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Date Range From
1960
Date Range To
2018
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
METAL, PLASTIC
Catalogue Number
P20180016001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1960
Date Range To
2018
Materials
METAL, PLASTIC
No. Pieces
1
Height
127
Length
40.8
Width
11.5
Description
SINGLE-SPACE DUPLEX PARKING METER WITH AN ELECTRONIC MECHANISM. THE METER CASING IS GREY FEATURING TWO GREEN DOMES IN THE SHAPE OF MICKEY MOUSE EARS. THE METERS ARE LABELED “30-61” AND “30-62” ON THE FRONT AND ATTACH TO A HOLLOW, METAL POLE. A STICKER NEAR THE BOTTOM OF THE CASING READS “THIS CAR – INSERT VALID COINS ONLY – DISPLAY INDICATES TIME PURCHASED – CITY OF LETHBRIDGE – THIS CAR.” BOTH METERS HAVE A COIN SLOT AND A LABEL WHICH SAYS “FREE PARKING – WEEKDAYS AFTER 5:30 PM – ALL DAY WEEKENDS AND HOLIDAYS.” THE DIGITAL METERS ARE VISIBLE AT THE TOP OF THE HOUSING, BEHIND SEMI-TRANSPARENT PLASTIC. ON EITHER SIDE OF THE METER'S TIME DISPLAY, THE WORDS “MACKAY" AND "GUARDIAN” ARE INSCRIBED VERTICALLY. A METAL PLATE FASTENS TO THE REAR, AND TWO KEYHOLES PROTRUDE ABOVE IT. THROUGHOUT, THERE ARE MANY SCRATCHES AND PAINT CHIPS. OVERALL GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
REGULATIVE & PROTECTIVE T&E
Historical Association
TRANSPORTATION
History
ON JULY 4TH, 2018, THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE REMOVED THIS PARKING METER FROM THE 300 BLOCK OF 3RD STREET SOUTH AND DONATED IT TO THE GALT MUSEUM AND ARCHIVES. ALL OF THE COIN-OPERATED PARKING METERS IN LETHBRIDGE’S DOWNTOWN CORE HAVE SINCE BEEN REMOVED AND REPLACED WITH MULTI-SPACE PARKING KIOSKS. IN DECEMBER 2015, THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE HOSTED AN INFORMATIONAL SESSION INFORMING LETHBRIDGE RESIDENTS ABOUT AN IMPENDING UPGRADE TO THE DOWNTOWN PARKING SYSTEM. VAL FELLGER WAS THE 2015 INITIATIVE’S PARKING COORDINATOR. FELLGER OUTLINED REASONS FOR UPDATING THE EXISTING PARKING SYSTEM IN A 2018 CITY OF LETHBRIDGE MEDIA RELEASE. THE ANNOUNCEMENT SAYS, “THE PRIMARY OBJECTIVE OF PAID AND TIME ZONED PARKING IN DOWNTOWN LETHBRIDGE IS TO ACHIEVE PARKING TURNOVER WHICH RESULTS IN EQUITABLE AVAILABILITY OF PARKING TO SHOPPERS AND VISITORS TO DOWNTOWN…THERE ARE CURRENTLY A LITTLE OVER 1500 PARKING METERS IN THE DOWNTOWN. APPROXIMATELY 95 PERCENT OF THE PARKING METER INFRASTRUCTURE, PARKING METER HOUSINGS AND SUPPORT POLES ARE GREATER THAN 25 YEARS OLD. THESE HOUSINGS AND POLES ARE STARTING TO SHOW SIGNS OF WEAR AND LOOK UNKEMPT. MANY OF THE METERS CANNOT BE REPROGRAMMED TO ACCEPT NEW COINS OR OTHER PAYMENT OPTIONS.” THE CITY PONDERED THREE OPTIONS FOR THE IMPROVED SYSTEM: 100 PERCENT SINGLE-SPACE METERS WITH FOOT PATROL ENFORCEMENT, 100 PERCENT PAY-BY-PLATE MULTI-SPACE SMART MACHINES WITH MOBILE LICENSE PLATE RECOGNITION ENFORCEMENT, AND A HYBRID SYSTEM COMPRISED OF PAY-BY-PLATE MACHINES WITH MOBILE LICENSE PLATE RECOGNITION ENFORCEMENT AND IN ISOLATED LOCATIONS, INCLUDING BARRIER-FREE PARKING STALLS, SINGLE-SPACE SMART METERS WITH FOOT PATROL ENFORCEMENT. IN THE DOWNTOWN PARKING METER REPLACEMENT PROJECT STAKEHOLDER & PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT REPORT, 80 PERCENT OF THE PUBLIC SELECTED THE HYBRID SYSTEM. IN AUGUST 2017, THE CITY CHOSE A VENDOR, AND BY JUNE 2018 THE NEW SYSTEM WAS UP AND RUNNING. AS A RESULT, 1526 COIN-OPERATED PARKING METERS WERE REMOVED FROM DOWNTOWN STREETS AND 170 MULTI-SPACE KIOSKS WERE INSTALLED. IN A CITY OF LETHBRIDGE MEDIA RELEASE FROM MAY 28, 2018, MAYOR CHRIS SPEARMAN SAYS, “THIS IS ANOTHER SIGN OF HOW OUR CITY IS GROWING UP. WE TALK A LOT ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING A “SMART CITY” AND USING TECHNOLOGY TO MAKE US MORE EFFICIENT. THAT’S WHAT THIS NEW SYSTEM DOES.” FELLGER ADDED, “THE KIOSKS ARE SOLAR POWERED MAKING THEM MORE COST EFFECTIVE AND ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY TO OPERATE THAN THE PREVIOUS PARKING METERS THAT USED AA BATTERIES.” ON DECEMBER 12, 2018, KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE’S ACTING PARKING COORDINATOR PHILLIP BERG. BERG ASSISTED FELLGER WITH THE PLANNING OF THE NEW PARKING SYSTEM. CONCERNING THE ROLLOUT OF THE METER REPLACEMENT PROJECT, BERG SAID, “IT WAS PRETTY HECTIC. PEOPLE WERE STILL A LITTLE RESISTANT TO CHANGE. WE HAD CONDITIONED PEOPLE TO A PARKING STYLE FOR THE LAST 50 TO 60 YEARS, AND IN ONE NIGHT WE CHANGED EVERYTHING OVER. SO THERE WAS A LOT OF RESISTANCE.” TO DEAL WITH THE RESISTANCE, BERG KEPT AN OPEN DIALOGUE WITH THE PUBLIC. “THERE WERE TIMES THAT MY PHONE DIDN’T STOP RINGING FOR DAYS, BUT WE’VE MADE A LOT OF CHANGES TO SCREEN DISPLAY AND SIGNAGE. [WE’VE DONE] EVERYTHING WE CAN POSSIBLY DO TO FACILITATE THE BEST PARKING MANAGEMENT STRATEGY WE CAN.” PRIOR TO THE PROJECT, BERG WORKED CLOSELY WITH THE COIN-OPERATED PARKING METERS AS LETHBRIDGE’S PARKING AND TRAFFIC TECHNICIAN. HE SAID, “I DID ALL THE REPAIRS, MAINTENANCE, AND PROGRAMMING THAT HAPPENED WITH THESE SINGLE-SPACE METERS FOR THE LAST EIGHT YEARS. ANYTHING FROM RE-BUILDING HOUSINGS [TO] PUTTING THEM TOGETHER FROM DIFFERENT PIECES TO RE-PROGRAMMING THEM…THEY WERE BROKEN. THERE WAS A LOT OF PIECES THAT WERE ‘FRANKENSTEINED’ TOGETHER TO ALLOW THE METERS TO FUNCTION. THERE WERE TIMES THAT I WAS TAKING AND GRINDING DOWN PARTS TO MAKE THEM WORK. WHEN I FIRST STARTED, I CALLED THE MANUFACTURER OF THE HOUSINGS [AND ASKED TO ORDER PARTS]. THEY LAUGHED AT ME AND [SENT ME EVERYTHING THEY HAD LEFT FOR FREE]. I GOT ALL THESE OLD DUSTY BOXES WITH PIECES WRAPPED IN NEWSPAPER, AND I WOULD BUILD WHATEVER I COULD TO GET THEM OUT ON THE STREET.” BEFORE BERG, LARRY WYROSTOK WAS THE PARKING AND TRAFFIC TECHNICIAN FOR SEVEN YEARS, AND MACLEAN INTERVIEWED HIM ON DECEMBER 20, 2018. WYROSTOK SUGGESTED THAT THE TWO MAIN REASONS THAT THE PARKING METERS BROKE DOWN WERE THEIR AGE AND VANDALISM. REGARDING VANDALISM, HE SAID, “WE USED TO HAVE QUITE A BIT. [ONE TIME I WAS DRIVING BY THE COURT HOUSE] AND SOMEONE USED A ROLL OF DUCK-TAPE ON A METER, [AND] THEY JUST COVERED UP THE WHOLE THING. IT WAS PROBABLY TWO OR THREE INCHES THICK, JUST SO THAT THEY DIDN’T HAVE TO PLUG IT. I TOOK ALL THE DUCK-TAPE OFF, AND THE METER SEEMED TO WORK FINE. YOU SEE ALL KINDS OF STUFF [ON THE STREET.]” WYROSTOK SUGGESTED THAT ANOTHER ASPECT OF THE JOB WAS COLLECTING THE COINS FROM THE METERS. HE SAID, “[I SPENT] A COUPLE OF DAYS A WEEK COLLECTING IN ALL KINDS OF WEATHER; RAIN, SLEET, AND SNOW. I CAN REMEMBER [DAYS THAT WERE] 35 DEGREES BELOW. [I WOULD PUT MY] METER KEY IN THE VAULT DOOR, AND IT WOULDN’T OPEN. IT WAS FROZEN SHUT. [SO I WOULD TAKE] A RUBBER MALLET AND GIVE THE [VAULT DOOR] A LITTLE TAP AND THEN [I WOULD] SPRAY SOME ETHER ON IT. IT COULD BE QUITE TEDIOUS BECAUSE [I HAD] 1500 METERS TO COLLECT FROM.” LIKE PARKING AND TRAFFIC TECHNICIANS, PARKING COMMISSIONAIRES ALSO HAD TO WORK IN ALL KINDS OF CONDITIONS. ON DECEMBER 18, 2018, MACLEAN INTERVIEWED RETIRED PARKING COMMISSIONAIRE, MAVIS BASTIE ABOUT HER TIME WORKING WITH THE PARKING METERS IN LETHBRIDGE’S DOWNTOWN CORE. BASTIE MOVED FROM HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA TO LETHBRIDGE, ALBERTA IN 1993. SHE SAID, “WHEN I ARRIVED HERE THE VERY FIRST THING I DID THAT WEEK WAS GO OVER TO THE CORPS OF COMMISSIONAIRES HERE IN LETHBRIDGE AND SAID THAT I WANTED TO BECOME A COMMISSIONAIRE. I WAS IMMEDIATELY GIVEN A JOB, AND THAT JOB HAPPENED TO BE GOING OUT AND DOING PARKING, WHICH MEANT WALKING THE STREETS…WALKING THE STREETS WAS DOING THE METERS AND CHECKING VEHICLES.” BASTIE WORKED AS A PARKING COMMISSIONAIRE FOR APPROXIMATELY TEN YEARS. DURING HER INTERVIEW, SHE EXPLAINED THAT THERE WERE FOUR PARKING BEATS WITHIN LETHBRIDGE, “THE FIRST ROUTE WAS MAINLY