NARRATION: He began life as a cabinet-maker’s son in the auld lang town of Kirkcaldy, just above Edinburgh on the Firth of Forth He was born in 1827 at the height of the Scottish technical industrial age He would grow tall, feisty, resilient, with big ideas and dreams With a large head of sandy red hair and an ego to match, a classic example of Victorian manliness At eighteen, he went to Canada He made influential friends He found fame by stapling steel across the new nation Canada was a railway in search of a country, a wit once said But when Fleming came here, there was not much country, and no railroads He would be their guide Narrator: Sandford Fleming was born on Glaswynn Road, one of six children raised as a team, which would stand him well in Canada His father, Andrew, was a careful man in appearance and industry, keeping his woodworking shop and lumberyard tidy Nothing out of place All moving parts oiled ALAN WILSON: Sandford’s father, Alexander, had a very good reputation in the Kirkcaldy district He was a first class cabinet-maker and a respected man in many, many ways And he was ambitious for his son NARRATION: Sandford’s clever mother, Elizabeth, kept the accounts ALAN WILSON: Andrew could not have persisted being the pater familias without a very strong lieutenant And indeed, in many ways she also ruled the roost NARRATION: After his early education, Sandford was apprenticed to one of Scotland’s leading engineers, John Sang ALAN WILSON: He is apprenticed, therefore, as early as fourteen John Sang’s reputation went well beyond Kirkcaldy He was acknowledged as an outstanding civil engineer Also surveyor But civil engineer, and as an experimental one NARRATION: Sang’s legacy affected most of Sandford’s future career, including his most controversial moments From his father, Sandford inherited order and system And a thirst for adventure from his mother, whose brothers worked overseas But Sandford’s father, Andrew, had his overseas contacts, too, among them a cousin, Dr. John Hutchison who had settled in Peterborough, Upper Canada ELWOOD JONES: When this area was opening up, it was covered with white pine NARRATION: Peterborough was developing quickly, and Hutchison urged the Flemings to come share the promise of this white pine, which among other natural resources was already being exploited by a group of entrepreneurial Scots who ruled from Scotstown across the river ELWOOD JONES: Well, the first fortunes in Peterborough were built on lumbering NARRATION: But Andrew was cautious, anxious about Canada’s winters and the perils of overseas travel He was assured, if it were not for the nights, I have seen far colder weather at home in June For two years, the boys waited anxiously for their father’s permission to make the fearful crossing and to become the family’s advance scouting party to Peterborough At last Andrew relented, and on April the 24th, 1845, David twenty, Sandford eighteen, and cousin Henry twenty-five, stood excitedly at the stern of the ship, Brilliant Andrew gave them three uneasy cheers while Elizabeth wept softly The voyage was stormy The fear of cholera in the St. Lawrence ports loomed over them throughout the voyage But they debarked safely and in good health And ascending the Ottawa River to Bytown, they traveled down the Rideau Canal to Lake Ontario Took ship for Cobourg And after fifty-five days of travel, arrived at Dr.Hutchison’s door JEAN COLE: Coming to Peterborough as he did, he knew he was going to find his relatives there But he certainly didn’t know what else he was likely to find ELWOOD JONES: Peterborough nowadays looks as if it’s a flat area at the centre of town But the truth was it was undulating And there was little peaks and valleys across the place And even the main intersection of town at that time was George and Hunter, was a swamp

NARRATION: Sandford was stunned It looked like such a poor little place The stumps still in the streets A wooden house here and there with a few good villas in the suburbs ELWOOD JONES: The exception is a house such as Hutchison house which was built in stone, which was very rare And of course Sheriff Hall’s house, which was built in brick very early NARRATION: Henry set out for Toronto immediately David, wanting to learn wood carving, would soon follow Sandford wasn’t yet sure And it may have been the last time in his life that he suffered from uncertainty He remained with the Hutchisons, working at surveys and collecting the doctor’s accounts But when he learned that David had got work with a Scotch furniture-maker, he set out for Toronto where he met Casimir Gzowski, the well-known engineer and great, great grandfather to journalist Peter Gzowski JEAN COLE: His first few forays into the engineering world in Toronto weren’t very successful He went to see Casimir Gzowski He was very offhand with him and just said, why don’t you go back to Scotland There’s no future for you here NARRATION: He retreated to Peterborough, resuming work as a surveyor, made lithographs of outstanding buildings and prepared plans of Peterborough and other towns Then he was commissioned to design a spire for Peterborough’s Catholic Church Sandford by now had no small estimate of his own worth, and he and Father Butler fell out over his fee This soon went to law Sandford reported home with glee, with Dr. Hutchison’s advice, I sued him and gained He had to pay the costs and all Think of Sand Fleming having a lawsuit with a Catholic priest It’s not everyone has the honours Meantime, David was prospering in Toronto and wrote to his father describing the Canadian’s mass production techniques and their attractive furniture Not like our clumsy old fashioneds And summing up that, a Scottish cabinet-maker has to come here to learn, not to teach And whether we farm or go into business, we’re quite a colony by ourselves, capable of everything ALAN WILSON: David foresees a vertically integrated operation that starts in the forests and ends in the shops, for the whole family But it is amusing that Sandford finds other reasons for the family succeeding if they come out My name is middling well known about this part of the country You will excuse my flattering myself a little He’s twenty years old, and he’s already caught that confidence in the country and in himself NARRATION: He was now a big man, six foot two of hearty spirits and much self-importance He would challenge men, energize them, and set them an outdoors manly model He seldom nursed self doubt and he would dismiss it in others His strong ego grows into networking as part of his formula for success GEORGE FLEMING: He had some connections given to him when he came here Found enough opportunities to invite his family to join him NARRATION: On April 16th, 1847, the father, Andrew, wrote to David “I write you, and most probably for the last time from this side of the Atlantic.” Still fearing the St. Lawrence plague ports, they all boarded the ship Mary from Glasgow for Montreal It was a risky business, and they were thankful for a safe landing and a quick escort to Canada West In order to be part of the growing Canadian railway fever, Sandford had moved to Weston to be nearer David and to work toward his surveyor’s certificate under the noted Stoughton Dennis Sophisticated modern equipment has made the surveyor’s task much easier BRUCE HICKS: One of the holdbacks in surveying has always been the fact that you have to have line of sight You have to actually be able to see from the instrument to the point you’re picking up So, in the past that meant I’m either cutting down trees to find lines the sight, or they’d actually build survey towers and go sit up on top of the towers and see over the trees So it’s moved us from having to actually physically see that person to being able to survey over long distances with obstacles in the way It saves a lot of man-hours in doing all that physical chaining NARRATION: In Sandford’s time, surveying was heavy work Distances were measured with long heavy chains To measure a single mile, the chain had to be spread nearly twenty-seven times Before him lay the challenge of carrying these cumbersome

hundred-link chains from the Atlantic to the Pacific, a measure of Sandford’s determination His training in surveying was essential to his hopes of becoming a railway engineer And he was overjoyed at the family’s reunion at this key moment in his developing career He and David conducted them all to a farmstead that Sandford had surveyed and secured for them For seven years, young and old farmed, managed woodlots and leased a sawmill on the Humber Andrew resumed cabinet-making and became consultant to the firm that David had now joined, Jacques and Hay, the colony’s leading furniture manufacturer, where he had already become a respected furniture carver Sandford’s interest in railways grew as the rumours of construction spread Keeping his eyes open for opportunity, he honed his inventive skills with designing other innovative means of locomotion like these in-line skates designed a century and a half before their commercial success His list of contacts grew, especially with the temperamental and ambitious Collingwood Schreiber, with whom he designed Toronto’s Palace of Industry Schreiber saw in this emerging engineer, someone who dared to think big Sandford’s career would centre upon his skills as an engineer, but he was also a skilled promoter Sandford had campaigned for a railway down southern Ontario’s spine, with Peterborough as its hub And although no one bought in, Sandford realized that his name was becoming middling well known in railway circles across Canada West In 1849, he led in founding the Canadian Institute, a society of surveyors, engineers and architects for this very practical age JEAN COLE: So a group of them got together and they met a few times And then the attendance was not so hot, and one Saturday night there were just two of them there Anyhow, out of this organization grew the Royal Canadian Institute which still meets on Saturday nights, and all due to Sandford persevering NARRATION: He founded the Institute’s Canadian Journal, an invaluable source of scientific and technical information In 1851, he designed the first Canadian postage stamp, the three penny Beaver A plaque in downtown Toronto commemorates the event ALAN WILSON: There was a contest of some sort, and Sandford in fact decided that he would submit his own design And the beaver of