Welcome to Martinalia. An academic career generates material which for one reason or another does not get into print. There are public lectures and keynote addresses. Some are never intended for publication. Others are commissioned for projects which never get off the ground. There is material prepared for teaching, which may be useful to colleagues and students involved in similar courses. Some projects seem worth sharing with interested readers even though they remain unfinished, lacking the final polish needed for conventional academic publication. Since 2014 I have used Martinalia to publish essays and research reports. 

The term “Martinalia” was coined by my friend Jim Sturgis.  

Maryland: an American place-name in east London?

The east London district of Maryland is probably best known for its station on the Liverpool Street suburban railway line.[1] It has been assumed that it owes its name to Maryland in the USA. This note offers an alternative explanation. 

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A joke about Mr Gladstone

It was customary in Victorian times for the local landowner to inspect the village school – after all, he was probably paying for it – and to quiz the children, so that he might assure himself that all was going well.

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Australian, New Zealand and Canadian newspapers as resources for research in modern British and Irish history

This note draws attention to Australian, New Zealand and Canadian online newspaper archives as resources that can support research in modern British and Irish history. The note concentrates on websites available free in February 2020.

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Treaties and textbooks: how forgotten agreements with First Nations crept back into Canadian history

Between 1871 and 1877, the Dominion of Canada negotiated seven Treaties with Aboriginal people to secure the transfer of their rights to over one million square kilometres of land stretching from Lake Superior to the Rocky Mountains. However, until the late nineteen-sixties, general textbooks about Canada's history barely mentioned these agreements.

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The Department of Indian Affairs in the Dominion of Canada budget, 1882

This examination of how Ottawa taxed and spent in 1882 is intended to place expenditure by the Department of Indian Affairs in the overall context of government priorities.

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Canadian history on

 This is a list with outline information of Canadian history and Canadian Studies articles, chapters and essays by Ged Martin on, as of February 2020. The material available here represents a selection of research and comment, both published and (more recently) written for the website. 

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The fourth Earl of Carnarvon (1831-1890): towards a reconsideration

This essay argues the case for a scholarly study of Henry Howard Molyneux Herbert, fourth Earl of Carnarvon (1831-1890), and suggests some themes and interpretations that a biographer might wish to examine.

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M.C. Cameron's indictment of Canada's Department of Indian Affairs, 1885-1891: the pitfalls of contemporary evidence

This discussion is a reconnaissance into a controversy between 1885 and 1891 over criticisms by a Liberal MP, Malcolm Colin Cameron, of the Canadian government's treatment of Aboriginal people. It argues that the exchanges merit study today, but warns that Cameron's use of evidence makes him an unreliable source.

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How much did Canada 'pay' First Nations for the prairies?

In a series of seven treaties between 1871 and 1877, the Dominion of Canada persuaded Aboriginal people to cede their rights over the land of Manitoba and the North-West. First Nations communities were promised various forms of annual payments, but no actual purchase price changed hands. Is it possible to calculate an assumed, if notional, capital value on the basis of these continuing outlays, the price that Canada would have paid had the treaties constituted a normal property transaction?

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Income tax in Canada before 1917

The Dominion of Canada adopted income tax as a wartime measure in 1917, 75 years after Britain. It was widely argued that few Canadians were sufficiently wealthy to justify the complex and intrusive administrative machine needed to enforce the measure. However, income tax was charged by at least one province, British Columbia, from 1876, and by several cities across the country.

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