Government House Lecture Series
As part of its 2014 Commemoration Project, the Government House Gate House Committee of the PEI Museum is presenting a lecture series on the history of Fanningbank with guest speakers Reg Porter and Dr. Edward MacDonald. The first in the series took place on August 25 with guest speaker Reg Porter discussing the evolution and use of the grounds at Government House. Sept 8 Reg Porter will speak about The Exterior of Government House Through the Years. Government House, as the building is properly called, was designed and built by the Yorkshire builder Isaac Smith and his associates in 1834. The design was based on English Neoclassical architecture with elements that connected strongly also with a secondary classical revival style, the Greek Revival, very popular at the time. The first exterior board cladding, removed in 1860 to be replaced with shingles, reflected this strongly. There is a considerable body of images that depict Government House at various times during its history and these will be explored to study the evolution of the exterior.
September 22 Reg Porter will talk about The Interior of Government House Through the Years. The history of the interior of Government House is not well documented with images, but the pictures and plans that do survive give us a good idea of how the House was used and how we may plan for future use and restoration. In this lecture the plan of the building will be examined with reference to its original appearance and use along with subsequent changes and renovations. The beautiful public rooms, with some extremely fine period furniture, will be examined.
October 6 Edward MacDonald will present The Backroom Boys: The Queen’s Representatives and Confederation. Tentatively, the role of the governors in bringing about the Charlottetown Conference and Confederation, generally, which would allow for a little discussion about the powers of a governor in the Confederation era compared to today and why the Colonial Office was pushing Confederation. The series, hosted by Beaconsfield Historic House, is part of the 2014 project presented by the Government House Committee. All lectures take place Monday at 7:30 pm in Beaconsfield’s Carriage House located at the corner of Kent & West Streets in Charlottetown. 902-368-6603
Mapping the Pre-settlement Forests of Prince Edward Island
On September 11 at 7.30 pm in the Wanda Wyatt Lecture Theatre, Room 104, K.C. Irving Chemistry Centre of UPEI, Dr. Doug Sobey, a research associate of the University’s Institute of Island Studies, and formerly at the University of Ulster, will give an illustrated public talk on the results of a study carried out by himself and William Glen (formerly of the Forestry Division), into the forest descriptions found on manuscript maps housed in the P.E.I. Public Archives dating from the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Sobey will discuss what the descriptions on the maps reveal about the Island’s forest-types before their destruction by clearance and fire. His research has been carried out with the support of both the Institute of Island Studies and the Forests, Fish and Wildlife Division of the PEI Dept of Agriculture and Forestry, and the lecture will include the launch of a recently published research report on the subject.
Social Justice Symposium
Citizens’ Alliance and ECELAW will host a workshop on Environmental Rights. On September 6 representatives from Island environmental groups and other interested parties will gather at the Farm Centre in Charlottetown for a workshop on the concept and process of environmental rights legislation. Promoted by scientists such as David Suzuki, and by Nova Scotia writer and filmmaker Silver Donald Cameron, the concept is that people in Canada deserve a healthy environment: clean water and clean air. The workshop will be facilitated by Cindy Richards of the Citizens’ Alliance and Jamie Simpson of East Coast Environmental Law Association. www.citizensallianceofpei.org
David Suzuki’s Blue Dot Tour
From space, Earth looks like a fragile blue dot. But it’s our only home, and that’s the message of David Suzuki’s final cross-country tour. From Sept 24 to Nov 9, the Blue Dot Tour will visit 20 communities across Canada, featuring David Suzuki and a renowned lineup of performers, artists and leaders who are standing together to see every Canadian’s right to live in a healthy environment legally recognized. The PEI stop is at Harbourfront Theatre in Summerside September 29, 7:30 pm. www.bluedot.ca, www.harbourfronttheatre.com