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Other Name
PLEASE PRESENT MEMBERSHIP CARDS
Date Range From
1960
Date Range To
1970
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
CARDBOARD, PAINT, INK
Catalogue Number
P20120045018
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
PLEASE PRESENT MEMBERSHIP CARDS
Date Range From
1960
Date Range To
1970
Materials
CARDBOARD, PAINT, INK
No. Pieces
1
Length
25
Width
36
Description
CARDBOARD SIGN PAINTED WHITE WITH HANDWRITTEN RED TEXT “PLEASE PRESENT” AND BLACK TEXT “MEMBERSHIP CARDS” AND GREEN UNDERLINES. FRONT OF SIGN IS DISCOLOURED AND HAS PAINT STAINS AND SPOTS; PENCIL OUTLINES ARE VISIBLE AROUND LETTERS. BACK OF SIGN IS PALE CARDBOARD WITH FOLDS AT THE UPPER AND LOWER EDGES TO CREATE STAND FOR SIGN. BACK OF SIGN IS CREASED IN THE CENTER AND ALONG LEFT AND RIGHT EDGES; BACK IS STAINED BLACK AND RED; OVERALL GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
ASSOCIATIONS
History
ON AUGUST 21, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN INTERVIEWED LLOYD CAREFOOT REGARDING HIS DONATION OF MEMORABILIA RELATED TO COURT WINDY WEST (#562) LETHBRIDGE CHAPTER OF THE INDEPENDENT ORDER OF FORESTERS. CAREFOOT WAS ACTIVELY INVOLVED WITH THE FORESTERS WHILE HE LIVED IN EDMONTON, ALBERTA, AND CONTINUED HIS INVOLVEMENT FOLLOWING HIS MOVE TO LETHBRIDGE IN 1963. WHEN ASKED ABOUT HIS TIME SPENT IN THE FORESTERS, CAREFOOT RECALLED, “WE [WIFE RUTH AND LLOYD] WERE INVITED TO [AN] ACTIVITY. [IN THOSE] DAYS THERE [WERE] SOCIAL PARTIES…SOMEBODY THAT I KNEW INVITED ME TO COME AND I HEARD WHAT THEY WERE DOING. IT WAS SOMETHING THAT RUTH AND I THOUGHT…WOULD BE SOMETHING WE’D LIKE TO BE INVOLVED IN…MY FATHER WAS A MEMBER OF THE CANADIAN ORDER OF FORESTERS WHICH WAS A STAGE BEFORE THE INDEPENDENT ORDER OF FORESTERS.” “I BECAME A MEMBER IN EDMONTON… I WAS ONLY AS ASSOCIATE AT THAT TIME. WHEN WE MOVED DOWN HERE, WE BECAME MEMBERS HERE…MY FIRST WORKDAY WAS THE SECOND OF JANUARY, ’63; 1963 [IN LETHBRIDGE]. I WAS A FULL-BLOWN MEMBER IN 1966.” “[I JOINED BECAUSE OF] THE SATISFACTION THAT IT’S A STRONG CHARITABLE WAY OF DOING THINGS TO GIVE BACK. THAT’S PART OF MY PHILOSOPHY; JUST GIVE A LITTLE BACK FOR THE GOOD LIFE I’VE HAD.” “I WAS THE PRESIDENT OF THE LEAGUE…OF [THE] LETHBRIDGE CHAPTER. AND [I] WOUND UP WITH [THE TRUNK] AND IN IT [WERE] THESE THINGS. IT PRE-DATES ME.” “MOST OF THOSE THINGS WERE FOR MY PERSONAL USE…EITHER IN EVENTS OR A POSITION I HELD IN THE FORESTERS. I LOOK AT [THE OBJECTS] AND I SMILE.” REGARDING HIS DONATION, CAREFOOT ELABPRATED, “THE FORESTERS IN THE COMMUNITY DID A LOT OF CHARITY WORK AND I THOUGHT IT WAS A WAY OF COVERING FOR THE FUTURE [ABOUT] THE THINGS THAT WE DID, OR STILL DO. THAT WAS, MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE, MY REASON FOR [DONATING IT] – A WAY OF PASSING IT ALONG SO IT JUST DIDN’T GET SHOVED IN THE JUNK…TO SOMEBODY IN THE FUTURE, IT INDICATES SOMETHING OF WHAT WE DID AND SOME ILLUSTRATION OF THINGS THAT WE DID. FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20120045001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20120045018
Acquisition Date
2012-12
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
BLANKET
Date Range From
1920
Date Range To
1990
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
RAW FLAX YARN
Catalogue Number
P20160003007
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
BLANKET
Date Range From
1920
Date Range To
1990
Materials
RAW FLAX YARN
No. Pieces
1
Length
139
Width
99.5
Description
HAND-WOVEN BLANKET MADE FROM RAW FLAX. THE BLANKET IS COMPOSED OF 2 SECTIONS OF THE SAME SIZE OF MATERIAL THAT ARE JOINED TOGETHER WITH A SEAM AT THE CENTER. ON THE FRONT SIDE (WITH NEAT SIDE OF THE STITCHING AND PATCHES), THERE ARE THREE PATCHES ON THE BLANKET MADE FROM LIGHTER, RAW-COLOURED MATERIAL. ONE SECTION OF THE FABRIC HAS TWO OF THE PATCHES ALIGNED VERTICALLY NEAR THE CENTER SEAM. THE AREA SHOWING ON ONE PATCH IS 3 CM X 5 CM AND THE OTHER IS SHOWING 5 CM X 6 CM. ON THE OPPOSITE SECTION THERE IS ONE PATCH THAT IS 16 CM X 8.5 CM SEWN AT THE EDGE OF THE BLANKET. THE BLANKET IS HEMMED ON BOTH SHORT SIDES. ON THE OPPOSING/BACK SIDE OF THE BLANKET, THE FULL PIECES OF THE FABRIC FOR THE PATCHES ARE SHOWING. THE SMALLER PATCH OF THE TWO ON THE ONE HALF-SECTION OF THE BLANKET IS 8CM X 10 CM AND THE OTHER PATCH ON THAT SIDE IS 14CM X 15CM. THE PATCH ON THE OTHER HALF-SECTION IS THE SAME SIZE AS WHEN VIEWED FROM THE FRONT. THERE IS A SEVERELY FADED BLUE STAMP ON THIS PATCH’S FABRIC. FAIR CONDITION. THERE IS RED STAINING THAT CAN BE SEEN FROM BOTH SIDES OF THE BLANKET AT THE CENTER SEAM, NEAR THE EDGE OF THE BLANKET AT THE SIDE WITH 2 PATCHES (CLOSER TO THE LARGER PATCH), AND NEAR THE SMALL PATCH AT THE END FURTHER FROM THE CENTER. THERE IS A HOLE WITH MANY LOOSE THREADS SURROUNDING NEAR THE CENTER OF THE HALF SECTION WITH ONE PATCH. THERE ARE VARIOUS THREADS COMING LOOSE AT MULTIPLE POINTS OF THE BLANKET.
Subjects
AGRICULTURAL T&E
BEDDING
Historical Association
AGRICULTURE
DOMESTIC
ETHNOGRAPHIC
History
THE KONKINS WERE A RUSSIAN-SPEAKING FAMILY FROM THE TOWN OF SHOULDICE, ALBERTA, NEAR CALGARY. THEY AND MANY OTHER RUSSIAN FAMILIES COMPOSED THAT TOWN’S DOUKHOBOR COLONY. IT WAS THERE WILLIAM KONKIN MARRIED ELIZABETH WISHLOW. IN 1928, THEIR DAUGHTER, ELSIE WAS BORN. THEY LATER MOVED TO A FARM IN VAUXHALL, ALBERTA. THE PRECEDING AND FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM A TWO-PART INTERVIEW WITH DONOR ELSIE MORRIS, WHICH WAS CONDUCTED BY COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN ON FEBRUARY 17, 2016. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION COMES FROM FAMILY HISTORIES AND TEXTS PROVIDED BY THE DONOR. A FULL HISTORY OF THE KONKIN FAMILY CAN BE FOUND WITH THE RECORD P20160003001. ACCORDING TO A NOTE THAT WAS ATTACHED TO THIS LIGHTWEIGHT BLANKET AT THE TIME OF ACQUISITION THE BLANKET IS BELIEVED TO HAVE BEEN MADE C. 1920S. MORRIS SAYS HER MEMORY OF THE BLANKET DATES AS FAR BACK AS SHE CAN REMEMBER: “RIGHT INTO THE ‘30S, ‘40S AND ‘50S BECAUSE MY MOTHER DID THAT RIGHT UP UNTIL NEAR THE END. I USE THAT EVEN IN LETHBRIDGE WHEN I HAD A GARDEN. [THIS TYPE OF BLANKET] WAS USED FOR TWO PURPOSES. IT WAS EITHER PUT ON THE BED UNDERNEATH THE MATTRESS THE LADIES MADE OUT OF WOOL AND OR ELSE IT WAS USED, A DIFFERENT PIECE OF CLOTH WOULD BE USED FOR FLAILING THINGS. [THE] FLAIL ACTUALLY GOES WITH IT AND THEY BANG ON THE SEEDS AND IT WOULD TAKE THE HULLS OFF… IT’S HAND WOVEN AND IT’S MADE OUT OF POOR QUALITY FLAX… IT’S UNBLEACHED, DEFINITELY… RAW LINEN." THIS SPECIFIC BLANKET WAS USED FOR SEEDS MORRIS RECALLS: “…IT HAD TO BE A WINDY DAY… WE WOULD PICK DRIED PEAS OR BEANS OR WHATEVER BEET SEEDS AND WE WOULD BEAT AWAY AND THEN WE WOULD STAND UP, HOLD IT UP AND THE BREEZE WOULD BLOW THE HULLS OFF AND THE SEEDS WOULD GO STRAIGHT DOWN [ONTO THE BLANKET.” THE SEEDS WOULD THEN BE CARRIED ON THE BLANKET AND THEN PUT INTO A PAIL. OF THE BLANKET’S CLEAN STATE, MORRIS EXPLAINS, “THEY’RE ALWAYS WASHED AFTER THEY’RE FINISHED USING THEM.” WHEN SHE LOOKS AT THIS ARTIFACT, MORRIS SAYS: “I FEEL LIKE I’M OUT ON THE FARM, I SEE FIELDS AND FIELDS OF FLAX, BLUE FLAX. BUT THAT’S NOT WHAT SHE USED IT FOR. SHE DID USE IT IF SHE WANTED A LITTLE BIT OF THE FLAX THEN SHE’D POUND THE FLAX, BUT THAT WASN’T OFTEN. IT WAS MOSTLY BEANS AND PEAS.” IT IS UNKNOWN WHO WOVE THIS BLANKET. PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, OBITUARIES, PHOTOGRAPHS, AND FAMILY HISTORIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160003007
Acquisition Date
2016-02
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1907
Date Range To
1995
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, METAL, VARNISH
Catalogue Number
P20160003008
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1907
Date Range To
1995
Materials
WOOD, METAL, VARNISH
No. Pieces
1
Height
107
Diameter
54.5
Description
WOODEN SPINNING WHEEL COATED WITH RED WOOD VARNISH. THE BOBBIN IS APPROX. 11.5CM IN LENGTH AND APPROX. 9CM IN DIAMETER. THERE IS SOME HANDSPUN, WHITE YARN REMAINING ON THE BOBBIN, IN ADDITION TO A SMALL AMOUNT OF GREEN YARN. THE SPINNING WHEEL IS FULLY ASSEMBLED. ON EITHER SIDE OF THE FLYER THERE ARE 10 METAL HOOKS. ON THE LEFT SIDE ONE OF THE 10 HOOKS IS PARTIALLY BROKEN OFF. ON THE FRONT MAIDEN, A WHITE STRING IS TIED AROUND A FRONT KNOB WITH A METAL WIRE BENT LIKE A HOOK (POSSIBLY TO PULL YARN THROUGH THE METAL ORIFICE ATTACHED TO FLYER). LONG SECTION OF RED YARN LOOPED AROUND THE SPINNING WHEEL (MAY BE DRIVE BAND). TREADLE IS TIED TO THE FOOTMAN WITH A DARK GREY, FLAT STRING THAT IS 5MM IN WIDTH. GOOD CONDITION. TREADLE IS WELL WORN WITH VARNISH WORN OFF AND METAL NAIL HEADS EXPOSED.
Subjects
TEXTILEWORKING T&E
Historical Association
DOMESTIC
ETHNOGRAPHIC
History
THE KONKINS WERE A RUSSIAN-SPEAKING FAMILY FROM THE TOWN OF SHOULDICE, ALBERTA, NEAR CALGARY. THEY AND MANY OTHER RUSSIAN FAMILIES COMPOSED THAT TOWN’S DOUKHOBOR COLONY. IT WAS THERE WILLIAM KONKIN MARRIED ELIZABETH WISHLOW. IN 1928, THEIR DAUGHTER, ELSIE WAS BORN. THEY LATER MOVED TO A FARM IN VAUXHALL, ALBERTA. THE PRECEDING AND FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM A TWO-PART INTERVIEW WITH DONOR ELSIE MORRIS, WHICH WAS CONDUCTED BY COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN ON FEBRUARY 17, 2016. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION COMES FROM FAMILY HISTORIES AND TEXTS PROVIDED BY THE DONOR. A FULL HISTORY OF THE KONKIN FAMILY CAN BE FOUND WITH THE RECORD P20160003001. MORRIS ACQUIRED THIS SPINNING WHEEL FROM HER MOTHER AT THE SAME TIME SHE ACQUIRED THE RUG (P20160003006-GA). SHE EXPLAINS: “I ASKED HER IF I COULD USE THE SPINNING WHEEL – SHE TAUGHT ME HOW TO SPIN. AND SHE ALSO TAUGHT ME HOW TO WEAVE, ACTUALLY MY GRANDMOTHER DID THAT MORE SO THAN MY MOTHER. AND I BELONG TO THE WEAVERS’ GUILD, SO I THOUGHT THAT I BETTER DO SOME SPINNING. AND I DID SOME, SO THAT’S WHY I’VE GOT IT HERE AND MOTHER SAID NOT TO BOTHER BRINGING IT BECAUSE SHE WASN’T GOING TO DO ANYMORE SPINNING. SHE HAD LOTS AND LOTS OF YARN THAT SHE DID. SO IT’S BEEN SITTING HERE; IT WAS IN THE BASEMENT.” THE WHEEL WAS MADE FOR ELIZABETH KONKIN WHEN SHE WAS A CHILD IN BRITISH COLUMBIA. MORRIS EXPLAINED THAT: “… [THE SPINNING WHEEL] WAS MADE ESPECIALLY FOR HER. SHE WAS VERY YOUNG. AND THAT IS THE CADILLAC OF SPINNING WHEELS… BECAUSE SHE KNEW WHO THE SPINNERS WERE, WHO THE SPINNING WHEEL CARPENTERS WERE. AND THERE WAS ONE PARTICULAR MAN AND HER MOTHER SAID, ‘WE’LL GO TO THAT ONE.’ AND THEN IN TURN, IN PAYMENT, SHE WOVE HIM ENOUGH MATERIAL TO MAKE A SUIT – A LINEN ONE… [T]HEY DIDN’T LIVE IN CASTELLAR, THEY LIVED IN ANOTHER PLACE. IT’S CALLED - IN RUSSIAN IT IS CALLED OOTISCHENIA. IT’S WHERE THE BIG – ONE OF THE BIG DAMS IS. IF YOU EVER GO ON THAT ROAD, THERE’LL BE DAMS – I THINK ABOUT 3 HUGE ONES… NEAR CASTELLAR, YEAH.” WHEN ASKED ABOUT THE TIME THE WHEEL WAS BUILT FOR HER MOTHER, MORRIS ANSWERED: “… [S]HE GOT IT LONG BEFORE [HER MARRIAGE].” SHE EXPLAINED THAT PRIOR TO MARRYING, GIRLS WOULD PUT TOGETHER TROUSSEAUS “AND THEY MAKE ALL KINDS OF FANCY THINGS WHICH THEY NEVER USE.” MORRIS RECALLS THE SPINNING WHEEL BEING USED WITHIN HER FAMILY’S HOME IN SHOULDICE AND IN THE LEAN-TO AREA IN THEIR HOME AT VAUXHALL: ‘WELL I THINK [THE SKILL IS] IN THE GENES ACTUALLY. BECAUSE MOST FAMILIES WOVE, AND THEY CERTAINLY SPUN, AS FAR AS I REMEMBER. I KNOW EVERY FALL THE LOOM WOULD COME OUT AND WE WERE LIVING WITH MY GRANDPARENTS ON MY DAD’S [SIDE]. WE LIVED UPSTAIRS, AND EVERY WINTER THEY’D HAUL THAT HUGE LOOM INTO THE BATHHOUSE – THE STEAM BATHHOUSE – BECAUSE THERE WAS NO ROOM ANYWHERE ELSE. AND THEY – THE LADIES SET IT UP AND IN THE SUMMERTIME. THEY TORE THE RAGS FOR THE RUGS, OR SPUN THEM. [FOR] WHATEVER THEY WERE GOING TO MAKE. MY MOM WAS SPINNING WHEN I WAS OLD. [S]HE USED MAKE MITTENS AND SOCKS FOR THE KIDS FOR MY CHILDREN AND SO WHEN SHE DIED THERE WAS A WHOLE STACK OF THESE MITTENS AND SOCKS AND I’VE BEEN GIVING IT TO MY GRAND[KIDS AND] MY GREAT GRANDKIDS” MORRIS ALSO USED THIS SPINNING WHEEL MANY TIMES HERSELF. SHE SAID, “IT WAS VERY EASY TO SPIN AND WHEN YOU TRY SOMEBODY ELSE’S SPINNING WHEEL YOU KNOW THE DIFFERENCE RIGHT AWAY. IT’S LIKE DRIVING A CADILLAC AND THEN DRIVING AN OLD FORD. IT’S JUST, IT’S SMOOTH. OUR SON, I TOLD YOU HE WAS VERY CLEVER, HE TRIED SPINNING AND HE SAID IT WAS JUST A VERY, VERY GOOD SPINNING WHEEL. WHEN I WAS IN THE GUILD I TRIED DOING [WHAT] MY MOTHER TAUGHT ME HOW TO SPIN FINE THREAD AND I WANTED HEAVY THREAD BECAUSE NOW [THEY'RE] MAKING THESE WALL HANGINGS. THEY USE THREAD AS THICK AS TWO FINGERS SO I DID THAT AND I DYED IT. I WENT OUT AND CREATED MY OWN DYES. THAT WAS FUN AND THEN I HAVE A SAMPLER OF ALL THE DYES I MADE… I STOPPED SPINNING SHORTLY BEFORE I STOPPED WEAVING… I LOVED WEAVING. FIRST OF ALL I LEARNED HOW TO EMBROIDER. I LIKED THAT THEN I LEARNED HOW CROCHET, I LIKED THAT. THEN I LEARNED HOW TO KNIT AND THAT WAS TOPS. THEN ONE DAY I WAS VISITING MY FRIEND, FRANCES, AND SHE WAS GOING TO THE BOWMAN AND I SAID, 'WHERE ARE YOU GOING?' SHE SAID 'I’M GOING THERE TO WEAVE.' I SAID, 'I DIDN’T KNOW YOU COULD WEAVE?' SHE SAID, 'OH YES,' AND I SAID ‘IS IT HARD?' SHE SAID, ‘NO,” SO I WENT THERE AND I SAW THE THINGS SHE WOVE. THEY WERE BEAUTIFUL AND SO I JOINED THE GROUP AND THEN OF COURSE I WANTED TO HAVE SOME OF THE STUFF I HAD SPUN MYSELF AND DYED MYSELF AND NOBODY ELSE WANTED. THEN I DECIDED, ‘ALRIGHT, I’VE WOVEN ALL THESE THINGS, WOVE MYSELF A SUIT, LONG SKIRT YOU NAME IT. PLACE MATS GALORE. THIS LITTLE RUNNER,’ AND I THOUGHT, ‘WELL, WHAT AM I GOING TO DO WITH THE REST BECAUSE NOBODY WANTS HOMESPUN STUFF. THEY WANT TO GO TO WALMART OR SOME PLACE AND BUY SOMETHING READYMADE,’ SO I GAVE UP SPINNING AND WEAVING… I STOPPED AFTER I MADE MY SUIT. THAT MUST HAVE BEEN ABOUT TWENTY YEARS AGO, EASILY.” MORRIS’ MOTHER WOULD WEAVE IN SHOULDICE, BUT “[I]N VAUXHALL, NO, SHE WASN’T [WEAVING]. SHE DIDN’T HAVE A LOOM.” MORRIS SAID IN SHOULDICE, “I LEARNED HOW TO THROW THE SHUTTLE BACK AND FORTH TO WEAVE RUGS BECAUSE I USED TO SIT THERE WATCHING MY GRANDMOTHER AND SHE LET ME DO THAT, AND THEN YOU SEE WHEN I GOT SO INTERESTED IN WEAVING THAT I BOUGHT A LOOM, SITTING DOWN IN THE BASEMENT. I’VE BEEN TRYING TO SELL IT EVER SINCE AND NOBODY WANTS IT. I OFFERED TO GIVE IT FOR FREE AND NOBODY WANTS IT BECAUSE THEY DON’T HAVE SPACE FOR IT.” PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, OBITUARIES, PHOTOGRAPHS, AND FAMILY HISTORIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160003008
Acquisition Date
2016-02
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
KNITTING BAG
Date Range From
1870
Date Range To
1999
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
CANVAS, FABRIC, THREAD
Catalogue Number
P20160003005
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
KNITTING BAG
Date Range From
1870
Date Range To
1999
Materials
CANVAS, FABRIC, THREAD
No. Pieces
1
Length
41
Width
36
Description
HANDMADE BAG MADE OF 3 SECTIONS OF STRIPS OF ABOUT 5 INCHES (APPROX. 13 CM) EACH. IT IS RED WITH BLUE, YELLOW, GREEN, AND RAW MATERIAL ACCENTS. THE TRIM AT THE TOP OF THE BAG IS BLUE WITH A HANDLE OF THE SAME FABRIC ON EITHER SIDE. THERE IS A STRIP OF RAW, NOT PATTERNED FABRIC AT THE BOTTOM OF THE BAG. BOTH SIDES OF THE BAG HAVE THE SAME ARRANGEMENT OF PATTERNED STRIPS. THERE IS ONE SEAM CONNECTING THE FRONT AND THE BACK OF THE BAG ON BOTH SIDES. THE INSIDE IS UNLINED. GOOD TO VERY GOOD CONDITION. THERE IS SOME STITCHING COMING LOOSE AT VARIOUS POINTS OF THE PATTERNING.
Subjects
CONTAINER
Historical Association
DOMESTIC
ETHNOGRAPHIC
History
THE KONKINS WERE A RUSSIAN-SPEAKING FAMILY FROM THE TOWN OF SHOULDICE, ALBERTA, NEAR CALGARY. THEY AND MANY OTHER RUSSIAN FAMILIES COMPOSED THAT TOWN’S DOUKHOBOR COLONY. IT WAS THERE WILLIAM KONKIN MARRIED ELIZABETH WISHLOW. IN 1928 THEIR DAUGHTER, ELSIE WAS BORN. THEY LATER MOVED TO A FARM IN VAUXHALL, ALBERTA. THE PRECEDING AND FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM A TWO-PART INTERVIEW WITH DONOR ELSIE MORRIS, WHICH WAS CONDUCTED BY COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN ON FEBRUARY 17, 2016. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION COMES FROM FAMILY HISTORIES AND TEXTS PROVIDED BY THE DONOR. A FULL HISTORY OF THE KONKIN FAMILY CAN BE FOUND WITH THE RECORD P20160003001. A STATEMENT WRITTEN BY MORRIS ATTACHED TO THE BAG STATES THAT THE MATERIAL OF THE BAG ORIGINATES FROM THE 1870S. THE STATEMENT READS: “THIS BAG WAS HAND WOVEN IN STRIPS [THAT WERE USED] TO SEW ON THE BOTTOM OF PETTICOATS. THE GIRLS AT THAT TIME HAD TO HAVE A TROUSEUA [SIC] TO LAST A LIFETIME BECAUSE AFTER MARRIAGE THERE WOULD BE NO TIME TO MAKE CLOTHES SO WHAT THEY MADE WAS STURDY. THEY STARTED ON THEIR TROUSEUS [SIC] AS SOON AS THEY COULD HOLD A NEEDLE. WHEN IT WAS HAYING TIME THE GIRLS WENT OUT INTO THE FIELD TO RAKE THE HAY. THEY WORE PETTICOATS OF LINEN TO WHICH THESE BANDS WERE SEWN. THE LONG SKIRTS WERE PICKED UP AT THE SIDES AND TUCKED INTO THE WAISTBANDS SO THAT THE BOTTOMS OF THE PETTICOATS WERE ON DISPLAY.” “THESE BANDS WERE ORIGINALLY MY GREAT GRANDMOTHER’S WHO CAME OUT OF RUSSIA WITH THE DOUKHOBOR SETTLEMENT IN 1899. THEY WERE PASSED ON TO MY MOTHER, ELIZABETH KONKIN, WHO MADE THEM INTO A BAG IN THE 1940S” THE STRIPS THAT MAKE UP THE BAG SERVED A UTILITARIAN PURPOSE WHEN SEWN TO THE BOTTOM OF THE PETTICOATS. IN THE INTERVIEW, MORRIS EXPLAINS: “… THESE STRIPS ARE VERY STRONG. THEY’RE LIKE CANVAS. THEY WERE SEWN ONTO THE BOTTOM OF THE LADY’S PETTICOATS AND THEY WORE A SKIRT ON TOP OF THE PETTICOATS. THESE STRIPS LASTED A LIFETIME, IN FACT MORE THAN ONE LIFETIME BECAUSE I’VE GOT THEM NOW. THEY WOULD TUCK THE SKIRTS INTO THEIR WAISTBAND ON THE SIDE SO THEIR PETTICOATS SHOWED AND THEY WERE TRYING TO PRESERVE THEIR SKIRTS NOT TO GET CAUGHT IN THE GRAIN. THE GIRLS LIKED TO WEAR THEM TO SHOW OFF BECAUSE THE BOYS WERE THERE AND THEY ALWAYS WORE THEIR VERY BEST SUNDAY CLOTHES WHEN THEY WENT CUTTING WHEAT OR GRAIN." “[THE FABRIC] CAME FROM RUSSIA. WITH THE AREA WHERE THEY CAME FROM IS NOW GEORGIA AND THEY LIVED ABOUT SEVEN MILES NORTH OF THE TURKISH BORDER, THE PRESENT DAY TURKISH BORDER… [THE DOUKHOBORS] CAME TO CANADA IN 1897 AND 1899.” MORRIS EXPLAINS THAT SURPLUS FABRIC WOULD HAVE BEEN BROUGHT TO CANADA FROM RUSSIA BY HER MATERNAL GRANDMOTHER FOR FUTURE USE AND TO AID THE GIRLS IN MAKING THEIR TROUSSEAUS: “THE TROUSSEAU THE GIRLS MADE HAD TO LAST THEM A LIFETIME BECAUSE THEY WOULDN’T HAVE TIME BUT RAISING CHILDREN TO SEWING THINGS. SEWING MACHINES WERE UNKNOWN THEN.” THE BANDS OF FABRIC THAT MAKE UP THE BAG WOULD HAVE BEEN REMAINS NEVER USED FROM ELIZABETH KONKIN’S TROUSSEAU. SHE HAND WOVE THE BAG WHILE SHE WAS LIVING IN SHOULDICE. THE BAG WAS USED BY MORRIS’ MOTHER TO STORE HER KNITTING SUPPLIES. WHEN MORRIS ACQUIRED THE BAG IN THE 1990S, IT MAINTAINED A SIMILAR PURPOSE: “WELL I USED TO CARRY MY STUFF FOR THE WEAVER’S GUILD BUT NOW I DON’T USE IT FOR ANYTHING. IT’S VERY HANDY YOU KNOW IT DOESN’T WEAR OUT.” THERE WAS ONLY ONE BAG MADE OUT OF THESE REMNANTS BY MORRIS’ MOTHER. PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, OBITUARIES, PHOTOGRAPHS, AND FAMILY HISTORIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160003005
