Helen S.

Gagetown, New Brunswick

Anglophone East Regional Heritage Fair (Hopewell Cape)

Charles Gorman: The Human Dynamo

My project tells the story of Charles Gorman, an award-winning World Champion speed skater from Saint John, New Brunswick. He was also a wounded First World War veteran who became New Brunswick’s first Winter Olympian!



What was the most interesting thing you learned about your topic?

I learned that my great-grandfather was a friend of Charles Gorman and skated against him on many occasions. My grandmother claims that he often beat Charles!

What important lessons have you learned that you want to share with other Canadians?

Charles Gorman's story is one of triumph over adversity. Despite being wounded in the legs during the war, Charles returned home and continued to skate, becoming the World Champion in 1926 in front of a hometown crowd.

How would you compare your life today to the lives of those studied in your project?

Many things are very different now than they were 100 years ago. Charles Gorman skated in long, narrow, leather skates and wore woollen leggings, and a toque, which is much different from the very technical and streamlined uniforms worn by Olympic speed skaters today.