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Stephen Leacock's The Great Election in Missinaba County

In 1974 Alan Maitland joined CBC Radio's As It Happens as co-host, and during that time he became known affectionately as Fireside Al and Front Porch Al, tempting listeners to pull up a chair to the fire or on the porch (depending on the season) and listen. He read stories by a long list of authors, and they were a delight for audiences, whether the story was a humorous or a poignant one. His reading of The Shepherd, by Frederick Forsythe, has become a Christmas Eve tradition on As It Happens.

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A recounting by Alan Maitland of the tale of an election in the imaginary county of Missinaba, in the Dominion of Canada, as viewed by the twinkling eye of Stephen Leacock. Liberal incumbent John Henry Bagshaw finds himself in a battle with Conservative Josh Smith, the proprietor of Smith's Hotel, with independent Edward Drone quietly working away at his own bid. The great day brings victory to one party and its candidate, and the inhabitants of Missinaba and the town of Mariposa are high-spirited in their celebration of the judiciousness of their choice.
• Stephen Butler Leacock was born in England on Dec. 30, 1869, and came with his parents to Canada when he was six years old.  They settled on a farm on the shore of Lake Simcoe.

Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town, published in 1912, is the fictional account of Mariposa, located on Lake Wissanotti.  He modelled the town on Orillia, where he spent summers as a boy, and it is perhaps his best known work.

Medium: Radio
Program: As It Happens
Broadcast Date: July 1, 1993
Narrator: Alan Maitland
Duration: 19:13

Last updated: July 28, 2014

Page consulted on September 10, 2014

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