Acquisition Date
2016-02
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail

PROJECTOR, MOTION-PICTURE

https://collections.galtmuseum.com/en/permalink/artifact13342
Other Name
MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1950
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
STEEL, GLASS, PLASTIC
Catalogue Number
P20120038001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1950
Materials
STEEL, GLASS, PLASTIC
No. Pieces
4
Height
202
Length
57
Description
A. PROJECTOR, FILM. GREY METAL BODY FIXED AT FRONT WITH MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR MECHANISM. BACK OF THE BODY HAS POWER (“ON/OFF”) AND IGNITE SWITCHES; BACK HAS GAUGES WITH GLASS COVERS MARKING HOURS (“16270”) AND 0-100 MV. BACK HAS SILVER LABEL WITH BLACK TEXT “STRONG X-16 TWO-SIDE LAMPHOUSE, D.C. VOLTS 28-32, D.C. AMPS. 60-95, TYPE NO. 76002-3, SERIAL NO. 65196, MFD. BY THE STRONG ELECTRIC CORP., TOLEDO, OHIO, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 76100” AND A BLUE STICKER ON LABEL “CSA SPECIAL TESTING LABORATORIES, S108124, ACCEPTANCE”. BACK HAS THREE BLACK DIALS MARKED “V”, “H”, “F”; FRONT HAS THREE BLACK DIALS MARKED “V”, “H”, “F” ON BLACK METAL PLATE WITH WHITE TEXT “VERT”, “HORTZ”, “FOCUS”. BASE HAS A WHITE SWITCH BENEATH THE MAIN LAMP HOUSE. LAMP HOUSE SIDE HAS HINGED COVER WITH SILVER AND RED PLATE FIXED TO COVER, “CAUTION, USE FACE MASK, OBSERVE SAFETY RULES, ALLOW LAMP TO COOL 10 MIN BEFORE OPENING DOORS”. FRONT HAS REEL MOUNTS FIXED TO TOP AND BOTTOM; TOP REEL MOUNT IS MARKED “A-675” AND HAS SILVER SHIPPING REEL WITH 35MM FILM ATTACHED (B); BOTTOM REEL MOUNT IS MARKED A-676 AND HAS EMPTY SILVER SHIPPING REEL ATTACHED (D). BENEATH REEL MOUNT IS MOUNTED ELECTRIC CHANGEOVER MECHANISM; UNFINISHED STEEL WITH SILVER SCREWS AND INSERTS; SILVER PLATE ON FRONT OF MECHANISM HAS RED TEXT READING “ZIPPER” AND BLACK TEXT READING “ELECTRIC CHANGEOVER, PATENT 1796970, OTHER PATS. PEND., MODEL 14-14, SERIAL 2537, VOLTS 117 A.C., AMPS 2, MFD. BY ESSANNAY ELECTRIC MFG., G.G., 1438 N. CLARK ST., CHICAGO 10, ILL.” MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR MECHANISM HAS LENS ATTACHED AT FRONT (C); MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR MECHANISM HAS RED DIAL BESIDE FRONT CHAMBER COVER WITH WHITE TEXT “FRAME”. MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR MECHANISM HAS HINGED CHAMBER COVER WITH FRONT FIXED SILVER PLATE WITH RED TEXT READING “MOTIOGRAPH” IN RED, AND YELLOW AND BLACK LABEL READING “SHARP’S THEATRE SUPPLIES LIMITED, FILM EXCHANGE BUILDING, PHONE M-4076—CALGARY, ALBERTA.” INSIDE HINGED CHAMBER COVER IS WHITE LABEL “UL, MODEL AA, FRAMING LAMP 120V 25W, MOTIOGRAPH INC., CHICAGO”. BENEATH IS LOWER CHAMBER WITH STEEL AND GLASS HINGED COVER. BASE OF LAMP HOUSE PEDESTAL IS SCRATCHED; INSIDE OF MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR MECHANISM TOP CHAMBER IS DETACHED BLACK METAL SLIDE WITH CENTER CUT OUT AND RED KNOB AT THE END. OVERALL PROJECTOR AND COMPONENTS IN GOOD CONDITION. B. FILM REEL, 37.2CM DIAMETER X 4.3CM DEEP, INCLUDES 35MM FILM. SHIPPING REEL; UNFINISHED PRESSED STEEL; FIXED WITH UNMARKED WHITE TAPE. REEL IS HANDMARKED WITH RED “T”. C. LENS, PROJECTOR, 41.7CM LONG X 11.5CM DIAMETER. CINEMASCOPE/ANAMORPHIC (LONG LENS) FORMAT. BRASS END COMPONENT IS STAMPED “SUPER SNAPLITE”, “KOLLMORGEN OPTICAL CORP”, “BX 241 F:1.9 3 ¼ IN.” SILVER LENS COMPONENT IS MARKED “MADE IN JAPAN, 19313, PROMINAR ANAMORPHIC”. LENS FRONT IS BLACK; LENS GOES TO 350 FEET. D. FILM REEL, 37CM DIAMETER X 5.3CM DEEP, SHIPPING. UNFINISHED PRESSED STEEL, EMPTY, HANDMARKED IN RED “2” AND ON MASKING TAPE IN BLACK “7”. FIXED TO LOWER REEL MOUNT ON PROJECTOR.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
BUSINESS
LEISURE
History
ON APRIL 11, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED LARRY AND ANDREA BECKER, OWNERS OF THE FORMER WATERTON THEATRE IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WHERE THE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT WAS USED. DURING THE INTERVIEW, THE BECKERS ELABORATED ON HOW THEIR THEATRE CLOSED, HOW THE EQUIPMENT WAS USED IN THEIR THEATRE, AND HOW AL ANCTIL CAME INTO POSSESSION OF THE THEATRE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT. LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HOW ANCTIL BECAME THE OWNER AND DONOR OF THE EQUIPMENT, STATING, “THIS EQUIPMENT IS BUILT AND DESIGNED TO EXHIBIT 35 MM MOTION PICTURE FILM. IN 2011, WHEN WE DISPOSED OF THE EQUIPMENT, FILM WAS BECOMING OBSOLETE. IT WAS NO LONGER AVAILABLE TO US AS AN EXHIBITION MEDIUM, SO WE WERE FACED WITH THE CHALLENGE OF CONVERTING TO A DIGITAL PROJECTION, IF WE WANTED TO CONTINUE SHOWING MOTION PICTURES. WE HAD TO GET RID OF THIS, AND AL [ANCTIL] THOUGHT HE HAD A USE FOR IT. AT THE TIME, HE WAS SELLING US COFFEE. WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP IN THE THEATRE, SO WE HAD THAT RELATIONSHIP WITH AL; AND I’M NOT SURE WHY AL WANTED IT…I DON’T KNOW IF HE EVER INTENDED TO USE IT. I THINK, UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES, IT MIGHT BE USEFUL, IF SOMEBODY COULD ACCESS SOME 35 MM FILM TO RUN THROUGH IT. WHEN WE HEARD THAT AL WANTED IT, WE SAID “SURE, YOU CAN HAVE IT AL. WE NO LONGER HAVE ANY USE FOR IT.”” “IT WAS THE COST OF THE CONVERSION [THAT INFLUENCED OUR DECISION TO CLOSE]. INITIALLY, WHEN ALL OF THE THEATRES WERE FACED WITH THE CONVERSION, WITHIN A VERY SHORT WINDOW, THE DEMAND FOR THE EQUIPMENT WAS VERY HIGH; COSTS WERE VERY HIGH, AND IT JUST WASN’T FINANCIALLY VIABLE IN A SEASONAL OPERATION, SO WE DECIDED NOT TO PROCEED, AT THAT TIME, WITH THE DIGITAL UPGRADING/CONVERSION. WE WERE WORKING QUITE HARD, BECAUSE WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP, AN ICE CREAM STORE, AND A MOVIE THEATRE. THE MOVIE THEATRE WAS THE FUN PART OF IT.” “WE WERE AT THE END OF OUR LAST SEASON IN 2011, AND WE HAD WORKED OUT AN ARRANGEMENT WITH THE TENANT, TO TAKE IT OVER, TO RUN IT AS A ‘STAGE AND GRILL’ KIND OF OPERATION. THEY WERE GOING TO PUT A KITCHEN IN, AND SERVE MEALS, AND PRESENT MUSIC ACTS ON STAGE.” ON THE PROJECTOR, LARRY BECKER INDICATED, “IT WAS OLD [IN 2011]. IT WAS VERY WELL-DESIGNED, AND BUILT EQUIPMENT, WHEN IT WAS NEW. THE PROJECTOR IS…THE HEART OF THE OPERATION, AND IT’S A MOTIOGRAPH PROJECTOR WITH THE MOTIOGRAPH SOUND HEAD…AND THAT WAS PROBABLY NEW IN THE LATE '40S OR EARLY ‘50S, WHEN THE MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY WAS IN AN ABSOLUTE HEY-DAY. HUGE INVESTMENTS WERE MADE IN DEVELOPING HIGH QUALITY EQUIPMENT FOR THE MOTION PICTURE EXHIBITIONS. THIS PROJECTOR, EVEN THOUGH IT WAS VERY OLD, BENEFITTED FROM THAT DESIGN PERIOD, AND WAS STILL WORKING REASONABLY WELL.” “WE REPLACED THE LAMP HOUSE [FROM AN OLD CARBON ARC LAMP TO…A ZENON BULB AS A LIGHT SOURCE]. [WE PICKED UP BULBS AND EQUIPMENT] FROM ‘TEN STORIES’. “[THERE WOULD BE A] BELL HERE, BEFORE WE PUT THE PLATTER SYSTEM IN… [THE BELL] WAS ATTACHED TO THE PROJECTOR, AND THIS WAS WHEN THESE SMALL 20 MINUTE REELS WOULD BE LOADED ON TO THIS REEL LINE, AND WHEN THERE WAS ABOUT 2 OR 2 1/2 MINUTES FILM LEFT ON THE PAY-OUT REEL…[THE] BELL WOULD START TO RING; START TO TURN AT A SPEED, AND THAT WAS TO SIGNAL THE PROJECTIONIST TO GET READY, BECAUSE HE WAS GOING TO HAVE TO DO A CHANGE-OVER. WHEN THAT BELL RANG, THE PROJECTIONIST WOULD LOOK THROUGH A PORT IN THE PROJECTION ROOM, AND LOOK FOR A LITTLE DOT UP IN THE RIGHT HAND CORNER OF THE FILM. THERE WOULD BE TWO OF THEM. WHEN YOU HEARD THE BELL, YOU’D STRIKE THE LAMP WITH THE OLD CARBON ARCS; GET THE LAMP HOUSE RUNNING. THEN YOU’D SEE THE FIRST DOT, THAT WAS YOUR SIGNAL TO START THE PROJECTOR, THEN, WHEN YOU SAW THE SECOND DOT, THERE WAS A PEDAL ON THE FLOOR, OR A HAND SWITCH, THAT YOU WOULD ACTIVATE, AND THAT WOULD CLOSE THE SHUTTER ON ONE PROJECTOR, AND OPEN IT ON THE OTHER ONE. IF THE PROJECTIONIST WAS GOOD, IT WAS SEAMLESS. THE AUDIENCE WOULD NEVER KNOW THAT THERE WAS A REEL CHANGE.” “THERE WOULD BE TWO PROJECTORS RUNNING SIDE-BY-SIDE. I DID OPERATE IT FOR A WHILE, WITH THE CHANGE-OVERS, BUT THAT WAS ONE OF THE THINGS THAT I REALLY WANTED TO CHANGE ABOUT WATERTON. I WANTED JUST TO MAKE MY JOB A LOT EASIER. [THAT WAS] THE INTRODUCTION OF THE PLATTER SYSTEM, AND THE ZENON LAMP.” LARRY BECKER DISCUSSED THE PURPOSE OF THE LENS