WALKING AROUND AND DOING THE TICKETING OF THE CARS THAT WERE AT METERS THAT WERE EXPIRED...BEAT ONE WAS DOWNTOWN, AND IT CAME OUT OF THE OLD POLICE STATION [TO THIRD AVENUE]…THIRD AVENUE BECAME BEAT TWO AND THEN BEAT THREE WAS A DRIVING [AND WALKING] AREA…BEAT THREE WOULD BE MORE OVER TOWARDS THE HOSPITAL…BEAT FOUR WAS JUST THE DRIVING, THAT MEANT DRIVING AROUND THE HOSPITAL.” BASTIE SUGGESTED THAT ONE OF THE BUSIEST TIMES OF YEAR TO BE A PARKING COMMISSIONAIRE WAS DURING THE WHOOP-UP DAYS PARADE, “YOU’RE JOB IS TO MAKE SURE THAT PEOPLE REALIZE THAT JUST BECAUSE IT’S WHOOP-UP DAYS DOESN’T MEAN THAT THEY CAN GET AWAY WITH [PARKING ILLEGALLY]. YOU STILL HAVE TO PLUG THE METERS. IF THAT METER EXPIRES AND YOU DON’T MOVE YOUR VEHICLE YOU GET A TICKET.” BASTIE WAS THE ONLY FEMALE PARKING COMMISSIONAIRE IN LETHBRIDGE DURING THE 1990S. SHE SUGGESTED THAT DUE TO THIS SHE RECEIVED SUPPORT FROM HER COLLEAGUES AND THE LETHBRIDGE POLICE DEPARTMENT, “[IF SOMEONE WAS HARASSING ME] I JUST HAD TO PICK UP THE RADIO… THEY WERE THERE FOR YOU, AND I KNEW THAT NOBODY WOULD EVER HURT ME. THEY WOULDN’T DARE. IT WASN’T BECAUSE I COULDN’T TAKE THEM ON, BUT IT WAS BECAUSE THESE GUYS [WERE LOOKING OUT FOR ME]…YOU’VE ALWAYS GOT THE POLICE DEPARTMENT THERE BEHIND YOU, AND I HONESTLY HAVE TO SAY THAT WHEN I WORKED FOR THE CORP BACK IN THOSE YEARS, WE HAD THE MOST SENSATIONAL POLICE OFFICERS THAT I HAVE EVER HAD ANYTHING TO DO WITH.” FOR BASTIE THE BEST PART OF BEING A PARKING COMMISSIONAIRE WAS WORKING WITH THE PUBLIC. SHE SAID, “[WORKING PARKING WAS] A GREAT OPPORTUNITY TO GET TO KNOW PEOPLE...[IT] WAS SOMETHING THAT I NEVER EXPECTED AND I DON’T THINK PEOPLE THINK OF WHEN THEY THINK OF PARKING… [I GOT TO] ASSOCIATE WITH SO MANY PEOPLE, AND IF [I SHOWED] THEM RESPECT THEY [SHOWED ME] RESPECT BACK…I FOUND YOU HAD TO HAVE A GOOD RAPPORT WITH THE BUSINESS OWNERS BECAUSE THE BUSINESS OWNERS APPRECIATED YOU. IF YOU NEEDED HELP, THEY WERE THERE FOR YOU. IF THEY NEEDED HELP, YOU WERE THERE FOR THEM.” OVERALL, BASTIE ENJOYED HER TIME WORKING AS A PARKING COMMISSIONAIRE. SHE SAID, “WHEN I WORKED THE METERS, I LOVED IT. I ENJOYED WORKING PARKING AND EVERYTHING [THAT] IT INCLUDED…IF I HAD MY LIFE TO LIVE OVER, WOULD I DO IT [AGAIN]? DARN RIGHTS I WOULD.” PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, CITY OF LETHBRIDGE MEDIA RELEASES, AND FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTIONS.
Catalogue Number
P20180016001
Acquisition Date
2018-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
BUTTON ACCORDION
Date Range From
1920
Date Range To
1930
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, METAL, PLASTIC
Catalogue Number
P20180011000
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
BUTTON ACCORDION
Date Range From
1920
Date Range To
1930
Materials
WOOD, METAL, PLASTIC
No. Pieces
2
Height
37
Length
36.4
Width
20
Description
A. BUTTON ACCORDION, 37 CM TALL X 36.4 CM LONG X 20 CM WIDE. ACCORDION IS BROWN POLISHED WOOD WITH BLACK AND LIGHT BROWN TRIM; ACCORDION HAS BLACK PLASTIC BELLOWS AND SILVER PLATE OVER THREE ROWS OF WHITE BUTTONS AT SIDE; OPOPSITE END OF ACCORDION HAS FOUR ROWS OF WHITE AND BLACK PLASTIC BUTTONS SET IN SILVER PLATE ABOVE BLACK LEATHER STRAP. TOP OF ACCORDION HAS TWO SILVER BASS/TREBLE SWITCHES. BORDERS AROUND BELLOWS HAVE PEAL/TORTOISE SHELL INLAID. ACCORDION IS MISSING BUTTON FROM FOURTH ROW OF BUTTONS, AND HAS TWO WOODEN SUBSTITUTE BUTTONS IN SECOND AND FOURTH ROWS. FRONT OF ACCORDION HAS WINDOW ABOVE BELLOWS WITH GLASS PLATE OVER WHITE PAPER AND BLACK TEXT “C. DALLAPE, TRENTO (ITALIA)”. ACCORDION HAS FOUR BRASS FEET ON SIDE WITH FOUR ROWS OF BUTTONS. WOOD IS WORN AT HANDLES AND EDGES; METAL PLATES AND ACCENTS HAVE CORROSION. OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. B. BLUE COTTON BAG, 72 CM LONG X 53 CM WIDE. BAG HAS HANDLE ATTACHED TO COVER FLAP; COVER FLAP HAS THREE BUTTON HOLES. BAG HAS TWO BLACK PLASTIC BUTTONS ON FRONT ALONG TOP EDGE. BAG HAS PATCHES STITCHED WITH BLACK THREAD ON FRONT UPPER LEFT CORNER, ON BACK IN THE CENTER OF BAG, AND ON THE BACK BESIDE LEFT CORNER OF HANDLE. BAG IS TORN IN LOWER RIGHT CORNER AND FRAYED; BAG IS TORN ALONG LEFT AND RIGHT EDGES AND ON FRONT AT UPPER RIGHT EDGE; BACK HAS TORN HOLES AT BOTTOM. OVERALL GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
MUSICAL T&E
Historical Association
HOME ENTERTAINMENT
LEISURE
History
ON MAY 22, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED LESLIE MORTON REGARDING HER DONATION OF A BUTTON ACCORDION. THE ACCORDION WAS OWNED AND PLAYED BY MORTON’S GRANDFATHER, GIUSEPPE (JOSEPH) "FABRO" BRIDAROLLI, AND WAS LATER OWNED BY HER UNCLE, SYLVIO "SYL" BRIDAROLLI, BEFORE BECOMING IN HER POSSESSION. MORTON DISCUSSED HER MEMORIES OF THE ACCORDION IN HER HOME, STATING, “IT’S A BUTTON ACCORDION…THERE’S BUTTON ACCORDIONS AND PIANO ACCORDIONS, AND I PLAY THE PIANO. IF I HAD A PIANO ACCORDION, I COULD AT LEAST PICK OUT THE NOTES BECAUSE I COULD READ THE MUSIC. THIS IS SOMETHING DIFFERENT. YOU HAVE TO BE A REAL MUSICIAN TO PLAY A BUTTON ACCORDION BECAUSE IT IS TOTALLY BY EAR. THERE’S THE MELODY SIDE AND THE CHORD SIDE AND YOU JUST DO IT BY EAR. IF YOU LISTEN TO HIS TAPE [IN ARCHIVES]…HE WAS JUST TURNING 81 WHEN HE MADE THIS TAPE AND HE WAS TRYING TO REMEMBER SOME OF THE SONGS HE KNEW. ONE CAME OUT REALLY GOOD AND THEN HE GOT THE MELODY OF SOMETHING. HE WAS PICKING IT OUT AND HE WAS INTO THINGS HE WAS MORE FAMILIAR WITH. HE WAS VERY MUSICAL AND HAD A REAL EAR. IT’S SORT OF LIKE AN IRISH BUTTON ACCORDION BUT NOT QUITE. IT’S BIGGER.” “WHAT I REMEMBER [MY GRANDPARENTS] TELLING ME IS WHEN HE WAS HERE, HE HAD IT MADE FOR HIM IN ITALY AND IT WAS SENT OVER TO CANADA WHEN HE LIVED HERE. I ALSO UNDERSTOOD HE PLAYED IN ITALY BUT THIS ACCORDION WAS MADE FOR HIM THERE AND SENT OVER [IN THE 1920S].” “IT’S A TREASURE. I WOULD SAY OF ALL THE THINGS I FOUND IN MY PARENTS’ HOME AND ALL THE THINGS I’VE HAD TO FIND HOMES FOR, ALL THE THINGS THAT WOULD REMIND ME OF MY CHILDHOOD, THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING. EVER. IT EVOKES REALLY STRONG MEMORIES. THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT MUSIC IN A FAMILY. IF YOU CAN MEET TOGETHER AND YOU CAN SHARE MUSIC, WHICH OUR FAMILY DID, IT LEAVES AN IMPRESSION THAT YOU DON’T EVER FORGET.” “[THE ACCORDION] REALLY WAS FOR MY GRANDFATHER [GIUESEPPE “JOSEPH” BRIDAROLLI]. IT WAS FROM HIM. THAT’S WHERE THE [LOVE OF] MUSIC CAME FROM FOR ALL [MY FAMILY].” “WHEN I WAS A LITTLE GIRL, WE WOULD GO OVER TO [MY GRANDPARENTS’] HOUSE AT 909 - 8TH STREET NORTH, [MY GRANDFATHER] ALWAYS PLAYED. HE’D JUST SIT IN HIS KITCHEN AND HE’D PLAY SOMETHING FOR US. HE WOULD SIT ON A BENCH BY THE BACK DOOR OUTSIDE AND HE WOULD PLAY SOMETHING FOR US. AT CHRISTMAS, MY GRANDPARENTS WOULD COME OVER [TO OUR HOME] AND HE WOULD PLAY THE ACCORDION. MY MOTHER WOULD PLAY THE VIOLIN, MY SISTER THE PIANO. SHE WAS BETTER THAN ME AND WE WOULD ALL SING CAROLS. FOR MY UNCLE IT WOULD BE THE SAME. HE ALWAYS WAS THERE PLAYING HIS ACCORDION. WHEN MY UNCLE AND AUNT CAME TO VISIT, IT WAS THE SAME THING. HE’D PLAY.” ON HER FAMILY’S HISTORY AND CONNECTION TO THE ACCORDION, MORTON ELABORTED, “[MY GRANDFATHER] STOPPED WORKING IN THE MINES IN THE FIFTIES. HE WAS STILL DOING IT IN THE FIFTIES. WHEN THEY CAME OVER FOR SUNDAY DINNER OR WE WENT OVER THERE [MY GRANDFATHER WOULD PLAY]. [WHEN] MY GRANDMOTHER WAS WELL ENOUGH, WE WOULD ALTERNATE [HOMES FOR DINNERS]. THEN WHEN IT GOT HARDER FOR HER [SUNDAY DINNER] WAS ALWAYS IN OUR HOME. I MADE A TAPE WHEN MY PARENTS WENT TO INDIA IN 1971, AND THAT’S WHEN MY UNCLE GOT MARRIED AS WELL. WE CORRESPONDED BY CASSETTE TAPE. THAT SOUNDS VERY ANTIQUATED NOWADAYS. THERE WAS NO EMAIL. PHONES WERE DIFFICULT WHEN YOU TRIED