Re Empress of Ireland

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Marion Kelch

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> [Any size donation to help keep the artifacts in Canada can be made out to The Empress of Ireland Artifact Committee and sent to the following address: Empress of Ireland Artifact Committee, 2159 Strathmore Blvd.,Ottawa, ON K2A 1M9 A tax deductible receipt will be issued. If you give me your e-mail address, I will send you a weekly update as to our progress. Our Committee was featured on COUNTRY CANADA on March 9. On May 4, the Calgary SUN ran a two page article written by Michael Platt. We also have the support of several Members of Parliament and Senators. Our Committee keeps growing every day.]
 
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Andre Escaravage

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> Please post your weekly updates here. Perhaps we can all give some thought to approaches that might be successful in securing financial support from the corporate sector, private foundations and personal donations. It seems like the Committee has an enormous tasks ahead, having to go from $15,000 to $750,000 in such a short time. Why can't the Feds give Beaudry $750,000 in cash and a deductible receipt for the other $750,000. Also, Quebec has a new provincial government and the liberals might be more open to a financial contribution. I still think that's a lot of money for a guy who hacked apart a ''national treasure'' and took whatever he could. Beaudry is no hero in my book. Nor are the others from our area (Rimouski and the Gaspe Peninsula) who took pieces of the Empress and still have them today waiting to ''cash in.'' On a final matter, I checked with all media in Quebec who ran the story yesterday (89th Anniversary) and it seems quite clear the information came from Geoff (with translation by Google into French, as required) and I couldn't find anyone East of Montreal who knew anything about the Committee or having received your press release. Montreal, by the way, did an excellent job and published a great deal of material. As you said, your Committee may have more influence in Alberta. Keep in mind we have the Empress of Ireland and she remains an on-going source of conversation, tourism and visitors, pillage, etc. Perhaps Ottawa would consider paying the entire amount to Beaudry and getting back the investment from the ticket price for visitors at the door. We have become immune to having to pay admission to visit a museum. I assume that's what Lyons would be doing in Florida to recoup his investment. A final thought to the invisible hands that manage this Board: Could we not have the most current message at the top rather than at the bottom? It would make it so much easier to view when messages flow quickly as they have been since Geoff in England woke us up yesterday morning!
 
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Marion Kelch

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> [I don't want to argue over who was the first responsible for alerting the Press. Geoff Whitfield does a superb job of keeping tab on things. Derek Grout and myself have been interviewed on Quebec CBC stations many times so there has to be people east of Montreal who have heard of the Committee. This brings up another point. As Derek Grout's book points out, the Empress of Ireland is more than just a "Titanic". It is also a Canadian version of the "Mayflower". Having been in service 8 years it brought to Canada over 117,000 passengers. A large percentage of these went on to settle western Canada. You may have the Empress but we've got many of the descendants of the passengers who came over on it! It is modestly estimated that over 400,000 people living today in western Canada can claim some connection to the liner. This is why the people out here so FERVENTLY support keeping the artifacts in Canada. We don't have one artifact from the liner in any of our museums but we believe the collection should be placed in a national museum. The Empress of Ireland means very much to us. Of those who perished on May 29, Manitoba lost 33, Saskatchewan lost 28, Alberta lost 50, and BC lost 71. At least 230 Americans perished. It is only logical that artifacts from the Empress, which at the time were legitimately retrieved, must be in Canada. How many Americans would allow a major collection of artifacts from the "Mayflower" to be sold to a private collector, let's say in, Whitehorse, Yukon? Having said all this, we really appreciate the support every one is offering. Part of the solution is "political" and we are working on that too.
 
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Andre Escaravage

Guest
> Geoff got the message out (in English and in a French translation via Google) in Eastern Quebec. There`s no doubt about it. I contacted the stations by e-mail and have received notes back, or mention on air. Perhaps you should check and see who received your Press Release and then check that against actual coverage in both official languages. No one wants to take credit for nothing and I have nothing but support for your group. Just give credit where credit is due, and that goes to Geoff in England. With regard to the 400,000 people in Western Canada linked to the Empress, according to your figures, where did the $15,000 come from, and why is it such a problem to get commitments for the balance on a short-term basis. So many people with such close links should make fundraising easy in a ''rich'' Province like Alberta. But, that does not seem to translate into much in the way of donations. Hence the constructive suggestions about getting the Government to do more. As well, in my travels this morning I came across a Regional office for Petro-Canada and they like donating to these national causes. The head office is in Calgary so it shouldn't be difficult to call the President and explain the situation and the need for urgency. Can your volunteers handle that?
 
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Andre Escaravage

Guest
Marion Kelch from the Artifacts Committee was interviewed on CBC radio (national) June 2 (5:45 to 6 p.m.) on the occasion of the opening of the Museum of the Sea in Rimouski, Quebec. She did an excellent job showing the link between the Empress and many early residents of Alberta while expressing the urgent need for funding to keep the Beaudry artifacts in Canada. Marion was joined on air by Anne-Marie Bourassa from the Museum and two other Albertans with links to the Empress, Eunice from Irma and Irene from Provost. The Committee clearly needs the financial support of many Canadians as soon as possible. Marion can be reached at (780) 857-2340.
 
