Tag Archives: elk island national park

Do Not Present a Gruesome Spectacle: Filming Bison for Hollywood at Elk Island in 1955

Sometimes you just stumble across surprising documents. I was cleaning out a series of boxes of older documents stored in the Astotin Theatre at Elk Island National Park. Inside were poorly organized slides from the 1970s and 1980s, photocopies of … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

A Bison Called Old Pink Eye

Historical newspapers seem to love talking about charismatic bull bison, characterising them as curmudgeonly grumps and giving them cool names. I uncovered this great account of an older bull at Elk Island National Park in 1908 in the Edmonton Bulletin. I … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Read the Plaque: Off the Beaten Track in Elk Island

Stopping to read commemorative plaques is an excellent way to do public history. They tell us what people in the past thought was important to commemorate. They tell us stories about these places. Often people may walk right past them … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Elk Island National Park: What’s in a Name?

Beautiful Elk Island National Park! But where did its name come from? Is there an Elk Island on the lake? Or is it all a beautiful metaphor? When I first arrived at Elk Island in 2014, I went searching for the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The (Historical) Dangers of Photographing Bison

As visitors to this blog may note, I never get tired of stories of bison, past and present. I was recently trying to track down some images of the roundup of bison in Montana from the Pablo-Allard herd – the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Elk Island National Park: Founded on a Bet?

It’s no secret that I’ve been doing a lot of research into Elk Island National Park’s history recently for work. One of the things that I could never quite wrap my head around is the motivations for the foundation of … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Great Roundups: Getting Michel Pablo’s Bison Herd To Canada, 1907-1912

By 1890, the once great wild North American bison herds, which had at one point numbered in the tens of millions, were all but extinguished. Within a single human lifetime of slaughter,  less than a thousand individuals were left, scattered … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Bison, Past and Present

Working as an interpreter at Elk Island National Park this summer (obligatory disclaimer: I am in no way an official spokesperson for EINP, merely a passionate employee who wants to talk a lot about historical bison), I have been conducting a … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment