Mina Benson Hubbard

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Early Life:
– Mina Adelaine Benson born on an apple farm near Bewdley, Ontario
– Father was James Benson, an Irish immigrant, and mother was Jane Wood from England
– Seventh of eight children, received primary education in village school
– Graduated as a nurse in 1899 from Brooklyn Training School for Nurses
– Worked in a small hospital in Staten Island, New York

– Hubbard organized an expedition to clear her husband’s name after his ill-fated Labrador trip
– Led a successful 576-mile trek through Labrador wilderness
– Confirmed geographical features and named Lake Hubbard after her husband
– Published book “A Woman’s Way Through Unknown Labrador” and diaries
– Encounter with Naskapi and Montagnais Indians documented

Later Life:
– Hubbard married Harold Ellis after the expedition
– Lived in Hampstead, London, purchased The Wabe
– Had three children and divorced in 1926
– Returned to Canada in 1936 for a canoe trip
– Died in 1956 in Coulsdon, UK, designated National Historic Person in 2018

– “A Woman’s Way Through Unknown Labrador” available at Internet Archive

See Also:
– Labrador
– History of Canada

– Finkelstein and Stone’s book “Paddling the Boreal Forest: Rediscovering A.P. Low”
– Hodgins and Hobbs’ book “Nastawgan: The Canadian North by Canoe and Snowshoe
– Bouchard and Verdon’s work on Mina Hubbard
– Davis’ book “Lobsticks and Stone Cairns: Human Landmarks in the Arctic”
– Roy’s book “Maps of Difference: Canada, Women, and Travel

Mina Benson Hubbard (April 15, 1870 - May 4, 1956) was a Canadian explorer and was the first white woman to travel and explore the back-country of Labrador. The Nascaupee and George River system were first accurately mapped by her in 1905. She was the wife of Leonidas Hubbard who was famous for his ill-fated expedition to Labrador in 1903.

Mina Benson Hubbard
Mina Benson Hubbard, A winter picnic ca. 1901 (courtesy of Betty Cawkill Ellis)
BornApril 15, 1870
DiedMay 4, 1956(1956-05-04) (aged 86)
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