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The 4th Annual Vimy Lecture
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On Wednesday, April 9, 2014 at 2:00 p.m. at 450 Sunset Drive, St. Thomas, the Elgin County Museum presents 1914 - 2014: What Do We Remember? Prof. Jonathan F. Vance will illustrate the challenges of encouraging us to remember a century-old event, as well as the opportunities provided by different ways of connecting with the past.

Jonathan F. Vance is a writer, historian, and holder of the J.B. Smallman Chair in the Department of History at The University of Western Ontario, where he teaches military history, Canadian history, and social memory. He previously held the Canada Research Chair in Conflict and Culture and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 2008.

He is the author of many books and articles, including Death So Noble: Memory, Meaning, and the First World War (1997), High Flight: Aviation and the Canadian Imagination (2002), A Gallant Company: The True Story of "The Great Escape" (2003), and Building Canada: People and Projects that Shaped the Nation (2006). His most recent books are Unlikely Soldiers: How Two Canadians Fought the Secret War Against Nazi Occupation (2008), A History of Canadian Culture (2009), Bamboo Cage: The P.O.W. Diary of Flight Lieutenant Robert Wyse, 1942-1943 (2009), and Maple Leaf Empire (2011).

He is the recipient of the 1997 Charles P. Stacey Prize from the Canadian Committee for the History of the Second World War for the best book in Canadian military history, the 1997 Sir John A. Macdonald Prize from the Canadian Historical Association for the best book in Canadian history, and the 1997 J.W. Dafoe Foundation Book Prize for 'distinguished writing that contributes to the understanding of Canada' (for Death So Noble: Memory, Meaning, and the First World War).

The Museum's Vimy Lecture is held annually on or near the anniversary of the first day of the Battle of Vimy Ridge. On that day, Wallacetown native Ellis Sifton single-handedly eliminated a German machine gun emplacement at the cost of his own life. He was posthumously awarded a Victoria Cross, one of 4 presented to Canadians that day. His VC will be on display during the lecture.


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