Page 52. " She’d be chaining herself to fences along with the other militant suffragettes if we lived in England "
Suffragette leader, Emmeline Pankhurst, being arrested in 1914
Public DomainSuffragette leader, Emmeline Pankhurst, being arrested in 1914

Suffragettes fought for women’s right to vote. Although most activities and protests were peaceful, they sometimes became militant, setting mail boxes on fire, smashing windows, and even detonating a few bombs. Women were arrested, and often went on hunger strikes in jail. That led to force-feeding, which was quite brutal.

Political activist Emmeline Pankhurst, the leader of the British suffrage movement, was arrested seven times before women gained the right to vote.

Page 55. " we have an Eaton’s catalogue somewhere, so if you need anything right away, we can telephone an order to the city and have it sent up "
A page from the Eaton's Catalogue, c 1916
Public DomainA page from the Eaton's Catalogue, c 1916

The Eaton’s merchantile empire was founded in Toronto by Timothy Eaton in 1869, and expanded to encompass the entire country, becoming a beloved national institution. In 1911, the Illustrated London News stated: “The T. Eaton Co. of Toronto can claim their stores are the greatest in the British Empire.”

The Eaton’s Catalogue started as a small booklet in 1884, but was soon a household staple in every Canadian home, offering everything that anyone could want, including furniture, appliances, clothes, food, medicines, and even pre-fab houses! The last catalogue was issued in 1976, to the dismay of many Canadians, especially those in rural areas who had relied on their orders from Eaton’s to bring them big-city merchandise. The Eaton’s stores declared bankruptcy in 1999.

Both Timothy Eaton and his son, Sir John Craig Eaton, had summer homes in Muskoka.

Page 59. " The large and stable fifty-foot steam yacht had a glassed-in wheelhouse and mid-section, with a canopy over the rest, and was reliable in all kinds of weather "
Steam yacht - Credit: Frank Micklethwaite
Public DomainSteam yacht - Credit: Frank Micklethwaite

It might very well have looked like this one. These steam yachts required a licensed pilot.

Page 63. " Let’s teach Jack to play Racing Demons. "

This fast-paced card game is based on solitaire, but can have as many players as will fit around a table. Watch this brief and amusing video to get a sense of the the game.


Page 73. " The cry of a loon echoed across the water, a haunting sound, like a disembodied soul in search of its mate "

Loons have several different calls, but this one is really haunting. For those who have heard it echoing across a lake at dawn or sunset, it seems to be the very voice of the lake itself. Watch this excellent short video to hear the call.