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culture

Historicist: The Supreme Chief Ranger of the IOF

Oronhyatekha built the Independent Order of Foresters and the tallest building in Toronto.

Sketch of Oronhyatekha  The Toronto World, August 27, 1897

Sketch of Oronhyatekha. The Toronto World, August 27, 1897.

If Oronhyatekha were alive today, he’d be considered an expert networker. He jokingly referred to himself as a “joiner,” accepting memberships in many prominent social organizations of his era. Relying on his extraordinary social skills to overcome prejudice he faced as a Mohawk, he built the Independent Order of Foresters into one of North America’s largest fraternal insurers. A profile published in the Globe in 1896 was typical of contemporary accounts praising his amiability:

Dr. Oronhyatekha is a man beloved for his social virtues as much as for his executive ability. In his personal relations he is gracious and unassuming. He never turns anyone away with a short answer, save as “no” is a small word. Everyone who calls upon him may see him, unless the exigencies of official duties and obligations, or in conference, make it impossible to spare even a moment, and may talk to him as long as he has anything worth hearing to say. As a rule it is the visitor who does the talking, unless he be one in whom the chief has confidence, when he will open the doors of his speech and talk freely and most entertainingly.

Keep reading: Historicist: The Supreme Chief Ranger of the IOF

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Newsstand: April 17, 2014

So, on Monday a Nebraska toddler got stuck in one of those claw-style toy vending machine games. No, you read that right. That actually happened. In slightly less awesome news: Open Streets will happen this summer, a new zoning law could allow small businesses to open up within apartment towers, electronic joints may not be safe to smoke, and the who’s who of city councillors running for re-election this fall.

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