Shelf Life – July 25
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Jul 25, 2013  |  Vote 0    0

Shelf Life – July 25

Stratford Gazette

Breakthrough! Canada’s Greatest Inventions and Innovations

by John Melady,

@SPL: 609.2271Mel

From medicine to agriculture, sports to theatre, small hand-held tools to a complex machine used on the International Space Station, Canadian inventions have helped to change the world.

In his book Breakthrough!  Canada’s Greatest Inventions and Innovations, author John Melady of Egmondville gives us a glimpse into the background of these discoveries and the individuals responsible for them. The short biographies of each inventor add an element of human interest, offering readers an understanding of the invention and the importance of the contribution.

Through 22 chapters the author introduces inventors from all parts of Canada, and Stratford readers may be especially interested in the chapter about Tom Patterson, founder of the Stratford Festival. Readers will be fascinated to discover the many challenges that he had to overcome in laying the foundation for the world-class theatre we know today as the Stratford Festival.

Another interesting Stratford connection  can be found in the chapter written about Henry Woodward and Matthew Evans, inventors of the light bulb.

The partners from Toronto connected with a famed American, Thomas Edison, who as a teenager worked as a telegrapher for the Grand Trunk Railway in Stratford.

Throughout this book the author’s conversational writing style makes it easy to absorb the wealth of information found in each chapter. He engages the reader with intriguing stories about Canadian inventions such as the snow blower, a crash position indicator for airplanes known as the “black box,” a machine built to travel across snow in the winter, goalie masks, the Robertson screwdriver and the Canadarm.

–Trish MacGregor, library on wheels coordinator

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