course was symbolic, had been symbolic of a great deal of Canada’s history But on the other hand, it’s kind of general toothiness and some of its other qualities leave something to be desired in a national symbol NARRATION: Meanwhile, when Toronto’s newspaper, The Globe, trumpeted plans for a rail link between Toronto and Lake Huron in anticipation of a further bold leap along the Great Lakes to the northwest, Sandford sensed that his time had come He applied successfully to chief engineer, Frederic Cumberland, to be his assistant But it was a potentially volatile mix of temperaments, egos and ambitions ALAN WILSON: Sandford got up there and started building the railway up to Collingwood, and discovered that Cumberland, the man he was to work with, had so many irons in other fires that he, Sandford, was left doing most of the day-to-day stuff NARRATION: Determined to make his mark, he worked tirelessly, completed the job and won accolades from the locals, especially the new railway stop at Saugine An entry in Sandford’s diary notes . . ALAN WILSON: “Saugine people decided to found a library, to be called the Fleming Library, a great mark of respect to me.” After several years of doubt and discouragement, it seems as if fortune smiles on him Must not be too vain, too sanguine, an evil day may come NARRATION: Sandford completed this rare reflective mood with, “an important week to me How will it end?” While Sandford was using the project to teach himself the skills of the railway builder, and being none too modest about it, Cumberland’s jealousy was aroused and he fired him Pointing out Cumberland’s delinquencies, Sandford shot back and became the new Northern Railway’s chief engineer Meanwhile, he began to look for a permanent family homestead, finding it just beyond the railway’s terminus at Collingwood on Georgian Bay GEORGE FLEMING: Which they named Cragleith, which reminded them of land in Scotland And it also had some decent farming capacities and other potential, so the whole family essentially moved up NARRATION:

And together they built a fine farmhouse David celebrated by carving elaborate clusters of grapes around the eaves and an ornate circular staircase Now filled with great visions, Sandford declared that from Craigleith he could almost see the prairies JEAN COLE: He was a wonderful son He always was considerate of his parents and helped them He really treasured his family NARRATION: While surveying, Sandford saw the possibility of exploiting the area’s lumber potential He bought a huge acreage, gifting it to his father who had now become chief supplier to Jacques and Hay David made plans to open a lumbering contracting business, and would build some of the finest homes in the growing town of Collingwood Sandford visited often, providing steady support and continued to push them into realizing bigger ambitions NARRATION: Shortly after the family settled in Craigleith, they announced plans for a new village For sale Valuable town and villa lots, beautifully situated at the foot of the Blue Mountains with frontage on the Georgian Bay A quarry of the finest building stone, and an excellent place for a fishery From its salubrity and picturesque beauty, it must become a favourite summering resort and watering place A healthful summer retreat for capitalists, merchants and mechanics They developed waterfront for shipping And while wood, limestone and water power were abundant, they opened a mill and a quarry, and began a general store and gave land and materials for a school and railway station Then Sandford wrote in his diary on New Year’s Eve 1853, “an intimacy has grown up with Miss Hall of Peterborough How it may terminate, I do not know An amiable well-bred woman with her peculiarities.” Jeannie was several years his junior Graceful, vivacious But as headstrong as he was, with a tom-boy spirit that proved irresistible A love poem borne by a dove caught her heart JEAN COLE: ThThis poem illustrated with the bluebird Which is very sweet NARRATION: When their sleigh overturned in the woods, Sandford fell under Jeannie’s spell JEAN COLE: They were somewhere near Lindsay and driving a little cutter, I think it was At any rate, it crashed and he was flung out and injured Well, when he came to, there was Jeannie hanging over him all anxious and whatnot And she got a neighbouring farmer to take them in Sandford was a number of days recuperating at this home, stranger’s house And then when he got back to Toronto, he wrote to her and asked her if she would marry him The very next mail came back with the answer, yes she would One feels that that little episode outside of Lindsay pushed it on a bit there NARRATION: Their courtship was like something out of a Harlequin Romance And two years later on New Year’s Day, 1855, Sandford wrote in his diary, at Cobourg on the way to Mary Jeannie Hall, woke up at the Globe Hotel, a great big Canadianized Scotsman with rather an ungainly figure, large head, red or sand coloured beard and mustache Such is my house of clay JEAN COLE: He was the kind of person that would have wanted to feel that he was well-established before he could ask anyone to marry him NARRATION: It was a happy and bountiful marriage with five sons and four daughters, though three would die in infancy And Sandford set out to encourage in his own home all of the team energy of his birth family In 1862, a vengeful Cumberland regained the confidence of the Northern Railway’s Board and was named General Manager Immediately, he fired Fleming for the second time But marriage to Jeannie had opened a new door Her mother came from Halifax’s establishment, and so a new round of contacts and opportunities opened out During his visits to Halifax, Sandford worked the tiny society of the town for all it was worth, charming everyone in sight Soon he made himself known to Nova Scotia’s Liberal Premier, Joseph Howe, who only a few years earlier had brought a Halifax audience to its feet by declaring . . ALAN WILSON:

