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RE: British Home Children

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  • Xenia Stanford
    You are welcome Bill. I am glad my tidbit added to understanding of the situation. Xenia ... From: owner-dist-gen@www.afhs.ab.ca
    Message 1 of 4 , Sep 1, 2003
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      You are welcome Bill. I am glad my tidbit added to understanding of the
      situation.

      Xenia

      -----Original Message-----
      From: owner-dist-gen@...
      [mailto:owner-dist-gen@...]On Behalf Of william campbell
      Sent: August 31, 2003 10:25 PM
      To: dist-gen@...; Xenia Stanford
      Subject: Re: British Home Children


      XENIA:

      You've done it again!

      I want to compliment you on such a well-considered and poignantly presented
      review of the significance of the home
      children saga/tragedy. I have copied it to discuss with our family.

      Thank you

      Bill

      Xenia Stanford wrote:

      > I felt the point the show made was even if some/many had good homes and
      went
      > on to lead successful lives, the denial of records and connection to their
      > families at home left a homesickness that never went away. Can you imagine
      > your child being removed without your permission or knowledge from your
      care
      > and shipped off to a foreign country never to be heard from again? Or of
      > being that child not knowing who your family was or why you were sent
      away?
      >
      > It is the denial of a natural need to be connected with family and the
      > ability to search for your roots that was so difficult for these home
      > children. Children were removed without their parents consent or even
      > knowledge. The show stated they were basically kidnapped and the
      governments
      > of Britain and Canada turned a blind eye. Not only that, but the British
      > government passed a law that made it legal to remove children without
      > parental permission from their homes and families to be shipped overseas.
      > Thus it became legalized kidnapping and a horrible denial of basic human
      > rights even though most involved stated they were solving rather than
      > creating problems. One of the interviewees said Bernardo truly thought he
      > was fulfilling his Christian mission and that his actions were in the
      > families' and childrens' best interests to do so.
      >
      > I was about to relate my own personal experience and why I have such
      empathy
      > for the home children but I know the messages are available publicly on
      the
      > Internet. So just suffice it to say I was separated from my parents and
      most
      > of my siblings when I was aged 5. This left wounds that perhaps have never
      > healed though I have made peace with it and understand that the only
      person
      > it hurts when you hold a grudge is you.
      >
      > I am not trying to discourage you from reading "The Little Immigrants" or
      > Perry Snow's book just because the subject matter is painful. I believe it
      > is as important a part of our history as the deportation of the Acadians,
      > the lost of rights suffered by the Japanese and Ukrainian families during
      > the war years, and the treatment of natives and Metis while our country
      was
      > being settled.
      > All these are part of our history and another old saw I believe in is
      "what
      > doesn't kill you makes you stronger". The positive in these stories for me
      > is that the suffering of our immigrant ancestors has made Canada what it
      is
      > today and we are a strong bunch!
      >
      > There are so many stories like this even on a smaller scale and I am sure
      > that many of us can relay tales of how our immigrant ancestors faced and
      > overcame hardships so their children and other descendants could have a
      > better life. My grandmother left her two month old daughter behind with
      her
      > mother when she came to Canada with her husband and my father because they
      > were led to believe they would become rich in three years and return home
      > never to have to worry about making a living again. My grandmother was 24
      > then and she died at age 83 never having seen her parents, siblings or
      other
      > relatives again. She was always homesick for what she called "the old
      > country" and her family.
      >
      > She did see her baby daughter again but not until this daughter was in her
      > forties and came to Canada. This aunt told me she was well-cared for by
      her
      > grandmother but that she never overcame the losing her parents as a child.
      > She thought there was something wrong with her that her own mother
      abandoned
      > her.
      >
      > Well guess I did share a bit more than I had intended and I will
      > nevertheless send this because to me the search for my roots is more than
      > just finding the "hatched, matched and dispatched" records of my
      ancestors.
      > Learning the human emotional side of the past, I realize and appreciate
      what
      > my immigrant ancestors gave up in order that they could have more than "a
      > teaspoon of land" as my grandaunt wrote in her diary.
      >
      > Xenia
      >
      > -----Original Message-----
      > From: owner-dist-gen@...
      > [mailto:owner-dist-gen@...]On Behalf Of Donna Coulter
      > Sent: August 30, 2003 9:39 AM
      > To: dist-gen@...; Rene Dussome
      > Subject: Re: British Home Children
      >
      > Yes Rene-- It is nice to be reminded that there were some
      > success or happy stories that could / can be told about the
      > Home
      > Children. I wish that I had asked more questions about the
      > Home Boy's that were with my great grandparents. There were
      > never any horror stories about them,-- both fought in the
      > WW -- I should check the WW records.
      > One stayed in England and the other found work in Ontario
      > after the war. I haven't had any success finding any
      > descendants but I haven't really tried.
      >
      > There was some discrimination, as we would call it now, but
      > that
      > was only that they ate at a different table. That I believe
      > was the
      > norm for the 'help' in that day and age--. Or maybe the
      > table was too
      > small??
      > They also got an education, as much as anyone else in the
      > 1890's.
      > I was able to correspond with the Barnard Home and was given
      > an insight from that angle. No doubt they would avoid
      > telling it all,
      > but it was enlightening.
      >
      > I must read "Little Immigrants" I might feel better about it
      > all.
      > Thanks for bringing it to my attention Xenia, I had avoided
      > it because
      > I was afraid it would be too depressing. There seems to be
      > so much
      > negative thought about everything. There must have been many
      > Christian homes that took the children in out of the
      > goodness of their heart.
      > Too often bitter memories last longer than happy ones for
      > some people.
      >
      > >From the heart
      > Donna Coulter
      >
      > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: "Rene Dussome" <rdussome@...>
      > To: "dist-gen" <dist-gen@...>
      > Sent: 29 August, 2003 11:04 PM
      > Subject: British Home Children
      >
      > > Greetings:
      > >
      > > Unfortunately, I did not read Mary Arthur's e-mail in time
      > to watch the
      > > program this evening. Nor did I pick up the item from the
      > TV Guide.
      > >
      > > Having read about the Home Children scheme extensively in
      > the past, I am
      > > fully aware of the many sad experiences suffered by the
      > Home Children.
      > > However, I would remind AFHS members that our own dearly
      > loved member,
      > > the late Ruth Duncan, shared a success story with us, that
      > of her mother
      > > and her mother's twin sister - Margaret and Harriet
      > Sutton. (See AFHS
      > > Journal Winter 94/95 volume 15 number 2.)
      > >
      > > Rene Dussome
      > >
      > > http://www.afhs.ab.ca
      > >
      >
      > http://www.afhs.ab.ca
      >
      > http://www.afhs.ab.ca

      --
      William A. Campbell
      Calgary, Alberta, Canada


      http://www.afhs.ab.ca

      http://www.afhs.ab.ca
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