TO PHONE INDIA AND [WE] HAD TO YELL INTO THE PHONE. SO WE DECIDED TO MAKE CASSETTE TAPES…I WENT DOWN SEPTEMBER THE 5TH, 1971…AND I HAD HIM PLAY THE ACCORDION SO THAT I COULD SEND THIS TAPE TO MY PARENTS. [THIS TAPE HAS] HIS VOICE A LITTLE BIT IN THE BACKGROUND AND MINE A TINY BIT BUT IT’S HIS MUSIC THAT’S IMPORTANT. IT WAS SENT OVER TO INDIA FOR THEM AND WE’VE KEPT IT EVER SINCE. HE DIED IN ’72 AND WE PLAYED THAT ACCORDION TAPE A HUNDRED MILLION TIMES. MY UNCLE ALSO HAD ONE OF COURSE. HE WAS ALWAYS PLAYING. MY MOTHER TELLS A STORY, ALTHOUGH IT’S NOT A FAMILY ONE BUT SHE SAID THAT FRIENDS OF HIS, WHEN IT WAS THEIR BIRTHDAY, HE WOULD GO OVER SIT UNDER THEIR WINDOW AND HE WOULD PLAY THE ACCORDION. HE WOULD PLAY AT GATHERINGS OF THE ITALIAN COMMUNITY. HE PLAYED AT DANCES.” “MY GRANDFATHER WAS BORN SEPTEMBER 7TH 1890 AND MY GRANDMOTHER [MARIA BERTE] WAS JANUARY 9TH, 1893. THEY WERE FROM CAVENDINE, ITALY, WHICH IS IN THE PROVINCE OF TRENTO AND THAT’S WHERE THIS ACCORDION WAS MANUFACTURED…THEY WERE VERY POOR OVER THERE…I FOUND A PAPER IN THE MIDDLE OF THE FAMILY DOCUMENTS THAT, I DON’T SPEAK ITALIAN, BUT IT LOOKED LIKE A POVERTY DOCUMENT THAT HAS MY GRANDFATHER—HIS FATHER’S NAME ON IT. THEY WERE VERY POOR AND THEY WOULD HAVE COME HERE TO MAKE A BETTER LIFE FOR HIS FAMILY.” “I UNDERSTAND THAT MY GRANDFATHER CAME OVER BY HIMSELF PRIOR TO 1920. HE WAS IN LETHBRIDGE AND SIZED THINGS UP. HE WENT BACK TO ITALY AND GOT MARRIED TO MY GRANDMOTHER IN 1920. MY MOTHER WAS BORN OVER THERE. IT WAS 1924, IN OCTOBER WHEN HE BROUGHT HIS WIFE AND HIS YOUNG DAUGHTER, ANN, OVER. THEY CAME ON A BOAT AND LANDED IN THE MARITIMES, AND THEY MADE THEIR WAY TO LETHBRIDGE. THEY STARTED IN COALHURST FOR A SHORT WHILE…AND THEN THEY MOVED TO LETHBRIDGE. MY UNCLE WAS BORN HERE IN 1926.” “I CAN GUESS [MY GRANDPARENTS MOVED TO SOUTHERN ALBERTA] BECAUSE [OF] MILLIE LUCIANI—THERE WERE BERTE FAMILIES HERE AND MY GRANDMOTHER WAS A BERTE. MILLIE LUCICANI’S FATHER[WAS A BERTE AND HE WAS A COUSIN OF MY [GRAND]MOTHER] … THERE WAS COMMUNICATION THERE THAT THIS WAS THE PLACE TO COME BECAUSE THEY WERE ALREADY HERE.” “WHEN MY GRANDFATHER DIED IN 1972, I HAD THIS ACCORDION AND THEN, AT A CERTAIN POINT I GAVE IT TO MY UNCLE, HIS SON, SYL. HE HAD IT IN FERNIE THEN IN MERRITT. HE DIED IN 2011 AND MY AUNT SENT IT TO ME. WE TALKED ABOUT LEAVING IT TO THE MUSEUM BUT I DIDN’T WANT TO LET GO OF IT YET. WHAT HAS SPURRED IT ON IS THAT THERE IS NOBODY ELSE TO PASS IT ON TO.” “I WAS GIVEN THIS BECAUSE, WHEN I WAS A LITTLE GIRL I JUST LOVED IT. HE PLAYED AND I LOVED IT. MY UNCLE LOVED IT TOO, HE DIDN’T LIVE HERE AND BECAUSE IT WAS EASY AND MY PARENTS HAD TO LEAVE FOR INDIA, I GOT IT TEMPORARILY. IT DID BELONG MORE TO MY MOM AND MY UNCLE THAN TO ME, BUT I HAD IT FIRST FOR QUITE A WHILE.” “MY SISTER AND I WERE TALKING AND WE THOUGHT, WELL REALLY IT WAS MORE [OUR UNCLE’S] THAN OURS. THAT’S WHY [I GAVE IT TO HIM]. BY GOING TO ME IT WENT TO MY MOM AND SHE WAS THE ELDEST. BUT WHEN MY MOTHER WAS GETTING REALLY SICK AND HE WAS COMING TO VISIT HER AND SHE WASN’T GOING TO LIVE, THEN IT WAS REALLY IMPORTANT THAT IT GO TO THE NEXT PERSON WHICH REALLY WOULD BE MY UNCLE. WE THOUGHT IT WAS THE RIGHT THING AND HE WAS ENCHANTED. IT WAS REALLY HIS AT THAT POINT.” “I WANTED TO LEARN HOW TO PLAY IT SO I TRIED, BUT I HAD ARTHRITIS IN MY SHOULDERS SO I COULDN’T. I WOULD TAKE [IT] OUT EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE AND TRY TO PLAY “SILENT NIGHT”. I JUST TOOK IT WHEREVER I WENT AND TRIED TO LOOK AFTER IT.” “IT WOULD BE [ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS IN MY HOME] AND I’M SURE FOR MY UNCLE TOO. PICTURES ARE REALLY IMPORTANT TO OUR FAMILY AND TO ME. I KNOW TO MY UNCLE SYL AS WELL THIS WOULD BE [IMPORTANT] BECAUSE WE ALL REMEMBERED [MY GRANDFATHER] PLAYING ALL THE TIME. HE NEVER SAT DOWN WITHOUT IT ON HIS LAP. TO MY UNCLE IT WOULD BE EVEN STRONGER BECAUSE, OF COURSE, HE GREW UP WITH HIS FATHER PLAYING THE ACCORDION.” “MY GRANDPARENTS HAD TWO CHILDREN, MY MOTHER ANN, AND HER BROTHER SYL. SYL NEVER HAD ANY CHILDREN, THEY ADOPTED A GIRL ONCE BUT THAT WAS LONG AGO [AND] SHE’S OUT OF THE PICTURE. THERE’S MY AUNT, HIS WIFE, AND THERE’S ME. MY PARENTS HAVE PASSED AWAY AND MY SISTER, LAUREL, PASSED AWAY IN 2009 IN GENEVA. IF SOMETHING HAPPENS TO ME, THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NO WAY THIS BRIDAROLLI FAMILY WILL CARRY ON. THE ANDERSON FAMILY [MY FATHER’S FAMILY] THERE WERE EIGHT OF THEM. THERE’S NOBODY ELSE. THERE’S ME AND I FEEL A LITTLE RESPONSIBILITY TO MAKE SURE IT’S POSSIBLE THAT THE JOSEPH BRIDAROLLI FAMILY IS IN SOME WAY REMEMBERED. MY GRANDFATHER WAS A COAL MINER IN LETHBRIDGE AND HE ALSO WAS A PART OF THE ITALIAN COMMUNITY AND THEY WEREN’T RICH; THEY WEREN’T POWERFUL. THEY DIDN’T HOLD POSITIONS BUT I THINK THEIR STORY IS VERY IMPORTANT AS IMMIGRANTS FROM ITALY AND I’D LIKE TO TELL THEIR STORY. THAT’S THE REASON I BROUGHT IT. I THINK IT WOULD BE REALLY IMPORTANT THAT IN SOME WAY IT IS PERPETUATED BOTH FOR MY UNCLE AND MY MOTHER AS WELL AS HER PARENTS.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES AND THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20180011000-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20180011000
Acquisition Date
2018-05
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1950
Date Range To
1980
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
BAKELITE, LEATHER, VELVET
Catalogue Number
P20160044003
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1950
Date Range To
1980
Materials
BAKELITE, LEATHER, VELVET
No. Pieces
11
Height
27
Length
38
Width
11.5
Description
A: CASE: GREEN AND OFF-WHITE LEATHER CASE. BLACK PLASTIC/SILVER METAL LABEL THAT READS “CONN” ON FRONT OF CASE. GREEN HANDLE AT TOP WITH TWO METAL LATCHES ON EITHER SIDE. HINGES ON THE BOTTOM OF CASE TO OPEN. FOUR METAL FEET ON BOTTOM. CORK EDGES AROUND THE SIDES, STITCHED ON AND PAINTED OFF-WHITE COLOUR. INSIDE IS LINED WITH A GREEN VELVET. TOP FOLDS DOWN AND IS FASTENED WITH LEATHER STRAP AND METAL SNAP BUTTON. “CONN” LABEL IN TOP LEFT CORNER OF CASE THAT IS GOLD WITH BLACK AND RED PAINT INSIDE. THREE PEOPLE OF A MARCHING BAND IN IMAGE ON LABEL. THE BOTTOM HALF OF THE INSIDE OF CASE HAS EIGHT SECTIONS FOR INSTRUMENT PIECES AND ACCESSORIES. FAIR CONDITION: MODERATE TO SEVERE SURFACE DIRT OVERALL. VARIOUS GREEN STAINS AT TOP OF CASE. METAL COMPONENTS SCUFFED. SOME STITCHING AS SIDES COMING LOOSE. LOSS OF PAINT IN SEVERAL PLACES ALONG CORK EDGE. INSIDE FABRIC WORN. B: BLACK BAKELITE CLARINET BELL WITH SILVER AROUND BOTH EDGES. “CONN DIRECTOR U.S.A.” ETCHED ON OUTER SURFACE. 11 CM LENGTH. 8 CM BELL DIAMETER. C: BLACK BAKELITE LOWER JOINT WITH SILVER KEYS. CORK EDGE ON BOTTOM AND SILVER RIM AROUND TOP. “721800” ETCHED ON BACK NEAR CORK. PADDED THUMB REST ON BACK OF THIS JOINT. 25.5 CM X 2.5 CM. D: BLACK BAKELITE UPPER JOINT WITH SILVER KEYS. BOTH ENDS COVERED IN CORK. LOGO WITH THREE MARCHING BAND FIGURES ETCHED ON FRONT NEAR THE TOP. 22.5 CM X 2.3 CM (TOP DIAMETER SLIGHTLY WIDER). E: BLACK BAKELITE BARREL JOINT WITH SILVER EDGES. 6 CM X 3 CM (BOTTOM DIAMETER) 2.8 CM (TOP DIAMETER). F: BLACK BAKELITE MOUTHPIECE WITH CORK AT BOTTOM. METAL LIGATURE WITH ITS TWO SCREWS ATTACHED SECURING A REED TO THE MOUTHPIECE. 