Recognizing Day of Truth and Reconciliation
Recent blogs have focused on Maritime connections in the Jamie Poole Book series. This blog will take a step back from that. While Halifax and Nova Scotia play heavily into plotlines of the series, the series takes place across Time and Space. And it began in Alexandria, Indiana, where Jamie calls home. Why is Jamie Poole from Alexandria, Indiana?
The obvious answer could be that since the series incorporates Egyptian culture, I’d choose or even make up a city named Alexandria as Jamie’s hometown.
If you picked this answer, you'd be wrong.
When I lived in Indiana, I worked in a city called Anderson. My daily commute took me through Alexandria where I hit a stoplight more times than didn’t. Near the stoplight is a carpet store. The town it’s in is Alexandria. And yes, the citizens call it Elek, just as Jamie states.
But, that wouldn’t be the whole answer. The Jamie Poole story first appeared as a short story while I was in university. Later, she was a mixture of ideas in my head when I did that commute. It was a long commute. I was bored. I composed stories in my head and that short story began expanding into what it is today. Writing about places you’ve been or things you know lend authenticity you can’t get from Wikipedia or history books. At the same time, good research and a liberal imagination are crucial. There is no apartment above the carpet store, but the owner of the building is aware I began the story in her building. I met her last year.
But this is just the starting point and a winding way to come to why I have titled this blog a recognition of September 30, Day of Truth and Reconciliation.
Jamie Poole's mom's family name is Anderson, the same as the town beside Alexandria: Anderson. When Jamie and Eliyana are first getting acquainted in Resurrection of the Druidess, Eliyana poses a question to Jamie. Here is an excerpt from the book:
Eliyana asked, “Tell me. Why is it your family is so lucky as to have a city named after you?” She studied Anderson’s city lights glowing in the early evening light.
I regarded the lights ten miles away. Mom hyphenated her name Anderson-Poole, because of me. All her life people from away asked about the surname. It wasn’t such an unusual name. It was more our proximity to a city with the same name. I answered, “I don’t know what year it was—a long time ago—there was a Native American nation here called the Delaware.”
“Do you mean, a long time ago like fifteen hundred years?” she teased. This was the most relaxed she’d been too.
“No. In comparison to your history it wasn’t so long ago. Maybe two hundred years. There was a chief named Kik-tha-we-nund. His English name was Chief William Anderson. He was a diplomat between the Delaware and other nations, and he was highly regarded. Years later, he and other Native Americans were forcibly relocated from their ancestral lands to Kansas. The Trail of Tears…”
She nodded as if recognizing this historical event.
“The city of Anderson was named in his honor. There’s a lot of people around here with the last name Anderson—relatives who managed to remain..."
Jamie’s explanation about her family and Chief William Anderson is historically accurate. While doing some genealogy research on my extended family, I discovered a connection to Anderson. An ancestor was married to to him. I decided to add this detail to Jamie's family history.
While Kik-tha-we-nund's history does not include to horrors of residential schools, it includes its own dark history. Some of this history has been included as part of the Jamie Poole series. History is not always easy to look at, but it is important to know our collective history. The broad history of indigenous peoples of this country and others is rich and diverse, and I am grateful to consider Kik-tha-we-nund a distant relative, if even by marriage.
If you are interested in learning more of the history behind the fantasy, check out other blogs here.
You can also purchase any of the Jamie Poole Books directly from the author. Arrangements can be made by emailing: JamiePooleBooks@gmail.com.
In working with Hal-Con there can be arrangements for drop off within Halifax as we are a virtual vendor. Additionally two preferred vendors can also assist you in getting the books any time of year: