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Regarding your article on the Banting Homestead ("Historic Homestead of Insulin Discoverer May Become Housing Development"), I would like to point out a number of facts that have not received sufficient attention.
The homestead never actually belonged to Sir Frederick Banting. It was the property of his parents. He grew up there but left in 1917, and the barn and implement shed were built afterward. In fact, the house on the property, often referred to as his birthplace, was actually constructed in 1925, six years after his departure.
The simple fact that the property was left to a historical society does not make it of heritage significance. As the historic site tasked by the Canadian government with preserving and presenting the birthplace of insulin and the legacy of Sir Frederick Banting, one would think the media would contact us for clarification on the issue. To date, they have not. This has resulted in only one side of the issue being presented, and has thus confused and in some respects misled the public.
As I stated at the outset, this issue is a mess. Until it is finally brought to a close, it will continue to be a disservice both to the public and to the legacy of a national, indeed, an international hero.
Grant M. Maltman, Curator
National Historic Site of Canada
Adelaide Street North
London ON N6B 3H8 Canada
May 24, 2007
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