To virtually celebrate 25 years of our award-winning production, A Spirit Walk: Call to Rebellion, we've created and compiled a series of videos and resources listed below. Learn about the events that led to the Rebellion of 1837 and how Pickering took part. 

Year of the Rebellion

The story of dissatisfaction with the early years of Canadian government that lead to rebellion and sacrifice of lives to achieve the beginning of democracy we know today.


A Family Story: The Ashael Scott Box

Asahel Hawley Scott was one of the men who followed the local Rebellion captain, Peter Matthews, to Montgomery's Tavern in Toronto on December 6, 1837. Read the story of the Rebellion Box he crafted in prison as a memento to his family.


The Rebellion Interviews

Pickering Township was very involved in Wm. Lyon Mackenzie’s ill-fated attempt to overthrow the government in December 1837. With the help of our talend Backwoods Players Theatre Company, we’ve interviewed six key figures connected to the Rebellion of 1837, and Pickering in particular. Learn details about the rebellion, straight from the lips of people who lived those times. 

W. Lyon Mackenzie Interview Part One
Learn about Mackenzie’s early life, his immigration to Canada, and his growing move towards political reform.
Wm. Lyon Mackenzie Interview Part Two
Discover how Mackenzie’s growing disillusionment with the “Family Compact” lead him to ask farmers to take up arms against the government, and what happened over the days of the uprising.
William Allan Interview
The Family Compact was an interconnected ruling elite in Upper Canada, that exploited their position and influence.  Meet this member of the Family Compact’s and learn about his career, and his link to Pickering. 
Asahel Scott Interview
Many of the rebels were farmers, frustrated with the lack of government support.  Meet this young farmer, and learn what getting caught up in the rebellion did to him and his family - and why he wished he’d listened to his father.
Mrs. Mary Major Sleigh Interview
Not all Pickering settlers were rebels.  Some were sympathetic to reform, but were not in favour of an armed uprising.  The Major family were early settlers and remained loyal to the Tory government.  Mrs. Sleigh tells the story of her family’s position.
Mrs. Hannah Smith Matthews
Mrs. Matthews was left to carry on the family farm and raise her children when her husband, Peter left Pickering to lead the the Pickering rebels to the uprising.  Her story is one of perseverence and sadness.
Peter Matthews
Peter was one of Mackenzie’s “captains” in the armed uprising.  Few of Mackenzie’s top men were captured.  Peter was one of two men the governement was able to arrest, and hold responsibe for Mackenzies traitorous actions.  Learn why he supported Mackenzie, and what it cost him.

Costume Confidential: 1830’s Fashion

A sneak peak at men’s and women’s fashion at the time of the rebellion.