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Other Name
RAILWAY SWITCH / C.P.R.
Date Range From
1970
Date Range To
1980
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
BRASS, COPPER, METAL
Catalogue Number
P20150023000
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
RAILWAY SWITCH / C.P.R.
Date Range From
1970
Date Range To
1980
Materials
BRASS, COPPER, METAL
No. Pieces
5
Length
12.3
Width
2.1
Description
5 RAILWAY KEYS OR SWITCHES ON A KEYRING. .A: BRASS. 5.0CM X 2.4CM (L X W). SKELETON KEY. ROUND TOP, WITH A SQUARE HOLE IN THE MIDDLE. AROUND THE TOP EDGE OF THE CIRCLE, STAMPED "C.P.R.". "T" STAMPED BELOW AND TO THE LEFT OF THE "C". ILLEGIBLE MAKER'S MARK ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE KEY. .B: SILVER COLOURED METAL. 5.3CM X 2.5CM (L X W). ROUND TOP, WITH A SMALL ROUND HOLE NEAR THE TOP. EMBOSSED "103" ON ONE SIDE OF THE ROUND TOP AND STAMPED "CPR" ON THE OTHER. .C: COPPER. 5.2CM X 2.3CM (L X W). ROUND TOP, WITH A MEDIUM SIZED CIRCULAR HOLE IN THE CENTRE. AROUND THE EDGE, EMBOSSED WITH "R. M. CO." OPPOSITE SIDE HAS "C.P.R." EMBOSSED ALONG THE TOP, WITH AN "S" EMBOSSED BELOW AND TO THE LEFT OF THE "C". .D: BRASS. 5.0CM X 2.2CM (L X W). ROUND TOP, WITH A MEDIUM SIZED CIRCULAR HOLE IN THE CENTRE. AROUND THE EDGE, STAMPED WITH "C.P.R.". MAKER'S MARK STAMPED ON REVERSE: "...ITCHE... CANADA" .E: COPPER. 12.3CM X 2.1CM (L X W). ROUND TOP, WITH A MEDIUM SIZED CIRCULAR HOLE IN THE CENTRE. NO IDENTIFYING MARKS. TEETH OF KEY FORM A SIDEWAYS 'E'. ALL KEYS IN GOOD TO VERY GOOD CONDITION. TWO COPPER KEYS HAVE TARNISHED.
Subjects
HOUSEHOLD ACCESSORY
Historical Association
TRANSPORTATION
History
THESE RAILWAY SWITCH KEYS WERE USED BY THE DONOR, ARNOLD “RED” ERVIN, WHEN HE WORKED ON THE RAILWAY. IN JULY 2015, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN, CONDUCTED AN INTERVIEW WITH ARNOLD AND HIS WIFE JOYCE ERVIN. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM THAT INTERVIEW. ARNOLD WAS BORN IN 1932 IN NIPIWIN, SK AND CAME TO LETHBRIDGE TO PLAY JUNIOR HOCKEY IN 1950. HE GOT A GOOD JOB WITH THE RAILWAY AND DECIDED TO STAY IN LETHBRIDGE. JOYCE WAS BORN IN 1931 IN FOREMOST, AB, ATTENDED MOUNT ROYAL COLLEGE IN CALGARY AND WORKED FOR SEVERAL YEARS IN CALGARY. SHE WORKED FOR THE GOVERNMENT, IN DEFENCE PRODUCTION, THEN WENT ON TO SHELL OIL. SHE MOVED TO LETHBRIDGE IN 1954 TO BE CLOSER TO HOME AND SHE GOT A JOB WITH THE RAILROAD. ARNOLD AND JOYCE MET THROUGH THEIR WORK AND WERE MARRIED IN 1955. SAID ARNOLD ABOUT THE KEYS: “[THESE ARE] OLD RAILROAD KEYS, UNLOCKED EVERY SWITCH