9 CM LONG WITH 2.1 CM DIAMETER AT BOTTOM. VERY GOOD CONDITION FOR B-F: SLIGHT SCUFFS OF SURFACE G: SILVER METAL MARCHING LYRE. CIRCULAR BAND WITH ADJUSTABLE SCREW FOR ATTACHMENT TO INSTRUMENT. THIS SCREWS ONTO A STEM, WHICH EXTENDS TO CONNECT TO A LYRIFORM SPRING CLAMP THAT IS MEANT TO HOLD MUSIC. FAIR CONDITION: SEVERE GREEN STAINING IN MANY AREAS OF SURFACE. METAL SLIGHTLY SCRATCHED OVERALL. H: BLACK PLASTIC REED HOLDER WITH SLOTS FOR TWO REEDS (ONE ON FRONT AND ONE ON). “LAVOZ” ETCHED IN PLASTIC ON FRONT AND BACK AND “USA” ABOVE THAT.7.7 CM X 2 CM. I: CLARINET REED ENCASED IN REED HOLDER (H).”RICO” IN MUSIC STAFF STAMPED ON BACKSIDE AND SIZE “V-2 ½” STAMPED BELOW THE LOGO. GOOD TO VERY GOOD CONDITION FOR H-I: SOME WEAR TO SIDE OF REED HOLDER WITH REED. REED SHOWS SIGNS OF USE. J: WHITE ENVELOPE THAT READS, “CONN EXCLUSIVE TUNING RING” WITH TEXT BELOW AND DIAGRAM OF THE TUNING RING PRINTED ALL IN BLACK INK ON THE FRONT OF THE ENVELOPE. THE BACK HAS SCOTCH TAPE SECURING THE RIGHT SIDE ENVELOPE FLAP. CAN FEEL ONE TUNING RING INSIDE ENVELOPE. 14 CM X 7.9 CM. FAIR TO GOOD CONDITION: PAPER OF ENVELOPE HAS SEVERELY YELLOWED. K-N: TWO IDENTICAL TUBES OF CORK GREASE WITH CAPS. WHITE PLASTIC TUBE THAT READS, “PARAMOUNT MUSIC “PREMIUM” CORK GREASE” AND AN ADDRESS BELOW ALL IN RED FONT. TWISTABLE END TO EXTEND THE GREASE IN TUBE. GREASE STILL PRESENT IN TUBES. RED PLASTIC CAPS. ONE READS “B 7 ETHYL” (K) ON INSIDE OF CAP AND THE OTHER READS “B 87 ETHYL” (N). 6.8 CM X 1,7 CM. GOOD TO VERY GOOD CONDITION: SLIGHT SURFACE DIRT ON LABEL. DISCOLOURING OF PLASTIC AROUND BOTTOM EDGES. GREASE IS CRYSTALIZING. O-P: SMALL, BLACK PLASTIC GREASE CONTAINER IN CUBE WITH GOLD METALLIC LETTERS ON LID “YAMAHA CORK GREASE”. HINGE ATTACHING LID TO CONTAINER, SO LID COMPLETE DETACHES. GREASE INSIDE OF THE CONTAINER. 2.7 CM X 2.7 CM X 2 CM. GOOD CONDITION: SLIGHT SCRATCHING ON SURFACE. BROKEN HINGE. Q: CLARINET CLEANING SWAB WAND WITH TWISTED WIRE WAND/HANDLE AND MULTICOLOURED (BLUES AND PINKS), FABRIC SWAB. THE SWAB IS SHAGGED. 29 CM X 2.5 CM. GOOD TO VERY GOOD CONDITION: WIRE IS SLIGHTLY BENT. R: CLOTH CLEANING SWAB WITH NATURAL-COLOURED TAN SUEDE CLOTH (APPROX. 12.5 CM X 6.3 CM) THAT HAS ROUGH EDGES. ONE CORNER OF SUEDE IS PINCHED TOGETHER WITH A SILVER METAL CLASP (TOOTHED), WHICH SECURES IT AROUND A BLACK STRING (57 CM IN LENGTH) WITH A SILVER-COLOURED WEIGHT AT THE END. FAIR CONDITION: STRING IS FRAYING MODERATELY IN ONE PLACE AND SLIGHTLY IN OTHERS. SUEDE FABRIC SHOWS DIRT. WEIGHT’S METAL IS SCUFFED.
Subjects
MUSICAL T&E
Historical Association
MILITARY
LEISURE
PERSONAL CARE
History
THE LATE ALICE PEARL HUMMEL (13 JUNE 1922 – 7 APRIL 2016) PERFORMED AS PART OF THE “ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA” ALONGSIDE HER SISTERS – FLORENCE JEANNETTE MCINTOSH (MAY 1917 – 18 MARCH 1999), MARIE EVELYN POPSON (C.1921 - 8 MARCH 2008) AND RUTH GINZER (C. 1926 - D. 2016). THE FOUR DAUGHTERS WERE BORN TO PARENTS, MARTIN EDWARD ANDERSON AND IDA JOHANNA ANDERSON (NEE JOHNSON). THE BAND WAS A FAMILY AFFAIR THAT SAW GREAT SUCCESS IN THE SOUTHERN ALBERTA REGION. ALICE’S DAUGHTERS, ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL, HONOURED THEIR MOTHER’S WISHES TO DONATE A NUMBER OF HER EFFECTS FROM HER TIME WITH LETHBRIDGE BAND TO THE MUSEUM. THIS CLARINET WAS PLAYED BY THREE GENERATIONS OF THE DONORS’ FAMILY. IN 2016 DECEMBER 16, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE DAUGHTERS ABOUT THE DONATION. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM THAT EXCHANGE. RUTH EXPLAINED, “IT WAS PURCHASED BRAND NEW [IN THE] EARLY ‘50S WITH THE INTENT THAT HER FIRST SON, BERNIE (BORN IN 1950) WOULD PLAY THE CLARINET, WHICH HE DID. MOM DID USE IT FOR SOME LATER PERFORMANCES WITH THE ANDERSON SISTERS, BUT IT WAS PURCHASED [FOR HIM]. AND HIS DAUGHTER, CONNIE, ALSO PLAYED THE CLARINET.” SPEAKING OF WHY THEY SELECTED THIS OBJECT TO BE DONATED TO THE MUSEUM, RUTH SAID, “WHEN WE WERE GATHERING THINGS TOGETHER, WE THOUGHT [OF] WHAT INSTRUMENTS WE HAD THAT HAVE A CONNECTION. SO IT WAS DECIDED [ON THE CLARINET]. CONNIE WAS QUITE HAPPY TO KNOW THAT IT WAS COMING IN THIS DIRECTION, SINCE IT WAS GRANDMA’S CLARINET, IT SHOULD GO WITH GRANDMA’S THINGS.” OF ALL THE INSTRUMENTS ALICE KNEW HOW TO PLAY, THE CLARINET “WAS THE MAIN ONE,” RUTH CONTINUED, “BUT SHE PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AS WELL. AND ALSO TAUGHT PIANO FOR YEARS AND YEARS AND YEARS. [ALL THE SISTERS] PLAYED PIANO REALLY WELL. SHE PLAYED OTHER INSTRUMENTS LIKE THE ORGAN, AND THERE WERE ACTUALLY INSTANCES TOO WHERE SOMEONE WOULD CALL ON HER TO LEARN HOW TO PLAY AN INSTRUMENT, AND SHE WOULD TEACH THEM HOW TO PLAY IT WITHOUT KNOWING HOW TO PLAY IT HERSELF, BECAUSE SHE KNEW THE TECHNIQUE [OR] WOULD LEARN THE TECHNIQUE. BUT THE CLARINET WAS HER MAIN THING WITH, AS I SAID, SAXOPHONE AND PIANO PROBABLY THE NEXT CLOSEST IN LINE.” THE SISTERS STATE THAT THEY REMEMBER THEIR MOTHER PLAYING THIS SPECIFIC CLARINET. ELEANOR SAID, “SHE DIDN’T PASS IT [ON] UNTIL CONNIE WANTED TO USE IT, BECAUSE BERNIE DIDN’T TAKE IT WITH HIM [FROM HOME].” RUTH ADDED, “YEAH, THAT’S RIGHT. I THINK IT’S REALLY ALWAYS BEEN HERS.” THE LAST TIME THEY REMEMBER HER PLAYING IT WOULD HAVE BEEN THE LAST TIME THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA PERFORMED, WHICH WAS A PERFORMANCE FOR THE ELKS IN GRANUM IN THE 1970S. THE FOLLOWING IS A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AS TOLD BY DONORS ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW: “[THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS] THE LONGEST RUNNING GROUP AT WATERTON LAKES PAVILION … [WHERE THEY PLAYED] FOR FIVE YEARS STRAIGHT,” ELEANOR EXPLAINED, “IN ADDITION TO DOING ALL KINDS OF OTHER THINGS, THEY WERE CONSTANTLY TRAVELLING [AND] WE HAVE THE RECORDINGS OF THAT.” RUTH ADDED, “THEY WERE ORIGINALLY FROM MONITOR (SASK). IN THE DIRTY 30S, WHEN THINGS GOT BAD FOR A LOT OF FARMS, THEY FOUND A WAY TO HAVE MUSIC LESSONS AND…PLAY FOR LOCAL DANCES. [ULTIMATELY, THE FAMILY] DECIDED TO LEAVE THE FARM AND HEADED OUT IN THE DIRECTION OF LETHBRIDGE (VIA DRUMHELLER). IT WAS TOUGH TIMES FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE IN THE 30S IN ALBERTA, BUT THE GIRLS, WITH THE TALENT THEY HAD, … HAD A WAY OUT…THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY. AND THEN THE ORCHESTRA REALLY CAME OUT OF THAT...” THE OBITUARY OF DONORS’ GRANDFATHER, MARTIN ANDERSON, (PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD, 1981) STATES THE FAMILY ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940. “THEY WERE SERIOUS MUSICIANS - VERY HUMBLE AND VERY QUIET,” RUTH CONTINUED, “[AS FAR AS PROMOTING THE BAND,] THAT WAS MORE GRANDPA’S JOB. WHEN IT CAME TO MUSIC, IT WAS A GIFT THEY PASSED ON - IN THE LATE ‘30S, ‘40S AND INTO THE ‘50S A BIT – [AND] IT WAS SOMETHING THEY FELT REALLY PRIVILEGED TO BE ABLE TO CONTRIBUTE IN THEIR OWN COMMUNITIES. [DURING] THE WAR YEARS, [THEY PLAYED FOR] THE ARMY BASES THAT WERE ALL CLOSE HERE AND [THEY WERE] A PART OF THAT HISTORY.” “[THEY WERE] ON THE ROAD 6 DAYS A WEEK [WITH THEIR CAR AND TRAILER]… PLAYING NOT JUST IN LETHBRIDGE [BUT] FAR REACHING OVER IN B.C., THE NORTHERN STATES, AND QUITE FAR NORTH IN ALBERTA. SO THEY WERE A REAL PART OF THINGS AND WORKED REAL HARD. I THINK IT’S AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE MUSIC HISTORY IN ALBERTA. THEY WERE, AFTER THE ANDERSON SISTERS [BAND WAS FINISHED], PROUD TO TAKE [MUSIC] INTO THE COMMUNITIES WHERE THEY WERE TEACHERS AND STILL PERFORMERS EVEN PAST THE FOUR OF THEM BEING TOGETHER.” WHEN ASKED ABOUT THEIR PERSONAL MEMORIES OF THE SISTERS PERFORMING TOGETHER, RUTH ANSWERED, “WELL ELEANOR WOULD HAVE BEEN A TODDLER, MYSELF AS WELL, THE LAST FEW TIMES THAT THEY PERFORMED AS THE ANDERSON SISTERS IN THAT ERA. BUT GROWING UP THROUGH THE YEARS, THERE WASN’T A TIME WHEN WE GOT TOGETHER AS A FAMILY WHERE WE DIDN’T HAVE A LOT OF MUSIC. THEY WOULD PLAY FOR US [AND] THEY WERE CALLED BACK SOMETIMES TO PERFORM AT COMMUNITY EVENTS… THE LAST ONE THAT I RECALL WAS SOMETHING IN GRANUM FOR AN ELKS 5OTH ANNIVERSARY IN GRANUM…THAT WAS THE LAST TIME PUBLICLY I REMEMBER.” THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM