October 19, 2013
Bookmark, Charlottetown, Cunard, Frederic Thornton Peters, Indigo, Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, Maritimes, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Operation Reservist, Operation Torch, Peters, Prince Edward Island, Royal Navy, Saint John, The Bravest Canadian, Uncategorized, Victoria Cross Leave a comment
October 12, 2013
Bookmark, Charlottetown, Cunard, Frederic Thornton Peters, Indigo, Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, Maritimes, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Oran, Peters, Prince Edward Island, Royal Navy, Saint John, The Bravest Canadian, Victoria Cross, war heroes Leave a comment
by Sam McBride
My two-week book tour through the three Canadian Maritime provinces was a wonderful experience, and exceeded all expectations in publicizing “The Bravest Canadian — Fritz Peters VC: The Making of a Hero of Two World Wars“ throughout New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, as well as Prince Edward Island, where Fritz was born and his story is best known.
It was a thrill to meet so many people who came by my book signing sessions and either bought copies of the book or expressed interest in Fritz and the book. These included several current members of the Canadian military, as well as relatives who told me about the heroes of their own family.
I particularly enjoyed meeting several third cousins for the first time, as well as leaders of the PEI Genealogical Society, the New Brunswick Historical Society and the Cunard Steamship Society who I have corresponded with extensively in the past, but not met in person. Extremely pleased that my enthusiastic supporter in St. John`s, Newfoundland, Dr. David Peters, came to my presentation at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, and we had a good chat afterwards.
Several people I talked to noted that next year, 2014, will be present opportunities to raise awareness of the Fritz Peters story across Canada. These are 1) the 150th anniversary of the historic Charlottetown Conference, in which Fritz`s family had a central role; 2) the centennial of the start of World War One, where Fritz Peters earned three major honours for valour; and 3) the 75th anniversary of the start of World War Two, where Fritz again received three awards for valour, including the Victoria Cross and the highest medal of the United States.
I have attached scans of a sample of print publicity from the book tour, and the links below have some, but not all, of the TV, radio and social media coverage. I did about 10 interviews by phone before i travelled, and then about another dozen while in the Maritimes between September 24th and October 5th, 2013.
October 4, 2013
Charlottetown, Cunard, Frederic Thornton Peters, Indigo, Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, Maritimes, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Operation Torch, Oran, Peters, Prince Edward Island, Robert Gray, Royal Navy, Saint John, The Bravest Canadian, Victoria Cross Leave a comment
Our book tour for “The Bravest Canadian — Fritz Peters VC: The Making of a Hero of Two World Wars” has generated a flood of publicity in the newspapers and broadcast media, including several stations of CTV and CBC in the three provinces. Most of the people who bought books at the book signing sessions said they saw or heard about Fritz Peters in a recent media story.
The tour is winding down, but I am looking forward to returning to Prince Edward Island for a booksigning at the Indigo Charlottetown on Oct. 5 from 11 am until noon, and also meeting with representatives of the PEI Genealogical Society. With the 150th anniversary of the historic Charlottetown Conference coming up in 2014, there is a great amount of interest in Fritz’s grandfather (and my great-great-grandfather) Col. John Hamilton Gray, who was head of the PEI government in 1864 and served as host and chairman of the conference. On the evening of Saturday, Sept. 3, 1864 Gray invited the Fathers of Confederation home to his residence known as Inkerman House (named after his father-in-law’s famous victory in the Crimean War) for an after-dinner party, where much liquor was consumed and the conference delegates got to know each other on a social basis. As they arrived, they were introduced to Gray’s family, including two-year-old Bertha, Fritz’s mother. Later in life, Bertha introduced herself to new acquaintances as “a Daughter of Confederation.”
My presentation at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic was well-received by about 20 interested attendees who came out for the event despite heavy rain in Halifax. I had not been to the museum since 1992, and was greatly impressed with his improvements, including a wonderful section on Fritz’s grandfather Sir Samuel Cunard.