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Module 43

Children and Childhood in the Nineteenth Century

Jane Errington

This module explores childhood and the social expectations of children in nineteenth-century British North America. It seeks to understand children’s perspectives of their role in the colonial workforce and the impact of formal education introduced mid-century. Further, it recognizes and examines how childhood experiences differed greatly depending on gender, class, and race.

Primary sources:

1. Document: “Excerpts from “Reminiscences of an Old Timer”, Jean A. Dreve    page 7
2. Document: Excerpts from Forest, Shanty and River Life in the Backwoods of Canada, Joshua Fraser    
page 10
3. Document: Petition of the “People of Colour” of Hamilton, October/November 1843    page 12
4. Photo: Plan of Hamilton Central School, 1852    page 15-16
5. Photo: Students of King St. School in Amherstburg, Ontario, with Their Teacher, J.H. Alexander    page 17
6. Document: Excerpt of “Report of James Padfield, Superintendent of Bathurst Common Schools, 2 October 1848”     page 18
7. Photo: Mohawk Children in School, 1786    page 20

Secondary sources:

1. “What If Mama Is An Indian”: The Cultural Ambivalence of the Alexander Ross Family, Sylvia Van Kirk    
page 21
2. Gender and the Class Dimensions of a Rural Childhood: Martin Butler in New Brunswick, 1857–1871, Deborah Stiles    page 28

Introduction

List of Modules -- 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | 49 | 50