FROM HERE TO VANCOUVER…I DIDN’T HAVE TO THROW SWITCHES BUT THERE WAS TIMES WHEN SNOW WAS TOO DEEP, YOU WERE OUT THERE SWITCHING, MAYBE [A TRAINMAN] WAS SICK AND YOU HAD TO GET OUT AND DO THAT…THEY’RE ALL THE SAME KEYS EXCEPT THIS ONE HERE (KEY E). ON THE PASSENGER TRAINS YOU HAD THOSE - YOU DIDN’T NEED THEM, BUT ONCE IN A WHILE IF YOU WERE OUT THERE…JUST HAD A FEW LOCKS THERE THAT EVERYBODY, EVERYBODY THAT WORKED ON THE PASSENGER TRAINS COULD UNLOCK CERTAIN [LOCKS]. THE BOTTOMS BELOW THERE, THEY USED TO UNLOCK THEM.” ARNOLD STARTED WORKING FOR THE RAILWAY IN 1951 IN THE ROUND HOUSE, AFTER DECIDING TO NOT PURSUE HOCKEY BEYOND THE JUNIOR LEVEL: “THEY PUT YOU IN [THE ROUND HOUSE] TEAMED UP, STARTED UNTIL YOU WORKED YOUR WAY UP TO A FIREMAN – FROM FIREMAN TO ENGINEER.” HE CONTINUED TO PLAY HOCKEY FOR FUN: “I STILL PLAYED HOCKEY WITH A BUNCH OF PEOPLE THAT [I] KNEW AND YOU DIDN’T HAVE TO GO ON TO THE BIG LEAGUES BUT JUST ENTERTAINMENT. LETHBRIDGE WAS A GOOD HOCKEY PLACE. AND A NICE CITY TO LIVE IN.” IN RECALLING HIS FIRST DAYS AND WEEKS AT HIS JOB, HE SAID: “WELL, IT WAS WORKING IN THE ROUNDHOUSE. THE ENGINES WERE THERE AND YOU HAD TO GET UP AND THERE WAS COAL ENGINES AND YOU HAD TO SHOVEL THE COAL TO GET IT BACK INTO PLACES WHERE IT WAS SUPPOSED TO BE, SO ALL OVER. … YEAH, TECHNICALLY THEY CALLED YOU A WIPER. YOU HAD TO GO IN AND CLEAN THE WINDOWS … FOR THE ENGINEER COMING OUT EVERYTHING HAD TO BE CLEAN OR HE CALLED YOU BACK UP AND YOU DID IT OVER AGAIN. SO, IT WAS BETTER TO DO IT GOOD AND GET IT DONE.” ARNOLD CONTINUED: “I LIKED WORKING WITH THE RAILROAD, ENJOYED IT, AND STARTED IN THAT ROUNDHOUSE AND YOU WORKED YOUR WAY UP TO A FIREMAN AND UP TO AN ENGINEER AND THEN I WAS IN CHARGE OF ALL THE ENGINEERS. SO IT WAS A CAREER FROM NOT EVEN KNOWING WHAT THE RAILROAD LOOKED LIKE TO FIFTY/FIFTY-ONE WHEN I FINISHED. … IT WAS A PRETTY COMPATIBLE BUNCH OF PEOPLE AND AS IT TURNED OUT THE MANAGER OF THE HOCKEY TEAM WAS YARDMASTER HERE SO KNOWING THE BOSS KIND OF HELPED A LITTLE BIT. HE WAS LOOKING AFTER THE YARDS AND HE WAS THE MANAGER OF THE JUNIOR HOCKEY TEAM UNTIL HE RETIRED FROM THE RAILROAD. IT WAS A GOOD PLACE TO WORK, PEOPLE TREATED YOU RIGHT.” STEAM ENGINES WERE STILL IN USE WHEN HE FIRST STARTED: “[THE STEAM ENGINES] WERE WHEN I FIRST STARTED YES. FROM STARTING IN THE SHOP YOU GREW UP TO BE ON A FIRE AND THEN ENGINES AND JUST ABOUT THAT TIME THE DIESEL ENGINES WERE COMING IN AND OPERATING AND [IT WAS A] TOTALLY DIFFERENT RAILROAD FROM A HAND-FIRED COAL ENGINE TO A DIESEL LOCOMOTIVE. SO, IT WAS QUITE INTERESTING AND