IN USE WITH PROJECTOR EQUIPMENT, STATING, “FILM WAS STILL AVAILABLE IN BOTH FORMATS, AND WHEN IT CAME IN, WE HAD TO KNOW WHICH FORMAT IT WAS, BECAUSE THEN WE WOULD USE THE APPROPRIATE LENS. [THE LENS] WAS STILL IN USE. PRODUCTION COSTS WERE PROBABLY…A LITTLE HIGHER IF THEY WERE SHOOTING IN THE CINEMASCOPE. I THINK THE FLAT LENS, THE 185 ASPECT RATIO WAS A BETTER RATIO FOR TELEVISION. I ALWAYS THOUGHT THAT, IF THEY THOUGHT THAT THE MOVIE WAS GOING TO HAVE A SHORT RUN IN THEATRES, AND THEN A BROADER AUDIENCE ON TELEVISION, THEN THAT FORMAT [185 ASPECT RATIO] WAS MORE SUITABLE. WE REPLACED [THE ORIGINAL LENSES].” THE BECKERS SPOKE ABOUT THEIR ARRIVAL IN WATERTON AND THEIR HISTORY WORKING IN THEATRES, WITH LARRY BEGINNING HIS CAREER WORKING IN THE PALACE THEATRE IN CALGARY, ALBERTA. IN 1975, THE BECKERS BECAME INTERESTED IN PURCHASING THE THEATRE IN WATERTON, AND BY 1976 THEY WERE RUNNING THE WATERTON THEATRE. LARRY NOTED HOW THE BECKERS BECAME INVOLVED WITH THE WATERTON THEATRE “I WAS TRAVELING TO WATERTON. I HAD NEVER BEEN TO WATERTON. I HAD AN OCCASION TO GO TO GREAT FALLS. IT WAS ON…A BUSINESS TRIP, AND IT WAS OVER A WEEKEND. I LOOKED AT THE MAP, AND I THOUGHT, “IF WE LEAVE AROUND DINNERTIME ON FRIDAY, WE CAN SPEND A NIGHT IN WATERTON…AND THEN WE CAN CONTINUE TO GREAT FALLS THE NEXT DAY.” GOT INTO WATERTON, AND, BY THIS TIME, THE SUN HAD SET, AND I STILL DIDN’T REALIZE I WAS IN THE MOUNTAINS. I SORT OF LOOKED AROUND. I DIDN’T HAVE A ROOM BOOKED, AND GOT A ROOM IN ALLEN’S LAKESHORE BUNGALOWS, WHICH WERE ON THE SHORE OF WATERTON LAKE, AT THAT TIME, AND WHEN I GOT UP IN THE MORNING, AND LOOKED AROUND, I COULDN’T BELIEVE WHERE I WAS. I MEAN, IT WAS JUST THE MOST BEAUTIFUL THING…IT WAS STUNNINGLY, GORGEOUS! THEN I THOUGHT, “I’LL TAKE A STROLL AROUND TOWN”, AND THERE WAS A MOVIE THEATRE. OF COURSE, BEING IN THE BUSINESS, I’VE GOT TO STOP AND YOU…FIND OUT WHAT’S GOING ON THERE. I CHATTED WITH A YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE LOOKING AFTER THE PLACE FOR LOTTIE BREWERTON. LOTTIE, AND HER HUSBAND, GORDON, HAD BUILT IT BACK IN ’35. LOTTIE WAS GORDON’S WIDOW. SHE WASN’T INVOLVED IN THE OPERATION, BUT SHE HAD SOME YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE HELPING HER OUT, SO, IN THE CONVERSATION, THEY SAID, “YOU KNOW, I THINK LOTTIE WANTS TO SELL.” I WENT BACK TO CALGARY, AND NEVER REALLY THOUGHT TOO MUCH ABOUT IT UNTIL SEVERAL MONTHS LATER, AND IT WAS SORT OF ON MY MIND, AND I THOUGHT, “WELL, I’M GOING TO GET AHOLD OF LOTTIE AND SEE WHAT THE DEAL IS HERE?” “IT NEEDED WORK. IT’S NOT A BIG MONEY-MAKING OPERATION IN WATERTON, SO IT WAS…HARD TO DO THE THINGS THAT NEEDED TO BE DONE. OVER THE YEARS, WE KIND OF KEPT IT GOING…BUT IT WAS ALWAYS…AN EXPERIENTIAL THING. IT WAS KIND OF AN ANTIQUE IN ITSELF. IT WAS NEVER INTENDED TO BE LIKE THE CITY THEATRES – IT’S A MUCH MORE CASUAL ENVIRONMENT.” “I LIKE THE STYLE OF THE BUILDING. IT’S A GORGEOUS OLD BUILDING – TUDOR-REVIVAL. IT’S GOT AN INTERESTING HISTORY. BACK IN THE MID-‘30S, PARKS CANADA WAS ENCOURAGING DEVELOPMENT IN WATERTON, AND WAS GIVING OUT THE COMMERCIAL LEASES, BUT THEY ALSO WANTED SORT OF AN ARCHITECTURAL THEME TO THE TOWNSITE. THEY HAD AN ARCHITECTURAL DIVISION, AND THEY HAD ARCHITECTS ON STAFF, AND IT WAS THAT BRANCH OF PARKS CANADA, THAT DESIGNED THAT BUILDING, AND MANY OF THE OTHER BUILDINGS IN WATERTON. IT’S GOT SOME CHARM. IT’S NICE THAT WAY.” ANDREA BECKER ADDED, “IT’S…A PRIVILEGE TO BE A WATERTON BUSINESS OWNER. IT’S A VERY SMALL COMMUNITY, AND IT’S A LIFESTYLE KIND OF ENVIRONMENT, AS WELL, FOR THE BUSINESS PEOPLE THERE. WE…FEEL THAT IT IS A SPECIAL THING TO DO…” LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HIS TRAINING WORKING IN THEATRES AND HIS EARLY START IN THE WATERTON THEATRE, “WHEN I STARTED DOING PROJECTION WORK, IT WAS A LICENSED TRADE IN THE PROVINCE OF ALBERTA, AND, IN THE EARLY DAYS OF MOTION PICTURE EXHIBITION, THE FILM STOCK WAS A SILVER NITRATE FILM STOCK WHICH WAS, LITERALLY, EXPLOSIVE. PROJECTION ROOMS, INCLUDING THE ONE IN WATERTON, WERE BUILT LIKE A BUNKER. THEY WERE CEMENT ROOMS, WITH FIRE SHUTTERS, THAT WOULD SLAM SHUT IF SOMETHING WENT WRONG IN THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAM TO BECOME A PROJECTIONIST WAS A 3 YEAR PROGRAM, AND THERE WAS DIFFERENT CATEGORIES OF LICENSING. WHEN I STARTED IN [1977] I OWNED THE THEATRE IN FORT MACLEOD AND I HAD TO DO AN APPRENTICESHIP, IN MY OWN THEATRE, BEFORE I WAS ALLOWED TO OPERATE THE EQUIPMENT. I BECAME A CERTIFIED PROJECTIONIST. I MENTION THE EARLY DAYS WITH THE SILVER NITRATE FILM, WHICH WAS HIGHLY FLAMMABLE, AND DANGEROUS. THAT HAD BEEN REPLACED BY ACETATE FILM, LONG BEFORE I BECAME INVOLVED, AND SO THE FILM STOCK WAS NO LONGER…COMBUSTIBLE, AND SO IT WAS A MUCH SAFER ENVIRONMENT. NONETHELESS, SOME OF THE OLD REGULATIONS SORT OF CARRIED FORWARD, AND SLOWLY CHANGED.” I WAS NEVER A PROJECTIONIST IN MEDICINE HAT AND CALGARY. I WAS JUST IN MANAGEMENT, SO I WASN’T THAT FAMILIAR WITH ALL OF THIS [WHEN WE BOUGHT THE WATERTON THEATRE]. IT WAS A BIT OF A LEARNING PROCESS FOR ME. I ENDED UP DOING AN APPRENTICESHIP IN MY OWN THEATRE IN FORT MACLEOD. I HIRED A PROJECTIONIST THE FIRST COUPLE OF YEARS IN WATERTON, AND I HAD TO BRING SOMEBODY DOWN FROM CALGARY TO RUN THE PROJECTOR. WHEN I GOT INTO FORT MACLEOD, I WANTED TO DO MY OWN PROJECTION WORK, AND THAT’S WHEN I DID THE APPRENTICESHIP.” [THE PROJECTIONIST WE BROUGHT TO WATERTON] WAS A FELLOW BY THE NAME OF DOUG COOPER…HE WAS FAMILIAR WITH THIS EQUIPMENT. THE CHANGES HAD STARTED IN THE CITY, BUT HE WAS FAMILIAR WITH DOING THIS KIND OF WORK. HE HAD LEARNED ON IT TOO, SO IT WASN’T A MYSTERY TO HIM. HE WAS ABLE TO MANAGE IT QUITE WELL. [WE HIRED] A DIFFERENT GUY EACH YEAR. DOUG WAS THE FIRST YEAR.” “ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WAS INTERESTING ABOUT THE THEATRE WHEN I TOOK IT OVER IS THAT, FOR LIGHT SOURCES IN THE PROJECTION ROOM, THE LAMPS THAT ILLUMINATED THE SCREEN WERE BURNING CARBON ARCS. CARBON ARCS CAME IN A BOX; YOU INSTALLED THEM IN THE LAMP HOUSE. WHEN YOU STARTED THE MOVIE, YOU’D STRIKE THEM TOGETHER, AND THEY WOULD CREATE AN ARC AND FLAME BETWEEN THESE CARBON RODS. THAT WAS WHAT PRODUCED THE LIGHT. IT WAS MAGNIFIED BY A MIRROR DOWN THROUGH THE LENS, AND WITH THE SCREEN. WITH THAT KIND OF A LIGHT SOURCE, YOU HAD TO BE IN THE PROJECTION ROOM…ALL THE TIME. YOU COULDN’T LEAVE THE PROJECTION ROOM WHILE THE MOVIE WAS RUNNING. AS A MATTER OF FACT, PROJECTION ROOMS HAD TOILETS IN THEM DURING THAT PERIOD. CHANGING THAT OUT WAS ONE OF THE FIRST THINGS THAT I DID, BECAUSE IT MADE IT A LOT EASIER TO GET OUT OF THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE OTHER THING – THE FILM WAS RUN OFF OF 18 20-MINUTE REELS AT THAT TIME, SO THERE WERE 2 PROJECTORS. WE WERE CONSTANTLY CHANGING BACK AND FORTH, FROM ONE PROJECTOR TO THE OTHER. GETTING RID OF THE CARBON ARC LAMP HOUSES, AND INSTALLING A PLATTER SYSTEM, WHICH ALLOWED…THE PROGRAM TO BE SPLICED TOGETHER ON THE SINGLE REELS.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT AND HISTORIES OF THE WATERTON THEATRE, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20120038001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20120038001
Acquisition Date
2012-10
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
JAPANESE CERAMIC VASE
Date Range From
1923
Date Range To
1956
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
CERAMIC
Catalogue Number
P20160042001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
JAPANESE CERAMIC VASE
Date Range From
1923
Date Range To
1956
Materials
CERAMIC
No. Pieces
1
Height
32.5
Length
17.5
Diameter
17.5
Description
BLACK AND SILVER GLAZED, CERAMIC VASE WITH RED AND GOLD DESIGNS PAINTED ON OPPOSITE SIDES OF THE VASE. ONE DESIGN SHOWCASES A CRANE FLYING TOWARDS A TREE BRANCH, WHILE THE OTHER SHOWCASES TWO CRANES PERCHED ON A LARGE TREE BRANCH BENEATH A RED DISC/MOON. “MADE IN JAPAN” IS STAMPED INTO BASE OF VASE. CONDITION: THE LIP OF THE VASE HAS A 4.3 CM CHIP AND IS MISSING 7.6 CM ALONG TOP EDGE. LOOSE OF PAINT AND OVERALL FINISH OF DESIGN. SLIGHT CHIPPING AROUND BASE.
Subjects
HOUSEHOLD ACCESSORY
Historical Association
DOMESTIC
FURNISHINGS
ETHNOGRAPHIC
History
