdays...

Gordon Lightfoot 1938-
folksinger, composer, was born on this day at Orillia, Ontario. Lightfoot first began singing in the church choir, and taught himself to play guitar in high school. On graduation, he headed off to Toronto to take up a folk singing career. He was a success in the Yorkville clubs in the mid-60s, and in 1969, signed with Warner Bros./Reprise Records, where he recorded such works as If You Could Read My Mind (1970), Summer Side Of Life (1971), Don Quixote (1972), Sundown (1973), Summertime Dream (1976), Endless Wire (1978), Shadows (1982), Salute (1983), and others.
In 1986, after the release of the East Of Midnight album, Lightfoot took time off to reassess his music and his life. In 1989, he started writing again, and touring with a band consisting of Rick Haynes (Bass), Terry Clements (Lead Guitar), Barry Keane (Drums), and Michael Heffernan (Keyboards). He also produced his 18th album Waiting For You, which is “very simple, very acoustic” according to Lightfoot. “I think it harkens back to an earlier style… of bringing things full circle”.
Lightfoot has won four Grammy nominations and 16 Juno awards, including the Juno Hall Of Fame Award. His list of hit songs includes Early Morning Rain, Canadian Railroad Trilogy, Cotton Jenny, Don Quixote, Sundown, Shadows, If You Could Read My Mind, Carefree Highway, The Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald, Beautiful, Alberta Bound, Ribbon of Darkness. Among the artists who have recorded his songs are Peter, Paul, and Mary, Ian and Sylvia, Marty Robbins, Richie Havens, Glenn Campbell, Anne Murray, Nana Mouskouri, Harry Belafonte, Elvis Presley, Barbra Streisand and George Hamilton IV.
This year Lightfoot was one of the winners of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards. Click here for some good Lightfoot links.
Also Petra Burka 1946-figure skater, was born on this day at Amsterdam Netherlands in 1946. Coached by her mother Ellen, Burka started skating at age 6 and won the Canadian junior figure skating title in 1961 at 14. A year later, she became the world’s first woman skater to land a triple salchow in competition. Later in 1962, at her first World Championships, held in Prague, she placed fourth. In 1965 she won not only the Canadian figure skating crown, but also the North American and World titles, making her the first ladies champion for Canada since Barbara Ann Scott. She also won the Olympic bronze medal that year.

Also Douglas Shearer 1899-1971audio engineer, motion picture pioneer, was born on this day at Westmount Quebec in 1899; died in Hollywood California in 1971. Shearer went to Hollywood in the 1920s to visit his sister, the actress Norma Shearer, and got a job at MGM as an assistant in the camera department. He headed MGM’s sound department during the development of talkies, and spent over 40 years with the studio, helping to perfect motion picture sound, and adding many technical innovations such as finding a way to reduce unwanted noise. He won 12 Academy Awards for Best Sound Recording in pictures such as The Big House (1930), Naughty Marietta (1935), San Francisco (1936), Strike Up the Band (1940), 30 Seconds over Tokyo (1944), Green Dolphin Street (1947) and The Great Caruso (1951). In 1955, he became MGM’s Director of Technical Research, and in 1959 won an Oscar in the Scientific and Technical category, as the co-developer of MGM’s Camera 65 wide-screen system. To learn more, consult his pages in the Internet Movie Database.

In Other Events…
1994 Ottawa Ontario – Defence Minister David Collenette announces public inquiry into the alleged DND coverup of brutality by Canadian peacekeepers in Somalia.
Ottawa Ontario –
1992 Ottawa Ontario – Justice Minister Kim Campbell says Ottawa to pay up to 80 victims of brainwashing $100,000 each on compassionate grounds; experiments by Dr. Ewen Cameron at McGill in early 1960s funded by Canada, CIA.
1992 Ottawa Ontario – CP Rail asks National Transportation Agency to abandon all lines east of Sherbrooke, Quebec, mostly in New Brunswick and Maine; lost $52 million in past 3 years
1987 St. John’s, Newfoundland – Figure skater Barbara Ann Scott-King and speed-walker Fred Hayward, both former Olympians, carry the Olympic Torch down Signal Hill and hand it off to Maurice Sheppard, the first of 6,620 Canadians who will carry the flame on an 18,000 km trek to Calgary. The Torch arrives 87 days later, on Feb. 13, 1988, to open the Winter Olympics.
1981 Manitoba – Howard Russell Pawley 1934- leads NDP to victory in Manitoba election, defeating Progressive Conservatives under Sterling Lyon.
1968 Rome Italy – Al Balding (b1924) & George Knudson (b1937) win World Cup golf tournament in Rome; first victory for Canadian team since Canada donated Cup; they defeat 41 other national teams
1938 Washington D.C. – US, Canada and UK sign a trilateral trade agreement; make further tariff concessions to ease Depression.
1913 Quebec – Completion of Quebec division of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railroad; at the Ontario boundary
1874 Esquimalt BC – Colonial Secretary Lord Carnarvon negotiates the building of the Esquimalt to Nanaimo section of the CPR, plus $2 million a year in surveys on the main BC line.
1856 Stratford Ontario – Grand Trunk Railway reaches Stratford from Guelph.
1831 Ontario – William Lyon Mackenzie 1795-1861 attends the opening of the second session of the 11th Parliament of Upper Canada; meets until Jan. 28, 1832; he will be expelled twice for criticism in his newspaper, ‘The Colonial Advocate’.
1800 Alberta – David Thompson 1770-1857 visits the Piegan (Blackfoot) Indians; to Dec. 3.
1775 Charlottetown PEI – American privateers raid Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island.
1623 Quebec Quebec – Canada’s first highway is built, connecting the Lower and Upper Towns of Quebec.


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