Harper Government recognizes the incredible contributions of Agnes Maule Machar

Early Canadian writer and influential social commentator designated a person of national historic significance

OTTAWA, Feb. 10, 2015 /CNW/ - Gord Brown, Leeds – Grenville, on behalf of the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of the Environment and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, today announced the designation of Agnes Maule Machar as a person of national historic significance in recognition of her contributions. As a prolific writer and proud nationalist in the late Victorian age, Agnes Maule Machar was a dominant and influential female voice in Canada.

Agnes Maule Machar was witness to the birth of Canada, and with many of her works she strove to inspire the public, especially young people. Accomplished in fiction, poetry, biography and histories, her writings covered a large range of subjects including social conditions, science and religion. Much of her poetry was inspired by her strong patriotic commitment to the fledgling country. Machar's body of work reflects the exciting period of Confederation and the years that followed.

Along with writing, Machar had a passion for the social condition of others, particularly women and children. A strong advocate for education for women, in 1896, she presented a resolution to the National Council of Women calling for legislation to improve the conditions of work for women and children in shops and factories and adequate pay for women was a theme in her works.

As our country nears its 150th birthday in 2017, the Government of Canada invites Canadians to learn more about the major events that have shaped their country's history. Canada's national historic designations enable us to experience our rich history and heritage in a special way and play a big part in the celebration of Canada 150.

Quick Facts

  • Agnes Maule Machar began her prolific career writing religious and Sunday school material and later progressed to reform literature.
  • As a deeply religious, upper middle class woman, Machar bowed to family pressure to avoid fame and first wrote under the pseudonym "Fidelis," and in time became well known under this name.
  • Her poetry was often anthologized in Canadian textbooks and generations of schoolchildren were exposed to her work.
  • Machar loved the outdoors and nature and hosted fellow writers at Ferncliff, her summer home in Gananoque near what is now Thousand Islands National Park.
  • Parks Canada manages a nationwide network of 167 national historic sites, 44 national parks and four national marine conservation areas that make up the rich tapestry of Canada's cultural and natural heritage.

Quote

"Our Government is committed to promoting our cultural heritage. As an influential commentator and observer from the time of Confederation, Agnes Maule Machar's voice, brought an important female perspective to this dynamic period. Through her writing, we get a strong sense of her patriotism, her love of nature and her desire for social reforms. This unique point of view during this exciting era in Canadian history spoke to her generation and those that followed."

Gord Brown
Member of Parliament for Leeds – Grenville

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Associated Links

Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada
http://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/clmhc-hsmbc/index.aspx

 

SOURCE Parks Canada

For further information: Media Relations, Parks Canada, 1-855-862-1812, www.twitter.com/parkscanada


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