ON 2 DECEMBER 2016, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE DONORS, MAKIO (MAC) AND REYKO NISHIYAMA, IN THEIR HOME TO DISCUSS ITEMS THEY WERE DONATING TO THE GALT. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM THAT INTERVIEW: MRS. NISHIYAMA EXPLAINED THAT THIS VASE CAME INTO HER CUSTODY AFTER ITS INITIAL OWNERS – HER PARENTS TAKASHI AND CHIAKI KARAKI – MOVED FROM THEIR RAYMOND HOME TO BRITISH COLUMBIA. SHE SAID, “… [AFTER THE] SIXTY YEARS OF FARMING, MY [PARENTS] DID IN RAYMOND… THEY SELL THE WHOLE THING AND MOVE! I’M LEFT BEHIND IN RAYMOND BY MYSELF, MARRIED… WHEN THEY MOVE TO QUESNEL, B.C [IN THE LATE 1950S], THEY HAD TO LEAVE BEHIND THEIR TRUNK AND IT HAD ALL THE TREASURES IN IT.” THIS VASE WAS VISIBLE THROUGHOUT MRS. NISHIYAMA’S CHILDHOOD. SHE EXPLAINED, “[THE VASE] WAS MORE AN EVERYDAY THING.” IT WAS PLACED BY THE DOOR OF THE FARM HOUSE. AND “[THE] ONLY THING THAT WAS IN THERE WAS [MY MOTHER’S] UMBRELLA.” OTHER TREASURES FOUND IN THE TRUNK WERE HER MOTHER’S HAIR ORNAMENTS AND COMB ALSO DONATED WITH THE VASE (P20160042002-004). THE TRUNK, ALONG WITH ITS CONTENTS, WERE BROUGHT TO SOUTHERN ALBERTA FROM JAPAN BY HER MOTHER, CHIAKI KARAKI (NEE KUMAGAI), FOLLOWING HER MARRIAGE TO TAKASHI KARAKI. MRS. NISHIYAMA EXPLAINED HER PARENTS’ MARRIAGE STORY: “… SHE CAME OVER AS A VERY YOUNG BRIDE… NOT QUITE EIGHTEEN… I OFTEN SAID TO MY MOTHER…, ‘HOW IN THE WORLD DID YOUR PARENTS EVER LET YOU GO TO CANADA? YOU DIDN’T KNOW THE LANGUAGE – IT’S A DIFFERENT COUNTRY.’ SHE DIDN’T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT MY DAD, EXCEPT THAT HE WAS A FARMER. HE’S SEVENTEEN YEARS OLDER THAN SHE WAS THEN. IT DOESN’T MAKE SENSE. SHE JUST SAID, ‘MY PARENTS SAID TO GO, SO I CAME’ … IT TOOK A LOT OF COURAGE…” MRS. NISHIYAMA WENT ON, “ALL JAPANESE MARRIAGES WERE DONE [BY] GO-BETWEENS. THERE WERE, I WOULD SAY, HARDLY ANY, IN FACT, I DON’T THINK THERE WAS ANY… FALLING-IN-LOVE KIND OF THING. THAT WAS JUST NOT EVEN THOUGHT ABOUT… MY DAD’S FOLKS WERE IN THE VILLAGE. THEY WERE FARMERS… THEY HAD A LARGE HOUSE AND THEY RAISED SILKWORMS. MY MOTHER’S FOLKS LIVED IN THE TOWN… SHE COMES FROM A VERY MODEST FAMILY, BUT HER DAD WAS A PAWN BROKER…” A FAMILY HISTORY WRITTEN BY MRS. NISHIYAMA AND HER BROTHER, SUSUMU KARAKI, IN THE BOOK TITLED "NISHIKI: NIKKEI TAPESTRY: A HISTORY OF SOUTHERN ALBERTA JAPANESE CANADIANS" (PUBLISHED 2001), ELABORATES ON THE FAMILY’S STORY. IT STATES THEIR FATHER, TAKASHI KARAKI, WAS BORN ON 1 JULY 1889 IN NAGANO PREFECTURE, JAPAN. THE HISTORY READS, “AFTER GRADUATING FROM HIGH SCHOOL IN 1907… HE LEFT A COMFORTABLE HOME… TO VENTURE OUT FOR A NEW LIFE IN AMERICA.” IT EXPLAINS HE LANDED IN VANCOUVER, AND WAS LURED BY A HIGH SALARY JOB IN SKEENA, BRITISH COLUMBIA. AFTER WORKING IN BRITISH COLUMBIA, THE HISTORY SAYS THAT “IN 1909, HE AND SEVERAL HUNDRED OTHER YOUNG JAPANESE MEN WERE RECRUITED BY AN AGENT OF THE KNIGHT SUGAR COMPANY TO WORK IN THE SUGAR BEET FIELDS IN RAYMOND, [ALBERTA] WITH PROMISES OF GOOD PAY AND EASY WORK...” THE MEN SOON LEARNED THAT THE WORK WAS MUCH MORE DIFFICULT AND THE PAY SIGNIFICANTLY LOWER THAN THEY HAD BEEN INITIALLY BEEN PROMISED, SO MANY RETURNED TO BRITISH COLUMBIA AFTER THEIR CONTRACT YEAR. KARAKI WAS OF THE GROUP THAT DECIDED TO STAY ON WITH THE COMPANY UNTIL ITS CLOSURE IN 1914. AFTER THAT, HE BEGAN A FARMING OPERATION WITH TWO OF THE FRIENDS HE MADE IN THE COMPANY – LEASING LAND FROM FIRST THE KNIGHT SUGAR COMPANY, THEN FROM A LOCAL NAMED ROLLO KINSEY, AND FINALLY FROM THE MCINTYRE RANCH IN MAGRATH. EVEN THOUGH THE PARTNERSHIP DISSOLVED AFTER THE FIRST THREE YEARS, KARAKI PERSISTED UNDER THE TRYING CONDITIONS, AND BY 1918 HE MADE THE DECISION TO MAKE ALBERTA HIS PERMANENT HOME AND TO BECOME A CANADIAN CITIZEN. HE PURCHASED A DRY LAND FARM IN RAYMOND AND FARMED THAT FOR FIVE YEARS BEFORE DECIDING HE WANTED TO GET MARRIED AND RAISE A FAMILY OF HIS OWN. HE RETURNED TO JAPAN IN 1923, WHERE HE MET THROUGH FAMILY AND FRIENDS, CHIAKI KUMAGAI, WHO WAS ALSO FROM THE NAGANO PREFECTURE. THE COUPLE MARRIED IN DECEMBER 1923, AND THE NEWLYWEDS RETURNED TO RAYMOND IN SPRING 1924. IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW, MRS. NISHIYAMA ADDED, “THERE WAS SOMEBODY ELSE. GO-BETWEENS HAD PICKED OUT SOMEONE ELSE FOR HIM, SO SOMEONE ELSE LOOKED AT HIM AND SAID ‘NO, THANK YOU.’ YOU KNOW, SOMETIMES IT WORKS, AND SOMETIMES IT DIDN’T. SO, THEN THEY HAD TO SCROUNGE A LITTLE BIT, AND MY MOTHER’S TOWN WAS NOT SO FAR FROM WHERE DAD’S FAMILY LIVED, SO THEY SAID, ‘WELL, WE’RE NOT THAT FAR APART. WHEN YOU COME HOME FOR A VISIT, YOU WILL BE ABLE TO VISIT.’” WHEN DESCRIBING THE HOME THE COUPLE INTIALLY SETTLED IN, MRS. NISHIYAMA EXPLAINED, “WE [WERE] 8 MILES SOUTH OF RAYMOND, IN WHAT WE CALL THE MAMMOTH SCHOOL DISTRICT… THERE WERE QUITE A FEW JAPANESE FAMILIES IN AND AROUND THAT MAMMOTH SCHOOL DISTRICT, SO WE WERE SORT OF THE MAJORITY.” MRS. NISHIYAMA SAID THAT HER MOTHER SPOKE OFTEN OF HER EARLY DAYS IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA. MRS. NISHIYAMA RECALLED, “IT WAS REALLY VERY LONELY [FOR MY MOTHER]. SHE’S YOUNG; THE CLOSEST NEIGHBOR WAS HALF A MILE AWAY… WHEN SHE GOT TO THE FARM, SHE SAID, ‘YOU SAID OUR NEIGHBORS ARE TAKAGUCHI’S. IS THAT HOUSE OVER THERE OUR NEIGHBORS?’ DAD SAID, ‘NO, THAT’S A CHICKEN COOP. THE NEIGHBOR’S HOUSE IS AWAY OVER THERE.’ FOR HER, THAT’S JUST APPALLING, COMING FROM A TOWN WHERE NEIGHBORS WERE CLOSE…DAD WOULD GET UP ONTO THE FIELD. NO ONE TO TALK TO EVEN. FORTUNATELY, SHE SAID, HER BROTHER-IN-LAW (DAD HAD A YOUNGER BROTHER HELPING HIM AT THAT TIME) – AND HE SAID, ‘GET ON THE BACK OF MY TRACTOR AND (IT WASN’T TRACTOR THEN – IT WAS HORSE AND BUGGY, BUT ANYWAY -) JUST COME AND RIDE THE FIELD WITH ME.’ AND, SHE DID JUST BECAUSE SHE COULDN’T STAND BEING BY HERSELF IN A LONELY OUTPOST, ON THE PRAIRIES, WITH NOTHING TO LOOK AT…” ACCORDING TO THE KARAKI FAMILY HISTORY IN THE NISHIKI BOOK, THE COUPLE RAISED A FAMILY OF SIX CHILDREN INCLUDING THE DONOR, REYKO NISHIYAMA. BY 1956, THEY SOLD THEIR FARM AND RELOCATED TO BRITISH COLUMBIA. TAKASHI PASSED AWAY IN THERE IN 1974 AT THE AGE OF 85 AND CHIAKI PASSED AWAY 14 YEARS LATER IN 1988. PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION, INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTIONS AND COPIES OF THE FAMILY HISTORIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160042001
Acquisition Date
2016-12
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1933
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
CLOTH, FELT, PAINT
Catalogue Number
P20160003002
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1933
Date Range To
2000
Materials
CLOTH, FELT, PAINT
No. Pieces
2
Height
29.5
Width
15
Description
A: HANDMADE DOLL. THE “ESKIMO” DOLL IS MADE WITH LIGHT BLUE, FELT-LIKE FABRIC WITH WHITE FABRIC ACCENTS. THE FACE IS MADE OUT OF A LIGHTER FABRIC THAT IS PEACH-COLOURED. THE FACIAL DETAILS ARE HAND PAINTED. THE DOLL HAS BLUE EYES, EYEBROWS, NOSTRILS, RED LIPS, AND ROSY CHEEKS. THE LIGHT BLUE FABRIC THAT MAKES UP THE MAJORITY OF THE DOLL’S BODY IS ENCOMPASSING THE DOLL’S FACE LIKE A HOOD. THE DOLL’S TORSO IS COVERED IN THE LIGHT BLUE FELT. TWO HEART-SHAPED ARMS, MADE OF THE SAME MATERIAL, ARE ATTACHED TO EITHER SIDE OF THE BODY. THE DOLLS UPPER LEG AND FEET ARE COVERED IN THE LIGHT BLUE FELT. FROM THE KNEES TO THE ANKLES, A LIGHTER, WHITE FABRIC IS COVERING THE LEGS. B: DOLL SKIRT. AROUND THE DOLL’S WAIST IS A DETACHABLE SKIRT MADE OF THE SAME FABRIC AND A WHITE WAISTBAND. POOR CONDITION. ALL FABRIC IS WELL-WORN AND THREADBARE IN MULTIPLE PLACES. THE DOLL’S RED STUFFING IS VISIBLE THROUGH PARTS OF THE FABRIC. THERE IS DISCOLORATION (YELLOWING) OVERALL. THE STUFFING IS NOT EVENLY DISTRIBUTED THROUGHOUT THE DOLL. THE SEAMS AT THE ARMS ARE FRAGILE. THE PAINT FOR THE DOLL’S FACE IS SEVERELY FADED.
Subjects
TOY
Historical Association
ETHNOGRAPHIC
LEISURE
History
THE KONKINS WERE A RUSSIAN-SPEAKING FAMILY FROM THE TOWN OF SHOULDICE, ALBERTA, NEAR CALGARY. THEY AND MANY OTHER RUSSIAN FAMILIES COMPOSED THAT TOWN’S DOUKHOBOR COLONY. IT WAS THERE WILLIAM KONKIN MARRIED ELIZABETH WISHLOW. IN 1928 THEIR DAUGHTER, ELSIE WAS BORN. THE FAMILY LATER MOVED TO A FARM IN VAUXHALL, ALBERTA. THE PRECEDING AND FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM A TWO-PART INTERVIEW WITH DONOR ELSIE MORRIS, WHICH WAS CONDUCTED BY COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN ON FEBRUARY 17, 2016. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION COMES FROM FAMILY HISTORIES AND TEXTS PROVIDED BY THE DONOR. A FULL HISTORY OF THE KONKIN FAMILY CAN BE FOUND WITH THE RECORD P20160003001. THIS DOLL BELONGED TO MORRIS AS A CHILD. SHE EXPLAINS, “THIS CAME FROM A GREAT AUNT WHO CAME TO VISIT US AND SHE ALWAYS BROUGHT GIFTS AND THIS ONE WAS MINE AND I LOVED THIS DOLL… I REMEMBER PLAYING WITH IT, IT WAS SOFT AND CUDDLY WHEN I HAD IT… MY DAUGHTER WENT THROUGH IT AND MY GRANDDAUGHTER AND THEN I PUT A STOP TO IT BEFORE THEY ATE IT UP OR DID SOMETHING… THEY LOVED IT AND THEY, YOU KNOW LITTLE KIDS, THEY’RE CARELESS SO I’LL KEEP IT...” IN A PHONE CALL WITH COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT ELISE PUNDYK ON OCTOBER 24, 2017, MORRIS SAID SHE RECIEVED THE DOLL FROM HER GREAT AUNT WHO HAD BROUGHT IT FROM VISITING BRITISH COLUMBIA. MORRIS PLAYED WITH THE DOLL AS A CHILD, AS DID MORRIS' CHILDREN. THE DOLL WAS LOVED BY MULTIPLE GENERATIONS IN MORRIS' FAMILY AS HER GRANDCHILDREN AND GREAT GRANDCHILDREN WOULD ALSO PLAY WITH THE DOLL WHEN THEY CAME TO VISIT. PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, OBITUARIES, PHOTOGRAPHS, AND FAMILY HISTORIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160003002
Acquisition Date
2016-02
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
FLAIL PADDLE
Date Range From
1920
Date Range To
1990
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD
Catalogue Number
P20160003001
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
FLAIL PADDLE
Date Range From
1920
Date Range To
1990
Materials
WOOD
No. Pieces
1
Height
4
Length
41
Width
12
Description
WOODEN FLAIL. ONE END HAS A PADDLE WITH A WIDTH THAT TAPERS FROM 12 CM AT THE TOP TO 10 CM AT THE BASE. THE PADDLE IS WELL WORN IN THE CENTER WITH A HEIGHT OF 4 CM AT THE ENDS AND 2 CM IN THE CENTER. HANDLE IS ATTACHED TO THE PADDLE AND IS 16 CM LONG WITH A CIRCULAR SHAPE AT THE END OF THE HANDLE. ENGRAVED ON THE CIRCLE THE INITIALS OF DONOR’S MATERNAL GRANDMOTHER, ELIZABETH EVANAVNA WISHLOW, “ . . .” GOOD CONDITION. THERE IS SLIGHT SPLITTING OF THE WOOD ON THE PADDLE AND AROUND THE JOINT BETWEEN THE HANDLE AND THE PADDLE. OVERALL WEAR FROM USE.
