May 1, 2013: Old School

Legions of in-line skaters have taken up where they left off last autumn, gliding through Montreal’s Vieux Port and along the Lachine Canal, slipping past pedestrians in a flash of spandex and a barely audible whirr. The technology in their modern wheeled footwear is light years removed from the pair of roller skates I found squirreled away with other castoffs from simpler times. 


Montreal, QC

Long before space-age plastics and polymers, metal Sunshine skates promised neighbourhood adventure and fun, but not without considerable appreciation of risk. “Shake, Rattle and Roll” was a popular hit of the era, but for those who ventured from the smooth surface of the roller rink onto pebbled concrete sidewalks, these words applied equally to the jarring ride and lack of control. Scraped knees and elbows were part of the learning curve, but by day’s end a determined youngster could circumnavigate the block with the wind at his back and an unassailable feeling of accomplishment written all over his face. 

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Lupin Mine, NU

Efforts to expand the scope of our photographic collection have received a welcome boost. Carey Management Philanthropy Photos has been given access to images taken at Echo Bay Mines' Lupin, Nunavut gold property. (I collaborated with Echo Bay for fifteen years, and had the unique opportunity to document the company's pioneering work in opening the central Arctic.) These two photos are among my favourites, showing the character and good humour of the miners, not the machinery or process of mining.  


Lupin Mine, NU

Obiter dictum:

Echo Bay’s visionary president, the late John Zigarlick, was the driving force behind the ice road popularized through History Channel’s “Ice Road Truckers” series. Originally built to enable fuel and supplies to reach the Lupin gold mine on Contwoyto Lake (latitude: 65°29’N, longitude: 110°22’W) from Yellowknife, NT approximately 400 kilometers to the south, it remains a vital lifeline today for the diamond mines of Nunavut.   

• In 1995, a young Internet entrepreneur, Pierre Omidyar, tried to register the domain name, but discovered it was already being used by the Canadian mining company. He decided to shorten it, and was born.  


Our three featured images are available for order. Please visit the gallery for a better look.

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