“I believe that many in this room will live to hear the whistle of the steam engine in the passes of the Rockies, and to take the journey from Halifax to the Pacific in five to six days.” NARRATION: Howe liked this confident cocky Sandford Fleming And this time, Sandford’s contact would pay off in spades ALAN WILSON: So the Premier of Nova Scotia was an advocate of railways And Nova Scotia was embracing the railway movement at that time And so he moved right out of the Northern job into becoming the chief engineer of railways for the province of Nova Scotia NARRATION: Characteristically then, Sandford jumped quickly from an apparent setback in losing the Northern Railway job, to a railway project that would lay the foundation for wide recognition in railway circles across Canada and the United States They moved to Halifax, finding a lovely home on the fashionable Brunswick Street And in Halifax he made his closest friendship ALAN WILSON: Being a devout man, he would go to the appropriate church, which was St. Matthew’s Here’s this young twenty-five year old livewire, George Grant, in the pulpit there at one of the churches of the town And so he’s caught up in the light of Halifax very quickly NARRATION: With Sandford’s advice as chief engineer, Howe let out contracts for a rail line between Truro and Pictou But when Charles Tupper’s Tory government soon took over, Tupper had immediately to face delays and cost over-runs on the Pictou line Sensing the political change, Sandford had already shrewdly courted Tupper who now turned to him for help At that, Sandford made his boldest proposal yet ALAN WILSON: That he shut down all existing contracts, and that he, Sandford take it over, and that he built it NARRATION: Tupper agreed But when he hired Sandford, the province’s former chief engineer to build the line, the press screamed patronage, kickbacks, collusion They labeled Tupper and Sandford, the sinister Siamese Twins ALAN WILSON: Well, he did come in on time and under budget We don’t know how far under budget But I think an awful lot For example, when he ballasted, he voluntarily put twenty-five percent more ballast into that line than the contract called for You don’t do that unless you anticipate a pretty comfortable profit NARRATION: Speculation over his private gains was widespread But whatever his profit, he soon bought a huge acreage on Halifax’s fashionable Northwest Arm across from Tupper So the Pictou caper suggests again this bold self-assurance As on the Northern, he learned on the job, and in the process made innovations hailed even by American railway engineers Using steel rails, not iron Applying John Sang’s lessons in properly building embankments and stone bridge approaches Using iron, not wood for bridges and laying track with the finished ballast These all became standard techniques after Sandford pioneered them, and they led to his being the natural choice as the guiding engineer for the great trans-Continental railways of Canada NARRATION: In the 1867 Act of Confederation, Maritimers welcomed the guarantee of a line between eastern and central Canada, to be built by Ottawa Fleming’s Pictou fame now paid off, as all agreed to his appointment as chief of engineering, prompting his move to Ottawa where he built an imposing mansion, Winter Home, whose huge tropical arboretum became his hobby But there were competitors for the job One was Charles Bridges of the grand trunk, who advocated building railroads quickly and cheaply, and then repairing and upgrading from operating revenues This could well appeal to the new cash-poor federal government But Sandford knew that along the intercolonial’s under populated and underdeveloped route, railway profits were probably generations away Better to do it right in the first place He stuck to his guns GEORGE FLEMING: He fought many battles to get iron bridges, instead of wooden bridges so trains of the day wouldn’t set them on fire as they crossed over them He nearly lost some of those battles, except that some bridges burned, and ultimately he did win NARRATION: When Ottawa’s Railway Board, his overseers, clashed with Sandford over issues raised by Charles