Subjects
AGRICULTURAL T&E
Historical Association
AGRICULTURE
ETHNOGRAPHIC
History
THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM A TWO-PART INTERVIEW WITH DONOR ELSIE MORRIS, WHICH WAS CONDUCTED BY COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN ON FEBRUARY 17, 2016. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION COMES FROM FAMILY HISTORIES AND TEXTS PROVIDED BY THE DONOR. THIS WOODEN DOUKHOBOR TOOL IS CALLED A “FLAIL.” A NOTE WRITTEN BY ELSIE MORRIS THAT WAS ATTACHED TO THE FLAIL AT THE TIME OF DONATION EXPLAINS, “FLAIL USED FOR BEATING OUT SEEDS. BELONGED TO ELIZABETH EVANAVNA WISHLOW, THEN HANDED TO HER DAUGHTER ELIZABETH PETROVNA KONKIN WHO PASSED IT ON TO HER DAUGHTER ELIZABETH W. MORRIS.” ALTERNATELY, IN THE INTERVIEW, MORRIS REMEMBERED HER GRANDMOTHER’S, “… NAME WAS JUSOULNA AND THE MIDDLE INITIAL IS THE DAUGHTER OF YVONNE. YVONNE WAS HER FATHER’S NAME AND WISHLOW WAS HER LAST NAME.” THE FLAIL AND THE BLANKET, ALSO DONATED BY MORRIS, WERE USED TOGETHER AT HARVEST TIME TO EXTRACT AND COLLECT SEEDS FROM GARDEN CROPS. ELSIE RECALLED THAT ON WINDY DAYS, “WE WOULD PICK DRIED PEAS OR BEANS, OR WHATEVER, AND WE WOULD [LAY THEM OUT ON THE BLANKET], BEAT AWAY AND THEN HOLD [THE BLANKET] UP, AND THE BREEZE WOULD BLOW THE HULLS OFF AND THE SEEDS WOULD GO STRAIGHT DOWN.” THE FLAIL CONTINUED TO BE USED BY ELIZABETH “RIGHT UP TO THE END,” POSSIBLY INTO THE 1990S, AND THEREAFTER BY MORRIS. WHEN ASKED WHY SHE STOPPED USING IT HERSELF, MORRIS SAID, “I DON’T GARDEN ANYMORE. FURTHERMORE, PEAS ARE SO INEXPENSIVE THAT YOU DON’T WANT TO GO TO ALL THAT WORK... I DON’T KNOW HOW MANY PEOPLE HARVEST THEIR SEEDS. I THINK WE JUST GO AND BUY THEM IN PACKETS NOW.” THE KONKINS WERE A RUSSIAN-SPEAKING FAMILY FROM THE TOWN OF SHOULDICE, ALBERTA, NEAR CALGARY. THEY AND MANY OTHER RUSSIAN FAMILIES COMPOSED THAT TOWN’S DOUKHOBOR COLONY. DOUKHOBOURS CAME TO CANADA IN FINAL YEARS OF THE 19TH CENTURY TO ESCAPE RELIGIOUS PERSECUTION IN RUSSIA. ELIZABETH KONKIN (NEE WISHLOW) WAS BORN IN CANORA, SK ON JANUARY 22, 1907 TO HER PARENTS, PETER AND ELIZABETH WISHLOW. AT THE AGE OF 6 SHE MOVED WITH HER FAMILY TO A DOUKHOBOR SETTLEMENT AT BRILLIANT, BC, AND THEY LATER MOVED TO THE DOUKHOBOR SETTLEMENT AT SHOULDICE. IT WAS HERE THAT SHE MET AND MARRIED WILLIAM KONKIN. THEIR DAUGHTER, ELSIE MORRIS (NÉE KONKIN), WAS BORN IN SHOULDICE IN 1928. INITIALLY, WILLIAM TRIED TO SUPPORT HIS FAMILY BY GROWING AND PEDDLING VEGETABLES. WHEN THE FAMILY RECOGNIZED THAT GARDENING WOULD NOT PROVIDE THEM WITH THE INCOME THEY NEEDED, WILLIAM VENTURED OUT TO FARM A QUARTER SECTION OF IRRIGATED LAND 120 KM (75 MILES) AWAY IN VAUXHALL. IN 1941, AFTER THREE YEARS OF FARMING REMOTELY, HE AND ELIZABETH DECIDED TO LEAVE THE ALBERTA COLONY AND RELOCATE TO VAUXHALL. MORRIS WAS 12 YEARS OLD AT THE TIME. MORRIS STATED: “… [T]HEY LEFT THE COLONY BECAUSE THERE WERE THINGS GOING ON THAT THEY DID NOT LIKE SO THEY WANTED TO FARM ON THEIR OWN. SO NOW NOBODY HAD MONEY, SO VAUXHALL HAD LAND, YOU KNOW, THAT THEY WANTED TO HAVE THE PEOPLE AND THEY DIDN’T HAVE TO PUT ANY DOWN DEPOSIT THEY JUST WERE GIVEN THE LAND AND THEY HAD TO SIGN A PAPER SAYING THEY WOULD GIVE THEM ONE FOURTH OF THE CROP EVERY YEAR. THAT WAS HOW MY DAD GOT PAID BUT WHAT MY DAD DIDN’T KNOW WAS THAT THE MONEY THAT WENT IN THERE WAS ACTUALLY PAYING OFF THE FARM SO HE WENT TO SEE MR., WHAT WAS HIS LAST NAME, HE WAS THE PERSON IN CHARGE. ANYWAY HE SAID TO HIM “HOW LONG WILL IT BE BEFORE I CAN PAY OFF THIS FARM” AND HE SAYS “YOU’VE BEEN PAYING IT RIGHT ALONG YOU OWE ABOUT TWO HUNDRED AND A FEW DOLLARS”. WELL THAT WAS A REAL SURPRISE FOR THEM SO THEY GAVE THEM THE TWO HUNDRED AND WHATEVER IT WAS THAT HE OWED AND HE BECAME THE OWNER OF THE FARM." MORRIS WENT ON, ”THE DOUKHOBORS ARE AGRARIAN, THEY LIKE TO GROW THINGS THAT’S THEIR CULTURE OF OCCUPATION AND SO THE ONES WHO LIKED FRUIT MOVED TO B.C. LIKE MY UNCLE DID AND MY DAD LIKED FARMING SO HE MOVED TO VAUXHALL AND THERE WERE LET’S SEE, I THINK THERE WERE FOUR OTHER FAMILIES THAT MOVED TO VAUXHALL AND THREE OF THE MEN GOT TOGETHER AND DECIDED THEY WERE GOING TO GET THEIR TOOLS TOGETHER LIKE A TRACTOR AND MACHINERY THEY NEEDED AND THEN THEY WOULD TAKE TURNS…” THE KONKINS RETIRED TO LETHBRIDGE FROM VAUXHALL IN 1968. MORRIS, BY THEN A SCHOOL TEACHER, RELOCATED TO LETHBRIDGE WITH HER OWN FAMILY. WILLIAM KONKIN PASSED AWAY IN LETHBRIDGE ON MARCH 3, 1977 AT THE AGE OF 72 AND 23 YEARS LATER, ON APRIL 8, 2000, ELIZABETH KONKIN PASSED AWAY IN LETHBRIDGE. A NUMBER OF ARTIFACTS PREVIOUSLY BELONGING TO THE FAMILY EXIST IN THE GALT COLLECTION. THE KONKINS RETIRED TO LETHBRIDGE FROM VAUXHALL IN 1968. MORRIS, BY THEN A SCHOOL TEACHER, RELOCATED TO LETHBRIDGE WITH HER OWN FAMILY. WILLIAM KONKIN PASSED AWAY IN LETHBRIDGE ON MARCH 3, 1977 AT THE AGE OF 72 AND 23 YEARS LATER, ON APRIL 8, 2000, ELIZABETH KONKIN PASSED AWAY IN LETHBRIDGE. A NUMBER OF ARTIFACTS PREVIOUSLY BELONGING TO THE FAMILY EXIST IN THE GALT COLLECTION. PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, OBITUARIES, PHOTOGRAPHS, AND FAMILY HISTORIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160003001
Acquisition Date
2016-02
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
STREET SIGN; "3RD AVENUE S."
Date Range From
1910
Date Range To
1952
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
PORCELIN, ENAMEL, PAINT
Catalogue Number
P20160039002
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
STREET SIGN; "3RD AVENUE S."
Date Range From
1910
Date Range To
1952
Materials
PORCELIN, ENAMEL, PAINT
No. Pieces
1
Height
11.5
Length
53.5
Description
BLUE SIGN WITH ENAMEL BASE COVERED IN PORCELAIN THAT HAS BEEN BAKED TO THE SURFACE. "3RD AVENUE S. PAINTED IN WHITE BLOCK LETTERS OVER BLUE. 3 HOLES PUNCHED AT EACH THE TOP AND BOTTOM EDGES. EACH HOLE HAS A METAL RIVET. THE SIGN IS CURVED OUTWARDS TO THE FACE. THE BACK SIDE OF SIGN IS UNFINISHED AND LIGHT GREY IN COLOUR WITH THE BLUE GLAZE AROUND THE EDGES WHERE IT HAS RUN OVER FROM THE FRONT SIDE. CONDITION: THERE ARE IMPERFECTIONS IN OVERALL GLAZE ON THE SIGN AND A SIGNIFICANT LOSS OF THAT GLAZE AROUND THE EDGES.SLIGHT CHIPPING ALONG TOP. SURFACE SLIGHTLY SCUFFED OVERALL. GENERAL WEAR AROUND RIVETS.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
TRANSPORTATION
History
IN 2016, THE GALT MUSEUM APPROVED A PURCHASE OF TWO FORMER LETHBRIDGE STREET SIGNS – ONE FROM 5TH STREET SOUTH AND THE OTHER FROM 3RD AVENUE SOUTH. THEY WERE COLLECTED FROM AN ESTATE DISPERSAL AGENT, BRENT CUMMINS, WHO BOUGHT AND DISPERSED THE ESTATE OF THE LATE MR. MICHEAL VARZARI. AS STATED IN HIS OBITUARY, “[VAZARI] WAS A GREAT COLLECTOR OF RELICS FROM DAYS GONE BY…” THE ESTIMATED DATE OF ORIGIN FOR THE SIGNS IS 1910-11. AT THE TIME OF DONATION, THERE ARE IDENTICAL VERSIONS OF THESE SIGNS STILL INSTALLED ON THE CORNERS OF THE RESIDENCES AT 1505 - 4TH AVENUE SOUTH AND 920 – 9TH AVENUE SOUTH. THROUGH LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARCHIVAL RESEARCH IT WAS DETERMINED THAT THE ISSUE OF LETHBRIDGE’S USE OF STREET NAMES OVER STREET NUMBERS WAS RAISED AS EARLY AS 1907. STREETS ASSIGNED WITH NUMBERS OPPOSED TO NAMES WERE SEEN TO BE AN INDICATOR OF A MORE MODERN CITY. AN EDITORIAL IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD PUBLISHED ON 11 APRIL 1908 SHEDS LIGHT INTO THE STREET SIGN SENTIMENTS OF THE EARLY DAYS OF THE CITY: “TWO OR THREE YEARS AGO THEY ORDERED STREET SIGNS. THEY CAME AND REPOSED PEACEFULLY IN THE DUSTY CORNERS OF THE FIRE HALL UNTIL IT DAWNED UPON THE MIND OF [AN] ALDERMAN… THAT IT WAS TIME THAT THE CITY STARTED USING THEM. ‘TWAS ORDERED THIS, AND NOW THEY ARE UP. NOW THE ALDERMEN ARE FEELING THE HUNCH THAT SOME PEOPLE HAVE HAD FOR A LONG TIME THAT THE STREETS SHOULD BE NUMBERED AND DIVIDED SYSTEMATICALLY INTO STREETS AND AVENUES… BUT IT WOULD BE A SHAME TO WASTE THE PRICE OF THOSE STREET SIGNS. SO I SUPPOSE THAT THE PRESENT AWKWARD SYSTEM WILL HOLD GOOD UNTIL THE SIGNS WEAR OUT... THE CHANGE SHOULD BE MADE BEFORE THE CITY PUTS IN ITS PERMANENT SIDEWALKS AND THEN THE NAMES COULD BE PUT IN THE CEMENT IN NICE COLORED CEMENT ALMOST AS PRETTY AS THE BEAUTIFUL BLUE AND WHITE SIGNS THAT ARE STUCK UP ALL OVER THE CITY WHERE THERE IS A CORNER BUILDING TO STICK THEM ON.” ON 18 JULY 1908, THE HERALD PUBLISHED AN ARTICLE THAT STATED, “THE WALKS ARE GOING AND ON THEM ARE BEING PLACED IN LARGE LETTERS THE NAMES OF THE STREETS NOT THE NUMBERS… NINETEEN OUT OF EVERY TWENTY PEOPLE IN THE CITY ARE IN FAVOR OF THE CHANGE [TO A NUMBER SYSTEM]… IF ANYONE IS NOT IN FAVOR OF IT LET HIM GO TO CALGARY AND SEE HOW EASY IT IS FOR HIM TO GO ANYWHERE HE WANTS WITHOUT POKING QUESTIONS AT EVERY ONE HE MEETS… IT’S A REGULAR SNAP.” THE DEBATE CONTINUED UNRESOLVED AND WAS REFERENCED AGAIN IN 1909 AS AN OBSTACLE TO THE CITY SECURING STREET MAIL DELIVERY. ON 8 FEBRUARY 1910, THE HERALD SAID: “… IS IT NOT ABOUT TIME THE CITY COUNCIL WERE ADOPTING THE METHOD IN HAVING THE STREETS AND AVENUES NUMBERED SYSTEMATICALLY? THE HERALD HAS ADVOCATED THIS CHANGE IN SEASON AND OUT OF SEASON ALMOST TO WEARINESS. SUPT. ROSS OF THE POSTAL SERVICE NOW ADVOCATES A MORE MODERN SYSTEM AND SAYS IT WOULD AID VERY MATERIALLY IN THE SUCCESSFUL WORKING OF THE SERVICE.” AND ON 4 OCTOBER 1910, IT IS PUBLISHED THAT “THE HERALD HAS SEEN ONE MORE OF THE THINGS IT HAS ADVOCATED BROUGHT TO PASS. THE STREETS AND AVENUES ARE NUMBERED.” BY THE LATE 40S, STREET SIGNS WERE IN THE NEWS ONCE MORE, SPECIFICALLY THE NEED FOR MORE OF THEM, AS THE CITY GRAPPLED WITH ITS EXPANDING URBAN FOOTPRINT. BACKGROUND INFORMATION ABOUT THE COLLECTOR COMES FROM HIS OBITUARY, WHICH STATES MICHAEL ARTHUR “COUTTSO” VARZARI WAS BORN IN LETHBRIDGE ON 17 NOVEMBER 1929 AND “WAS RAISED ‘DOWN NUMBER THREE.’” THE OBITUARY GOES ON SAYING, “HE ALWAYS ATTRIBUTED HIS STRONG AND SOLID WORK ETHIC AND HIS APPRECIATION FOR THE SIMPLE THINGS IN LIFE TO HIS UPBRINGING ‘DOWN NUMBER THREE’.” HE WORKED FROM THE GROUND UP IN THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE’S ELECTRIC DEPARTMENT, FIRST AS AN APPRENTICE, THEN AS A “FULL-FLEDGED ELECTRICIAN,” AND HE RETIRED AS SUPERINTENDENT OF CONSTRUCTION. VARZARI’S BROTHER WAS GEORGE VARZARI WHO WAS THE OWNER AND PRESIDENT OF NATIONAL SALVAGE, A BUSINESS HE STARTED AROUND 1951. PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION, INCLUDING IN-DEPTH LETHBRIDGE HERALD RESEARCH REGARDING THE CITY’S STREET SIGNS.
Catalogue Number
P20160039002
Acquisition Date
2016-11
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
STREET SIGN; "5TH STREET S."
Date Range From
1910
Date Range To
1952
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
ENAMEL, PORCELAIN, PAINT
Catalogue Number
P20160039001
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
STREET SIGN; "5TH STREET S."
