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Wilfrid Laurier University Faculty of Arts
October 25, 2016
Canadian Excellence

Winners & Other News

The prizes are awarded for the best essays in British Columbia history, including: the related disciplines of historical geography, historical sociology, art history, the history of education and ethnohistory, to students at the provincial university colleges. The prizes are meant to encourage what Dr. Ormsby did so well: researching and writing about British Columbia history in a way that informs and engages a broad audience.

The Margaret Ormsby Prizes are offered by the Society for the Promotion of British Columbia History to honour Dr. Margaret Anchoretta Ormsby. She is most widely known for her book, British Columbia: A History, the first modern attempt to explain the development of British Columbia to British Columbians. A pioneering woman scholar who headed the history department at the University of British Columbia for over a decade, Dr. Ormsby promoted the history of the province more effectively than any other individual.

Here are the winners of the essay prize for BC History. Congratulations to all the recepients!


Brian Stephenson, (UBC Okanagan)  “A Closer Look at the Foundations: The Role of Freemasonry in Early Kelowna”.

Colin Pacholuk, (Vancouver Island University), “Hockey and the Okanagan Identity: The Penticton Vees and the 1955 World Hockey Championships”.

Michael Schmidt, (Fraser Valley University)  "Split Loyalties: Fraser Valley Mennonite service in the Second World War”.


Tim Bertram (Vancouver Island University), “The Not-So-Terrific Tom: Tom Campbell and the Creation of a Vancouver Police State”

Kelsey Siemens (University of the Fraser Valley), "'Enemy Aliens and Conchies': Perceptions of the 'Un-British' in the Fraser Valley, 1939-1946" 




Kelly Black (Vancouver Island University),“They Knew Their Roads and Where They Wanted to Go: Roads and Trails in the Southern Cowichan Valley, 1860-1875”.

Eden Dovauo (Thompson Rivers University), “From Camp to Community: Mining Technology's Influence on Long-Term Settlement Patterns”


Del Cunningham (University of the Fraser Valley), "Construction Of The Bonneville And Grand Coulee Dams: Environmental Impact On Salmon Habitat In The Columbia River"


Tyrone Reeder (University of British Columbia-Okanagan) "'They Must Understand that they cannot disregard our law.' The History of the conflict between the Canadian Government and the Doukhobors from 1899-1940."


Callie Joyce Smith (Malaspina University College), "Cricket, Culture, and Empire in Victoria B.C."

Marlene Roseboom (University College of the Fraser Valley), "The Evolution of the Kwakwak'wakw Potlatch: From Pre-contact to Post-ban"


Amy Kramer (University College of the Fraser Valley), "Women are Nurturing, Women are Subordinate, Women are Mothers: The Feminization of Teaching in British Columbia, 1872-1914." 


Allen Peabody (Malaspina University College), "Modus Vivendi: Race, Economics, and Political Exploitation in Early British Columbia" 

Vicki Willis (University College of the Fraser Valley), "The Early History of British Columbia Chinese Sojourners: On the Journey to Gum Sahn, 1858-1885"


Sherri Ellis (University College of the Fraser Valley), "Sons of Freedom, the Canadian State, adn the Media: Freedomite Children in the 1930s and 1950s" 

Tracey Moss (Malaspine University College), "A Trade of Such Terrible Possibilities: Outcomes of the SS Oscar Explosion, Nanaimo Harbour, 1913" 


LiLynn Wan, Okanagan University College, for her paper "Nkamaplix Okanagan Adoption of Agriculture, 1877-1881."

Anne Doré, University College of the Fraser Valley, for her paper "Japanese Canadian Sport History in the Fraser Valley: Judo and Baseball in the Interwar Years."


Christine Hawkins (Okanagan University College), "Situational Control: The Effective Leadership of Peter Vasilievich Verigin."

Matthew Séguin (Malaspina University College) "Marching with Purpose: Labour Day Parades in Nanaimo, 1890-1902."


Jean Foote (University-College of the Cariboo), "The Honourable Thomas Humphreys: A Controversial Contributor to Changes in Early B.C.Politics."

Anne Doré (University-College of the Fraser Valley),"Good Neighbours: Remembering Japanese Canadians of the Fraser Valley."

Leanne Dyck (Okanagan University-College) "Goal Symbiosis: An Analysis of the Mutually Compatible Goals of the Bella Bella Heiltsuks and the Methodist Missionaries of B.C."

Wendy Robertson (Malaspina University College) "You start the work, and I'll fill in the blanks.' To All Appearances a Lady: Fact or Fiction?"

1999 (essay titles unavailable)

Charlene Smith (Okanagan University College)

Stan Wiebe (University College of the Fraser Valley)

Erin Ashbee (Malaspina University College)

Honourable Mention: Carol Baird (University College of the Fraser Valley)


Carol Baird (University College of the Fraser Valley), "Sandbags and Rubber Boots: Chilliwack and the Flood of 1948." (Co-recipient)

Teresa Hampel (University College of the Fraser Valley) "'A Land of Freedom and Humanity?' Weighing Racial Discrimination within the Black Colonial Experience in the Vancouver Island Region: 1858-1872." (Co-recipient)

Dorothy Barenscott (Okanagan University College),"The Ethnography of George Hunt: 'Arti'fact or Arti'fiction'"?


Jessica Pauls (University College of the Fraser Valley), "Emily Carr: Her Ethnographic Importance to British Columbia."

Carol Grant Powell (Malaspina University College) "The Horne Family Portrait: A Micro-Study in the Use of Photographs as Primary Sources."

George Richard (Okanagan University College) "Price Ellison: A Gilded Man in British Columbia's Gilded Age."