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This is the way it was on February 19 in Canada's past.

On this date in 1889, Gabriel Dumont was officially pardoned by The Crown for his role in the skirmishes of 1885. Louis Riel wasn't so lucky, and was hanged by authorities. And the struggles first brought forth by Dumont, Riel, Poundmaker, Sitting Bull and others resonate today.

Remember back to this day in 1996? It was on February 19th of that year that The Royal Canadian Mint first put into circulation its new two dollar coin, to go along with the one dollar coin, or "loonie" that was set loose on an unsuspecting public a few years earlier. This new, two dollar so-called "Polar Bear" coin was quickly dubbed "the toonie" and Canadians have been carting them around in their pockets and ash trays ever since.

In 1860, off the west coast of Nova Scotia's Cape Sable, the steamship "SS Hungarian", owned by the Allan Steamship Line, went down as it neared the end of its voyage from Liverpool, England. 205 lives were lost.

By February 19th of 1814, a chap by the name of Joseph Willcocks was a-moulderin' in his grave, but that fact didn't stop the Parliament of Upper Canada from posthumously ejecting him from membership. Why? Because he turned traitor during the 1812 War and led U.S. raids against that province.

Thanks for the click. There will be more tomorrow. And the day after. We hope.

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