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Meetings

Monthly meetings are held in Cobourg's Victoria Hall.

Cobourg and District Historical Society Meetings are held every month except May, June, July, August and December.  Meetings are held on the fourth Tuesday in the Month.  Meetings start at 7:30 pm but coffee and cookies are available starting at 7:00 pm.  Meetings are $5 for non-members and free for members of the society and students. 


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News

Janet Kellough has written and appeared in numerous stage productions that feature a fusion of storytelling and music. As well, she is the author of seven books in the Ontario history based Thaddeus Lewis Mystery Series, the fifth book of which, Wishful Seeing was short-listed for the 2017 Crime Writers of Canada Arthur Ellis Best Novel Award and subsequently developed into a play of the same name by Ontario’s 4th Line Theatre. She has also written two contemporary novels and the speculative fiction thriller The Bathwater Conspiracy, which was nominated for a 2019 Alberta Book Publishing Award.ted

As a storyteller, Janet released two CDs – Swear On My Mother’s Grave, a collection of Prince Edward County tales; and Fowke Tales: Live at Lang, a journey into the roots of Ontario folk music.

Janet will lead a discussion on using local setting, period detail and documented historical characters to add authenticity to historical fiction, and explore how fiction can be used to illuminate and generate interest in local history.

Join us on Tuesday, November 22, in Victoria Hall. Doors open at 7:00 PM for coffee and cookies. The meeting begins at 7:30 PM. Guests are always welcome. Admission, including refreshments, is free for members and $5 for non-members. All are welcome so bring a friend or two. See you on Tuesday, November 22!

 

It started out as a straightforward architectural inventory of Hamilton Township’s older buildings. The township had never catalogued its heritage and in 2016, Tom Cruickshank proposed that he was the guy to do it. Retired from a career in journalism, he has an abiding interest in local history and heritage architecture which is a subject that he has pursued in no less than five books. His works include Old Ontario HousesOld Toronto Houses and The Settler’s Dream. He also worked as editor of Century Home and later, Harrowsmith Country Life. Currently he freelances for Watershed Magazine.

tedTom started to document all the farmhouses, bridges, churches and schoolhouses as a kind of archive of Hamilton’s history. As he toured the backroads and villages along the way, the project quickly took on a life of its own. In addition to cataloguing the wonderful architecture of the township, he also dove into family histories, newspaper searches and genealogical accounts. Now and then, some peculiar facts and even some family secrets emerged. While Tom’s talk will focus on the heritage architecture, it’ll also veer into personal histories and news events from the 19th century. After all, what’s more interesting: a slide show of pretty houses or a slide show of pretty houses that have stories to tell?

Join us for our second meeting of the 2022-2023 season on Tuesday, October 25 in Victoria Hall’s Concert Hall. Doors open at 7:00 PM for coffee and cookies. The meeting begins at 7:30 PM. Guests are always welcome. Admission, including refreshments, is free for members and $5 for non-members. All are welcome so bring a friend or two. See you on Tuesday, October 25!

In the 20th century's greatest war, the North Atlantic battlefield held the key to victory or defeat. It took 2,074 days and nights to determine its outcome, but the Battle of the Atlantic proved the turning point of the Second World War.

Ted Barris300For five and a half years, the German navy attempted to destroy Allied transatlantic convoys, mostly escorted by Royal Canadian Navy destroyers and corvettes, as well as aircraft of the Royal Canadian Air Force. In 1939, Canada's navy went to war with 13 warships and about 3,500 sailors. During the desperate Atlantic crossings, the RCN grew to 400 fighting ships and over 100,000 men and women in uniform. By V-E Day in 1945, it had become the 4th largest navy in the world.

Ted Barris will present the fascinating details of this epic battle. Ted is an expert on military history and has published 20 non-fiction books with many them winning awards.

Join us for our first meeting of the 2022-2023 season on Tuesday, September 27 in Victoria Hall's Concert Hall. Doors open at 7:00 PM for coffee and cookies. The meeting begins at 7:30 PM. Guests are always welcome. Admission, including refreshments, is free for members and $5 for non-members. All are welcome so bring a friend or two!

 

Dan BuchananWe are pleased to welcome author and speaker Dan Buchanan to our April 26 meeting.

Every community has its favourite prohibition characters and stories. It was a time we think of now as almost cartoonish in nature and we use it more as a punch line than anything else. In reality, it was all based on money and could often be very dangerous. Can you picture gun battles on Lake Ontario?

In Brighton, one of our prohibition characters was Ben Kerr, the notorious rum-runner who worked out of Presqu'ile Bay for a couple of years near the end of the 1920s. He was handsome and easy with money when he liked you. He had a fancy car and a honking speedboat. The mechanics at Wright's garage were particularly attentive when Kerr brought his car in for repairs.

How did Ben Kerr end up in the quiet little town of Brighton? It is the story of prohibition from start to finish, beginning in Hamilton and developing through the decade of smuggling and speakeasies. Of course, this all happened because politicians deemed it so. What on earth were they thinking? This presentation explores all of that and more. Strap in; it's a fun ride.

Join us in the Concert Hall of Victoria Hall on April 26, 2022 at 7:30 p.m. and learn more about the life of Ben Kerr. All required public health measures must to adhered to. Admission is free for members and $5 for guests.