Date Range From
1910
Date Range To
1952
Materials
ENAMEL, PORCELAIN, PAINT
No. Pieces
1
Height
11.5
Length
53.5
Description
BLUE SIGN WITH ENAMEL BASE COVERED IN PORCELAIN THAT HAS BEEN BAKED TO THE SURFACE. "5TH STREET S" PAINTED IN WHITE BLOCK LETTERS OVER BLUE. 3 HOLES PUNCHED AT EACH THE TOP AND BOTTOM EDGES. EACH HOLE HAS A METAL RIVET. THE SIGN IS CURVED OUTWARDS TO THE FACE. THE BACK SIDE OF SIGN IS UNFINISHED AND LIGHT GREY IN COLOUR WITH THE BLUE GLAZE AROUND THE EDGES WHERE IT HAS RUN OVER FROM THE FRONT SIDE. CONDITION: TOP CENTER RIVET IS MISSING. AROUND THAT CENTER HOLE THERE IS A LOSS OF THE PORCELAIN INTO THE "TR" OF "STREET". THERE ARE IMPERFECTIONS IN OVERALL GLAZE ON THE SIGN AND A SIGNIFICANT LOSS OF THAT GLAZE AROUND THE EDGES. WHITE PAINT ON TOP OF FINISHED PAINT ON THE UPPER RIGHT SECTION OF SIGN. SLIGHT CHIPPING ALONG TOP. GENERAL WEAR AROUND RIVETS. BACK SIDE HAS LOSS OF THE PORCELAIN OVERALL AND A DUST/ROUGH MATERIAL STUCK TO THE SURFACE.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
TRANSPORTATION
History
IN 2016, THE GALT MUSEUM APPROVED A PURCHASE OF TWO FORMER LETHBRIDGE STREET SIGNS – ONE FROM 5TH STREET SOUTH AND THE OTHER FROM 3RD AVENUE SOUTH. THEY WERE COLLECTED FROM AN ESTATE DISPERSAL AGENT, BRENT CUMMINS, WHO BOUGHT AND DISPERSED THE ESTATE OF THE LATE MR. MICHEAL VARZARI. AS STATED IN HIS OBITUARY, “[VAZARI] WAS A GREAT COLLECTOR OF RELICS FROM DAYS GONE BY…” THE ESTIMATED DATE OF ORIGIN FOR THE SIGNS IS 1910-11. AT THE TIME OF DONATION, THERE ARE IDENTICAL VERSIONS OF THESE SIGNS STILL INSTALLED ON THE CORNERS OF THE RESIDENCES AT 1505 - 4TH AVENUE SOUTH AND 920 – 9TH AVENUE SOUTH. THROUGH LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARCHIVAL RESEARCH IT WAS DETERMINED THAT THE ISSUE OF LETHBRIDGE’S USE OF STREET NAMES OVER STREET NUMBERS WAS RAISED AS EARLY AS 1907. STREETS ASSIGNED WITH NUMBERS OPPOSED TO NAMES WERE SEEN TO BE AN INDICATOR OF A MORE MODERN CITY. AN EDITORIAL IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD PUBLISHED ON 11 APRIL 1908 SHEDS LIGHT INTO THE STREET SIGN SENTIMENTS OF THE EARLY DAYS OF THE CITY: “TWO OR THREE YEARS AGO THEY ORDERED STREET SIGNS. THEY CAME AND REPOSED PEACEFULLY IN THE DUSTY CORNERS OF THE FIRE HALL UNTIL IT DAWNED UPON THE MIND OF [AN] ALDERMAN… THAT IT WAS TIME THAT THE CITY STARTED USING THEM. ‘TWAS ORDERED THIS, AND NOW THEY ARE UP. NOW THE ALDERMEN ARE FEELING THE HUNCH THAT SOME PEOPLE HAVE HAD FOR A LONG TIME THAT THE STREETS SHOULD BE NUMBERED AND DIVIDED SYSTEMATICALLY INTO STREETS AND AVENUES… BUT IT WOULD BE A SHAME TO WASTE THE PRICE OF THOSE STREET SIGNS. SO I SUPPOSE THAT THE PRESENT AWKWARD SYSTEM WILL HOLD GOOD UNTIL THE SIGNS WEAR OUT... THE CHANGE SHOULD BE MADE BEFORE THE CITY PUTS IN ITS PERMANENT SIDEWALKS AND THEN THE NAMES COULD BE PUT IN THE CEMENT IN NICE COLORED CEMENT ALMOST AS PRETTY AS THE BEAUTIFUL BLUE AND WHITE SIGNS THAT ARE STUCK UP ALL OVER THE CITY WHERE THERE IS A CORNER BUILDING TO STICK THEM ON.” ON 18 JULY 1908, THE HERALD PUBLISHED AN ARTICLE THAT STATED, “THE WALKS ARE GOING AND ON THEM ARE BEING PLACED IN LARGE LETTERS THE NAMES OF THE STREETS NOT THE NUMBERS… NINETEEN OUT OF EVERY TWENTY PEOPLE IN THE CITY ARE IN FAVOR OF THE CHANGE [TO A NUMBER SYSTEM]… IF ANYONE IS NOT IN FAVOR OF IT LET HIM GO TO CALGARY AND SEE HOW EASY IT IS FOR HIM TO GO ANYWHERE HE WANTS WITHOUT POKING QUESTIONS AT EVERY ONE HE MEETS… IT’S A REGULAR SNAP.” THE DEBATE CONTINUED UNRESOLVED AND WAS REFERENCED AGAIN IN 1909 AS AN OBSTACLE TO THE CITY SECURING STREET MAIL DELIVERY. ON 8 FEBRUARY 1910, THE HERALD SAID: “… IS IT NOT ABOUT TIME THE CITY COUNCIL WERE ADOPTING THE METHOD IN HAVING THE STREETS AND AVENUES NUMBERED SYSTEMATICALLY? THE HERALD HAS ADVOCATED THIS CHANGE IN SEASON AND OUT OF SEASON ALMOST TO WEARINESS. SUPT. ROSS OF THE POSTAL SERVICE NOW ADVOCATES A MORE MODERN SYSTEM AND SAYS IT WOULD AID VERY MATERIALLY IN THE SUCCESSFUL WORKING OF THE SERVICE.” AND ON 4 OCTOBER 1910, IT IS PUBLISHED THAT “THE HERALD HAS SEEN ONE MORE OF THE THINGS IT HAS ADVOCATED BROUGHT TO PASS. THE STREETS AND AVENUES ARE NUMBERED.” BY THE LATE 40S, STREET SIGNS WERE IN THE NEWS ONCE MORE, SPECIFICALLY THE NEED FOR MORE OF THEM, AS THE CITY GRAPPLED WITH ITS EXPANDING URBAN FOOTPRINT. BACKGROUND INFORMATION ABOUT THE COLLECTOR COMES FROM HIS OBITUARY, WHICH STATES MICHAEL ARTHUR “COUTTSO” VARZARI WAS BORN IN LETHBRIDGE ON 17 NOVEMBER 1929 AND “WAS RAISED ‘DOWN NUMBER THREE.’” THE OBITUARY GOES ON SAYING, “HE ALWAYS ATTRIBUTED HIS STRONG AND SOLID WORK ETHIC AND HIS APPRECIATION FOR THE SIMPLE THINGS IN LIFE TO HIS UPBRINGING ‘DOWN NUMBER THREE’.” HE WORKED FROM THE GROUND UP IN THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE’S ELECTRIC DEPARTMENT, FIRST AS AN APPRENTICE, THEN AS A “FULL-FLEDGED ELECTRICIAN,” AND HE RETIRED AS SUPERINTENDENT OF CONSTRUCTION. VARZARI’S BROTHER WAS GEORGE VARZARI WHO WAS THE OWNER AND PRESIDENT OF NATIONAL SALVAGE, A BUSINESS HE STARTED AROUND 1951. PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION, INCLUDING IN-DEPTH LETHBRIDGE HERALD RESEARCH REGARDING THE CITY’S STREET SIGNS.
Catalogue Number
P20160039001
Acquisition Date
2016-11
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
BATHROOM SIGN
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1992
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
BAKELITE, PAPER
Catalogue Number
P20150022001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
BATHROOM SIGN
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1992
Materials
BAKELITE, PAPER
No. Pieces
1
Length
25.4
Width
18
Description
WHITE BAKELITE WOMEN'S BATHROOM SIGN. WHITE BACKGROUND, BLACK BORDER 1.7CM FROM EDGE OF SIGN. PINK FIGURE OF A WOMAN, IN A DRESS, IN CENTRE OF SIGN. FIGURE IS OUTLINED IN BLACK. REVERSE OF SIGN IS A NEON-GREEN PIECE OF PAPER THAT READS "WASHROOM CLOSED". TWO SCREW HOLES, CENTRE TOP AND CENTRE BOTTOM, TO AFFIX SIGN TO DOOR. OVERALL IN VERY GOOD CONDITION. SLIGHT WATER STAINING ON PAPER AT BOTTOM. SLIGHT DISCOLOURATION AROUND EDGES OF PAPER. BAKELITE SURFACE IN VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
PERSONAL CARE
History
THIS BATHROOM SIGN WAS SALVAGED FROM THE SOUTHERN ALBERTA ART GALLERY (SAAG – HOUSED IN THE CARNEIGE LIBRARY BUILDING) IN 1992 WHEN THE BUILDING UNDERWENT RENOVATIONS FOR THE REMOVAL OF ASBESTOS. IN AN INTERVIEW WITH ITS DONOR ANINE VONKEMAN, CONDUCTED BY KEVIN MACLEAN IN JUNE 2015, SHE CLAIMED THAT THE SIGN WAS “IN THE HALLWAY FROM THE MAIN ENTRANCE DOWN TOWARDS WHERE THE CHILDREN’S LIBRARY WAS. AND MY OFFICE WAS RIGHT ACROSS THE HALL FROM IT. AND SO THIS HAD BEEN PUT IN THE GARBAGE AONG WITH THE ‘MENS’ SIGN. AND THE ‘MENS’ SIGN HAD BROKEN, SO I DIDN’T TAKE IT.” SHE CONTINUED SAYING THAT “I REALLY LIKED THIS ‘CAUSE IT’S AN ARTIFACT FROM, I DON’T KNOW, 40S, 50S – BAKELITE, WITH AN ICON OF A FEMALE ON IT. SO ANYWAY, I TOOK IT AND IT SAT IN MY OFFICE AND THEN WHEN I WAS DONE AT SAAG, I WAS ABLE TO TAKE IT WITH ME AND I PUT IT ON THE BATHROOM DOOR IN MY HOUSE, WHICH WAS BUILT IN 1945.” ANINE EXPLAINED HER REASONING FOR SALVAGING THE SIGN BY SAYING “I DON’T KNOW, LIKE RETRO THINGS TO ME HAVE VALUE AND VISUAL INTEREST. SO I THINK THAT IS WHY AND ALSO IT’S PART OF THIS BUILDING; IT’S LIVED IN THIS BUILDING FOR I DON’T KNOW HOW MANY YEARS, INDICATING THIS IS WHERE FEMALES GO TO THE WASHROOM AND HOW MANY PEOPLE HAVE OPENED THAT DOOR, YOU KNOW, AND USED THAT BATHROOM. SO, I MEAN IT’S MORE THAN JUST A SIGN, IT’S PART OF THAT BUILDING.” ANINE WOULD HAVE LIKED TO KEEP THE SIGN WITH HER WHEN SHE MOVED TO BRITISH COLUMBIA, BUT DONATED IT TO THE MUSEUM BECAUSE OF ITS CONNECTION TO LETHBRIDGE. SHE EXPLAINED, SAYING “IT’S A BIT OF A STRUGGLE [TO GIVE THE SIGN UP], BUT IT’S ABOUT A BUILDING, A HISTORIC BUILDING IN LETHBRIDGE, AND I’M LEAVING LETHBRIDGE AND I THINK IT SHOULD STAY HERE.” ANINE ATTENDED THE UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE (U OF L) IN 1986 AND STARTED WORKING AT THE SAAG IN 1992, TWO WEEKS AFTER GRADUATING FROM THE U OF L. SHE BEGAN AS THE PUBLIC PROGRAMS COORDINATOR AND “WAS DOING MEDIA STUFF, VOLUNTEER COORDINATION, SPECIAL EVENTS COORDINATION AND STARTED THE ART AUCTION.” BY 2004, SHE WAS WORKING AT THE GALT AS MARKETING/COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER. SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTS AND SEE P20150005000 FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ON THE VONKEMAN FAMILY.
