The Project

Thanks to funding by the Edmonton Heritage Council, Leslie Holmes, Tom Long, and Ryan Troock were able to make their dream of a locally based heritage comic a reality.

In partnership with local community organizations, these comics help tell the story of Edmonton's diverse past. Each comic was created through discussion and collaboration with community organizations, allowing for their vision of the story to be captured in this unique art form.

Our project team is made up of two local historians and a local artist. Leslie Holmes and Tom Long are the lead historical researchers. Ryan Troock is the head of artistic development, comic creation, and online hub. Once we developed an outline and script for an individual story, Ryan created thumbnails of how the story would play out in comic panels. These thumbnails are used to make sure that the stories are properly paced before each panel is inked and colored, to create the final art. The pencils are done traditionally, while the inking and coloring are done digitally. This process enables us to easily make changes throughout the project, and obviously provides the easiest method for placing the content onto the website.

Together we collaborated on creative content and each individual comic plan and outline. Each member of the team brings a unique background, perspective and skillset to this project. Tom and Ryan both have considerable experience writing and drawing comics and are aware of the unique challenges in creating a historical comic. We sought to make these comics historically accurate, both in design and in content, which requires a great deal of research not only of the events in question, but of the general time period in which these events took place. We also highly value the partnerships we have formed with local community organizations and descendants, and value their ideas and feedback. Through this process we have created a new and exciting medium to share Edmonton's story.

Visit ECAMP's blog to learn more about the process behind making Peter Erasmus.

The Partners

The Jewish Archives and Historical Society of Edmonton and Northern Alberta.

The Jewish Archives and Historical Society of Edmonton and Northern Alberta strives to preserve the Jewish heritage of the communities of Edmonton and Northern Alberta through the acquisition, housing, arrangement, cataloguing, preservation, restoration and access of collected materials.

Gwen L'Hirondelle is the descendant of Peter Erasmus, a member of the Metis Nation, and an educator of youth and adults. Whether is it is with her wonderful family, her job at Prince Charles School, or volunteering at Fort Edmonton Park, Gwen seems happiest when she is sharing stories with warmth and glee.

The Edmonton Japanese Community Association is a non-profit organization serving the Japanese Canadian community and anyone who has an interest in Japanese culture in the Edmonton area.

The Edmonton Japanese Community Association seeks to develop and support a vibrant Japanese community and to promote awareness of Japanese heritage and culture in Canada. More information about our mission statement and our history can be found in the About Us section.

The Green Room youth program (an initiative of Islamic Family & Social Services Association) utilizes research on youth development locally and internationally and tailors its programs to ensure cultural and religious relevance for Muslim youth, preventing negative outcomes and supporting positive opportunities for the youth in our community.

By providing a neutral space & platform, activities, events, and training for youth to connect, learn, and engage with the Muslim and Canadian community.

We provide daily, weekly, and monthly classes and activities for youth to develop meaningful social connections, participate in culturally and religiously relevant personal growth, and an opportunity to make a positive impact in the community

Richard Awid is a lifelong educator and the son of one of Edmonton's first Muslims pioneers. He has written two books on the subject of Canada's Arab and Muslim communities, including Canada's First Mosque: The Al Rashid. Richard annd his wife, Soraya Zaki Hafez, along with other community members, played a strong role in saving the Al Rashid Mosque from demolition. Richard has spent several years volunteering at Fort Edmonton Park in order to tell the history of the mosque now located at the park. His passion is to record and share stories with locals and the world alike.

The Creators

Leslie Holmes is a historical researcher and interpretation consultant based out of Edmonton, Alberta. She completed her Masters of Arts, with a focus in Alberta History, from the University of Alberta in 2010. She is passionate about Edmonton and Alberta's history and believes it is an essential part of community building and growth. Leslie's past projects include helping tell the story of the Edmonton Federation of Community Leagues, as well the history of Edmonton's human services sector (Alif Partners.) Previously, Leslie has worked at Fort Edmonton Park and Visitor Services in the Legislative Assembly Offices. Throughout her professional experiences, Leslie has come to believe that effective exhibits, programming, and outreach are based in a combination strong historical research and interpretive planning.

Tom Long works at Fort Edmonton Park and has been involved in historical interpretation and storytelling there for over fifteen years. He's liked comics for a lot longer than that! Chester Brown's Louis Riel helped open his eyes to the possibility of combining his two great loves. Larry Gonick's Cartoon History of the Universe is also amazing. Oh, and Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales! And Scott Chantler's Two Generals. And...why not just save space by talking about comics with him?

Ryan Troock is a comic artist, painter, and film editor who lives and works in Edmonton. He loves dogs, especially his best friend Chops.

Funding provided by