writer, researcher, editor, lecturer


R.B. (Rae) Fleming







1606 Rd 46, Woodville ON, K0M 2T0 CANADA




17 MAY 1944




  • BA 1966, University of Toronto;
  • MA 1982, University of Saskatchewan;
  • PhD 1988, University of Saskatchewan.


  • Introduction to Photography, Sir Sandford Fleming College, Lindsay ON, 1978;
  • Broadcast Journalism, Ryerson University, Toronto ON, 1986;
  • Teaching English as Second Language, Sir Sandford Fleming College, Peterborough ON, 1992;
  • Writing Short Fiction, Ryerson Polytechnic University, 1993.



Thomas H. B. Symons Award, Trent University, 1979, for Best Essay, Fourth Year, Canadian Studies.


University Fellowship, University of Saskatchewan, 1979.

University Scholarships, University of Saskatchewan, 1980-85.

Travel Grants, J.S. Ewart Memorial Fund, Winnipeg, Manitoba, for research at the National Archives, Ottawa Canada, 1980-85 ($1,500).

Ontario Arts Council, Writers’ Reserve, 1986 ($1,000).

James J Hill Travel Grant for twelve days research at the J J Hill Reference Library, St Paul, Minnesota, 1986 ($1,200).

Ontario Arts Council, Writers’ Reserve, 1988 ($1,500).

Ontario Arts Council, Writers’ Reserve, 1993 ($1,800).

Trent University's Symons Trust Fund for assistance in publishing The Wartime Letters of Leslie & Cecil Frost (2007) and Peter Gzowski, A Biography (2010).

Travel grant, Canada Council for the Arts, 2010.


Canada Council Travel Grants for illustrated readings, Railway King of Canada, 1991 and 1992 ($1,200).

Ontario Historical Society’s Fred Landon Award for the best book 1989-1991 in Ontario regional history (for The Railway King of Canada), 1992.

Canada Council, B Grant, May 1996-April 1997 ($15,000).

Recipient of a Lieutenant Governor's Award for Lifetime Achievement, February 2010.


Canadian Who’s Who 1995-.

Ontario’s Who’s Who 1995-.

Ontario Historical Society, Toronto ON, 1994-2004, & 2009-.

Arts and Letters Club, Toronto ON, 1993-.

Canadian Historical Association, Ottawa Canada, 1980-.

Writers’ Union of Canada, Toronto ON, 1991-.

Canadian Club, Lindsay Branch, Lindsay ON, 1987-.

Trent Valley Archives Group, Peterborough ON, 1993-.

Victoria County Historical Society, Lindsay ON, 1992-1998.

Beaverton, Thorah & Eldon Historical Society, Beaverton ON, 1976-1979 &1994-.

Bytown Railway Society, Ottawa Canada, 1992-1996.

Midwestern Railway Society, Winnipeg MN, 1992-2000.

British Association for Canadian Studies, Edinburgh Scotland, 1983-.

Peterborough Historical Society, Peterborough ON, 1992-.


Member, Editorial Board, Ontario History, 1992-95.

Member, Organizing Committee, Ontario Historical Society’s Annual Meeting, Peterborough ON, May 1993.

Reader/Reviewer, Journal of Canadian Studies, 1993-94.

Editor, Donna McDonald, Lord Strathcona, A Biography of Donald A Smith (Toronto: Dundurn Press, 1997).

Researcher/writer (Dec97/Jan98) of background paper on steamboats on Lake Simcoe, 1830-1930, for an Ontario Heritage Foundation plaque erected 17 Sep 1998 at Barrie ON.

Judge, Mississauga Arts Awards, Mississauga ON, 1999-2001.

Researcher/writer (Jan/Feb2000) of background paper on the first last spike of the Canadian Pacific Railway, for an Ontario Heritage Foundation plaque erected in September 2000 near Dryden ON.

Editor, Wally Bebris, Loving Milda (Toronto: privately printed), 2000.

Editor, A A MacKenzie, The Harvest Train (Cape Breton: Breton Books), 2002.

Editor, Ontario History, 2003-2004.

Member, Editorial Advisory Board, Daily Post, Lindsay ON, 2005 - 2007

Vice President, Fund Development, Association of Canadian Clubs, Ottawa ON, 2005 - 2007

Editor, Friends of The OPP Museum Newsletter, August 2008-10.

Board Member, Friends of The OPP Museum, February 2009-10.


Teacher, Secondary Level, Scarborough Board of Education, 1967-75.

Teacher, Primary Level, Occasional, Durham Board of Education and Victoria County Board of Education, 1975-78.

Teaching Assistant, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon SK, 1979-83.

Sessional Lecturer, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon SK, 1983-4.

Sessional Lecturer, Sir Sandford Fleming College, Lindsay ON, 1988.

Sessional Lecturer, University of Winnipeg, Peguis Indian Reserve, Hodgson MB, 1988-‘89.

Sessional Lecturer, Canadian Social History, University of Guelph, Guelph ON, Fall 1990.

