TORONTO, March 27, 2013 /CNW/ - The Historica-Dominion Institute today
announced that James Harley Marsh will retire effective March 31 after
33 years as editor-in-chief of The Canadian Encyclopedia.
In the course of his remarkable career, Mr. Marsh - the founding editor
of the Encyclopedia - oversaw the publication of several print editions
of The Canadian Encyclopedia (with over 700,000 volumes sold); the
translation of the Encyclopedia into French, the integration into its
content of the Encyclopedia of Music in Canada, and the adaptation of
the Encyclopedia first to CD-ROM and then online. Today, more than six
million people visit The Canadian Encyclopedia website every year. Most
recently, in conjunction with a leading Canadian software developer,
Mr. Marsh initiated a successful mobile version and the app 'Toronto in
Time' (available in IOS and Android), which extends the concept of an
encyclopedia in the digital age.
"Without Jim, the Encyclopedia in its present form literally would not
exist," said Anthony Wilson-Smith, President of the Historica-Dominion
Institute. "On behalf of the millions of Canadians who use it as well
as all of us at the Institute, we are profoundly grateful and wish him
the very best in retirement."
Mr. Marsh was also project manager and principal author for a number of
content initiatives undertaken with HDI. They include websites on the
War of 1812, a Black History Portal, Canadian Citizenship, Voting,
Asia-Pacific, and Champlain in Acadia. He is the author of more than
100 newspaper articles on Canadian history and several books on Alberta
"My hopes for the future of the Encyclopedia remain much as they were
when I set down our goals in 1980," said Mr. Marsh, "that is, to
provide Canadians with the most comprehensive reference work on all
aspects of Canada, and to adhere to the editorial values of authority
and balance that date back hundreds of years to Diderot and beyond. I
felt that if we sought this goal earnestly we could present a lasting
portrait of Canada that would help define who we are."
"I am grateful to Mel Hurtig and Avie Bennett as my two publishers. They
gave the initial opportunity and then continued support over so many
years," added Mr. Marsh. "The thing of which I am most proud is that I
helped to create a community of staff and authors devoted to helping
Canadians learn about their amazing country."
Mr. Marsh is recipient of a number of honours, including the Order of
Canada and the Centenary Lorne Dawson Chauveau Medal of the Royal
Society of Canada. He will remain on the masthead of the Encyclopedia
as Editor Emeritus and will be available to HDI on a consulting basis
through the coming transition period.
SOURCE: The Historica-Dominion Institute
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