CDA BO-331: I.J. Kavanagh, S.J. Click here to view the album in full screen.

At the start of the 1880s, Isodore J. Kavanagh pursued studies in geology and astronomy, notably at Victoria University in Manchester, England. He then taught at Collège Sainte-Marie in Montreal and at Collège Saint-Boniface in Winnipeg, before heading to the brand-new Loyola College in Montreal, where he taught until 1912.

CDA_BO-331.4.2: I.J. Kavanagh S.J. July 90.

Father Kavanagh’s research was recognized by the British Association for the Advancement of Science, and he was elected member of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. As a result, he was invited to accompany the Canadian Government Expeditionary Force delegation on their journey to view the total solar eclipse that occurred on August 30, 1905. The delegation consisted of around 30 scientists belonging to the Canadian Astronomy Society and the Royal Observatory Greenwich. It was associated with the British Astronomical Association, which wrote an official report on the eclipse.

As part of the delegation, Father Kavanagh was responsible for documenting, via photographs, the Expeditionary Force’s route, in addition to the eclipse itself. A photo album documenting the progress and activities of the Expeditionary Force was subsequently created. It also illustrated the delegation’s meetings with First Nations and Inuit communities, who contributed to their travels. Through this album, we can follow the Expeditionary Force’s journey, right up to the eclipse observation at the North West River in Labrador.