Macedonians started immigrating to Canada in the late 1800s, yet the community has never had its history recorded - until now. Lillian Petroff, in her book Sojourners and Settlers, has remedied that omission in an informative and enjoyable manner. She charts the settlement patterns, living and working conditions, religious life, and political activity of Macedonians in Toronto from the early twentieth century to the Second World War.
The first Macedonians who came to Toronto lived an almost isolated existence in a distinct set of neighbourhoods that were centred around their church, stores, and boarding houses. They moved with little awareness of the city-at-large since the needs of their families in the old country and political events in their homeland were much more important to them than developments in Toronto and Canada. A greater interest in Canada began to take root only after Macedonians began to think less like sojourners and more like settlers. This transition was often accompanied by a move from bachelorhood to marriage and from industrial labour to individual entrepreneurial activities.
Employing a wealth of primary written and oral source material, Petroff tells the remarkable story of the men and women who laid the foundation for what would become a significant community in the Toronto area, which today represents the largest community of Macedonians outside the Balkans.
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