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History Post-confederation (1867-)

Craigdarroch Castle in 21 Treasures

by (author) Moira Dann

Publisher
TouchWood Editions
Initial publish date
Apr 2021
Category
Post-Confederation (1867-), General, Modern (late 19th Century to 1945)
  • Paperback / softback

    ISBN
    9781771513487
    Publish Date
    Apr 2021
    List Price
    $20.00
  • eBook

    ISBN
    9781771513494
    Publish Date
    May 2021
    List Price
    $12.99

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Description

Told in 21 objects—including furnishings, artwork, and tools—this approachable museum guide takes readers into the family history, local lore, and oddities of one of Victoria's most famous landmarks.

Craigdarroch Castle, built by coal baron Robert Dunsmuir for his wife, Joan, and their family, was completed in 1890. Following Joan's death, the castle was put up for sale in 1908, and later housed a military hospital and the nascent University of Victoria.

Since 1979 the castle has operated as a museum and is one of the top tourist attractions in the city, a prime example of a “bonanza castle” and a rich repository of Victorian-era furnishings and décor, as well as objects evoking the hospital and college eras. Author Moira Dann offers the reader 21 selections from the castle's collection, using each artifact as a portal into the history of the building and life in Victorian and more recent times.

The Black Forest clock, acquired by Joan on a trip to Europe; the telescope used by the eldest Dunsmuir son, James, aboard his yacht the Dolaura; the castle's famous stained-glass windows; a nineteenth-century intercom system known as a speaking tube—these and 17 more are described with detail and enthusiasm, and accompanied by photographs. Dann provides careful research into each object's provenance and manufacture, while inviting readers to join her imaginative journeys into the lives of the castle's occupants through the years.

About the author

Moira Dann is a writer, editor, speaker, and current president of the Craigdarroch Castle Museum Society board. She has a Master of Fine Arts in creative non-fiction from the University of King's College and is a former editor of the Globe & Mail's Facts and Arguments page. She lives with her husband, Sam Bufalini, in Victoria, BC.

Moira Dann's profile page

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