John Duncan Lawrence "Jack" MCINTOSH
Born: September 19, 1940 — Whitewood, SK
Died: May 29, 2019 — Richmond, BC — Age 79, cancer.
This shy bibliographer from the University of British Columbia (UBC) was a brilliant and generous scholar that many of us will miss. He was a friendly soul who wished the best for each of us regardless of our religion, politics, or education.
He was born in Saskatchewan and raised in the Castlegar area among Doukhobors, where he began to learn Russian from classmates at Stanley Humphries Secondary School. After studying Russian for two years at UBC, Jack studied in Russia where he attended sectarian Baptist meetings. Upon returning to Canada, he got ‘great on-the-job training’ translating for government, journals and the Soviet press. He entered the Librarian program at UBC, where he was employed, excelled, retired in 2001, and continued to volunteer. He managed the UBC Doukhobor Collection.
Jack and I exchanged historic materials on the Doukhobors, Lev N. Tolstoy, and peace-making since the 1960s. He gifted me a copy of his Expanded Bibliography on the Doukhobors that he hoped to get published, but never did. The Bibliography served me well. Whenever I needed some important source, he was able to provide me a photocopy, or email a file.
In the early 1980s, Jack was invited to interpret and participate in the Expanded Kootenay Committee on Intergroup Relations (EKCIR). We trusted him due to his honesty and many years of personal exposure to and knowledge of Doukhobors. Jack was impressed with Ashleigh Androsoff's observations and conclusions of the hearings. See her 2011 PhD thesis: Spirit Wrestling Identity Conflict and the Canadian “Doukhobor Problem,” 1899-1999 (pages 386, 390-392; and search for 'EKCIR').
In the early 1990s Jack was our guest during a Learned Societies conference here. He soon was in our basement looking over my history collection, and I recall how elated he was to find material for his current study.
It is remarkable that a Scottish lad learned Russian so well, and that he boldly shared insights that others did not. In the special issue of the Canadian Ethnic Studies in 1995 about Doukhobors, he challenged the accuracy of George Woodcock’s publications.
Jack was sensitive to the oral history of the Doukhobors, and drew on his wide readings to distinguish fact from fiction. His transliteration skills were precise: borshch, pirogi, sobranie, Petrov Den’, stikhi, etc. He wrote with dedication and thoroughness.
When I needed help with the creation of a CD version of Plakun Trava: The Doukhobors, Jack volunteered corrections and suggestions.
Jack McIntosh was a dear colleague whom I could trust in time of need. I don’t know of anyone who can fill his void.
Obituary: 'John McIntosh’, Vancouver Sun, June 8, 2019.
By Jack about Doukhobors
Unfortunately, none of his work is online, open source.
‘Jack McIntosh — Bibliographer (1940-2019)’. In forthcoming eBook by Koozma J. Tarasoff and Andrei Conovaloff, Spirit Wrestlers: Doukhobor Pioneers and Friends. Submitted 2018. Proposed publication 2020.
‘Maintaining community among a small, dispersed people: Canadian Doukhobor periodical publications on the wall, in the mail and on the Internet’. In Andrew Donskov, John Woodsworth and Chad Gaffield (eds.), The Doukhobor Centenary in Canada (2000): 277-289.
‘Rarely-Cited “Gems” in the Doukhobor Bibliography: Why So Obscure? What Can be Done?’ In Canadian Ethnic Studies, vol. XXVII, No. 8, 1995: 262-269.
‘Update 1973-1993: Excerpts From the Doukhobor Bibliography, Expanded Updated Edition’. In Koozma J. Tarasoff and Robert B. Klymasz, Spirit Wrestlers. Centennial Papers in Honour of Canada’s Doukhobor Heritage (1995): 187-216.
Horvath’s Doukhobor Bibliography (in Progress). Revised and Expanded. Unpublished 1989 version, 428 pp.
- ‘Maintaining community among a small, dispersed people: Canadian Doukhobor periodical publications on the wall, in the mail and on the Internet, at The Doukhobor Centenary in Canada: a multi-disciplinary perspective on their unity and diversity, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario. 1999 October 22-24. — Though not on the program, Jack gave half of his time to Jonathan Kalmakoff and Andrei Conovaloff to show their new web sites.
- ‘The Doukhobor Migration That Never Was’. Panel: ‘Doukhobors in Canada — 100 Years and Beyond’. Canadian Association of Slavists Meeting, Ottawa, Ontario. 1998 June 1.