IT EITHER COULD BE AS GOOD AS YOU WANTED OR AS BAD AS YOU WANTED. KINDA HAD NO BOSSES IN THE RAILROAD - YOU WERE KIND OF THE CREW - YOU HAD TO LIKE THE JOB OR YOU DIDN’T STAY THERE. AND I LIKED THE RAILROAD, LIKED THE TRAVELLING, TRAVELLING IN THE ENGINES AND SOME PEOPLE WOULD GIVE THEIR EYE TEETH TO GET UP ON ONE OF THEM ENGINES, RIDE UP TO CROWSNEST AND IN THE MOUNTAINS.” HE WAS NOT DISAPPOINTED TO SEE THE STEAM LOCOMOTIVES GO OUT OF SERVICE: “IF YOU HAD YOUR CHOICE TO GO ON A STEAM ENGINE ON A TRIP, GETTING ON A DIESEL ENGINE WAS A LOT EASIER THAN GETTING ON AN OLD COAL ENGINE, COAL-FIRED ENGINE, WHERE YOU BASICALLY TOOK COAL AND THREW IT IN THE BOILER. YOU TOOK IT FROM A CAR RIGHT BEHIND YOU AND PUT THE COAL IN THE ENGINES THEN BOIL IT AND THAT’S WHERE ALL THE POWER CAME FROM.” BY 1975, ARNOLD WAS WORKING AS AN ENGINEER FIREMAN AND CONTINUED TO RECEIVE ON THE JOB TRAINING: “YEAH, ALL ON-THE-JOB TRAINING. MOST OF IT - THERE WAS OTHER THINGS GOING ON BUT THE BASIC THING WAS DOING TRAINING AS AN ENGINEER TO BECOME AN ENGINEER. IT WAS WHERE I WANTED TO BE, WAS AN ENGINEER, AND THE RAILROAD WORKS IN SENIORITY - THEY DON’T CARE IF YOU’RE EVEN BETTER, YOU HAD TO WORK YOUR WAY THROUGH. WHEN THEY NEEDED YOU, YOU GOT THE BEST JOB WHEN YOU GOT MORE SENIORITY. IT WASN’T NECESSARILY ALWAYS THE BEST GUY [THAT] GOT IT, SENIORITY PREVAILED ON THE RAILROAD AND YOU GOT YOUR JOBS AS YOU BECAME OLDER … THE BETTER JOBS BEING MAYBE A DIESEL ENGINES ON ONE JOB AND A FIREMAN ON THE OTHER JOB.” HE RECALLED A COUPLE OF ACCIDENTS WHILE WORKING ON THE RAILROAD: WHILE WORKING AS AN ENGINEER, ARNOLD’S TRAIN HIT A CAR ON THE TRACKS NEAR BLAIRMORE AND HE RECALLED SEEING THE EYES OF THE CAR DRIVER: “I LOOKED UP AND [SAW] HER EYES LOOKING AT [ME].” ARNOLD REMEMBERED THAT ONE OF THE SCARIEST ROUTES WAS THE ONE GOING TO PINCHER CREEK, WHERE THERE WAS A HILL WITH A 2.3 GRADE, WHICH MADE CONTROLLING THE TRAIN CHALLENGING. HE SAID: “YOU’D LIKE TO KNOW IF YOU’D SET THE BRAKE, YOU HAD CONTROL OVER IT BUT IT WAS SUCH A HILL AND SUCH A HEAVY TRAIN BEHIND YOU THAT IT WAS SCARY SOMETIMES … THAT WAS A VERY INTERESTING TRIP DOWN THERE THEN WITH THE DOWN 2.3 GRADE AND THEN 100,000 TON POTASH BEHIND YOU, PUSHING YOU. … YOU KNOW TRAINS STOP BUT IT TOOK A LONG TIME TO STOP … EVERY BRAKE ON THE TRAIN IS ON AND YOU’D STILL GO ANOTHER HALF A MILE DOWN THE TRACK. NOBODY COULD BELIEVE YOU WHY YOU COULDN’T STOP THAT THING – IT DOESN’T WORK THAT WAY – YOU COULD HARDLY EXPLAIN THAT IT TAKES THAT LONG TO STOP A TRAIN, BUT IT DOES.” HE ALSO RECALLED A RUNAWAY TRAIN