Episode #16

Internment Years


June 8, 2023

Episode Length:


Episode Guests:

Chad Townsend – Documentary Filmmaker

Eric Chevalier – Carpenter, boat builder

Brian Thomas-Peter – Author


Episode Overview

It is a largely forgotten blemish on British Columbia’s and Canada’s history, one that creates a potent stigma in the Columbia River Basin. During both the First and Second World Wars, thousands of people, many of them Canadian citizens, were interned in makeshift camps throughout the region. Russian Doukhobors, Austrians, Germans, and Japanese were considered threats to the country and so the government uprooted them, changing their lives forever. This episode features a New Denver man who made a documentary about the letters written during internment that he found in an old church. We also discover a book titled The Kissing Fence, about Doukhobor parents separated from their children, and we look back on the dark years of Kootenay internment.

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