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Viola Desmond didn't set out to be a civil rights leader. But in 1946 when she was removed from a theatre in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia for sitting in a section reserved for whites, she fought back in court.
The beauty salon owner lost the case but strengthened the fight to end racial segregation in Canada. She went on to become a civil rights icon. In Nova Scotia, Heritage Day on February 16, 2015, has been dedicated to the legacy of Viola Desmond.
The idea that women could drive an automobile — let alone drive around the shell holes of the frontlines — was rather revolutionary at the outbreak of the Great War. But nicety was soon driven out by necessity.
Choosing Canada’s Great Women is not easy. Listen to Charlotte Gray, one of the judges on our panel, as she describes the pleasures and pitfalls of ranking the great women of history.
Life was a story of unending toil for many women in pioneer Canada.
Fiction Feature: It started with a high school girls’ basketball team in Edmonton, and ended with one of the best winning records ever.