Dear Canada: A step back in time


A Country of Our Own

A Country of Our Own
The Confederation Diary of Rosie Dunn

By Karleen Bradford

ISBN: 978-1-4431-1324-3 Hardcover
ISBN: 978-1-4431-2850-6 Ebook
192 pages | Ages 9-12 | 5 1/4" x 7 5/8"

It's 1866. The year before Confederation. And the year Rosie's life turns upside-down.

She has just gone into service with Mr. Bradley, a civil servant working in Quebec City, the bustling capital of the Province of Canada. When the capital is moved to the rough sawmill town of Ottawa, the Bradleys have to move there too. Rosie knows she will desperately miss her own parents and siblings, and wonders if she will ever have a place in her own family again.

A Country of Our Own is an authentic portrait of a young girl displaced in the whirlwind of government.

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From Rosie's diary:

Monday, April 30th, 1866

Oh, I am not happy about this.

Mary Margaret and I set off right after breakfast. After Mary Margaret’s breakfast, I should say, because in spite of Mam’s urging me to keep my strength up this morning, I still could not force a bite down my throat. Maybe I should have. It might have given me courage as well as strength. I’m afraid I did not make too good an impression. I can hardly bear to write down what happened, but journals are for telling the truth in, so write it down I must.

We arrived at the Bradley house and that was the beginning of my troubles. I had no idea the house would be so grand. It’s on a lovely wide street with trees on both sides, and there’s a garden in the front and another in the back. And not a little kitchen garden like we have, but a vast expanse of grass, all bordered with flowers. The grass seems quite useless to me, but the flowers are lovely. And the house itself! Narrow, perhaps, but three full stories high. I was frightened before I even stepped into it. Then I made my first mistake. I started up the path to the door, but Mary Margaret grabbed me by the elbow and yanked me back.

“Not the front door, you ninny,” she hissed at me. “We use the servants’ door around the back.”

But it was too late. Before we had a chance to retreat, the door opened and the snobby maidservant herself looked out.

“Back entrance, if you please,” she sniffed at us, and slammed the door in our faces.

From Dear Canada: A Country of Our Own. Text copyright © 2013 by Karleen Bradford. All rights reserved.