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Marion Kelch

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> Hello Andre, Thanks so much for your comments regarding the CBC interview. I can see how the Empress of Ireland Artifact Committee must do more to explain to the general public why so many of us in Western Canada agonize over the possible loss of the Beaudry collection of artifacts...and any other Empress artifacts, for that matter. We absolutely insist they stay in this country. We are trying our hardest to think of every angle for fund raising and are planning many events. I suppose, if need be, we'll be as feisty as those British women who posed for a "nude calendar" and raised lots of money! Geoff Whitfield, where are you!]
 
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Andre Escaravage

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> I didn`t know Geoff Whitfield had anything to do with that ``nude calendar!`` Goes to show you doesn`t it, you never know who you meet on the internet. What the heck, it`s for a good cause. In the interval, perhaps the rest of us can come up with some fundraising ideas to raise some serious cash quickly. One avenue open to us is the pharmaceutical industry in Quebec. These guys are floating in cash right now and this is the kind of large exposure one-time ``event`` of national importance these guys like to support. I have a list with all the key contacts...Of course, the calendar sounds like a fun idea as well. How much did those British women bring in???
 
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Marion Kelch

Guest
> [With reference to the "nude calendar" I'm just thinking that having Geoff Whitfield included in the pose would "up" the sales! Not sure exactly how much they brought in but I think it was around $750,000.]
 
Nov 22, 2000
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Well, I suppose it was down to good intentions, but.........last time I did a nude centrefold in our magazine, the membership dropped by 60 per cent, one lady suffered breathing problems and another had to be talked down from on top of a bridge! A calendar sounds a good idea to me though - given my ample proportions I'd probably fill up January through to September!

Geoff
 
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Andre Escaravage

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>That's the spirit. Its for a good cause. The Artifacts Committee is under a great deal of pressure to come up with the money needed to purchase the Beaudry items. Marion has photos of some of the pieces and has promised to send them along today. I'll pass them on to you immediately. Since they come from Beaudry, few others have ever seen them. The Museum in Rimouski also has a number of documents just released from the Federal Court of Canada. These documents had never seen the light of day and are now on summer exhibition in Rimouski. I'll try to get over there and put together a descriptive list for publication here. How about this Geoff for getting some publicity...if you threatened to sue the Canadian Artifacts Committee for slander for suggesting you had something to do with the original British calendar, the publicity generated would draw an enormous international response to the Empress of Ireland and the need for immediate financing?
 
Nov 22, 2000
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Andre - if I appeared in it though, the publicity would be even greater! Look forward to hearing what has been released to the Musee de la Mer. I was there last year and was pleased to see how well it had progressed since my last visit in 2000.
 

John Clifford

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Nov 12, 2000
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Actually, Geoff, instead of a nude spread, we could try a Talent show, where we can showcase the various things we do best, singing, dancing, telling jokes, etc.

I just can't guarantee that we won't end up raising money "Jack Benny style":
He asks if people will pay him to play the violin. The response is that people would offer to pay him NOT to play the violin.
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May 8, 2001
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OK. I'll donate the $750,000 to NOT see Geoff in the calender, but need the clause to include his two elusive "rascal friends" to the contract that would probably step in.
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Great to see (most of the) the talk continue on this subject.
 
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Andre Escaravage

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> Who are those two rascal ''friends'' your refer to...
 
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Marion Kelch

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Look what I've done...brought out all these creative ideas. Thanks everyone. Great fun!
Seriously, I'd also love to see a celebrity event held to raise funds. I notice on the crew list there is an Officer's Steward by the name of G. Lightfoot who perished. Any relation to THE G. Lightfoot, so well known in the music industry? There can't be that many "Lightfeet" around. Imagine the publicity we'd have if some very famous person suddenly discovered his/her connection to the liner and chose to endorse our campaign. You'd be surprised how many people don't know on what ship their ancestors came over.
 
Nov 22, 2000
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Colleen my dear - $750,000 is a tad on the low side compared to other bids to keep me off the calendar.

Andre - the other two miscreants are one George Behe, author of some note, and Pat Cook, playwright. Rascals perhaps but two very good friends of mine.

Marion - Well, Charles Bowes-Lyon was a very distant relative of our own late Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, the former Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon.
I doubt if George Lightfoot and Gordon lightfoot were related, although you never know.............


Geoff
 

Pat Cook

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Apr 27, 2000
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MISCREANTS, is it, eh? That's MISTERcreant to you, sir! Remember, I have photos of you in Scotland last April, with one hairy gentleman named Hamish!

As ever, me laddie,
Laird Cook
 
Nov 22, 2000
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O.K. Cook.....if we are going to resort to blackmail..........watch out! There's always the story about the talc !!!

Geoff
 
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Andre Escaravage

Guest
> Check with Marion. We might be able to ''raffle'' those photos on this site to raise money for the Empress artifacts. Turn this site into a baby-ebay for the occasion. Who needs a calendar when you can get your hands on photos like those...Photos from Beaudry artifacts to come (Marion is to send them) and list of new Federal documents on exhibition at Rimouski museum soon to follow. Please note these are newly-discovered documents that had been held in the archives of the Federal Court of Canada.