Recent Blog Posts

Creating Oral History Excerpts and Making Pasta. They have more Similarities then One would believe.

As a student one has to learn how to make meals. One of my favourite meals to enjoy is pasta and there are some similarities in making pasta and constructing Oral History Excerpts at the Sarah and Chaim Neuberg Holocaust Education Center where my history internship is occurring.  

Making Historical Judgments: The Value of Assessing Primary Textual Sources


Recently, in my role as a Public History Student with the Ministry of Indigenous Affairs, I was asked to review a legal opinion written by John A. Macdonald in his capacity as Attorney General of Canada West. In this respect, the text pertained to his opinion on a matter concerning the Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation.

Given Macdonald’s role in the perpetuation of policies of discrimination against Indigenous people; I found it odd that the Ministry would consider his opinion on the issue, whereby, his documented antagonism towards First Nations, would no doubt have biased his understanding of the ownership of a given claim. However, upon a closer reading of the relevant texts, it became clear to me, that the value had in interpreting his narrative, afforded a greater appreciation of the historical record. In that, the analysis of Macdonald’s writings offered an interactive understanding of the utility provided by the assessment of a breadth of conflicting primary source documents.


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What Have I Learned from My Interviews with International Students?

Since I’ve started my internship at University of Toronto News, I have been working on a series about international students at University of Toronto. As an international student myself, I am familiar with both the positive and negative aspects of studying abroad. However, interviewing with various students with various backgrounds made me understand, we all have had similar experiences. 

For this post, I compiled four common answers-feelings-thoughts (whatever you want to call) that I’ve got from the international students’ interviews. 

Immigration and Opportunity: How to Build a Life through Community

In the transcribing I have done up to this point for the Multicultural History Society of Ontario (MHSO), one thing has been very apparent in the stories of immigrants from Europe. This "thing", is rather, a phenomenon that seems to take place on a scale in the thousands regarding community populations.

I have begun to theorize that part of the consolidation process for immigrants is actually relying on the work and community involvement people from their same ethnic groups participate in.

How an Item Becomes Part of a Museum Collection

                                                                                                    Me holding a megalodon tooth from the Discovery Gallery.

Ever wonder how museums acquire rare, antique, or unusual objects? Or what happens after a museum receives an object but before it’s unveiled to the public? From my experiences cataloguing new items for the Learning Department in the Royal Ontario Museum, I’ve learned that the “behind the scenes” work at the museum takes a lot longer and is a lot more hands-on than I expected.

Written by: Shawna Quigley
Date posted: November 25, 2018

What I Learned While Handling a World War Two Era Rifle

In my first two weeks at the Royal Canadian Military Institute, I was introduced to several World War Two era rifles, pistols, submachine guns and assault rifles. As someone who is thrilled with the military history of the Second World War, it was a dream to be getting such a hands-on experience. I realized there is much about guns that most of us don’t know until we get our hands on one.

The RCMI in 2017

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