THAT HE WAS CALLED IN TO HELP WITH: “THEY STOPPED AT COLEMAN TO SET A CAR OFF AND DIDN’T PUT THE BRAKES ON [AND] THE AIR SLEAKED OFF [OF] THE AIRBRAKES … YOU HAD TO HAVE THE COMPRESSORS WORKING TO KEEP THE TRAINS PUMPED UP TO KEEP [THE] BRAKES ON AND IT STARTED CREEPING DOWN.” HE CONTINUED SAYING THAT THE TRAIN STARTED “GOING BACKWARDS AND AS THE HILL GOT A LITTLE STEEPER [THE TRAIN] GOT GOING FASTER AND IT CAME DOWN TO LUNDBRECK WHERE YOU GO ACROSS THE RIVER THERE [AT] THE BRIDGE. [AT] THAT TIME, I WAS MANAGEMENT, [SO] I GOT IN A CAR AND WENT UP THERE AND TOLD THEM EXACTLY WHERE THAT TRAIN WAS GOING TO BE. [THE TRAIN WAS MOVING] TOO FAST TO GO ON THE REVERSE CURVE JUST COMING INTO LUNDBRECK AND IT FLEW LIKE A PLANE INTO THE RIVER THERE.” IT WAS ESTIMATED THAT THE TRAIN WAS TRAVELLING AT MORE THAN SEVENTY MILES PER HOUR. ARNOLD SAID: “THERE’S A REVERSE CURVE JUST BEFORE YOU GET TO LUNDBRECK. [THE TRAIN] LIFTED UP QUITE A BIT BECAUSE IT WAS GOING WAY TOO FAST AND THEN WHEN IT REVERSED THE OTHER SIDE, IT DIDN’T COME DOWN ON THE RAILS - IT LIFTED AND EVERY CAR ENDED UP IN THE LUNDBRECK RIVER.” FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION, INCLUDING DETAILS ABOUT JOYCE ERVIN’S TIME WITH THE CPR, AND INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT, SEE PERMANENT FILE.
Catalogue Number
P20150023000
Acquisition Date
2015-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
2010
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, INK
Catalogue Number
P20140032001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
2010
Materials
WOOD, INK
No. Pieces
1
Height
8.9
Length
90.7
Width
2.5
Description
RECTANGULAR WOODEN SIGN WITH THE RIGHT EDGE COMING TO A POINT AT END (LIKE AN ARROW). "BELLY RIVER STATION' PAINTED IN BLACK, BLOCK LETTERS. LETTERS ARE SLIGHTLY RAISED FROM SURFACE. THE WOOD IS WEATHERED AND GREY IN COLOUR. APPROX. 8 NAIL HOLES AT CENTER WITH SEVERAL OTHER, SMALLER HOLES AND NOTCHES OVER THE SURFACE OF SIGN. CONDITION: NAIL HOLES ARE RUST-STAINED. DIRT STAINS ON BOTTOM CENTER. SECTION OF WHITE PAINT ON BACK. BLACK PAINTED LETTERS HAVE MODERATE TO SEVERE FADING.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
TRANSPORTATION
History
