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Kingston Regional Fair
Catharine Parr Traill - Woman of the Wild
Catharine Parr Traill was an author, a botanist, and a pioneer in early Canada. Her descriptive writings enlightened our understanding of what pioneer living was like during the 19th century. Her strong spirit and determination helped her cope with the challenges that came with being a settler.
What was the most interesting thing you learned about your topic?
It was very interesting to learn how remarkable Catharine Parr Traill was and how much she contributed to our understanding of what it was like to be a pioneer in early Canada. She wrote detailed descriptions of botanical species and of the experiences in Upper Canada which must have taken an incredible amount of time, energy, and knowledge. It was interesting to learn how optimistic, hopeful, and strong she remained in the face of severe adversity.
What important lessons have you learned that you want to share with other Canadians?
Catharine Parr Traill taught us the importance of learning from one another and the importance of developing strong social and emotional connections with family, friends, and the Indigenous people of the land. She taught us the importance of perseverance, faith, optimism, courage, and hope when faced with adversity.
How would you compare your life today to the lives of those studied in your project?
Catharine Parr Traill's life was very different from our life today (ie., poverty, hunger, isolation, and sheer exhaustion from physical demands), but there were also many similarities to make between an early settler's life and modern day Canadians. Similarities include harsh seasonal changes, the importance of family and friends, and the importance of having courage, perseverance, and a positive outlook on change.