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Our online collection contains 1347 stories, 5003 images and 637 oral histories.

Title Date of Arrival Culture Related Ship Accession Number Language More Information
Photograph portrait of J.P. LeBlanc, c. 1942 (No Restriction) c. 1942 DI2015.255.102

Donated to the Museum by J.P. LeBlanc, April 5 2001
John Paul (J.P.) LeBlanc was born in Saint Anselme, New Brunswick in 1921. During the Second World War, J.P. was a pilot with the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) and the Royal Air Force (RAF). He departed for Europe from Pier 21 in 1942 on board HMT Queen Elizabeth. He flew thirty-two missions before returning to Pier 21 with his English War Bride wife, Trudy Tansey. They had four children. He later had a distinguished career as a civil servant and retired in 1982 as Director General, Nova Scotia Region, Employment and Immigration Canada. He helped renew interest in Pier 21 and created the first Board of Directors in 1988. He was also the Founding President of the Pier 21 Society.

Photograph portrait of Iris Kidlark, circa 1945 (No Restriction) c. 1945 DI2014.224.1

Donated to Pier 21, July 12 2006, by Iris Kidlark-Tillett.
Iris Kidlark-Tillett (née Joyce) was born in Swansea, Wales in 1925. Iris met her first husband, Canadian soldier Michael Kidlark, while he was stationed overseas during the Second World War. Michael drove ammunition trucks for the Royal Canadian Artillery. They were married circa 1944. Michael returned to Canada in October 1945 and Iris arrived at Pier 21 on April 10, 1946 on board RMS Aquitania. They settled in Toronto, Ontario and had two sons.

Photograph portrait of Graziella Di Pasquale, circa 1954 (No Restriction) c. 1954 DI2015.301.2

Donated to Pier 21, May 19 2010, by Biase and Graziella Di Pasquale.
Biase Di Pasquale immigrated to Canada from Italy on board SS Conte Biancamano on November 18, 1953. Graziella Di Pasquale (née Di Giovanni) immigrated to Canada from Italy on board MS Vulcania in April 1954. Biase and Graziella met while working at Marra's Bread in Amherstburg, Ontario. They were married in April 1956 and had two daughters, Antoinette and Maria Lisena.

Photograph portrait of Gordon Comrie in uniform, 1940-1945 1940 to 1945 DI2016.476.4

Donated to the Museum by Ella Comrie, July 1 2006
In September 1943, Ella Comrie, and her sister, Cathie, took vising friends out dancing at the Lacarno in Glasgow, Scotland. There Ella met her future husband, Gordon (Joe) Comrie, a member of the Queen’s Own Rifles, based out of Toronto, Ontario. They corresponded for the next three years and would meet every three months when Gordon was on leave. Gordon returned to Scotland in July 1945 after the European campaign. Ella and Gordon were married on July 18 1945 and a month later Gordon returned to Canada. Ella departed from Southampton and arrived at Pier 21 on June 27 1946 on board RMS Aquitania. It took two days for her to be processed and allowed off the ship. She took the train to Toronto and was met by Gordon, his family, and his best friend. They settled in Toronto and had their first daughter in 1947 and their second in 1951.
During the First and Second World Wars civilian, European women, married Canadian soldiers. Most of the women came from Great Britain, with fewer numbers coming from other European countries. These women are referred to as War brides.

Photograph portrait of Giovanni Zavarella, c. 1959 c. 1959 DI2017.34.17

Donated to the Museum by Luigia, Nunziata, and Maria Zavarella, November 28 2009
Luigi Zavarella was born in Pratola, Italy in 1945 and his sister, Nunziata (Tina) Di Benedetto, was born in 1940. They immigrated to Canada with their father, Giovanni Zavarella, after their mother passed away in March 1959. They arrived at Pier 21 on November 30 1959 on board SS Conte Biancamano. They were met by their older sisters, Domenica and Concetta. Domenica arrived in 1958, sponsored by Concetta who arrived in 1956 with her son, Rocco, to join her husband, Giovanni Cianfaglione. They settled in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Domenica and Tina worked at the Halifax Infirmary and Luigi found work as a barber. He worked at various barbershops, and later worked at Saint Mary's University for 19 1/2 years. Tina's husband arrived in Canada on September 26 1960 and they were married on October 8 1960. Luigi married his childhood sweetheart, Maria Zavarella, also from Pratola, on June 19 1967. Maria arrived at Pier 21 on May 14 1967 on board SS Queen Anna Maria.

