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Genealogy & History Resources
BOOK - Great Canadian Expectations, The Middlemore Experience
By Patricia Roberts-Pichette
Published by Global Heritage Press, Ottawa, November 2016
Some emigration agencies have been accused of having acted more in their own interest than the children’s, leaving the latter open to abuse. A common belief has evolved that these children were exploited for economic gain by the Canadian families with whom they were placed and for the relief of the British public purse.
Dr. Patricia Roberts-Pichette has found that the history of John T. Middlemore’s Children’s Emigration Homes, which settled more than 5,000 children in Canada, is strikingly different from the usual negative accounts of the emigration agencies. The experiences of Middlemore children were mainly positive and most of them thrived. The Middlemore story became her passion to relate.
Great Canadian Expectations: The Middlemore Experience is the result of fifteen years of research by the author. Unlimited access to all extant Middlemore files up to 1936, to contemporary reports, and the personal communications and meetings with Middlemore family members and descendants of Middlemore home children have given Dr. Roberts- Pichette a unique perspective on the work of the Middlemore agency and its homes.
The author concludes that John T. Middlemore’s motivations were truly altruistic and that his organization’s procedures were in accord with the best contemporary social practice. Her book explores government policy changes over the whole period of juvenile immigration and reveals the influence of eugenicists in helping end the juvenile immigration movement in Canada. It is essential reading for anyone wanting to understand the movement’s causes and evolution.
Patricia Roberts-Pichette, Ph.D. was born in New Zealand where she received her early education before completing her graduate studies in the United States on a Fulbright Scholarship. She then taught for 10 years at the University of New Brunswick, following which she served twenty-five years in the Canadian federal and international public services. In 2001, with other volunteers of the British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa, she helped prepare a nominal index of the children mentioned in the microfilmed archives of Middlemore Homes records held by Library and Archives Canada. This work helped spark her interest in the juvenile emigration movement.
8.25 X 10.75"
Published by Global Heritage Press, Ottawa, 2016
ISBN 978-1-77240-046-5 (Softcover)
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