Monday, March 14, 2011

Winnipeg's Great War: Jim Blanchard

For journalism class we had to read Winnipeg's Great War by Jim Blanchard. The book, which is about Winnipeg during the WWI era (1914-1918) is a factually rich account of what happened in our province (which, at that time, was the third largest in Canada) during World War One.

From the first page of this 267 page monster of a book, Blanchard spares no details of what was a revolutionary time for Winnipeg, and the world. For this reason, Winnipeg's Great War needs to be read with a great deal of care and consideration in order to absorb everything that he throws at you.

I found the book extremely interesting, yet hard to digest. (Not because it wasn't good, but just because of all the information that was being thrown my way.) Often I found that I would read a few pages of the book and discover that I wasn't paying well enough attention to the content, so I would have to re-read or forge ahead, depending on my time and schedule. Still, it was a good book, and I recommend it to anyone who is interested in learning bout Winnipeg's history.

I was specifically interested in how Blanchard explained that people rallied behind the War efforts so much that they invested in war bonds. (My grandma took out a loan for $50 so she could buy a war bond during WWII. Many of her brothers and friends from the reserve fought in the war, including her younger brother Tommy Prince, a now decorated war hero.)

It was interesting to see the mentality of people back then...

I am excited to lend Winnipeg's Great War to my (other) grandma who was born in 1919, so we can talk about it. (She is a member of the IODE) Although I think I should re-read it first, because I was rushed the first time.

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