Photograph portrait of Francis O'Leary and her husband, c. 1944 c. 1944 DI2014.231.2

Donated to the Museum, by Francis O'Leary, June 24 2001
British War Bride, Francis O'Leary (née Mabel Francis Clark) married Cpl. C. S. O'Leary and immigrated to Canada on board RMS Aquitania.
During the First and Second World Wars civilian, European women, married Canadian soldiers. Most of the women came from Great Britain, with fewer numbers coming from other European countries. These women are referred to as War Brides.

Photograph portrait of Ethel Suárez, 2012 2012 DI2017.793.10

Donated to the Museum by Ethel Suárez, November 24 2012
Ethel Suárez was born in Salto, Uruguay in 1944 and grew up in an upper middle class family. Following her marriage in 1962, Ethel and her husband, Enrique, moved to Montevideo, Uruguay and went on to open a school that taught business administration. Both Ethel and Enrique taught at the school while Enrique additionally worked at the central bank. In 1972, a military coup forced many people to flee the country due to their political beliefs. Ethel and Enrique belonged to the Frente Amplio party, which was against the government. They were harassed and threatened by the military and Enrique was jailed and tortured for five days. They decided to flee to Argentina; their three children followed at a later date. With the help of the United Nations, the family was able to come to Canada in 1977 as refugees, settling in Red Deer, Alberta. Ethel and Enrique eventually opened and operated a carpentry business in Red Deer. At the time of the interview, Ethel worked as a disability counselor in Red Deer and was also involved with CARE (Central Alberta Refugee Effort), assisting new immigrants and refugees in Red Deer.

Photograph portrait of Erzsébet Lantos and Gaby Niloff, circa 1949 (No Restriction) c. 1949 DI2016.11.3

Donated to Pier 21, February 7 2004, by Gaby Niloff.
Gaby Niloff (née Lantos) was born in Budapest, Hungary in 1948 to parents Elizabeth (Erzsébet) and Frank (Ferenc) Lantos. Gaby’s family left Hungary during the Hungarian Revolution on December 3, 1956. They made their way to Vienna, Austria and took a train to Rome and then Genoa, Italy, where they boarded SS Venezuela. They arrived at Pier 21 on January 5, 1957 and travelled to Montreal, Quebec.

Photograph portrait of Ella and Gordon Comrie, c. 1980s 1980s DI2016.476.3

Donated to the Museum by Ella Comrie, July 1 2006
In September 1943, Ella Comrie, and her sister, Cathie, took vising friends out dancing at the Lacarno in Glasgow, Scotland. There Ella met her future husband, Gordon (Joe) Comrie, a member of the Queen’s Own Rifles, based out of Toronto, Ontario. They corresponded for the next three years and would meet every three months when Gordon was on leave. Gordon returned to Scotland in July 1945 after the European campaign. Ella and Gordon were married on July 18 1945 and a month later Gordon returned to Canada. Ella departed from Southampton and arrived at Pier 21 on June 27 1946 on board RMS Aquitania. It took two days for her to be processed and allowed off the ship. She took the train to Toronto and was met by Gordon, his family, and his best friend. They settled in Toronto and had their first daughter in 1947 and their second in 1951.
During the First and Second World Wars civilian, European women, married Canadian soldiers. Most of the women came from Great Britain, with fewer numbers coming from other European countries. These women are referred to as War brides.

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