Visiting Fellow, Centre of Canadian Studies, University of Edinburgh, Spring 1991.

Sessional Lecturer, Canadian History, Ryerson Polytechnic University, Toronto ON, 1994.

History Tutor, Open College, Ryerson Polytechnic University, Toronto ON, 1994-1997.

Sessional Lecturer, Durham College, North Campus, Uxbridge ON, Fall 1995.

Research Associate, Leslie Frost Centre for Canadian Heritage and Development, Trent University, Peterborough ON, 1993-.

Census Commissioner, Brock Township, for 2001 Canadian Census, March-June 2001.

Researcher, Interviewer, Statistics Canada, 2002.


Eldon Connections, Portraits of a Township (Lindsay: John Deyell Printers), 1975.

Argyle, A Pioneer Village (Woodville: Woodville Legion and Wintario), 1976.

“Sir William Mackenzie” in The Canadian Encyclopedia, 1985 and 1988.

Introduction, Beating the Bounds, A Policeman’s Tale (Stockport Eng: Stockport Historical Society), 1989.

“The Trolley Takes Command” in Urban History Review, February 1991.

The Railway King of Canada, Sir William Mackenzie, 1849-1923 (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 1991; paperback 1994 and 2000).

“The Limits of Canadian Multiculturalism” in Canadian Speeches (July/August 1991).

“The Unbearable Lightness of Being Canadian” in Journal of Canadian Studies (Summer 1992).

Boswell’s Children: The Art of the Biographer (Toronto: Dundurn Press, 1992. Editor/Contributor).

“Sir William Howland” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, Vol. XIII, 1994.

The Lochaber Emigrants to Glengarry (Toronto: Natural Heritage Inc, 1994. Editor).

“Once We Built Railways” in The Literary Review of Canada, Vol. 5, no. 5 (May 1996).

“From Horses to Stage Coaches, Street Cars, Jitneys and Subways: Two Hundred Years of Transportation on the Longest Street in the World” in Wyn Millar, ed, The Life and Times of Yonge Street (Toronto: Ontario Historical Society), 1996.

“Yonge at 200, The Dramatic Story of a Street and a Dream” in The Beaver, August/September 1996.

“Genealogy: The Somewhat Unappreciated Study” in Families (Ontario Genealogical Society), Vol. 36, no. 1 (February 1997).

“Hostess to a Nation” in The Beaver, August/September 1997.

“Steamboat Follies” in The Beaver, June/July 1999 (nominated for a Canadian Magazine Award, humour section, Spring 2000); reprinted in Douglas Hilker and Sue Harper, eds, Elements of English 10 (Toronto: Harcourt Canada, 2000).

“Eye on Canada, The Documentary Photography of Frank Tyrell” in The Beaver, June/July 2001.

“Charles Mitchell, An Obituary” in The Fragment , Spring 2001.

The Royal Tour of Canada, The 1939 Royal Visit of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (Toronto: Lynx Images), 2002.

“Lives Lived: Marjorie Frost Porter” in The Globe and Mail, 28 June 2002.

“The Golden Age of the General Store” in The Beaver, Aug/Sept 2002.

General Stores of Canada: Merchants and Memories (Toronto: Lynx Images), 2002.

"Islay-born Settlers in Eldon and Thorah Townships: a Search for Patterns" in The Heritage Gazette of the Trent Valley, August 2005.

The Wartime Letters of Leslie and Cecil Frost 1915-1919 (Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier University Press), 2007.

Peter Gzowski, A Biography (Toronto: Dundurn Press), 2010.

Three articles, on The Canadian Northern Railway, The Mount Royal Tunnel and Hell's Gate Canyon, in The Golden Age of Canadian Railways consultant ed. Bruce Clement Cooper (Worth Press, Stroud, England, 2010), 137-47

"The Land Between Imagined" in The Land Between, Encounters on the Edge of the Canadian Shield, ed. by Thomas F. McIlwraith with The Land Between Circle (Markham: Fitzhenry and Whiteside, 2013), 33-34

"I Remember Rita MacNeil" in Globe and Mail, 26 April 2013.

"Lord Tweedsmuir: Governor General Embraced Canadian Diversity Ahead Of His Time," on-line publication in Leaders and Legacies series ed. by Roderick Benns, 2014.

"Samuel de Champlain and the Portage Road in 1615" in The Heritage Gazette of the Trent Valley, Feb 2015.

"A Tale of Two Premiers" in Mariposa Exposed, ed. by Dennis Rizzo and Ross Greenwood (Orillia: Elite Printing, 2016), 236-39

Looking For Old Victoria County (Orillia ON: Rose Printing), 2017

"Musings On The Academy Theatre of Music in January 1893" in Front Row Centre, A Pictoral and Narrative Chronicle of the History of the Academy Theatre, 1893-2018, ed. by Jessie Kennedy with Ian McKechnie and Valmay Barkey (Lindsay: Blewitt Printing, 2018), 12-13.


