Sunday, 16 August 2015

History Denied or Delayed???

  I’m not sure that City officials are out to deny history or they merely have delayed recognition of one of Winnipeg’s most important historical events, the General Strike of 1919.
  There is only one official marker of the Strike put up by the City – a bronze plaque at the corner of William and Main.  Don’t be embarrassed if you have never seen it, as it is very innocuously placed where only those waiting for a bus might notice it.
  Another plaque was to the right of the entrance to the City Hall chambers. It was taken down, apparently ‘for cleaning’ over two years ago and has not been replaced.
  The Provincial government has at least recognized the Strike. There is a very informative display at the Museum of History. However, another plaque that was in the main hall of the Legislative building has been removed.
    Bruce Owen of the Free Press recently noted at a public event, that for decades after the Strike there was virtually no mention of the Strike in city newspapers. This is understandable as the owners of the media, business and industry were the ones who suppressed the Strike.
  Fortunately that are people in the City who are keeping the history of the Strike very alive. Thanks to Danny Schur and STRIKE the Musical, or the Brown family and Victoria Parkette (see story below). The Winnipeg Labour Council President has spoken often about the Strike and the Labour History Project has kept this blog active.
  Could it be that there is still a fear in City officials and the ruling elite of Winnipeg, that another general strike could erupt if there is recognition of what happened before. Possibly they are just waiting for the 100th anniversary of the Strike to recognize its contribution to our social history and to then take credit for the Strike!

Thursday, 30 April 2015

General Strike - 96th Anniversary

 OTTAWA—A room devoted to the 1919 Winnipeg General Strike could have been excluded from the renovated Canadian Museum of History, but officials promise the labour movement will still have a home in its halls.

Toronto Star article

STRIKE Tour - May 24, 2015
The 1919 General Strike Tour took 40 people through the highlights of what happened in 1919, with a look at social and economic conditions that led to the General Strike. The tour reflected on how the echoes of the Strike can be heard in Winnipeg of 2015.

The tour started in the north end, went to the residential area south of the Assiniboine River and ended in the Exchange area of the city, particularly on the Red River at  Victoria Park. 

Participants said they found the tour informative and particularly were pleased to learn about Victoria Park and the lack of effort on the part of government to commemorate this important moment in Winnipeg's history.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Victoria Parkette

Who knows where the Victoria Parkette is located?
It is a small section of land, at the corner of Lily and James, near the waterfront. It is intended to remind everyone of Victoria Park that was once a central feature of the City's park infrastructure.

The owners of the land have set up Victoria Parkette on their own, as they saw the significance of the Park to our social history. Jon Brown of Leon Brown initiated the effort and I think we should applaud him and his family for it. The signage is now removed  (September 2016)but for at least a few years this was the only memorial to Victoria Park.

The Parkette is not on the original land of Victoria Park as that land is now occupied by a condominium development and a hydro station. The City of Winnipeg has done virtually nothing to commemorate the Winnipeg General Strike of 1919 and Victoria Park, so it has fallen to people like Jon and those involved in the Labour History Project to maintain this important place in history.

Watch Videos:  Victoria Park and Victoria Parkette

Monday, 13 April 2015

STRIKE becomes a movie

The award-winning 2005 stage musical by Danny Schur & Rick Chafe becomes a major movie musical

Production Facts

  • Stars signing on
  • Shooting on location in Winnipeg, Canada in spring/summer, 2016
  • Made-in-Manitoba production enjoys one of the highest labour tax credits of any jurisdiction
  • Funded by Strike! Movie Limited Partnership
  • Premiering in the first quarter of 2017