Branch President, Al Dodd, was Master of Ceremonies, Paul Robinson UE gave a toast to the Queen, Diana French gave a short historical summary as a toast to the Association and Heather Traub noted some highlights in our ancestors' lives in her toast to the Loyalist Ancestors. Our very own Rev. Dr. Lloyd Fourney UE said Grace.
It was fitting that member Don Chapman UE received his UELAC certificate from Peter Johnson UE as their respective fathers attended school together. Don then introduced Peter as the guest speaker.
Peter's presentation was about the military aspects of Loyalists as he has been a military reenactor for many years. He was wearing his "less important" uniform as a safety precaution against airlines losing his luggage. He described it and explained that having the buttons grouped together in twos meant that it was the 2nd Battalion of the King's Royal Regiment of New York. At the beginning of hostilities, uniforms were generally green but later most changed to red like the British regiments. We were reminded that some Loyalists could have served in various regiments over the course of their military careers. Often people of the same regiment settled in the same areas. Peter encouraged us to research the Muster Rolls, books and web sites to discover the history of our ancestors. Peter also recognized the Loyalists who were in non-military roles. Many were women who kept the homes and businesses while possible and supported the cause in various other ways. At the conclusion of Peter's talk, Fran Losie UE presented him with a framed silkscreen print entitled "Aurora Borealis" by George Weber on behalf of the branch.
Betty Fladager UE gave a summary of the Edmonton Branch history from the first two groups formed and disbanded prior to each of the World Wars to the present Branch chartered twenty years ago. She also mentioned that two of the inaugural Executive members were present, Paul Robinson UE (President) and Barbara Roth UE (Vice-President).
President Al Dodd UE presented Long Service Certificates to Betty Fladager UE for thirty-seven years of continuous service with Calgary and Edmonton Branches and to Margaret Best UE (who was not present) Paul Robinson UE and Fran Losie UE each of whom had given twenty years of continuous service to the Branch.
A special thanks to Fran Losie UE and Shona Wards UE for their hard work in convening a most successful Annual Banquet.
Following the May 8th celebration, a social luncheon was held on May 26th at an Edmonton restaurant. Some former Branch members attended and two new members were present. These socials are popular and give everyone time to share ancestral histories.
The Edmonton Branch, in fulfilling its Mission Statement "To Raise Awareness in Northern Alberta of Loyalist History", is willing to suggest UEL topics and resources to teachers and students planning to create displays for the Edmonton Historica Fair 2008. Fran Losie UE attended the Edmonton 2007 Historica Fair and found that a display had a Loyalist twist to it. The spelling of the family name "Thouin" had become "Twa" when a marriage took place with a Loyalist family who didn't pronounce the name in the French manner. The boy in the photo is Paul Twa who is home-schooled and gave an excellent presentation. His mother won a Teacher Prize at the 2007 Historica Fair.
On 5 December, Branch member Marion Rex, was recognized as one of six recipients in Alberta for the Wild Rose Foundation Stars of Alberta 2006 Volunteer Awards, sponsored by the government, for the work she does in several volunteer organizations. She has also received several high-level awards for her teaching attributes in the Separate School system and is currently President of the Alberta Genealogical Society--Edmonton Branch, as well as Grants Chair of the Alberta Genealogical Society--Provincial Board. She is a very dedicated lady.
Betty Fladager EU, Edmonton Branch Secretary