Bridges, the most outspoken member of the Board, the disputes were often referred for resolution to the new federal Minister of Railways and Canals, who was Charles Tupper, his old Siamese twin Sandford seldom lost an appeal Bridges, his ideas constantly ignored, joined a growing list of those who thought Fleming’s construction methods were too lavish But Sandford just concentrated on laying track Here’s how I saw him in the Heritage Minute we made in 1992 SANDFORD FLEMING [DRAMATIZATION] We’re not just building a railroad, gentlemen, we are building a country ALAN WILSON: He really was revered on the line But the trouble was in some cases, and he came under heavy fire from Bridges and others later on, for the fact that he let them get away with too much He did, and no one else had ever done it this carefully, he created a form wherein the engineers had to report on a very, very frequent basis So he rode herd on them But on the other hand, that other warm side of him often drew him close to people NARRATION: Too close it seems For while he readily won friends and admirers, he attracted critics and even enemies with a fair facility, too The work was difficult and he met strong criticism But he was getting track laid And then he was shaken by a message from Ottawa ALAN WILSON: He was asked to take on yet another responsibility To bring British Columbia into Confederation, MacDonald had offered to build a trans-continental line Fleming was asked to be its chief construction engineer, too Now that’s a huge burden, and he hesitated NARRATION: To complete the railway through the Rockies was a forbidding task Could he find in himself the resources to supervise a third major trans-Continental link George Grant may have tipped the scale ALAN WILSON: A Pacific railway would be a vital link in an imperial global chain And since Sandford had dreams of developing a cable link to New Zealand and Australia, surely this was part of a grand design And remember, they’re both Presbyterians The whole idea of predestinarianism is very amusing And in the summer of 1872, with his son Frank, and with Grant and a couple of others, he set out on the first of two exploratory journeys across the Prairies to the Rockies and beyond And this was a pretty daring venture Because Sandford, although he’s still only forty-five and Grant’s only thirty-seven, they loved the outdoor life But it was a demanding trip And yet Sandford sat and sketched and did watercolours in the evening while Grant wrote notes for a book that would become a Canadian classic, Ocean To Ocean And that was matched by a serialized version lavishly illustrated, sold in chapter lengths and priced for a popular audience NARRATION: There was a lot of testosterone floating about in the construction camps Grant and Fleming had caught some of its drive It was manly work, Grant said, to move mountains But the job’s demands, the political wrangling and the death of his beloved father, were taking a toll on Sandford’s health Now he faced the most difficult decade of his life With Charles Bridges still nipping at his heels in Ottawa, Sandford seemed to dither about the right route through the Rockies It was his undoing He always wanted to get it right first But Tupper’s loyalty to him was splitting the Tory party Tupper needed a decision, and Sandford seemed lost in the passes of the Rockies He’d become a political liability In May 1880, Tupper, abruptly dismissed his old Siamese twin The settlement of thirty thousand dollars and the promise of a Pacific cable contract eased the separation But at fifty-three, Sandford Fleming was out For the first time, he seemed to face a dim future Now he would prove his extraordinary resilience ALAN WILSON: He’s just gone through thirty-five years of his middle career Now he starts thirty-five years of retirement which are almost as hectic and as busy as the thirty-five years of his so-called working life NARRATION: In mourning for his father, Sandford returned to Scotland and England to regain his health His most memorable project was still ahead NARRATION: In 1879, Sandford Fleming the greatest of all the Canadian Railway engineers was out of a job and in need of a friend

Reverend George Grant, his old pal was standing by ALAN WILSON: When Grant became principal of Queen’s in 1879, he immediately installed Fleming as Chancellor GEORGE FLEMING: He always felt a little, whether he ought to have been that, because he was an engineer not by going through schooling and education but through practical application NARRATION: His inaugural address was a hymn to scientific learning, and he supported Grant in Queen’s rivalry with McGill And remained an effective Chancellor for thirty-five years, with energy left over for other ventures He invested heavily in Hudson’s Bay stock, joining the company’s largest shareholder, Donald Smith Smith and Fleming knew that the old Bay Company held huge tracts in the west, and would complement, and perhaps compete with the Pacific Railway’s interest in western lands Smith was an obvious target for Sandford’s list of useful contacts And through him, he was soon welcomed into a powerful Montreal syndicate which now took over the private development of the trans-Continental railway as the Canadian Pacific Railway Company, under another engineering giant, William Van Horne Sandford was readily attracted to a man who once told a doubting investor, go sell your boots, man, and buy CPR stock He threw his support to Van Horne And although