2017 Governor General's History Awards Recipients

Canadians recognized for their commitment to keeping our history alive.

November 7, 2017

Cultural organizations, teachers, students, and community groups will be honoured for their exemplary work in promoting the exploration of Canada’s history. The prestigious Governor General’s History Awards — recognizing the excellence of innovative projects and encouraging the dissemination and learning of the history of Canada among its citizens — will be presented at Rideau Hall on November 22, 2017. Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, will preside over the award ceremony in the presence of the winners from communities across the country.

“I am deeply touched to see just how much our history arouses the interest of teachers, young students, academics, writers, community institutions, and museums. All demonstrate a real passion that is expressed through a desire to share the memory of places, people, and events. In turn, these award winners become witnesses who offer concrete reflections of our past. And since history also happens in the here and now, it is being made today by these Award winners from across the country. I offer them my most sincere congratulations,” states Janet Walker, President and CEO of Canada’s History, which administers the awards.

The Governor General’s History Awards are given out in the following five categories:

Excellence in Community Programming

Recognizes unique local and community history projects (awarded by Canada’s History). The winners are:

Excellence in Teaching

Recognizes eight exemplary teachers or teams of teachers who are “leaders” in the classroom (awarded by Canada’s History, with the support of TD Bank and EF Educational Tours). The winners are:

Scholarly Research: The Sir John A. Macdonald Award

Recognizes the best Canadian history book produced in the academic milieu (awarded by the Canadian Historical Association, with the support of Manulife Financial). The winner is:

  • Sarah Carter, of the University of Alberta, for her book Imperial Plots: Women, Land, and the Spadework of British Colonialism on the Canadian Prairies, published by University of Manitoba Press, 2016.

Excellence in Museums: The History Alive! Award

Recognizes institutions that demonstrate excellence in the presentation, preservation, and interpretation of history (awarded by the Canadian Museums Association, with the generous support of Ecclesiastical Insurance Ltd.).

  • The Manitoba Museum, for the creation of the Spirit Lines educational kit; Winnipeg, Manitoba

Popular Media: The Pierre Berton Award

Recognizes exceptional achievement in books, film, television, and new media (awarded by Canada’s History). The winner is:

  • Daniel Francis, historian and author; North Vancouver, British Columbia

In addition to the presentation of the Governor General’s History Awards, recipients of the following prizes will also be honoured at Rideau Hall:

Indigenous Arts and Stories

Encourages indigenous youth to excel in the fields of writing and visual arts (awarded by Historica Canada). The winners are:

Kayak Kids’ Illustrated History Challenge

Fosters artistic talents and historical knowledge among students between the ages of 7 and 14 (awarded by Canada’s History, with the support of TD Bank). The winners are:

Experiences Canada History Award

Encourages group organizers to incorporate creative and innovative activities relating to history and heritage into their interprovincial exchanges. The winner is:

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