Project #15877 - Toronto Historical Labour Sites: Research

TOPIC: The House of George Brown



4-6 page (minimum: 1500 words) double-spaced essay will describe the significance, the physical properties and specific location of a site of historical significance to the labour movement in Canada.


You will need to use 3 secondary resources for your essay, including 2 valid academic sources*. This assignment emphasizes your relationship to the material history of the labour movement in Canada and should help to illustrate your own interconnectedness with that historical fabric as scholars of labour history and residents of Toronto.


Your assignment should include a brief 250-word-plus account of that site: you should describe the site and provide an account of your response to the site in light of your research of it. Remember to include in your account why this site is of personal significance to you.


Tip: You may wish to present this assignment in two parts: i) a field component, with your representation (i.e. photos, videos, drawings) of the site, and ii) the research component: your composition on the site.


* A secondary source, in this case, is material other than that provided at the site you will be researching, or on the website related to your historical physical.


Valid academic resourcescan sometimes be difficult for students to discern. Do not assume a source is valid simply because it is in print or on the Internet. Focus on the currency, accuracy and authority of your resource. Is the information your book or article contains up-to-date? Does it relate to relevant, factual details? Is the author of the text a respected authority on the subject? Is she qualified to speak on or to a given matter? You must use your own knowledge and intelligence to weigh these matters. Sticking to library and database resources will help you in zeroing in on a valid secondary source.



For this report, you will use at least two database articles (only one of them from a newspaper or magazine, and at least one from a scholarly/peer-reviewed journal), and at least one website. Additional sources, such as books (or chapters in books) by labour historians (Greg Kealey, Desmond Morton, Brian Palmer, Joan Sangster, Julie White, Dionne Brand and more) are recommended but not required.



List all of the sources used in the course of your research on a Works Cited page at the end of your 4-6 page report. Be sure to also use in-text citation to indicate the sources for all direct quotations, facts and statistics used in your report.


Some questions your report might answer:


  • What does the site look like?
  • Where is it located? Explain in detail the event and its actors that make the physical location significant?
  • What is the historical significance of your site?: i.e., what happened there? Who was involved? What was the outcome?
  • If the event / person who is the object of the site is controversial, why?; i.e. some sites will honour a person who might not be completely praise-worthy;or, they may pay tribute to an event that does not deserve celebration. Make sure to include an account of this. Remember to continue to employ the rules of reading history critically, even in this exercise.
  • What reverberations does this event / idea / person / change still effect today?
  • If your subject is a person (plaque commemorating a person):
    • Relate the site to the person: why is this site significant?
    • What did this person do to change the situation of labour in Canadian history?
    • Did she/he make changes for the better of for the worse?
  • If your subject is an event:
    • What was this situation like prior to the unfolding of your event?
    • What were some immediate outcomes?
    • What were some long-term outcomes?
  • What feeling do you get standing where history unfolded? What connections did you make, or did anything become clearer to you standing on that physical site?
  • Why is this event or person personally significant to you?


 Where do I get started?


Try starting with one or two of the sites below for ideas:



Your project should include the following details:



Tips for the successful completion of this assignment:



  • Your report should answer in sufficient detail the questions you have set out in the outline component of this assignment.
  • Clearly organize your work in order that your viewer, your community, knows what it is they are looking at.
  • Be sure that all relevant terms and concepts used in the project are explained and the information given is contextualized. This will help the person encountering your work to follow you through your presentation.
  • Be sure to double-check your work for errors of grammar, spelling, and logic.
  • Depending on what it is you are researching, finding valid material beyond that on the group’s website may be difficult, you should therefore choose a subject that you feel you are able to adequately research.


Subject History
Due By (Pacific Time) 11/04/2013 12:00 am
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