Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Immigration 1910 Montreal and Schools

Well, as I write Biology and Ambition, the story of teacher Marion Nicholson in 1908 to 1913 I am still trying to figure out EXACTLY what children went to her school, Royal Arthur, on Canning at Workman.

I probably should look up the History of Little Burgundy. I know that is the seat of Montreal's Black Community.

 I discovered the number of schools in Montreal in 1910, 18 with 15,000 students. Royal Arthur was a big new school rebuilt in 1910 as it had partially burned down. Marion, I know has 50 students in her class. I'm guessing that is the limit.

The Education Report for Quebec for 1910 shows how some schools were growing in population, bigtime:  Dufferin (St. Urbain) Aberdeen (St. Denis) and Mount Royal, in the Plateau on Clarke. Immigrants.  I have looked at the Census and seen who lived around Royal Arthur, but I have read that many students were bused long ways, as some of the newly annexed boroughs had no Protestant Schools.

What I read over and over is that many young students know No English. And that the teachers at the early level have a hard time of it. I imagine there were not that many non-English speakers at Royal Arthur.

Biology and Ambition will be epistolary, unlike Threshold Girl or Diary of a Confirmed Spinster, although both those ebooks contain some letters. I thought it would be easier, but really, I have to edit the letters as well as create new ones and add to old ones, as Marion didn't write letters in 1910 for instance.