A compilation of letters originally written to her mother over the course of two and a half years, Catharine Parr Traill’s The Backwoods of Canada is an intimate and telling look at pioneer life in Upper Canada.
Originally published in 1836, Traill’s memoir details her journey with genuine charm and good cheer, even during difficult times. Thanks to its remarkable observations on Canadian class and economy, Traill’s story remains an important and essential telling of Canadian history.
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About the author
As one of the first voices to write from the wilds of newly-settled Canada, Catharine Parr Traill’s books continue to be considered important sources of early Canadian history. In particular, The Backwoods of Canada, first published in 1836, details the everyday life of Canada’s founding communities. Together with her sister, Susannah Moodie (who penned the equally historically significant Roughing it in the Bush), Traill became an important resource for settlers arriving in Canada during the nineteenth century. Continuing to write and publish well into her nineties, Catherine Parr Traill is celebrated as one of the first authors in Canadian literary history. She died in 1899 at the age of 97.