A HISTORY PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD IN 24 MAY 2003 TITLED, “SISTER ACT: SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S SWINGIN’ ANDERSON SISTERS WERE ALL THE RAGE DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR.” “IT WAS THE ERA OF SWUNG, OF MUSIC WITH MEMORABLE LYRICS, AND OF DANCE. IT WAS ALSO THE TIME OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR AND THE HEYDAY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS, AND LITERALLY EVERY TOWN IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WAS SWINGING AND SWAYING TO THE SOUNDS OF FLORENCE, MARIE, ALICE, AND RUTH." "DUBBED THE FOUR MAIDS OF MELODY BY CJOC RADIO…" THE ARTICLE CONTINUED, "[THE SISTERS] WERE THE TOAST OF SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S DANCE HALLS." INTERVIEWED FOR THE ARTICLE WAS ONE OF THE SISTERS, MARIE POPSON. SHE WAS QUOTED, "WE PLAYED THE TRIANON A LOT, THE OLD BUCKET OF BLOOD. THEY CALLED IT THAT BECAUSE IT WAS DURING THE WAR AND THERE WERE A LOT OF FIGHTS. PRIOR TO AND AFTER THE TRIANON WAS OK, BUT IT WAS REAL LIVELY DURING THE WAR… THE CROWDS [THERE] WERE SO LARGE THEY WERE AFRAID THE FLOOR WOULD WEAKEN… THE DANCE FLOOR WAS ON THE SECOND STORY OF THE BUILDING." THE ARTICLE EXPLAINED, "FLORENCE WAS THE ELDEST OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND AS SUCH WAS THE BAND’S LEADER. [SHE] PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND THE PIANO. MARIE… PLAYED THE PIANO AND ALICE PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND CLARINET. RUTH, 'THE BABY,' … PLAYED THE DRUMS, CLARINET AND TRUMPET." THE ARTICLE READS, "'RUTH STARTED PLAYING THE DRUMS AT AGE 11 AND LATER SHE COULD HANDLE THE DRUMMING WITH HER FEET AND PLAY THE TRUMPET AT THE SAME TIME FOR SOME OF OUR NUMBERS,’ SAYS MARIE WITH A TWIRL OF THE HAND. ‘FLO AND ALICE WERE OUR MAIN SINGERS AND I MADE UP THE TRIO SOMETIMES. RUTH DIDN’T SING. WHEN WE SANG AS A TRIO RUTH WOULD PLAY THE PIANO. ALICE WOULD ALSO SING SOLO. WE PLAYED ALL THE POPULAR MUSIC OF THE DAY AND OLD-TIME MUSIC AS WELL… MY SISTERS COULD ALSO PLAY THAT FAST-PACED SQUARE DANCE MUSIC ON THE SAX, AND THAT WAS SOMETHING. WE PLAYED WALTZES, POLKAS AND EVERYTHING… YOU NAME IT, WE PLAYED IT... OUR THEME SONG WAS BREEZING ALONG WITH THE BREEZE BUT MY FAVOURITE HAD TO BE SIDE BY SIDE, WHICH WE WERE AS A GROUP. WE WERE VERY CLOSE.'" THAT ARTICLE STATES THAT MARTIN AND IDA HAD EIGHT DAUGHTERS, IN FACT, BUT ONLY FOUR LIVED TO BECOME TEENAGERS. THE FOUR SURVIVING SISTERS BEGAN THEIR MUSICAL EDUCATION AT AN EARLY AGE, ALL BEGINNING WITH PIANO. THEY BEGAN PLAYING FOR VARIOUS TYPES OF EVENTS NEAR MONITOR, WHERE THEY WERE BORN. WHILE FLORENCE WAS WITH THE ALL GIRLS BAND IN CALGARY, THE THREE YOUNGER SISTERS FORMED THEIR OWN ORCHESTRA, MAKING THEIR DEBUT IN 1937. THE FOLLOWING YEAR, AFTER FLORENCE’S RETURN, THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS FORMED. UPON ARRIVING IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940, THEY AUDITIONED FOR THE CJOC RADIO STATION. THE ARTICLE STATES, “FOUR DAYS LATER THEY WERE ON THE AIR, LIVE, ON THE CHRISTMAS SHOPPER PROGRAM HEARD THREE TIMES A WEEK. THEY WERE ALSO ON THE AIR MONDAY NIGHTS FROM 9:15 TO 9:30 PM.” A NOTE THAT CAME WITH THE DONATION SAYS THE WEEKLY SHOW WITH CJOC WAS “BROADCAST LIVE ‘FROM HIGH ATOP THE MARQUIS HOTEL.’” BACK IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW AT THE MUSEUM, ALICE’S DAUGHTER ELEANOR COMMENTS ON THE BAND’S LEGACY. “I VOLUNTEER AT THE HOSPITAL [AND PLAY THE PIANO]. I USUALLY HAVE SENIORS INVOLVED THERE… AND WHEN I MENTION MY MOM’S NAME OR MY AUNT’S NAME, THEY REMEMBER DANCING TO THE ANDERSON SISTERS. SO, YOU KNOW, EVEN IN THIS DAY AND AGE, [PEOPLE] REMEMBER HOW MUCH FUN THEY HAD. [IT SHOWS] HOW RESPECTED THEY WERE AND I FIND THAT [BACKGROUND] JUST THRILLING.” “[MUSIC] WAS THEIR LIVELIHOOD,” RUTH ILLUMINATED, “SO [IT] WAS DRIVING THEM [THROUGH] TOUGH TIMES (SUCH AS THE DEPRESSION IN ALBERTA). THE GIRLS TOGETHER [WITH] THE TALENT THEY HAD, HAD A WAY OUT, WHERE A LOT OF OTHER PEOPLE HAD SOME BIGGER STRUGGLES. AND IT WAS THE TALENT IN THEM BEING TOGETHER. THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY.” PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES AND CLIPPINGS ABOUT THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND THEIR SHOWS, AND FAMILY OBITUARIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160044003
Acquisition Date
2016-12
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, LEATHER, METAL
Catalogue Number
P20180001001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Materials
WOOD, LEATHER, METAL
No. Pieces
2
Height
9
Length
58.5
Width
22
Description
A. BANJOLELE, 53 CM LONG X 19 CM WIDE X 5.5 CM TALL. BODY IS POLISHED BROWN WOOD WITH WHITE LEATHER DRUM/HEAD; BODY HAS SILVER METAL TAIL PIECE AND TONE RING AROUND DRUM/HEAD. NECK AND HEAD-STOCK ARE COVERED IN PEARL/TORTOISE SHELL; FRET ON NECK IS STRUNG WITH ONE SILVER WIRE AND ONE CLOTH STRING; FRETBOARD IS LINED WITH SILVER METAL FRETS. HEAD-STOCK HAS FOUR SILVER METAL TUNING PEGS AND BLACK AND GOLD TEXT LABEL “VALENCIA”. BACK HAS FOUR DISCOLORED WHITE, WOODEN TUNING PEGS AND SILVER METAL SPRING AT JUNCTION OF NECK AND HEAD-STOCK. BACK OF DRUM BODY HAS CUT-OUT SWIRLS IN WOOD. WOOD BODY IS SCRATCHED AND WORN AT EDGES; BACK OF NECK HAS PEELING FINISH ON WOOD; LEATHER OF DRUM/HEAD IS WORN AND STAINED BLACK. OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. B. CASE, 58.5 CM LONG X 9 CM TALL X 22 CM WIDE. CASE IS BROWN CLOTH COVERING A PAPER BOARD IN SHAPE OF BANJOLELE, WITH WIDER BASE. CASE OPENS AT BASE AND HAS BROWN LEATHER HINGE AND SILVER METAL CLASP. BROWN LEATHER HANDLE ON SIDE OF CASE IS BROKEN AND DETACHED AT END. INSIDE OF CASE IS LINED WITH DARK GREEN FABRIC. TOP OF CASE HAS “L W” HANDWRITTEN IN BLACK INK. CASE IS WORN AROUND EDGES AND CLOTH IS FRAYING; BOTTOM OF CASE HAS WATER DAMAGE AND WHITE STAINING; TOP OF CASE HAS WHITE STAINING AND SCRATCHES. LEATHER HINGE AND HANDLE ARE CRACKED AND FADED. OVERALL GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
MUSICAL T&E
Historical Association
LEISURE
HOME ENTERTAINMENT
History
ON JANUARY 24, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BEVE SPENGLER AND RUTH HILL REGARDING RUTH’S DONATION OF A BANJOLELE AND GUITAR. THE INSTRUMENTS WERE KEPT AND PLAYED BY THEIR FATHER, SYDNEY JAMES WOMACK, IN THE 1930S AND 1940S. ON THE BANJOLELE, RUTH RECALLED, “I CAN’T REMEMBER [MUCH] ABOUT [IT] AT ALL, BECAUSE HE BOUGHT [THE GUITAR] BUT SOMEHOW HE MUST HAVE SEEN THIS, AND THEN HE THOUGHT FOR LORNE [OUR BROTHER] HE WOULD BUY THAT [BANJOLELE] TO MATCH THE GUITAR.” “MY DAD USED TO PLAY ME TO SLEEP FROM THE TIME…WE WENT OUT TO THE FARM IN ’30. I WAS BORN IN ’27, SO ALL THE ‘30S HE PLAYED ME TO SLEEP EVERY NIGHT…I NEVER SAW MY DAD PLAY [THE BANJOLELE] YET HE BOUGHT IT BECAUSE HE KNEW THERE WAS A MATCHING PAIR. HE COULDN’T AFFORD BOTH OF THEM AT THE SAME TIME. HE BOUGHT HIS GUITAR AND THEN, LATER ON WHEN HE HAD SOME MORE MONEY, HE WENT AND GOT THAT FOR LORNE, BUT I CAN’T REMEMBER HIM PLAYING IT.” “[HE BOUGHT THE BANJOLELE] HERE IN LETHBRIDGE. HE BROUGHT [HIS] VIOLIN FROM THE STATES, BUT THOSE TWO PIECES WERE BOUGHT IN LETHBRIDGE. I DON’T KNOW WHERE AT, BUT I KNOW IT WAS IN THE EARLY ‘20S BECAUSE THEY CAME TO THE FARM WITH US IN ’30. THEY CAME HERE IN ’18…HE WORKED AT THE CPR AS AN OILER AND THEN HE ENDED UP AT THE GALT GARDENS WORKING WITH THE PLANTS. WHEN THAT FIZZLED OUT, HE WANTED A FARM SO WE WENT FARMING.” HILL ELABORATED ON HER FATHER’S MUSICAL BACKGROUND, NOTING, “[MY PARENTS] MOVED FROM ENGLAND TO IOWA. THEY WERE THERE FOR SEVEN YEARS AND DADDY LEARNED TO PLAY THE VIOLIN IN THE TOILET, IN THE OUTHOUSE. THAT’S