Sandford’s choice for the Rockies pass was ignored, since he’d been the driving force of the Pacific Railway for so long, his tall figure loomed over the magical moment of driving the last spike, concluding one of the most dramatic ventures in Canadian history Then, the railway complete and his energy level fully restored, he turned to the project of building a vast ocean-bottom cable network that would link Canada to the South Pacific colonies and eventually to London This was a scheme for which Tupper had guaranteed him the contract as part of his earlier separation agreement in 1880 But Tupper broke his promise ALAN WILSON: Despite the fact that the Canadian government will give him no support, and that they have reneged on their promise that he would have the contract to build it across the Pacific, he goes with his own money to London And he goes to Australia And he goes to New Zealand And for over twenty years he is working to get that cable NARRATION: His feistiness had not diminished, nor his readiness to confront the special interests In this case, it was English private monopolists who wanted to keep an imperial cable strictly within their own grasp Sanford Fleming refused to regard a cable that would span the world, linking the elements of the British Empire and setting the model for others as just some opportunity for capitalists to turn a profit To him, it was a major expansion of communications to people around the world Messages could now be received across the Pacific in moments, not months And Sandford Fleming was the one driving it through to completion ALAN WILSON: And when it finally comes through early in the 20th century, in New Zealand and Australia, they hail Sandford Fleming as being singly the most important figure in having made that achievement It’s one of his great triumphs NARRATION: Nothing became Fleming as much as his retirement He’d lost none of the buoyancy or charm or drive of the young eighteen year-old who had come to Peterborough years earlier But he was not done In the same period that he was pressing the cable project, an incident in Ireland prompted him to take up what was certainly the most significant cause in his whole career Missing a train in Ireland because of a confusion in schedules, he missed his boat to England He began to reflect on chaotic time zones in the world of communications The Weights and Measurements section of Canada’s National Research Council still acknowledges his enormous contribution DR. ROBERT DOUGLAS: In the Sandford Fleming world, time was intrinsically a local phenomenon Time was local to the city hall clock So there were timekeepers like myself attached to each and every town, rather than one for the country In Canada and the United States, there was a major problem And the problem hit the railroads first for issues of safety What time do you expect this train to be crossing that track? If you have two different versions of the time, you might have problems NARRATION:

Working closely with American railway advocates of a continental time standard, Canada and the U.S. extending so far across the lines of longitude, he became Chairman of the American Society of Civil Engineers Committee on Time It’s largely Fleming, the publicist, who rescued us from the chaos of time zones that varied even by towns, making communication and the scheduling and safety of railways and steamers a nightmare JEAN COLE: How many years had people gone along, and nobody’d ever thought twice about how they could solve this problem of always missing their trains Until he came along and said something should be done about this And do it, you know I think he was just that kind of a person He couldn’t sit still and let things go on that shouldn’t be going on NARRATION: In our Heritage Minute, we summed it up this way SANDFORD FLEMING [DRAMATIZATION] Between Halifax and Toronto, there are five different time zones It’s ridiculous After the railway and the electric telegraph, what the world really needs is a system of standard time zones REBUTTAL [DRAMATIZATION]: But sir, cities set their own time by the sun They’d never agree SANDFORD FLEMING [DRAMATIZATION] Well, we’ll have to make them aware of it REBUTTAL [DRAMATIZATION]: Make them understand? SANDFORD FLEMING [DRAMATIZATION] Even if it takes years GEORGE FLEMING: But he had the capacity to not only think of it, but to carry it through the political establishments which included the United States, certainly France, not to mention the rest of the world and where the meridian would be chosen was a fair challenge NARRATION: He doggedly cut through a maze of scientific and diplomatic manoeuvering, losing ground in the international controversy over fixing the meridian, but winning his main goal of standard time, with its orientation on Greenwich JEAN COLE: He gets no credit at Greenwich, you know I looked high and low when I was there for some recognition of the fact that he is the one who originated the idea NARRATION: Back in Collingwood, his brother David caught Sandford’s obsession with time in an ambitious wood carving If Sandford was not the model, for millions he had certainly become Father Time NARRATION: In the front garden of the Kirkcaldy Museum