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THE BOOKS: Periodicals


First Annual Report…Anti-Slavery Society of Canada, 1852

The Slave Trade had been abolished and emancipation of slaves had been achieved before this report was published, yet the Anti-Slavery Society of Canada continued to speak out against slavery and actively support the safe arrival of escaped slaves from the southern United States. This report from a meeting held in Toronto’s St. Lawrence Hall highlights the society’s work of opposing the system of slavery that still existed in some parts of the world at the time. Its members included many prominent residents of Ontario including the popular politician, George Brown.


The Rockwood Review…, 1898

The Rockwood Review was an early version of a community-based publication. Today it might take the form of a community newspaper or a website catering to a specific community. The Review was where Kingston residents could share stories, opinions, poems, creative writing and their knowledge of local and natural history. It was also a great way to learn what was happening in the community and what people were doing.


The Rockwood Review…, 1899

See previous entry for details on this publication.


Anything - magazines, newspapers, academic journals, annual reports, etc. - that is published on a regular schedule (every day, week, month…) is said to come out periodically. Periodicals are important because they provide us with current and accurate information on a wide variety of topics. They can also provide specific knowledge or information on local history that might not otherwise have been recorded.

In today’s world, local periodicals, like newspapers, are available throughout the world, 24/7, providing up-to-date information and making history with their reporting. Historically, periodicals were one of the few sources of information beyond word-of-mouth. Television and the Internet had not been invented. The first radio station did not start broadcasting until the 1920s! Periodicals educated the population, provided opinions and bias and influenced political decisions. One such periodical is The Globe and Mail, which had its beginnings in the 1840s.

  1. What history is recorded in these documents? Whose history is told?
  2. What significance do these periodical have as historical documents? Consider where it was published, the topics discussed and who the intended audience might have been.
  3. AS PART OF THE CLASS MAGAZINE: Design a layout for the classroom magazine. Using the Layout Criteria Checklist, create a template for the contributions of other groups. The Magazine Layout Template will help you organize the various pages that will be submitted. Throughout the process, you will need to consult with your teacher, as well as the other groups, to make sure you are on the right track.


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