WHAT HE TOLD US.” “HE LOVED MUSIC AND ACTUALLY HIS BEST WAS HAWAIIAN GUITAR…THAT’S WHY HE GOT [THE GUITAR], BECAUSE HE LOVED HAWAIIAN MUSIC. HE LOVED TO PLAY HAWAIIAN SONGS ON [THE GUITAR] BECAUSE THEY WERE SLOWER. THE VIOLIN HE COULD REALLY GO TO TOWN AND PLAY TWO STEPS.” “[WE] USED TO GO [TO DANCES] EVERY MONTH. I CAN SEE HIM WITH THE OLD MODEL T—HE WOULD HAVE TO PUT A FIRE UNDER IT TO GET IT STARTED AT HOME, THEN WE WOULD GO FOR THE CHRISTMAS CONCERT AND HE WOULD START PLAYING UNTIL TWO IN THE MORNING. THEN HE HAS TO PUT THE FIRE UNDER TO GET THE CAR GOING AGAIN. THEY WERE BAD YEARS BUT THEY WERE WONDERFUL YEARS…FROM [1933] UNTIL I WENT OUT IN GRADE NINE HE USED TO COME, WE USED TO HAVE DANCES, ALL THROUGH THE THIRTIES WE HAD DANCES AT LEAST TWICE A MONTH.” BEVE ADDED, “HE PLAYED WITH OTHER MEN, HE DIDN’T PLAY BY HIMSELF.” RUTH ELABORATED, “THEY HAD A LADY ON THE PIANO, THEY HAD DADDY ON THE VIOLIN, AND THEN THEY HAD ANOTHER CHAP ON THE DRUMS…[OUR FATHER] TOOK THE LEAD. THE VIOLIN WOULD ALWAYS START BEFORE, BECAUSE HE HAD THE MEMORY OF THE PIECES HE WANTED TO PLAY AND NOBODY ELSE KNEW NOTHING UNTIL HE GOT STARTED. THEN THEY’D JOIN IN.” “HE WAS STILL PLAYING THE VIOLIN, HE USED TO LIKE TO PLAY THE VIOLIN. EVEN IN THE ‘40S [HE LIKED TO PLAY THE VIOLIN], I CAN REMEMBER THAT. HE DIDN’T SO MUCH PLAY [THE OTHER INSTRUMENTS] BUT HE PLAYED THE VIOLIN. “ “HE WAS GOOD. THAT DANCE FLOOR IN THE SCHOOL THERE WOULD BE LOADED AS SOON AS HE STARTED PLAYING. AS SOON AS HE STARTED TO PLAY THEY WERE ALL UP, AND AT NIGHT NOBODY LEFT UNTIL TWO IN THE MORNING…HE USED TO TAKE THE GUITAR AND PLAY THE WALTZES ON THAT, BUT THE VIOLIN HE WOULD PLAY THE OTHERS.” “THAT CLASSICAL [MUSIC], HE HAD NO USE FOR [IT]. HE USED TO SAY, “THERE’S NO BEAT THERE.” THEY WERE HIS WORDS. THERE WAS NO BEAT AND HE SAID, “IF THEY CAN’T PLAY THIS, I’M NOT LISTENING.” HE COULDN’T READ MUSIC, BUT IF HE COULD SEE THE [NOTES] AS [THEY] WENT UP OR DOWN…THAT’S WHAT HE’D LOOK AT, AND THEN HE’D LEARN TO PLAY THAT SONG. THAT WAS ON THE GUITAR, THAT WAS FOR THE HAWAIIAN PART.” “[HE HAD THE INSTRUMENTS] ON OUR FARM AT KIPP, ALBERTA AND ON THE FARMHOUSE, I’M IN THE BED. HE [WOULD BE] PLAYING THAT AND THEN I’D GO TO SLEEP TO HIM PLAYING THAT DAY IN, WEEK AFTER WEEK. YEAR AFTER YEAR. HE ALWAYS PLAYED ME TO SLEEP.” “HE [PLAYED] IN THE FRONT ROOM. [THE INSTRUMENTS] STAYED IN THE CORNER, HE BUILT A SHELF FOR THE RADIO AND THEN [THE GUITAR] STOOD UNDERNEATH THAT SHELF. THAT’S WHERE [THEY] STAYED…[THE INSTRUMENTS WERE] WITH MY DAD UNTIL ’93, THEN HE CAME TO LIVE WITH ME AND OF COURSE HE BROUGHT HIS THINGS WITH HIM. I NEVER THOUGHT THEY WERE IN MY CLOSET AND I HADN’T DONE A BIG CLEANING, SO THEY’VE JUST BEEN THERE. NOW I THOUGHT IT’S TIME TO LET SOMEBODY ELSE LOOK AT THEM...[OUR FATHER] DIED IN ’98.” “I DIDN’T WANT THE INSTRUMENTS TO BE GARBAGED. I WANTED THEM TO MEAN SOMETHING, AND I KNEW…THE MUSEUM WOULD ACCEPT THEM…IT WAS ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL [FOR MY DAD TO PLAY FOR ME] BECAUSE I LOVE MUSIC TOO. THAT WAS REALLY SOMETHING TO HAVE HIM PLAYING TO ME ALL THE TIME [AT BEDTIME].” “LET SOMEBODY ELSE LOOK AT [THE INSTRUMENTS] NOW. I’VE GOT ALL THE MEMORIES…I CAN SEE HIM PLAYING [THEM], I CAN HEAR HIM PLAYING [THEM], I CAN SEE IT AT THE DANCEHALL, I’VE GOT IT RIGHT THERE. SO SOMEBODY ELSE CAN LOOK AT [THEM] NOW.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND PHOTOGRAPHS, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20180001001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20180001001
Acquisition Date
2018-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, METAL, SHELL
Catalogue Number
P20180001002
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Materials
WOOD, METAL, SHELL
No. Pieces
2
Height
9
Length
94
Width
32.5
Description
A. GUITAR, 94 CM LONG X 32.5 CM WIDE X 9 CM TALL. WOODEN BODY WITH PEARL/TORTOISE SHELL INLAID AS PICK GUARD AND ALONG FRET BOARD; GUITAR IS STRUNG WITH SIX WIRE STRINGS. GUITAR HAS SIX TUNING KNOBS AT HEAD WITH WHITE PLASTIC HANDLES ON METAL SCREWS. GUITAR BODY HAS DECORATIVE BROWN, RED AND GREEN TRIM AROUND EDGE; GUITAR HAS BLACK KNOB AT BASE. “VALENCIA” LABEL AT TOP OF HEAD; GUITAR SHOWS WEAR AND STAINING ON PICK GUARD AND FRET BOARD; GUITAR HAS SOILING INSIDE; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. B. GUITAR CASE, 100 CM LONG X 37 CM WIDE X 13 CM TALL. BLACK FAUX-LEATHER EXTERIOR WITH LEATHER BUCKLE AT BASE AND LEATHER HANDLE FIXED TO TOP WITH SILVER RINGS; CASE OPENS AT BASE. BASE OF CASE HAS BLACK METAL SNAP AROUND LEATHER BUCKLE STRAP. INSIDE OF CASE LINED WITH BROWN FAUX-FUR. CASE IS HEAVILY WORN ON EDGES AND PEELING; CASE IS SCRATCHED ON SIDES; LEATHER BUCKLE STRAP AT BASE IS CRACKED AND FADED; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
MUSICAL T&E
Historical Association
LEISURE
HOME ENTERTAINMENT
History
ON JANUARY 24, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BEVE SPENGLER AND RUTH HILL REGARDING RUTH’S DONATION OF A BANJOLELE AND GUITAR. THE INSTRUMENTS WERE KEPT AND PLAYED BY THEIR FAMER, SYDNEY JAMES WOMACK, IN THE 1930S AND 1940S. ON THE GUITAR, RUTH HILL RECALLED, “HE BOUGHT IT AND STARTED STRUMMING ON IT…IT WAS ALWAYS ON HIS LAP…MY DAD USED TO PLAY ME TO SLEEP FROM THE TIME…WE WENT OUT TO THE FARM IN ’30. I WAS BORN IN ’27, SO ALL THE ‘30S HE PLAYED ME TO SLEEP EVERY NIGHT…I NEVER SAW MY DAD PLAY [THE BANJOLELE] YET HE BOUGHT IT BECAUSE HE KNEW THERE WAS A MATCHING PAIR. HE COULDN’T AFFORD BOTH OF THEM AT THE SAME TIME. HE BOUGHT HIS GUITAR AND THEN, LATER ON WHEN HE HAD SOME MORE MONEY, HE WENT AND GOT [THE BANJOLELE] FOR LORNE.” “HE LOVED MUSIC AND ACTUALLY HIS BEST WAS HAWAIIAN GUITAR…THAT’S WHY HE GOT [THE GUITAR], BECAUSE HE LOVED HAWAIIAN MUSIC. HE LOVED TO PLAY HAWAIIAN SONGS ON [THE GUITAR] BECAUSE THEY WERE SLOWER. THE VIOLIN HE COULD REALLY GO TO TOWN AND PLAY TWO STEPS.” “[HE BOUGHT THE GUITAR] HERE IN LETHBRIDGE. HE BROUGHT [HIS] VIOLIN FROM THE STATES, BUT THOSE TWO PIECES WERE BOUGHT IN LETHBRIDGE. I DON’T KNOW WHERE AT, BUT I KNOW IT WAS IN THE EARLY ‘20S BECAUSE THEY CAME TO THE FARM WITH US IN ’30. THEY CAME HERE IN ’18…HE WORKED AT THE CPR AS AN OILER AND THEN HE ENDED UP AT THE GALT GARDENS WORKING WITH THE PLANTS. WHEN THAT FIZZLED OUT, HE WANTED A FARM SO WE WENT FARMING.” HILL ELABORATED ON HER FATHER’S MUSICAL BACKGROUND, NOTING, “[MY PARENTS] MOVED FROM ENGLAND TO IOWA. THEY WERE THERE FOR SEVEN YEARS AND DADDY LEARNED TO PLAY THE VIOLIN IN THE TOILET, IN THE OUTHOUSE. THAT’S WHAT HE TOLD US.” “[WE] USED TO GO [TO DANCES] EVERY MONTH. I CAN SEE HIM WITH THE OLD MODEL T—HE WOULD HAVE TO PUT A FIRE UNDER IT TO GET IT STARTED AT HOME, THEN WE WOULD GO FOR THE CHRISTMAS CONCERT AND HE WOULD START PLAYING UNTIL TWO IN THE MORNING. THEN HE HAS TO PUT THE FIRE UNDER TO GET THE CAR GOING AGAIN. THEY WERE BAD YEARS BUT THEY WERE WONDERFUL YEARS…FROM [1933] UNTIL I WENT OUT IN GRADE NINE HE USED TO COME, WE USED TO HAVE DANCES, ALL THROUGH THE THIRTIES WE HAD DANCES AT LEAST TWICE A MONTH.” BEVE ADDED, “HE PLAYED WITH OTHER MEN, HE DIDN’T PLAY BY HIMSELF.” RUTH ELABORATED, “THEY HAD A LADY ON THE PIANO, THEY HAD DADDY ON THE VIOLIN, AND THEN THEY HAD ANOTHER CHAP ON THE DRUMS…[OUR FATHER] TOOK THE LEAD. THE VIOLIN WOULD ALWAYS START BEFORE, BECAUSE HE HAD THE MEMORY OF THE PIECES HE WANTED TO PLAY AND NOBODY ELSE KNEW NOTHING UNTIL HE GOT STARTED. THEN THEY’D JOIN IN.” “HE WAS STILL PLAYING THE VIOLIN, HE USED TO LIKE TO PLAY THE VIOLIN. EVEN IN THE ‘40S [HE LIKED TO PLAY THE VIOLIN], I CAN REMEMBER THAT. HE DIDN’T SO MUCH PLAY [THE OTHER INSTRUMENTS] BUT HE PLAYED THE VIOLIN. “ “HE WAS GOOD. THAT DANCE FLOOR IN THE SCHOOL THERE WOULD BE LOADED AS SOON AS HE STARTED