Demers revives the memory of journalist Miriam Green Ellis, an all-but-forgotten feminist, suffragist, and agricultural reporter who documented the modernist sphere for over four decades and who refused to be confined to the "women's pages." With written material from the University of Alberta's Miriam Green Ellis Collection, accompanied by an excellent selection of photographs, Ellis's inimitable voice and views on Albertans, westerners, and Canadians in the early decades of the twentieth century emerge clearly. Readers interested in Canadian women studies, journalism, or feminism will find Ellis's highly coloured perspective both entertaining and informative.
"Ellis's writing displays her keen observations of the places and peoples she encountered. Of particular interest are her comments on native life and culture, especially in 'Down North' and 'Sun Dance at Hobbema.' As an agricultural journalist, Ellis had a gift for connecting to the difficulties of people living on the land. 'On the Aggie Beat' covers topics ranging from women's push for the vote to the resiliency of farmers overcoming hardships and obstacles. Overall, this is a wonderful collection..."
"...a much recommended pick for social issues and women's studies collections with a focus on Canada."
"Treasure hunters strike it rich in the oddest places, but none stranger than a document vault at the University of Alberta. There, largely undisturbed for nearly 50 years, were cartons containing the life's work of reporter Miriam Green Ellis. Inside, gold."
"Wearing men's breeches and sometimes armed with a rifle, trailblazing Canadian journalist and suffragist Miriam Green Ellis (1879-1964) was one of the few women (or even men) of the time period traveling to isolated regions of Canada.. The book provides examples of Ellis's agricultural reporting in various regions of Canada between 1915 and 1933 and her travel reporting 1920-1941. An introduction overviews her life and her career as a writer, reporter, speaker, and member of high society. Of special interest are the many b&w historical photos taken by Ellis, depicting the lifeways of indigenous peoples on the Canadian prairie."
“Nearly a century later, Ellis and many of her contemporaries are only now beginning to emerge from the shadows of history…. What was it about these scribbling women with their ‘virile pens’ that generated anxiety in so many readers, reviewers, and publishers?... Perhaps readers were quick to recognize that women with pens possessed no small measure of power: unlike women whose work was restricted to domestic spaces, roving women reporters were in positions to influence and shape public perception…. Travels and Tales of Miriam Green Ellis makes a valuable contribution to the fields of women’s history, women’s culture, and print culture in Canada.”