Author Tags: First Nations

Tom Swanky’s Quesnel-raised son Shawn Swanky is spreading the word—based on his father’s self-published 2012 ebook, The Great Darkening: “The True Story of Canada’s ‘War’ of Extermination on the Pacific”—that the administration of Governor James Douglas spread smallpox to generate epidemics that killed 100,000 indigenous people in 1862-63. They further claim that historians have failed to recognize this genocide, that indigenous people of that era “universally believed” smallpox was being used to exterminate them and that Douglas (who was married to a First Nations woman) was complicit. According to publicity materials, these accusations have been drawn from ten years of collecting first-hand accounts from the descendants of the smallpox survivors and collated accounts of the epidemics published in newspapers of the time. Shawn Swanky hopes to raise funds for a documentary film, The Great Darkening. www.shawnswanky.com

[BCBW 2013]

Review of the author's work by BC studies:
The True Story of Canada's "War" of Extermination on the Pacific plus The Tsilhqot'in and Other First Nations Resistance
A Missing Genocide and The Demonization of its Heroes