PLAYING. AS SOON AS HE STARTED TO PLAY THEY WERE ALL UP, AND AT NIGHT NOBODY LEFT UNTIL TWO IN THE MORNING…HE USED TO TAKE THE GUITAR AND PLAY THE WALTZES ON THAT, BUT THE VIOLIN HE WOULD PLAY THE OTHERS.” “THAT CLASSICAL [MUSIC], HE HAD NO USE FOR [IT]. HE USED TO SAY, “THERE’S NO BEAT THERE.” THEY WERE HIS WORDS. THERE WAS NO BEAT AND HE SAID, “IF THEY CAN’T PLAY THIS, I’M NOT LISTENING.” HE COULDN’T READ MUSIC, BUT IF HE COULD SEE THE [NOTES] AS [THEY] WENT UP OR DOWN…THAT’S WHAT HE’D LOOK AT, AND THEN HE’D LEARN TO PLAY THAT SONG. THAT WAS ON THE GUITAR, THAT WAS FOR THE HAWAIIAN PART.” “[HE HAD THE INSTRUMENTS] ON OUR FARM AT KIPP, ALBERTA AND ON THE FARMHOUSE, I’M IN THE BED. HE [WOULD BE] PLAYING THAT AND THEN I’D GO TO SLEEP TO HIM PLAYING THAT DAY IN, WEEK AFTER WEEK. YEAR AFTER YEAR. HE ALWAYS PLAYED ME TO SLEEP.” “HE [PLAYED] IN THE FRONT ROOM. [THE INSTRUMENTS] STAYED IN THE CORNER, HE BUILT A SHELF FOR THE RADIO AND THEN [THE GUITAR] STOOD UNDERNEATH THAT SHELF. THAT’S WHERE [THEY] STAYED…[THE INSTRUMENTS WERE] WITH MY DAD UNTIL ’93, THEN HE CAME TO LIVE WITH ME AND OF COURSE HE BROUGHT HIS THINGS WITH HIM. I NEVER THOUGHT THEY WERE IN MY CLOSET AND I HADN’T DONE A BIG CLEANING, SO THEY’VE JUST BEEN THERE. NOW I THOUGHT IT’S TIME TO LET SOMEBODY ELSE LOOK AT THEM...[OUR FATHER] DIED IN ’98.” “I DIDN’T WANT THE INSTRUMENTS TO BE GARBAGED. I WANTED THEM TO MEAN SOMETHING, AND I KNEW…THE MUSEUM WOULD ACCEPT THEM…IT WAS ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL [FOR MY DAD TO PLAY FOR ME] BECAUSE I LOVE MUSIC TOO. THAT WAS REALLY SOMETHING TO HAVE HIM PLAYING TO ME ALL THE TIME [AT BEDTIME].” “LET SOMEBODY ELSE LOOK AT [THE INSTRUMENTS] NOW. I’VE GOT ALL THE MEMORIES…I CAN SEE HIM PLAYING [THEM], I CAN HEAR HIM PLAYING [THEM], I CAN SEE IT AT THE DANCEHALL, I’VE GOT IT RIGHT THERE. SO SOMEBODY ELSE CAN LOOK AT [THEM] NOW.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND PHOTOGRAPHS, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20180001001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20180001002
Acquisition Date
2018-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
SAXOPHONE W/CASE AND ACCESSORIES
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
BRASS, VELVET, WOOD
Catalogue Number
P20190003000
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
SAXOPHONE W/CASE AND ACCESSORIES
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Materials
BRASS, VELVET, WOOD
No. Pieces
9
Height
15.3
Length
61.2
Width
26
Description
A. CASE, BLACK SYNTHETIC LEATHER EXTERIOR, 61.2 CM LONG X 26 CM WIDE X 15.3 CM TALL. LINED WITH BLUE COTTON VELVET; CASE HAS BLACK LEATHER HANDLE ON FRONT WRAPPED IN BLACK PLASTIC TAPE; FRONT HAS TWO SILVER METAL CLASPS AND SILVER METAL LOCK IN CENTER. FRONT HAS BROWN PAPER LABEL WITH HANDWRITTEN TEXT IN BLACK INK “S.R. SMEREK”. FRONT AND TOP HAVE WORN BROWN PAPER LABELS; WORN LABEL ON TOP HAS REMAINING TEXT “CANADIAN PACIFIC EXPRESS COMPANY”. CORNERS OF CASE HAVE SILVER METAL GUARDS. CASE EXTERIOR HAS METAL GUARD ALONG EDGE OF LID COVERED SYNTHETIC LEATHER. INSIDE HAS INDENT FOR SAXOPHONE BODY; INSIDE HAS SQUARE COMPARTMENT WITH BLACK LEATHER STRAP AND SILVER BUTTON SNAP FOR STORING MOUTHPIECE, NECK, REEDS, AND CLEANING CLOTH. CASE EXTERIOR IS WORN, SCRATCHED, AND STAINED ON ALL SIDES; EDGES OF CASE ARE HEAVILY WORN WITH WOOD UNDER OUTER LINING VISIBLE IN PATCHES. METAL CORNERS AND CLASPS ARE TARNISHED; LABELS ARE DISCOLOURED AND BRITTLE. INSIDE OF CASE HAS WORN LINING. OVERALL GOOD CONDITION. B. SAXOPHONE BODY, BRASS, 57 CM LONG X 22.5 CM WIDE. SAXOPHONE KEYS INLAID WITH PEARL; BOW HAS RED FELT RESTS ON VALVES. BELL HAS INSCRIPTION ON FRONT, “INDIANA, INDIANA BAND INST. CO., ELKHART, IND., U.S.A.” WITH LOGO OF THE PROFILE OF A NATIVE AMERICAN MAN IN HEADDRESS. BACK OF BODY HAS WHITE PAPER LABEL TAPED ON WITH BLACK PRINTED TEXT “STEVE SMEREK, ROYAL ALBERTANS ORCHESTRA 1940’S, LETHBRIDGE, AB”. INCLUDED INSIDE IS YELLOW COTTON-FELT RING FOR FITTING TO BODY AT NECK IN TRANSPORT. BACK OF BODY HAS BRASS LOOP FOR ATTACHING NECK STRAP. BODY IS TARNISHED AND CORRODED ON BACK, KEYS, AND BELL; BELL HAS WHITE RESIDUE AROUND BASE OF VALVES AND BASES OF VALVE GUARDS; INSIDE NECK AND BELL OPENINGS ARE TARNISHED AND CORRODED; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. C. SAXOPHONE NECK, 16,3 CM LONG X 2.2 CM DIAMETER. BRASS NECK PIECE WITH CORK AT END TO ATTACH TO MOUTHPIECE. BASE HAS ROUND OCTAVE PIN RING WITH OCTAVE KEY THAT RUNS ALONG TOP; OCTAVE KEY HAS RED COTTON PAD ON BASE AND CORK ALONG UNDERSIDE THAT TOUCHES NECK. INSIDE OF NECK IS TARNISHED AND CORRODED; OUTSIDE OF NECK IS TARNISHED; CORK AT MOUTHPIECE END HAS TARNISHING WORN THROUGH; TARNISHING VISIBLE AROUND BODY END. OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. D. CLEANING CLOTH, 48 CM LONG X 21 CM WIDE. YELLOW COTTON CLOTH WITH BROWN STITCHED EDGING AT ENDS; CLOTH IS FRAYED AT UPPER EDGE. CLOTH IS STAINED WITH BROWN, BLACK AND GREEN ON FRONT AND BACK; OVERALL GOOD CONDITION. E. MOUTHPIECE IN BOX. MOUTHPIECE 10 CM LONG X 2.5 CM DIAMETER; BOX 12.5 CM LONG X 4.3 CM WIDE X 4.2 CM TALL. MOUTHPIECE BLACK PLASTIC WITH SILVER METAL CAP, WOODEN REED, SILVER METAL CLASP AND TWO SILVER METAL PINS. BACK OF MOUTHPIECE HAS WHITE SQUARE PATCH; BACK OF CLASP HAS ENGRAVED “A”. BOX BASE IS BLUE CARDBOARD WITH BLUE INSERT AND ATTACHED BLACK ELASTIC BAND. BOX LID IS LIGHT BLUE CARDBOARD WITH DARK BLUE TEXT ON TOP “BRILLHART” WITH IMAGES OF MOUTHPIECE AND REED; SIDE OF LID HAS DARK BLUE TEXT “TOMALIN, CLARINET, SERIAL NO. FACING, 24607, 3” WITH IMAGE OF STAR BESIDE “3”; SIDE OF LID HAS HANDWRITTEN PENCIL INSCRIPTION “SCCC, 15.50”. MOUTHPIECE HAS TARNISHING ON CAP AND METAL CLASP AND PINS; BOX BASE IS WORN ON INSIDE AND OUTER SIDES; BOX LID IS WORN AT EDGES AND ON SIDES. OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. F. TWO REEDS IN PAPER SLEEVE, 11.4 CM LONG X 3.2 CM WIDE. ORANGE CARDBOARD SLEEVE WITH GREY CARDBOARD INSERT; CANE REED INSERTED ON EITHER SIDE OF CENTER CARDBOARD. ORANGE CARDBOARD STAPLED CLOSED AT EDGES. CANE REEDS DISCOLORED PINK; REEDS STAMPED IN BLACK AT BASES “RICO” WITH BARS AND TREBLE CLEF BACKGROUND IMAGE, “REGISTERED U.S. PAT. OFFICE” AND “REG. U.S. PAT.”, “V1” AND “V2” STAMPED AT BASE. REEDS HAVE RESIDUE AT TOPS; LABELS FADED ON REEDS; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. G. CANE REED IN CARDBOARD SLEEVE, 9.1 CM LONG X 3.8 CM WIDE. CARDBOARD SLEEVE FOLDED OVER; FRONT HAS BLACK PRINTED IMAGE OF REED AND TEXT “MICRO “PLASTICOAT” REED, A GUARANTEED “MICRO” PRODUCT” AND FADED STAMP AT BOTTOM EDGE “ALTO SAX. NO. 2”. BACK OF SLEEVE HAS BLACK PRINTED TEXT “PLEASE NOTE: AFTER USING YOUR MACRO “PLASTICOAT” REED FOR A WHILE THE PLASTI-COATING MAY PEEL OFF. WHEN THIS HAPPENS YOUR REED IS READY TO GIVE YOU EVEN MORE SATISFACTION AS TO TONE AND PLAYING SERVICE. IT IS ONLY THE EXCESS COATING THAT PEELS OFF.” INSIDE OF SLEEVE HAS BLACK PRINTED TEXT “CAUTION: TO AVOID DAMAGE TO TIP, DO NOT PUSH REED TOO FAR IN. IMPORTANT: FOR BEST RESULTS, WET REED THOROLY, SAME AS CANE REED, BEFORE PLAYING.” REED IS WOODEN WITH WORN BLACK COATING ON BACK AND FRONT; REED FRONT HAS BLACK AND GOLD LABEL AT BASE, “MICRO PLASTICOAT CANE REED, REG. U.S. PAT. OFF., MADE IN U.S.A., 2”. SLEEVE IS WORN AT EDGES AND CREASED; BACK OF SLEEVE HAS RED STAINING AT LOWER EDGES; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. H. CANE REED IN CARDBOARD SLEEVE, 9.1 CM LONG X 3.7 CM WIDE. CARDBOARD SLEEVE FOLDED OVER; FRONT HAS BLACK PRINTED IMAGE OF REED AND TEXT “MICRO “PLASTICOAT” REED, A GUARANTEED “MICRO” PRODUCT” AND FADED STAMP AT BOTTOM EDGE “ALTO SAX. NO. 3”. BACK OF SLEEVE HAS BLACK PRINTED TEXT “PLEASE NOTE: AFTER USING YOUR MACRO “PLASTICOAT” REED FOR A WHILE THE PLASTI-COATING MAY PEEL OFF. WHEN THIS HAPPENS YOUR REED IS READY TO GIVE YOU EVEN MORE SATISFACTION AS TO TONE AND PLAYING SERVICE. IT IS ONLY THE EXCESS COATING THAT PEELS OFF.” INSIDE OF SLEEVE HAS BLACK PRINTED TEXT “CAUTION: TO AVOID DAMAGE TO TIP, DO NOT PUSH REED TOO FAR IN. IMPORTANT: FOR BEST RESULTS, WET REED THOROLY, SAME AS CANE REED, BEFORE PLAYING.” REED IS WOODEN WITH GROOVED BACK OF BASE; REED HAS FADED BLACK STAMP ON BASE OF FRONT “VIBRATOR, CHIRON, FRANCE, M.F.G. U.S.A.” SLEEVE IS WORN AT EDGES AND CREASED ON FRONT AND BACK; SLEEVE HAS RIP ON FRONT RIGHT EDGE; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. I. NECK STRAP, 40.8 CM LONG X 10.3 CM WIDE. BROWN LEATHER AT NECK WITH COTTON CORDS ATTACHED. CORDS ATTACH AT BASE WITH BLACK PLASTIC FITTING; CORDS ARE TWINED AT BASE TO ATTACH TO SILVER METAL HOOK. COTTON CORDS STAINED GREEN; LEATHER IS WORN AND STAINED GREEN; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