under a Canadian maple, there’s a small plaque commemorating Sandford Fleming A livelier reminder of his achieving standard time is reflected just a few metres away at the Kirkcaldy train station Here day after day, local and world travelers board modern dependable trains, all running on time MASTER OF CEREMONIES [DRAMATIZATION]: And gentlemen, Mr. Sandford Fleming of Canada, to whom the world owes the invention of standard time NARRATION: Standard time was his greatest triumph But his dark days were not over ALAN WILSON: When his brother died, David, the one with whom he came out originally, he immediately took over David’s children and sent both girls to private schools and then financed their university education Always there’s that sense of the extended family And no matter how extended, it’s still important to him NARRATION: Sandford was abroad advancing his global projects when word came of his wife Jeannie’s failing health He hurried home The family gathered But the doctors couldn’t save her ALAN WILSON: Sandford just went haywire for several years He continued to work, but he worked out of his home And he wrote in a sad tone in much of his work NARRATION: Sandford had barely recovered from this loss when his mother died, plunging him into more months of grief But the demands of his retirement life left little time for prolonged mourning He now enjoyed lucrative appointments on several boards, which occupied him heavily When his Siamese twin, Tupper had fired him, he’d invested deeply in Hudson’s Bay stock And through the connivance of his close associate, Donald Smith, he was appointed Resident Director for Canada Fleming never stopped He helped found the Northwest Mounted Police and the Royal Military College He set professional standards for the new Engineering Society of Canada, and helped found the Royal Society with a Science Division, reminiscent of his old Canadian Institute Active as ever, still the publicist, he had become the foremost apostle of Canadian nationalism and science, and a staunch imperialist, all of which was recognized by honourary degrees from Canadian, American and Scottish universities, and in

1897 by a knighthood Now he was Sir Sandford Fleming Through personal and professional adversity, Sandford had piled success upon success And he was reluctant to leave that active world in which he’d played such a dramatic role Jeannie was no longer there to play the vivacious hostess But he regularly welcomed his children and his nieces and nephews to Winter Home And his gregarious ways never deserted him He began to hold small galas that seemed almost to be a kind of extended leave-taking JEAN COLE: He had these different groups he met with And it seemed that they were having farewell gatherings He didn’t say it was a farewell party for him, but he would be saying farewell, you know And he was quite, it was almost the formality about the way he made a point of saying good-bye to everybody NARRATION: During his last years he turned his attention to the summer acreage he’d bought on Halifax’s Northwest Arm ALAN WILSON: He built a chapel And he built a cottage And he built stone walls across the front He gave ninety-three acres of it to the city of Halifax to be used as a park The whole property was known as The Dingle He determined to rally as much support as he could And of course he had friends worldwide, to build a commemorative tower in that public park And so a tower was erected NARRATION: It commemorated the one hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the establishment of representative government in Nova Scotia, the earliest such achievement in the British Empire GEORGE FLEMING: An initiative that he felt was needed to warrant what the British Empire and Britain had done for Canada, and to have it recognized ALAN WILSON: It becomes a landmark for Halifax NARRATION: Opened by the Duke and Duchess of Kent with great ceremony in 1912, its walls are embedded with plaques and carvings contributed by Commonwealth members, universities, societies and governments ALAN WILSON: The park itself becomes a marvelous recreational site for the whole city And it’s given the name Fleming Park NARRATION: Such was the thirty-five year retirement of Sandford Fleming Nothing could turn him off except the inevitable JEAN COLE: I think he had quite an illustrious career But I do think he also had a personal life that is much to be admired There was no better inheritance that he could leave to his children than to have come to this country and to leave this lovely land to them And he really did love it here ALAN WILSON: He really does represent the ever-onward, ever-up quality The building of quality The idea of progress What you’re going to do is you’re going to speed up evolution And you’re going to, it’s not going to just evolve You’re going to add your own touch to it and put some ginger in it NARRATION: His own words best close this life “How grateful I am for my birth into this marvelous world, and how anxious I have been to justify it It has been my great fortune to have my lot cast in this goodly land, and to have been associated with its educational and material prosperity To strive for the advancement of Canada.”