October 24-26, 2007
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Speakers: Biography

Speaker: James Marsh


James Marsh

Editor in Chief
Canadian Encyclopedia
60 Spadina Avenue
2nd Floor
Toronto ON
M5V 2H8 Canada

James Marsh was born in Toronto. He attended Davenport (now Osler) and Perth Avenue schools before spending five years at Oakwood Collegiate. His stint at Waterloo Lutheran University (now Wilfrid Laurier) was ended after two years by his first permanent job as an education editor at Holt Rinehart Winston, where he learned all aspects of publishing from copy editing to the inner workings of the typesetting and printing industries. He was the editor of a centennial history of Canada called Canada: Unity and Diversity and of a series of social studies volumes–writing one of them along the way (The Fishermen of Lunenburg). In 1970 Jack McClelland and the Institute of Canadian Studies at Carleton University hired James Marsh to be the editor of the Carleton Library Series, scholarly works on Canadian history and social science. In ten years he edited 60 volumes in the series and co-authored his first textbook, New Beginnings. He also completed a combined history and art history degree. Edmonton publisher Mel Hurtig brought James Marsh to Edmonton in 1980 to be the editor in chief of The Canadian Encyclopedia. There he drew up plans for Canada's first comprehensive encyclopedia since the 1950s and hired some 40 staff, 200 consultants and several thousand contributors. The ambitious project was completed and published in September 1985. James Marsh has been editor in chief of all three print editions of The Canadian Encyclopedia, of the Junior Encyclopedia of Canada and numerous CD-ROM versions and is currently editor in chief of the online versions of The Canadian Encyclopedia and The Encyclopedia of Music in Canada. Since 2000 he has also been Director of Content Development at the Historica Foundation. James Marsh's publications include The Fishermen of Lunenburg (Toronto: Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 1968), The Fur Trade in Canada (Toronto: Collier Macmillan, 1969), The Exploration of Canada (Toronto: Collier Macmillan, 1970), New Beginnings: a Social History of Canada, Volumes I & II (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1971), co-authored with Daniel Francis, "Timeline of Canadian and World History" (1983-present), Alberta: A Story of the Province and Its People (Toronto: Nelson, 1993), Beginnings: From the First Nations to the Great Migration (Toronto: Nelson, 1996). He is co-editor of Alberta: A State of Mind, published by Key Porter in summer 2005 and author of the chapter "Peoples of Alberta" in that volume. He is also author of "Alberta's Quiet Revolution: The Early Lougheed Years" in Michael Payne et al, editors, Alberta's 2005 Centennial History (University of Alberta Press). He has also been the author of over 100 Dateline history columns which appeared weekly in the CanWest newspaper chain. James Marsh is a member of the Order of Canada and was awarded the Centenary Medal of the Royal Society of Canada (1986) in recognition of his achievement of producing The Canadian Encyclopedia. He served as a member of the federal Advisory Council on the Information Highway and is currently a member of the editorial board of the Virtual Museum of Canada.

James will demonstrate Access.ca: Social Studies Resources for Canadian Teachers. [Demonstration]