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Sir John A returns to Picton Main with special speaker series

UPDATE: Dr. Niigaan Sinclair’s discussion next Tuesday which was previously at capacity has been moved to St. Mary Magdalene church in order to accommodate more participants!

The return of Sir John A. Macdonald to Picton Main Street later this month will be celebrated with a special speaker series at his new home – the Picton Library.

Sculptor Ruth Abernethy’s artwork Holding Court has been in storage for the past several months while landscaping work took place in front of The Armoury.

The bronze statue will now reside on the forecourt of the Picton Library, a short distance east of its former location.

As part of the reinstallation, the Prince Edward County Public Library is launching a speaker series. The events are intended to explore the broader historical context of Canada’s first prime minister.

“We are excited to welcome this familiar statue to the library’s public space and engage the community in a conversation about Sir John A. Macdonald’s legacy, especially through the lens of reconciliation,” said Barbara Sweet, CEO, PEC Public Library. “As a community gathering place focused on encouraging learning and inquiry, the PEC Public Library is well positioned to foster these discussions.”

Niigaanwewidam (Niigaan) Sinclair

The speaker series kicks off Tuesday, Nov. 12 with a talk by Niigaanwewidam (Niigaan) Sinclair, an associate professor at the University of Manitoba.

Sinclair is an award-winning writer, editor, activist, and a regular commentator on Indigenous issues. He was named one of Monocle Magazine’s Top 20 Most Influential People in Canada and one of the CBC Manitoba’s Top Forty under Forty. Niigaan’s father, Honourable Justice Murray Sinclair, was the chair of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.

PEC Public Library and the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board have partnered to welcome Niigaan to Prince Edward County.

His talk is set to begin at 7 pm at St. Mary Magdalene Church, Picton (new location)

Additional events in the speakers series will be announced in the coming weeks.

Holding Court depicts the moment when the teenage Macdonald won his first court case in the Picton Courthouse on Oct. 8, 1834 before a judge and jury.

The statue was commissioned by the MacDonald Project of Prince Edward County and presented to the municipality in 2015 to celebrate the bicentennial of his birth.

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