Manny was also responsible for establishing the Miramichi Folksong Festival, which was founded in 1958. At its inception, this was a three-day event in which folk singers and storytellers had a chance to perform and share stories. In the early years of the festival, performers were not allowed to use instruments. In the interest of maintaining the purity of the folk tradition, it was expected that the songs be performed a capella. The festival continues to be a yearly event and has since grown in size and scope, featuring local and national acts. In addition to her other pursuits, Manny was director of the festival from 1958 until 1969. Today, it is the longest-running festival of its kind in Canada.
A published author, she completed a series of three volumes chronicling New Brunswick’s shipbuilding history. Her other book, Songs of the Miramichi, is a comprehensive collection of the region’s folksongs.
In 1966, she was honoured by the American Association for State and Local History for her work as a historian and folklorist. She received the “Woman of the Century” medal from the National Council of Jewish Women of Canada in 1967. Additionally, the province of New Brunswick named a mountain in Northumberland County “Manny Mountain” after her.
One of her last request was: Keep the Festival Alive! I wonder if she realized that it would still be going strong after 54 years, and it would go on for a week, complete with luncheons!! I appeared on stage with a little friend of mine in 1959.Here are some pics from last night, the first night.
David Adam Richards officially opened the Festival. He is one of our own who has become quite an accomplished author. You can google him to find out more. On top of that, he received the Order of Canada also, here he is pictured with his wife Peggy, I went to school with both.
Toe tapping music from the Miramichi Fiddlers, they held a Fiddler's weekend this past week, served delicious breakfast, yum yum!