Catalogue Number
P20150022001
Acquisition Date
2015-06
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1950
Date Range To
2002
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, METAL
Catalogue Number
P20160008001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1950
Date Range To
2002
Materials
WOOD, METAL
No. Pieces
1
Height
38.3
Length
121.5
Width
4.6
Description
SIGN. WOOD AND METAL. BORDER OF SIGN IS PAINTED MEDIUM/DARK BROWN. MAIN PORTION OF SIGN IS GOLDEN ROD YELLOW, WITH BLACK LETTERING. TEXT READS: “A SAFE WORKER IS A VALUABLE EMPLOYEE”. TWO METAL BRACKETS FOR HANGING ATTACH TO BACK OF SIGN. EACH BRACKET ATTACHES TO THE BACK WITH TWO FLAT HEADED BOLTS, WHICH ARE VISIBLE ON THE YELLOW SIDE OF THE SIGN. NUTS HOLD THE BOLTS ON THE BACK. HANDWRITTEN IN BLUE INK ON BOTTOM LEFT SIDE “317-9353”. REVERSE OF SIGN IS UNFINISHED DARK, ROUGH PINE BORDER. OVERALL IN GOOD TO VERY GOOD CONDITION. SIGN IS VERY DIRTY. SOME OF BROWN PAINT AROUND BORDER HAS SCRATCHED OFF, REVEALING BLACK PAINT UNDERNEATH.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
INDUSTRY
TRANSPORTATION
History
THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM A SERIES OF LETHBRIDGE HERALD NEWSPAPER ARTICLES AND AN INTERVIEW WITH DONOR JOHN SUMPTION CONDUCTED BY GALT MUSEUM TECH KEVIN MACLEAN ON 22 MARCH 2016: JOHN STARTED WORKING AT THE FROG SHOP IN KIPP, AB IN 1992. HE DESCRIBED HOW IT WAS THAT HE CAME TO WORK THERE: “I WAS WORKING AS A SEASONAL MACHINE OPERATOR ON THE PACIFIC REGION, WHICH MEANT THAT IN THE SPRINGTIME EVERY YEAR, I GENERALLY START OUT SOMEWHERE NEAR THE FRASER CANYON AND OVER THE COURSE OF THE YEAR I’D WORK ANYWHERE FROM THERE TO SWIFT CURRENT AND FROM THE U.S. BORDER AS FAR NORTH AS [THE CPR HAD TRACKS, TO ROUGHLY ST. PAUL, AB]. THE LENGTH OF MY YEAR’S EMPLOYMENT WOULD BE DETERMINED IN MY SENIORITY AND THE AMOUNT OF WORK THAT WAS AVAILABLE. I WAS REAL TIRED OF BEING ON THE ROAD. THE YEAR PREVIOUSLY, THERE’D BEEN A TEMPORARY JOB – A COUPLE OF TEMPORARY JOBS THAT WERE BULLETINED AT THE FROG SHOP IN THE FALL, PROCESSING SOME SCRAP MATERIAL THAT WAS THERE. A FRIEND AND MINE BID THOSE JOBS AND GOT THEM. THAT MEANT WE WERE ON THE SHOP’S SENIORITY LIST AND WHEN THE OPPORTUNITY AROSE, THERE WAS A POSITION THERE BULLETINED – ACTUALLY A COUPLE OF POSITIONS BULLETINED THERE – MY FRIEND AND I BID THEM TO BE ABLE TO BE AT HOME AND HAVE A YEAR ROUND JOB. MIGHT NOT HAVE BEEN THE BEST IDEA EVER, BUT IT WAS GOOD TO BE HOME AND SLEEP IN MY OWN BED AT NIGHT AND WAKE UP AND SEE MY HORSES IN THE MORNING.” JOHN REMOVED THIS SIGN FROM HIS WORKPLACE WHEN THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY ELECTED TO CLOSE THE FROG SHOP IN KIPP IN THE SPRING OF 2002. JOHN’S SUPERVISOR, GUY MITCHELL, KNEW THAT HE HAD AN INTEREST IN HISTORY AND OLD THINGS AND ALLOWED JOHN TO TAKE SOME ITEMS HOME. JOHN RECOUNTED THE EXPERIENCE: “WHEN I ASKED [GUY] WHAT WAS TO BECOME OF THE [SAFE WORKER] SIGN HE SAID, ‘YOU CAN HAVE IT, JOHN. THEY’LL JUST THROW IT AWAY. IT’S JUST JUNK AS FAR AS ANYONE ELSE CONCERNED.’ I ASKED HIM, ‘GEE, COULD I HAVE THE LITTLE PLAQUE OFF THE DOOR?’ AND HE SAID, ‘OF COURSE, YEAH, TAKE IT. IT’S GOING TO GET – SOMEONE ELSE WILL KNOCK IT OFF AND IT’LL GET BROKEN. SO MUCH THE BETTER. YOU WANNA SEE IT HANG IN THERE, GO FOR IT. IT’S ALL YOURS.’” JOHN EXPLAINED THAT THIS SIGN HUNG ON THE WALL: “IT WAS HANGING ON THE WALL WELL ABOVE THE DOORWAY, AND [I] PUT A LADDER UP AND TOOK THE TWO BIG SCREWS OUT OF THE WALL THAT HELD IT IN PLACE, AND TOOK THE TWO LITTLE TINY SCREWS OUT OF THE DOORWAY THAT HELD THE FROG SHOP SIGN IN PLACE. THAT WAS ONE OF THE LAST DAY – I THINK IT MIGHT HAVE BEEN EVEN THE LAST DAY THAT WE WERE THERE – AS I RECALL THAT’S THE CASE.” JOHN EXPLAINED WHY HE WAS SO INTERESTED IN THIS PARTICULAR SIGN: “BUT THE SIGN WAS SIGNIFICANT TO ME IN IT OF ITSELF GIVEN THAT WE SOMETIMES JOKED THAT THAT WAS THE ENTIRETY, FOR A LONG TIME, OF THE RAILWAY’S SAFETY PROGRAM – WAS A SIGN LIKE THIS. ON ALL THE MIRRORS IN ALL OF THE EMPLOYEES’ BATHROOMS, GOING BACK AT LEAST WHEN I FIRST WORKED FOR THE RAILWAY THE SUMMER OUT OF THE UNIVERSITY IN 1975, THE MIRRORS WERE ALL PAINTED WITH A SIGN ABOVE - AT THE TOP AND THE BOTTOM OF THE MIRROR THAT SAID, “YOU’RE LOOKING AT THE MAN MOST RESPONSIBLE YOUR SAFETY.” THOSE WERE QUITE OFTEN CHANGED BY EMPLOYEES TO SAY SOMETHING QUITE DIFFERENT, BUT YEAH, IT WAS SOMETHING OF A JOKE.” HE WENT ON FURTHER, SAYING THAT IN 1978 HE AND A FRIEND LOOKED INTO THE OLD ROUNDHOUSE AT THE RAIL YARD IN LETHBRIDGE AND “WAS MORTIFIED” TO SEE THE WORKING CONDITIONS: “WE PULLED UP BEHIND THE OLD ROUNDHOUSE IN THE OLD YARD HERE IN LETHBRIDGE, AND LOOKED IN THE DOORWAY. THAT’S AS MUCH AS I KNOW OF THE OLD ROUNDHOUSE, AND I WAS MORTIFIED TO SEE MEN WORKING IN A POORLY VENTILATED, ANCIENT, REALLY FALLING APART BUILDING. MORE PIGEONS THAN PEOPLE INSIDE, IN A CLOUD OF DUST AND WELDING SMOKE THAT YOU COULD NOT SEE THROUGH. THAT’S WHERE THIS SIGN CAME FROM.” IN COMPARISON, THE WORKING CONDITIONS IN THE KIPP FROG SHOP WERE MUCH BETTER, BUT JOHN EXPLAINS THAT THERE WERE STILL PROBLEMS: “WHEN I WENT TO WORK AT THE FROG SHOP IN KIPP IN EARLY ’92, A GREAT NUMBER OF PEOPLE WORKING THERE, AND THEN THERE WERE ONLY 12 EMPLOYEES THERE AND A SUPERVISOR, HAD WORKED THERE. CONSEQUENTLY, THAT FACILITY WAS LIGHT YEARS BEYOND WHERE THEY WORKED PREVIOUSLY, AND THEY’RE PRETTY COMFORTABLE IN THEIR ENVIRONMENT. THEY FELT THAT, YOU KNOW, THEY WERE DOING PRETTY WELL. THERE WERE A NUMBER OF US OVER THE COURSE OF THE NEXT COUPLE OF YEARS THAT CAME TO WORK THERE THAT HAD PREVIOUSLY WORKED ON THE SEASONAL WORK CREWS, AS MACHINE OPERATORS, WERE HAPPY TO HAVE A FULL TIME, YEAR-ROUND JOB. IT WASN’T A VERY PLEASANT PLACE TO WORK. IT WAS VERY DUSTY, VERY NOISY, AND DESPITE A RELATIVELY DECENT WELDING FUME VENTILATION SYSTEM, IT WASN’T A GOOD PLACE TO BE. AND WE LOOKED AT THE SIGN EVERY DAY AS YOU WALKED OUT. IN THE COURSE OF READING THE MSDS ON THE WELDING WIRE AND THE WELDING ROD WE USED, AFTER I WORKED THERE FOR MAYBE A YEAR OR SO – MAYBE A COUPLE YEARS – I SAW THAT THE WELDING WIRE MANUFACTURER – WELL THE WELDING ROD MANUFACTURER – SUGGESTED THAT PEOPLE HAVE AT LEAST ANNUAL BLOOD TESTS TO DETERMINE THEIR BLOOD LEVELS OF HEAVY METALS, IN PARTICULAR MANGANESE.” JOHN EXPLAINED THAT TOO MUCH MAGNESIUM IN THE HUMAN BODY CAN MIMIC PARKINSON’S DISEASE, A CONDITION CALLED PARKINSONISM. SUMPTION PUSHED FOR BLOOD TESTING TO BE DONE IN THE 1990S: “THAT STARTED US DOWN THE ROAD THAT RESULTED IN A STUDY BEING DONE BY A GROUP OF INDUSTRIAL MEDICINE SPECIALISTS FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF CALGARY, INCLUDING OF THE FOREMOST – THE WORLD’S MOST FOREMOST – MOVEMENT DISORDER SPECIALIST … . CONSEQUENTLY, WE ALL SPENT TWO DAYS IN CALGARY, GOT MRI, GOT BLOOD TESTS, AND THEREAFTER WERE REGULARLY SUBJECTED TO URINE TESTS.” THE RESULTS OF ALL OF THIS TESTING: “CONSEQUENTLY, THE VENTILATION SYSTEM WAS IMPROVED, THE DUST CAPTURE SYSTEM WAS IMPROVED FOR THE GRINDING PROCEDURES, AND ALL EMPLOYEES WORE POWER PURIFIED AIR RESPIRATORS THEREAFTER. SO WE HAD A MUCH SAFER WORK ENVIRONMENT.” JOHN NEVER SAW THIS SIGN HANGING IN THE ROUNDHOUSE AND HAD THE FOLLOWING TO SAY: “IT’S FAR TOO OLD TO HAVE BEEN MADE FOR THE FROG SHOP IN 1982. WHEN YOU LOOK AT THESE … BOLTS – HAVEN’T SEEN THEM DO LIKE THAT IN AN AWFUL LONG TIME. THIS IS HAND-PUNCHED – THIS IS HAND-CUT AND HAND-PUNCHED. LOOT AT THE WIDTH OF THE PINE PLANK THAT IT’S ON. IT’S NOT REGULAR, OLD CPR RED. THEY DIDN’T BUY THINGS. THEY ARE NOTORIOUSLY CHEAP. I REMEMBER THIS YELLOW PAINT. THIS IS THE SAME YELLOW PAINT THAT THEY PAINTED THEIR MOTOR CARS WITH – THE LITTLE, FREEZE-YOUR-ASS-OFF TRACK MOBILES WE USED TO TRAVEL ON WHEN WE’RE WORKING ON THE TRACK. YEAH, I WAS TOLD THAT. BUT I KNOW THEY WOULDN’T HAVE A SIGN PAINTED. I KNOW THEY WOULDN’T BUY ONE FROM ANYONE. AND THAT WAS WHAT I WAS TOLD BY ALL THE PEOPLE THAT I WORKED WITH THERE; SOME OF WHOM HAD A GREAT MANY YEARS. AND THERE WERE A COUPLE OLD GUYS THAT I WORKED WITH THAT RETIRED AT 35 YEARS, SHORTLY AFTER I ARRIVED IN THE FROG SHOP THERE IN ’92.” JOHN DESCRIBED WHERE THE SIGN HUNG IN THE FROG SHOP IN KIPP: “IT HUNG IN THE DOORWAY THAT LEAD OUT OF THE SHOP INTO THE HALLWAY INTO OUR CHANGE ROOM. I LOOKED AT IT EVERY DAY, AT LUNCHTIME, COFFEE TIME.” JOHN ADDED THE FOLLOWING ABOUT WORKER SAFETY: “I JUST THINK THAT THIS IS TO ME ILLUSTRATIVE OF HOW FAR WE’VE COME WHEN IT COMES TO WORKERS’ SAFETY. AND WHEN YOU TAKE A LOOK AROUND TODAY OF HOW HORRIFYINGLY FAR WE HAVE TO GO. TO THINK THAT THERE ARE PEOPLE, WHAT LESS THAN TWO WEEKS AGO, STANDING IN FRONT OF THE LEGISLATURE IN EDMONTON FIGHTING THE NOTION THAT FARM WORKERS IN ALBERTA SHOULD HAVE THE SAME PROTECTION THAT THEY DO EVERYWHERE ELSE IN THE COUNTRY AND HAVE FOR YEARS AND YEARS. TOO MANY PEOPLE DIE GOING TO WORK. IT’S TOO EASY TO HAPPEN AND IT’S EVEN EASIER NOW. IT’S SCARY TO THINK OF YOUNG PEOPLE. I’VE WORKED WITH LOTS OF YOUNG PEOPLE AS THE YEARS HAVE GONE ON. I’M OLD. I KNOW OLD PEOPLE - OLDER PEOPLE - LOOKED OUT FOR ME AND HELPED ME; AND I’M REALLY FORTUNATE FOR THAT. BUT IN THIS HURRY-UP WORLD, NOW AND PARTICULARLY AS YOU SEE UNION MEMBERSHIP DECLINING AND IT BECOMING MORE AND MORE DIFFICULT TO OBTAIN A UNION CONTRACT, TO RATIFY A UNION VOTE, GEE I DON’T WANT TO SEE ANYONE - ANYBODY ELSE GET HURT. AND I HOPE THAT THAT GETS BETTER. BECAUSE I’VE SEEN REALLY BAD THINGS HAPPEN TO PEOPLE AND IT WASN’T BECAUSE THEY WERE DUMB AND IT WASN’T BECAUSE THEY WERE CARELESS. FAR TOO OFTEN IT WAS BECAUSE THEY JUST DIDN’T KNOW AND SOMEBODY WHO SHOULD KNOW BETTER DIDN’T GET IN LINE.” RELOCATING THE RAIL YARDS TO KIPP IS COVERED IN DETAIL IN SEVERAL LETHBRIDGE HERALD NEWSPAPER ARTICLES, ESPECIALLY IN THE PERIOD OF 1980 TO 1982. THESE ARTICLES TEND TO FOCUS ON THE BENEFIT FOR THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE AND THE ABILITY TO REDEVELOP THE YARDS. FOR EXAMPLE, AN OCTOBER 10, 1980 ARTICLE DISCUSSES REDEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES: “THERE MUST BE A GOOD CORRIDOR WITH A DIVIDED HIGHWAY THROUGH THE CITY TO ACCOMMODATE BOTH TRAFFIC THAT DOESN’T WANT TO STOP AND TRAFFIC THAT WANTS TO GET OFF AT DOWNTOWN LETHBRIDGE. RAILWAY RELOCATION GIVES ROOM FOR SUCH A CORRIDOR FROM THE RAILWAY BRIDGE THROUGH TO 13TH ST.” FOR MORE DETAILS, PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE. FOR COPIES OF NEWSPAPER ARTICLES AND FOR A TRANSCRIPT OF THE INTERVIEW, PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE.
Catalogue Number
P20160008001
Acquisition Date
2016-03
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail

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