Andy Thomson, Toronto

I spent my summers in an area in Northern Ontario that was a microcosm of the development of the Ontario wilderness. My connection to the area and the lake where my family had a camp was once a logging operation belonging to my grandfather, W. B. Plaunt of Sudbury. However, it wasn't until I retired from teaching that I discovered just how rich a history it held. After researching in five major Canadian archives and interviewing many people who had lived in the area, I published my book entitled "Pogamasing: The Story of a Northern Lake." My grandfather and his family had a significant impact on the area as he operated a sawmill beside the Spanish River and Wye, the CPR stop during the 1930's.

His son, Donald Plaunt enlisted in the RCAF and was one of the first Canadians to fly a Lancaster bomber. Unfortunately, he was killed on his 11th mission in 1943. His 150 letters to his family became the subject of my second book: "Write Soon and Often - The Life of a Bomber Pilot Through His Letters Home."

Photos, blogs, a video on lumbering and excerpts from both books can be seen at

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