A letter of tribute

Historian, mother, sister, friend, Dr. Anne Clendinning started her life adventure in Ingersoll, Ontario and ended it in North Bay on June 1, 2014. She lived her life to the fullest. She loved to learn. She was fierce and determined. She was beautiful and the master of her own fate.

She met the love of her life, Dermot Wilson, hiking in the Kananaskis Valley. Together they travelled around the world for two years. Travel was always a passion and source of inspiration for Anne because she wanted to understand other peoples and cultures. Her younger sister Lynda will always remember her as the cool older sister with wonderful tales to share about her latest adventures. Dermot and Anne had two beautiful daughters, Imogen and Aurelia. As infants they attended doctoral classes and a dissertation defence at McMaster University. Before she left us she made a point of telling her girls she was so proud of them.

A farm girl at heart, Anne had a way with plants and, unbeknownst to most people, studied horticulture at the University of Guelph. She loved visiting the land of her childhood where her father, Eugene Clendinning, still farms today. Her siblings include: Lynda, Joyce, David and Douglas.

Anne was always by disposition a historian. She was a skillful storyteller. She had a mind for detail. A women’s and gender historian of Victorian England, her first book examined the impact of the gas industry on women. She was passionate about her latest project on the gendered world of The Wembley Exhibition of 1924/25. It broke her heart not to finish it. Anne was also a mentor to her students. She took such pleasure in sharing her ideas and time with them, and delighted watching them develop as young scholars. She thrived working through complex ideas and watching their minds open up in different ways. Like with all people she came into contact with, she deeply respected her students and teaching them gave her great joy and satisfaction.

Her friends admired her strength, dignity and wit. They loved her style and choice “finds,” which she so generously shared. She developed a preeminent international Mode Barbie and Ken collection, the last piece of which is yet to arrive. She was an artist in the kitchen, particularly with pies. She was very proud of her apple pie, and for good reason; she often talked about her mother Marjorie at these times. Anne was deeply interested in popular culture. She wanted to write to the director of Mad Men to request he release the last episodes.

Anne was a passionate historian, loyal friend and devoted mother. She was deeply loved and will be sorely missed by everyone. Most of all she was a dignified, strong and compassionate woman.

Donations can be made to the newly formed “Dr. Anne Clendinning Scholarship Fund” at Nipissing University in the following ways:

Online: www.nipissingu.ca/giving

Mail: Make cheque payable to Nipissing University

Nipissing University- Development Office
100 College Dr.,
North Bay, ON P1A 3W2

Phone: 705 474-3450 x 4361

In person: F209

Katrina Srigley, Ph.D.
Chair and Associate Professor of History
Nipissing University
100 College Drive, Box 5002
North Bay, Ontario
P1B 8L7