Little known Lotta facts for a Friday: Did you know? Lotta loved to laugh!

Have you signed the petition? Let’s put Lotta on a commemorative stamp!

The public image that Dr Lotta Hitschmanova projected to millions of Canadians – through her famous TV and radio ads in the 60s and 70s – was that of a sincere, compassionate, caring, very serious human being.

As I have suggested elsewhere, she was our conscience, our national priest, rabbi and imam, all rolled into one. And yet.

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Special Bank of Canada survey, Update #3: the ultimate paradox, Lotta’s name isn’t well known

Have you signed the petition? Let’s put Lotta on a commemorative stamp!

Lotta Hitschmanova on a Canadian bank noteFor me, one of the more surprising results of the Bank of Canada’s survey on 12 “bank-notable” women was how few people (29%) recognized Lotta Hitschmanova’s name.

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Mike Myers, Lotta Hitschmanova, and on being Canadian

Have you signed the petition? Let’s put Lotta on a commemorative stamp!

Mike Myers, Shelagh Rogers, CBC radio photo

“What does it mean to be Canadian? Well, for one thing, if you’re of a certain age (Mike Myers is 53), it means you have stored away in your memory banks one of Canada’s most famous addresses, 55 Sparks Street, Ottawa 4 – or was it 56 Sparks?” Continue reading

“Immigrants make the best Canadians”

Have you signed the petition? Let’s put Lotta on a commemorative stamp!

Seldom has a newcomer to a country left such a nation-wide legacy as Lotta Hitschmanova has in her adopted land.

Indeed, I have argued that she was a refugee who literally changed Canada, for the better.

Peter Lockyer, who directed Soldier of Peace, Lotta’s film documentary, has reflected on the impact that Lotta and many other newcomers have had and concluded that “immigrants make the best Canadians.”

If you’d like to learn more, or hear Lotta’s voice again, have a viewing of Lockyer’s excellent video, Soldier of Peace.

David Rain

56 Sparks St – Canada’s most famous address?

Have you signed the petition? Let’s put Lotta on a stamp!

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56-sparks-photoWhy is it that so many visitors come to Ottawa from across Canada, and after taking a tour of Parliament Hill, they find themselves strolling down the Sparks Street Mall, when all of a sudden, they catch sight of a big door with the number 56 on top of it, their eyes pop out with incredulity, they come to a quick stop and then they start taking souvenir snapshots – to show the folks back home – to prove that there really was, and is, a 56 Sparks Street?

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Would you like to hear Lotta’s iconic voice again?

Have you signed the petition? Let’s put Lotta on a commemorative stamp!

Millions of Canadians still remember that unique and iconic voice of Lotta Hitschmanova.

For who can forget her distinctive Czech accent (and unique uniform) during those TV and radio PSAs  that were broadcast almost daily in the  1960s and 70s? Continue reading

Sharing a Lotta story: “Immigrants make the best Canadians”

Have you signed the petition? Let’s put Lotta on a commemorative stamp!

A special note from Peter Lockyer, producer of Lotta’s documentary, Soldier of Peace:

“I think it’s a wonderful site and thanks so much for thinking of me and the documentary program we did on Lotta Hitschmanova of the USC so many years ago.

“Lotta was an amazing individual and there will never be another person like her. Continue reading

Launching Lotta56sparks.ca — Happy Birthday Lotta! Though you won’t be printed on our $100 bills, you will always be etched in our hearts.

Have you signed the petition? Let’s put Lotta on a commemorative stamp!

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Welcome to the launching of Lotta56sparks.ca – on this, the 107th anniversary of one of Canada’s most beloved humanitarians!

Though Dr. Lotta did not make it onto the Bank of Canada’s short list of five women banknote candidates, there is still much cause for celebration, and indeed for reflection on the lasting impact that she has had on our Canadian society. Continue reading