"The White Pass Railway" in Northward Journal, 1989.

"Greenbank" in Canadian Journal of Church History, 1989.

"The People’s Railway" in Canadian Historical Review, 1994.

"The Burning Bush and a Few Acres of Snow" in Canadian Journal of Church History, 1995.

"Store Wars" in The Literary Review of Canada, 1997.

"A St. Andrews Look at Methodism to 1925" in Canadian Journal of Church History, 1998.

"Lines of Country" in The Beaver, August/September 1999.

"The Carving of Canada" in Canadian Speeches, January/February 2001

"The Carving of Canada: A Tale of Parliamentary Gothic" in British Journal of Canadian Studies Vol 14, no 2, 1999.

"Massanoga, The Art of Bon Echo" in British Journal of Canadian Studies, Vol 14, no 2, 1999.

"Out of Penumbra, Superb Canadian Histories" in Books in Canada, September 2003".

"Tales of the CPR" in The Beaver, October/November 2003"

"Come Blow Your Horne" in The Beaver, October/November 2004.

"Country Post, Rural Service in Canada, 1880 to 1945" in Ontario History, Spring 2004.

"Destinies, Fifth Edition, Canadian History Since Confederation" in Ontario History, Autumn 2004.

"The Selected Papers of Arthur Currie: Diaries, Letters, and Report to the Ministry, 1917-1933" in The Canadian Historical Review, June 2009.


Articles on local history in The Beaverton Express, Beaverton ON, 1974-78.

Editor/contributor “Glimpses of Our Past,” published by the Beaverton, Thorah & Eldon Historical Society, Beaverton ON, 1978.

Bimonthly articles for Village Voice, Beaverton ON, 1994.

Articles on history for The Heritage Gazette of the Trent Valley, Peterborough, ON, 1999-2005.

Series of articles for The Lindsay Post 2005-06.

Contributor to The Ramara Chronicle, March 2010-September 2011.

"Argentina build learning experience for historian" in The Lindsay Post, 20 January 2012.


Founding member and programme director, Beaverton, Thorah & Eldon Historical Society, Beaverton ON, 1975-1979.

Producer, interviewer, “Local History” Cable 10 TV, Lindsay ON, 1976-1978.

Chair, Unveiling Ontario Heritage Foundation plaque in honour of Sir William Mackenzie, Kirkfield ON, June 1976.

Chair, producer, “Meet the Authors Day,” Victoria County Spring Festival of the Arts, Lindsay ON, featuring Alice Boissonneau, Munroe Scott and Donald Jack, May 1978.

Chairperson, producer, “Meet the Historians Day,” Victoria County Spring Festival of the Arts, Lindsay ON, featuring Elwood Jones, Michael Bliss and Leo Johnson, May 1979.

Co-organizer, chair, Unveiling Ontario Heritage Foundation plaque in honour of George Laidlaw, Balsam Lake Drive ON, August 1979.

Producer University of Saskatchewan’s contribution to Century Saskatoon’s “Remembering Our Past,” Saskatoon SK, May 1982.

Co-ordinator two-day lecture tour Saskatoon by Irving Abella, York University, April 1983.

Advisor, World Canada Youth exchange, Ecuador-Canada, Woodville ON, Summer 1989.

Co-author, Memoirs of Dr. Harcourt Brown, Winnipeg MN, 1988-1990.

Member, Committee to restore Old Stone Church, Beaverton ON, 1990-1994.

Member, Committee, Eldon Township display booth, International Ploughing Match, Lindsay ON, Sept 1992.

President, Canadian Club, Lindsay Branch, 1995-96 and Board Member 1994-.

Member, Save-the-Jail Committee, Beaverton, Thorah & Eldon Historical Society, Beaverton ON, 1995-97.

Producer/Director/Participant, “Timothy Findley and Friends,” an evening of readings and music, Beaverton ON, July 1995.

Chair, Speakers’ Committee, Beaverton, Thorah & Eldon Historical Society, Beaverton ON, 1996-2011.

Interviewer, Cable 10 TV Lindsay ON and COGECO Peterborough ON, re political-economic-heritage questions, 1997-2002.

Interviewer, senior members of Beaverton, Thorah & Eldon Historical Society for a video series, 1998-2002.

Board Member, Trent Valley Archives, Peterborough ON, 2000-2002.

Board Member, Friends of Bata Library, Trent University, 2002-2010.

Committee Member, Ontario Historical Society, re Constitution Amendments, Jan 2002.

Participant, "Authors' Night", an evening of readings and music, Beaverton ON, 9 July 2005.

Script Writer and Mozart Impersonator for "Mozart 250," Lindsay ON, 28 Jan 2006.

Judge, Historica Fairs, Lindsay ON, April and May, 2007-2009.

President, Lindsay Canadian Club, 2012-14.

© 2002, Updated 2011, Created by

Contact Rae at rb.fleming@bell.net or 705-439-2337 or 1606 Rd 46, Woodville ON, K0M 2T0 CANADA