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New $10 Bill Honouring Viola Desmond's Courage Is Here. And It's Vertical

10 March 2018

On Thursday, the Bank of Canada unveiled a new bank note featuring civil rights icon Viola Desmond - and visitors to the promotional website can find the video game by repeatedly clicking on the "Spin" button underneath a 3D image of the bill. Now in her 90s, Robson captivated the Halifax audience with her genuine delight at seeing her sister on Canadian currency.

That's what makes the new $10 bill such a powerful act of acceptance, Grosse said.

The civil rights activist was convicted of defrauding the province of a one-penny tax, the difference in tax between a downstairs and upstairs ticket, even though Desmond had asked to pay the difference.

After being released on a $20 fine and $6 in court costs, Desmond appealed her conviction but lost.

The incident that would propel her into Canada's history books took place in 1946 after her auto broke down in New Glasgow, some 100 miles north-east of Halifax, while on a business trip.

"I said, it's a $10 bill, she's on the $10 bill!" Her name now graces a Halifax Transit harbour ferry, a Canada Post stamp, and there are plans for streets named in her honour in Montreal and Halifax and a park in Toronto. "And well, I was speechless -my family would have liked that but for once in my life I was speechless", she said.

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"We know more about Rosa Parks than Viola Desmond", he said.

Desmond, 32, was dragged out of the theatre by police and jailed for defiantly sitting in the "whites only" section of a film house. Desmond, a beautician and entrepreneur from north end Halifax who sold her own line of cosmetics, was headed to Sydney, N.S., when her vehicle broke down.

"Viola Desmond carried out a singular act of courage", Saney said. She died in 1965, but received Canada's first-ever posthumous apology and pardon in 2010.

Looking to kill time while her auto was being repaired, she stopped by a local movie theatre.

"You just can't spend it between now and the end of the year", he told her.

New $10 Bill Honouring Viola Desmond's Courage Is Here. And It's Vertical