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Geoffrey Milburn - In Memoriam (University of Western Ontario, History)

The history community remembers with fondness Geoffrey Milburn, a former colleague and friend who recently died in his 81st year (2012). Born in Rothbury, Northumberland, England, Geoff attended the local grammar school and took his B.A. from Durham University. After completing his national service in the British military, he taught for a short time in Britain before immigrating to Canada where eventually he taught history at Beck Collegiate in London. When Althouse College at the University of Western Ontario was started in the early 1960s, Geoff was the first faculty member appointed to train others in the teaching of history. He remained at Althouse until his retirement in 1994, was instrumental in building its History department, and for many years served as its Head. Geoff's many contributions as a Western faculty member included founding and editing a journal of pedagogical studies (The History and Social Science Teacher Journal), and serving as book review editor of the Journal of Curriculum Studies, a post he maintained until February of this year. One of the founders of the Althouse Press, he was its editor-in-chief for at least twenty years. In addition to publishing a number of texts, teaching materials, and monographs, the Althouse Press published Man and Nature, the annual of the Canadian Society for Eighteenth Century Studies which Geoff also helped to found. In addition to organizing conferences which brought together high school and university teachers, Geoff taught tutorials in an introductory history course at Western for several years in order to gain perspective on the preparedness of high school students for university studies. He was the author of numerous scholarly articles and books, and did consultancy work for the Ontario government. A ferocious badminton player, his matches were enjoyed by partners and opponents alike. Geoff is survived by two daughters, Ann, a social services lawyer in Toronto, and Karen, a music teacher in Guelph.