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CHARBONNEAU – Canada’s Roma have a rich history, including in Kamloops

THE ROMANI PEOPLE of Canada have been met with both fascination and suspicion.

For more than a century, Canadians have been fascinated by the colourful bands of “Gypsies” that roamed the country. There was a circus-like feeling when they came to town.

Dressed in colourful costumes, women danced, told fortunes, sold herbs, and worked as midwifes. Men made and sold copper utensils and furniture. Gypsies must have been a rare source of entertainment in frontier towns like Kamloops.

Historical entries of the Roma are brief says Professor Cynthia Levine-Rasky, author of Writing the Roma:

“In historical almanacs, most encounters are discussed only fleetingly, such as the report of the “Gypsy show put on in Kamloops in 1898, or in description of visitors who dressed ’like Gypsies,’ or in the numerous sightings of nearby campsites (Canada’s History Magazine, June/July 2018).”

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David Charbonneau is a retired TRU electronics instructor who hosts a blog at http://www.eyeviewkamloops.wordpress.com.

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About Mel Rothenburger (6186 Articles)
ArmchairMayor.ca is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At ArmchairMayor.ca he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

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