Tag Archives: Legion Magazine

Vikings’ genetic diversity greater than present-day Scandinavia: study

An item from the Legion Magazine.


Front Lines
Stephen J thorne

iStock

Vikings’ genetic diversity greater than present-day Scandinavia: study

STORY BY STEPHEN J. THORNE

Mention the word Vikings and one is likely to conjure images of blond-haired, blue-eyed brutes in beards sailing distinctive ships, wielding axes and shields.While the ships, axes and shields are a sure thing, and the beards are a pretty good bet—at least for the men—a new study has found that the adventurers and plunderers who settled in Newfoundland some 500 years before Columbus crossed the ocean were more genetically diverse than the myths would suggest.

In the largest genetic analysis of Viking remains ever conducted, palaeogeneticist Ricardo Rodrı́guez-Varelal and his colleagues at Stockholm University and the Stockholm-based Centre for Palaeogenetics analyzed Scandinavian burials going back 2,000 years.

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Exclusive Pre-sale 1943: The Allies gain the advantage in the Second World War
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The Canadian who was the real life James Bond

STORY BY SHARON ADAMS

William Samuel Clouston Stanger was born on Jan. 23, 1897, in Winnipeg.

He had a humble childhood, but was destined for greatness.

His birth parents gave him up for adoption because they couldn’t care for him. He took his adopted parents’ surname, Stephenson, and dropped out of school to become a telegrapher.

He eventually became a decorated First World War air ace, a business titan and a spymaster who set up the British espionage system in the Americas, schooled the United States in undercover operations and established a spy school in Canada.

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Nazi treasure: The ever-elusive myth

An item from the Legion Magazine.


Front Lines
Stephen J thorne

Cpl. Donald R. Ornitz/American Commission For the Protection and Salvage of Artistic and Historic Monuments In War Areas/Wikimedia

Nazi treasure: The ever-elusive myth

STORY BY STEPHEN J. THORNE

A story broke recently that purported to divulge a long-lost secret surrounding four German soldiers who buried a cache of ammunition cases laden with treasure as they fled advancing Allied forces in the Netherlands in 1945.

The location of this cache of coins, watches, jewelry, diamonds and other gems supposedly worth more than C$25 million has been a mystery for almost 80 years. German soldiers stole the hoard from a broken bank vault in Arnhem during the final year of the war and buried it in ammunition boxes as they fled.

Recently, among a pile of documents released by the Netherlands national archives, a treasure map has been found with an X evidently marking the spot where the treasure lies buried in what is now a field.

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Exclusive Pre-sale 1943: The Allies gain the advantage in the Second World War
Military Milestones

 Northern BC Archives & Special Collections

Canada’s attempt to become the ultimate Arctic warrior

STORY BY SHARON ADAMS

“Generals January and February mount guard for the Canadian people all year round,” historian Charles P. Snow opined in 1940, to general agreement and relief. The Second World War was to change that opinion.

Adolph Hitler sent more than three million troops to invade Russia on June 22, 1941, mistakenly believing Russia would capitulate to his blitzkrieg as quickly as western European nations at the beginning of the war.

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STORY BY ROBERT AMOS

E.J. Hughes attended the Vancouver School of Art from 1929-1935, and was recognized as the most talented artist of his generation on the West Coast. But the Great Depression made an art career impossible at that time. Reflecting on the years he had enjoyed as a cadet, he enlisted in the army on Aug. 30, 1939, just days before the commencement of the Second World War.

Hughes had joined the artillery, but almost from the start he had higher ambitions. Through his teachers, Fred Varley and Charles H. Scott, Hughes was aware of the War Art Program of the First World War, and he began writing to his superiors, asking for a role as a war artist. At the time, there was no war art program, but early in 1941 he was posted to Ottawa as one of the first three “service artists” in the Canadian Army.

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Hearing-Life

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Battle of the Atlantic: A U-boat hunter remembers

An item from the Legion Magazine.


Front Lines
Stephen J thorne

Canadianletters.ca

Battle of the Atlantic: A U-boat hunter remembers

STORY BY STEPHEN J. THORNE

The best part of my job without a doubt is meeting veterans. The vanishing generation of men and women who served in the Second World War and Korea holds a special place in my heart. They’ll soon be gone, and every opportunity to sit down with a soldier, sailor or air force veteran of those wars—of any war, to be sure—is to be cherished. Many, like Elmer Auld, are in their late-90s; some are 100 or more. For a surprising number, their wartime memories remain vivid. Such was the case with Auld, a sonar operator aboard a corvette on the notorious North Atlantic Run—a U-boat hunter, a terrific interview and my favourite column of 2022.

 

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 Wikipedia

Love bombing: the story of the last woman executed in Canada

STORY BY SHARON ADAMS

Marguerite Pitre became a footnote in history on Jan. 9, 1953, when she was thirteenth—and last—woman executed in Canada.

She might well have faded into history, as most working-class people do, were it not for an ill-fated friendship and a history-making murder half a world away.

That friendship was with Joseph-Albert Guay, a jewelry salesman in Quebec City. Guay was also a friend of Pitre’s brother, Générux Ruest.

 

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