MUSICAL T&E
Historical Association
LEISURE
MILITARY
History
ON JANUARY 24, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BARBARA LEGGE AND ROBERT SMEREK REGARDING THEIR DONATION OF A SAXOPHONE, CASE, AND ACCESSORIES. LEGGE AND SMEREK RECALLED THAT THE SAXOPHONE BELONGED TO THEIR FATHER, STEVE SMEREK, WHO PLAYED IN LETHBRIDGE. ON THE SAXOPHONE, LEGGE ELABORATED, “IT WAS STILL MY DAD’S…HE DIED IN 1970. MY DAD [WAS] STEVE SMEREK, THE ORCHESTRA LEADER OF THE ROYAL ALBERTAN’S ORCHESTRA.” “[DAD] PLAYED IN…THE ROYAL ALBERTAN’S ORCHESTRA…FROM IN THE EARLY ‘40S, TILL 1951. [ROB AND I WERE] VERY SMALL [ROB WAS BORN IN ’43, AND I WAS BORN IN 1948], AND THEY PLAYED TILL ’51, AS FAR AS I COULD CAPTURE [FROM] THE NEWSPAPER ARTICLES. I ONLY REMEMBER GOING TO A PRACTICE WITH HIM. I THINK IT WAS AT THE TRIANON…WHEN I WAS YOUNG…WHEN HE WAS WORKING, WE WOULD PLAY ON THE PIANO…” “I PLAYED WITH MY DAD, WHILE ON THE PIANO, AND THEN HE ACCOMPANIED ME WITH THE SAXOPHONE [THAT WAS IN JUNIOR HIGH, I GUESS]…WE STARTED BAND IN GRADE TEN, SO THAT WAS PROBABLY IN 1964, THAT I ACTUALLY HAD [THE SAXOPHONE] IN MY HANDS.” “MY BIGGEST MEMORY IS HIM COMING IN AND PLAYING THE SAXOPHONE, JOINING ME ON WHATEVER I WAS PRACTICING ON THE PIANO. [MY] BEGINNER PIANO LESSONS WERE IN CLASSICAL MUSIC. I WAS PROBABLY PLAYING POPULAR MUSIC BY THAT TIME. I HAD SWITCHED TO A MRS. SINCLAIR, TO LEARN POPULAR MUSIC. THAT’S WHEN I REMEMBER HIM COMING IN. I’D PLAY SOME OF HIS OLD SONGS, BECAUSE HE HAD BOOKS OF OLD SONGS THAT I USED TO PLAY ON PIANO, SO HE WOULD KNOW ALL THE MUSIC.” ROBERT SMEREK ADDED, “I WAS THERE ONCE, AT THE TRIANON BALLROOM…IT WAS A PRACTICE. THEY MIGHT HAVE BEEN RECORDING TOO…IN THE ‘50S, THE BIG BANDS WERE ON THE WAY OUT, SO THAT’S WHEN THE BAND TERMINATED, AND I WAS ONLY 8 YEARS OLD.” “I DON’T THINK THEY TRAVELED. THEY PLAYED THE TRIANON BALLROOM, HENDERSON LAKE PAVILION, THE RAINBOW BALLROOM IS ANOTHER ONE.” LEGGE CONTINUED, “BEFORE THAT, HE WAS IN OTHER BANDS, WITH SOME OF [THE SMALLER BANDS]. [HE WAS] IN A MELODY QUEEN’S BAND, WHEN HE WAS YOUNGER. THEN [HE WAS] IN THE 18TH BRIGADE BAND, DURING THE WAR. SOME PEOPLE FROM OTHER BANDS IN LETHBRIDGE, THEY WERE ALL KIND OF MUSICAL FRIENDS, (LOU GONZY AND THE RANCH BOYS, A FEW PEOPLE), AND I HAVE NO IDEA HOW [THE BAND MEMBERS] ALL GOT TOGETHER FOR THIS ORCHESTRA. THEY ALL PLAYED, AS FAR AS I COULD TELL, DIFFERENT INSTRUMENTS, BECAUSE THERE’S DIFFERENT PICTURES THAT WE HAVE. IN ONE, MY DAD’S PLAYING THE SAXOPHONE, BUT THERE’S ANOTHER ONE WHERE HE’S PLAYING THE CLARINET. IN SOME OF THE MUSIC, I THINK HE’S PLAYING THE TRUMPET. I DON’T KNOW IF IT’S HIM, FOR SURE. THEY WOULD SWITCH INSTRUMENTS, EXCEPT FOR MY UNCLE MIKE, WHO WAS THE DRUMMER IN THE BAND.” “SOME OF THE ANNOUNCEMENTS…WERE AT THE MARQUIS HOTEL, WHICH ISN’T HERE ANYMORE, AND THE LEGION MEMORIAL HALL. THERE’S A FEW WHERE, I THINK, THEY PROBABLY WENT OUT OF TOWN, BUT PROBABLY NO FARTHER THAN COALDALE. I THINK MOST, OR ALL THESE ANNOUNCEMENTS, ARE MOSTLY AT THE HENDERSON LAKE PAVILION, UNTIL THE END, THERE IS A TRIANON ONE…[DAD] HAD A FAMILY, SO HE DIDN’T REALLY TRAVEL…THE STORY TOLD BY MY AUNT, HIS SISTER-IN-LAW, WAS THAT, WHEN TOMMY DORSEY WAS HERE IN [JULY] 1951, THAT HE WANTED MY DAD TO JOIN HIS BAND WHEN HE WAS ON TOUR HERE. BUT MY DAD DIDN’T WANT TO GO, BECAUSE HE DIDN’T WANT TO LEAVE HIS FAMILY. WE WERE ALL SMALL THEN. AS FAR AS I KNOW, HE DIDN’T REALLY GO OUT OF TOWN. IT WAS ALL LAKE PAVILION, AND WORKING AT HIS REGULAR JOB.” “THE DANCES WERE…EVERY SATURDAY, AND TUESDAYS…I REMEMBER WEDNESDAYS IN LETHBRIDGE, THE STORES WERE CLOSED, AT LEAST FOR HALF A DAY, BECAUSE MY MOM USED TO WORK AT EATON’S, AND WEDNESDAY WAS THEIR DAY OFF, AT LEAST AFTER 12:00 NOON. SO, THERE WAS A LOT OF DANCING ON TUESDAYS, AND SATURDAYS.” “[MY DAD STARTED PLAYING MUSIC WHEN] MY GRANDMA (HIS MOM) WAS TOLD BY A DOCTOR THAT HIS LUNGS WERE A BIT WEAK, AND THAT THE BEST THING TO DO WAS TO START BLOWING AN INSTRUMENT…HIS LUNGS WERE KIND OF WEAK SO THE BEST THING TO DO WAS BLOW AN INSTRUMENT. THEY TELL YOU THAT TODAY, TOO. YOU CAN STRENGTHEN YOUR LUNGS BY BLOWING AN INSTRUMENT…THERE WAS MUSIC IN OUR FAMILY, PRIOR TO THAT, SO I’M NOT SURE WHY [DAD CHOSE] THE SAXOPHONE…[OUR DAD’S] GRANDFATHER HAD BEEN IN BANDS. THERE’S A FUNNY STORY ABOUT THE SMEREK’S – THERE WERE TWO SISTERS MARRIED TWO BROTHERS…AND THEY’RE ALL SINGERS, AND MUSICAL BACKGROUNDS FROM THE OLD COUNTRY. [THAT WAS] THE STORY WE WERE TOLD WHY HE STARTED PLAYING THE SAXOPHONE. MY GRANDMA DIDN’T WANT HIM TO GO INTO THE MINE…BECAUSE AN OLDER BROTHER WAS KILLED IN THE MINE–-THE #9 OR #6 MINE ON THE NORTH SIDE.” “[ROBERT] PLAYED THE TENOR, SO I RECEIVED THE ALTO SAX [FROM DAD], BECAUSE [DAD] TOLD ME IT WAS EASIER TO PLAY THAN HIS CLARINET, TO LEARN ON A SAXOPHONE INSTEAD. THAT WAS JUST IN HIGH SCHOOL, WHEN [MOM AND DAD WERE] STILL IN LETHBRIDGE.” ON THE MOTIVATIONS FOR DONATING THE SAXOPHONE, LEGGE ELABORATED, “AFTER OUR DAD DIED, OUR MOTHER KEPT ALL THE INSTRUMENTS TILL WE WANTED THEM…I HAVE BEEN HOLDING [ONTO] THE SAXOPHONE [SINCE 1970], BECAUSE MY CHILDREN PLAYED IT IN BAND, IN HIGH SCHOOL [IN FORT MCMURRAY, ALBERTA], AND I PLAYED IT IN BAND, IN CATHOLIC CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL…ROB PLAYED THIS SAXOPHONE IN HIGH SCHOOL BAND AT ST. FRANCIS HIGH SCHOOL, LETHBRIDGE…WE’RE GETTING OLDER NOW, AND MOST OF THE PEOPLE THAT WE HAVE THE HISTORY FROM ARE NO LONGER WITH US. I DECIDED THAT IT WAS TIME TO PUT IT SOMEWHERE WHERE EVERYBODY CAN LOOK AT IT AND ENJOY IT…THE INSTRUMENT ITSELF. [I] WANT IT SOMEWHERE PROTECTED.” “IT’S VERY DIFFICULT FOR ME [TO GIVE IT UP], AND IT TOOK A WHILE FOR ME TO WANT TO DO THIS, AND KNOW THAT IT’S GOING TO BE HERE. I JUST HAVE TO ADJUST TO IT, BUT IT’S STILL, TODAY, A VERY DIFFICULT DAY FOR ME TO ACTUALLY GIVE YOU THIS [SAXOPHONE].” “IT’S ‘HIM’. IT JUST IS, BUT I STILL THINK [DONATING THE SAXOPHONE IS] A GOOD THING FOR US TO DO…[DAD] PLAYED A BIG ROLE IN LETHBRIDGE, IN THE BAND ERA, IN THE ‘40S. I JUST WANT HIM TO BE REMEMBERED, AND I WANT HIS STUFF TO BE ENJOYED BY OTHER PEOPLE, ESPECIALLY MY KIDS, BECAUSE THEY HAVEN’T REALLY HEARD THESE RECORDS DIRECTLY, LIKE I HAVE. [MY KIDS] THOUGHT IT WAS A GOOD IDEA. I RAN IT BY EVERYBODY, TO SEE HOW THEY FELT ABOUT IT. THEY’RE OK WITH IT, BUT IT’S STILL HARD TO DO.” ROBERT SMEREK ADDED, “I’D LIKE TO HAVE OTHER PEOPLE SEE IT, AND REMEMBER [DAD]. [BARBARA] WOULD HAVE MORE CONNECTION TO IT THAN I’D HAVE.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND COPIES OF LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190003000-GA
Catalogue Number
P20190003000
Acquisition Date
2019-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail

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