A newly released book was written to celebrate Algonquin Park’s 125 history.
Rory MacKay, author of “Algonquin Park: A Place Like No Other,” says he’s been thinking about writing the book as far back as 1972. That’s when he started working at Algonquin Park’s museum as a seasonal naturalist. He says history become the area he specialized in during his six years working there. Before he left the Museum, Frank MacDougall, former Superintendent of Algonquin Park, passed away. One of MacKay’s colleagues said it was too bad no one spoke to MacDougall about the Park’s history before he passed. At that point, he was offered a position to interview people about the Park’s history.
After retiring from teaching a decade ago, MacKay was able to start writing the book full-time. “I’m very proud of the work i did on the book. My wife said she’s known me for 17 years and never known a day where I wasn’t working on the book,” he said, laughing.
MacKay says the book spans the entire history of the Park starting with the First Nations people and ending with an oral history of the Park from 1975 to now. In-between there will be stories on the work done by the Park Rangers and the development of railways that go through the Park.
MacKay says the title for the book came from an interview he did with on the Superintendents. “I couldn’t come up with the right secondary phrase for it until I interviewed one of the Superintendents and he said Algonquin Park is a place like no other,” MacKay says. He said that was exactly the kind of phrase he was looking for.
The book is 432 pages with 200,000 words packed in, MacKay says. The book is available now through The Friends of Algonquin Park’s website for $34.50.