Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Alphadello: J is for Jay


While a friend and I were seated near a window, dining, we heard a song unlike that of any of the common birds with which we were familiar; it was not loud nor ringing, nor at all like whistling, but the notes were formed into a sweet and somewhat complex bird melody...it required from us only a lifting of the eyes to discover the singer, a Blue Jay, perching outside of the window on the lowest branch of a pine tree.

"The Song of the Blue Jay," by Isabel Goodhue (1919). Click here to read the book online, or download it free, from the Internet Archive.

Posted yesterday on Alphadello.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Alphadello: I is for Ibis

Fiddler crabs...abound on the island and are a popular food source.... Large male fiddler crabs may grab the ibises' bill. When this occurs the bird gives several billshakes until the crab relinquishes his hold.

Reproductive Behavior and Ecology of the White Ibis, [dissertation] by Thomas James Rudegeair (1975). Click here to read the book online, or download it free, from the Internet Archive.

Posted today on Alphadello.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Alphadello: H is for Hummingbird

When the Hummingbird says "Go!" other birds...go at once; while the little warrior sometimes accelerates their flight, for his sharp beak is a weapon not to be despised.

The text is from Useful Birds and their Protection, by Edward Howe Forbush (1907). Click here to read the book online, or download it free, from the Internet Archive.

Posted yesterday on Alphadello.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Storydello: Corrie's Legacy

Corrie and Archie lived in the house on Queen's Crescent for the rest of their lives, and died there within a year of each other: Archie in 1935 and Corrie in 1936. They are buried together in Cataraqui Cemetery in Kingston, Ontario.

For more than 40 years in the beautiful brick house, story after story unfolded. Corrie experienced everything from great joy to terrible tragedy as she watched her children grow up. You can read about their adventures in future episodes of Storydello. Please stay tuned!


Posted yesterday on Storydello.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Storydello: Corrie's Children

Corrie's eldest son, Freddie, had some sort of intellectual or developmental disability. We don't know the specifics, since the records aren't yet open to the public, but when he was about 23 years old, his parents admitted him to the Orillia Asylum. He spent the rest of his life there. Upcoming Storydello entries will tell more of Freddie's story.

Meanwhile, Corrie's other children were growing up and making their way in the world. Then, suddenly--in 1902, when the nest was almost empty--Corrie found herself with a new toddler to raise.

Phyllis Spencer was Corrie and Archie's first grandchild. While the baby's flamboyant mother was travelling the world and marrying one rich husband after another, little Phyllis grew up quietly in the house on Queen's Crescent, much-loved by her grandparents and unmarried aunt.

Posted yesterday on Storydello.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Alphadello: G is for Gull

David Townsend advised: "Never taunt crows...greet these birds with a respectful, 'Good day, brother crow'...Gulls and pigeons, on the other hand, are really just flying rats, so you can pretty much say whatever you like."

"Souls of Lost Scoutmasters," Corvi Chronicle (2007). Click here to read the book online, or download it free, from the Internet Archive.

Posted today on Alphadello.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Storydello: Corrie and the New House

With its back toward Lake Ontario, the new house faced the lush green trees and lawns of the university campus, a short walk from the medical buildings and laboratory where Archie worked and taught.

He travelled often, studying or doing research overseas. Meanwhile, Corrie had her hands full at home, with five sons and daughters: Freddie (15), Muriel (14), Cyril (12), Mona (8) and Phyllis (2).

Even with help from a couple of domestic servants and from her mother, Corrie must have felt overwhelmed at times. And things were about to get very rough indeed.


Posted 2 days ago on Storydello.