A NOTE WRITTEN BY THE DONOR, FRANK LIGHTBOUND, AND PROVIDED TO THE MUSEUM AT THE TIME OF DONATION STATES: “[SIGN] DISCOVERED AT THE JUNCTION OF TWO OLD TRAILS IN THE PIKE HAVEN AREA SOUTHWEST OF CARDSTON ADJACENT TO WATERTON PARK. THIS AREA WAS AT ONE TIME PART OF WATERTON LAKES NATIONAL PARK. AT THE TIME OF DISCOVERY, EARLY 1980S, I WAS EMPLOYED AS A RANGER WITH THE ALBERTA FOREST SERVICE IN THE CROWSNEST FOREST. HAVING WORKED ON A TRAIL CREW AND A SEASON MANNING THE SOFA MTN. FIRE LOOKOUT IN THE EARLY 1950S, I WAS FAMILIAR WITH THE OLD WARDEN STATION AND THE BELLY RIVER DISTRICT. THE STATION AND THE LOOKOUT NO LONGER EXIST.” ON 22 MARCH 2017, GALT COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED LIGHTBOUND ABOUT HIS DONATION OF THE SIGN. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM THE INTERVIEW: LIGHTBOUND EXPLAINED THAT THE ARTIFACT WAS IN HIS POSSESSION FOR “PROBABLY 30 YEARS, [WHERE] IT WAS DISPLAYED IN [MY] LIVING ROOM IN FRONT OF THE FIRE PLACE.” ABOUT HOW HE CAME INTO POSSESSION OF THE SIGN, LIGHTBOUND SAID, “WELL, I HAD SPENT SOME TIME WORKING IN WATERTON PARK, AND AT ONE POINT I SPENT A SUMMER ON THE SOFA MOUNTAIN LOOKOUT WHICH IS IN THE BELLY RIVER DISTRICT. AT THE TIME I CAME ACROSS THIS SIGN I WAS WITH THE ALBERTA FOREST SERVICE, DOING SOME WORK IN THE POLL HAVEN REGION SOUTHWEST OF CARDSTON." "AT ONE TIME, I THINK BACK IN THE EARLY 1900S, THAT POLL HAVEN AREA WAS INCLUDED INSIDE OF THE WATERTON PARK BOUNDARIES—IT WAS PART OF THE PARK. I WAS DOING SOME WORK IN THERE, AND I CAME TO AN OLD TRAIL WHERE THERE WAS ALL WINDFALL AND TREES DOWN ALL OVER IT, AND I NOTICED ONE TREE HAD A SIGN ATTACHED TO IT. IT WAS FACING DOWN, I GOT CURIOUS AND I WENT OVER THERE AND PRIED IT OFF THE TREE. HERE IT WAS AN OLD SIGN POINTING THE TRAIL TO THE BELLY RIVER RANGER STATION. AT THAT POINT, THEY WERE MAKING USE OF TRAILS IN THE POLL HAVEN AREA WHICH WAS, AS I SAID, PART OF WATERTON LAKES NATIONAL PARK AND THIS WAS POINTING TO THE NEAREST WARDEN STATION, [WHICH WAS ACTIVE] AT THE TIME… I GOT THE SIGN. [BUT THE TRAIL] WAS OBLITERATED.” LATER IN THE INTERVIEW, LIGHTBOUND STATED HE CAME ACROSS THE SIGN “PROBABLY IN THE EARLY ’80S.” A FOOTNOTE WRITTEN BY THE TRANSCRIBER AND WATERTON HISTORIAN, CHRIS MORRISON, STATES: “POLL HAVEN, A 16-SQUARE MILE PARCEL OF LAND, WAS LOCATED ON THE EXTREME EASTERN EDGE OF THE PARK. IT WAS PART OF THE GOVERNMENT’S 1914 ENLARGEMENT OF WATERTON. IT WAS WITHDRAWN FROM PARK BOUNDARIES IN 1947 BY ACT OF PARLIAMENT TO PERMIT A LAND EXCHANGE WITH THE PROVINCE OF ALBERTA TO ALLOW THE EXPANSION [OF] ELK ISLAND NATIONAL PARK TO THE NORTH. THE NAME POLL HAVEN IS STILL IN USE AND IS A COMMUNITY PASTURE FOR LOCAL RANCHERS.” LIGHTBOUND DESCRIBED HIS JOB ACTIVITIES BY SAYING, “[IN THE] FOREST SERVICE, THERE’S NUMEROUS ACTIVITIES GOING ON IN DIFFERENT DISTRICTS AND AT THAT POINT… I WAS... CHECKING THE TIMBER PERMITS AND THE GRAZING ACTIVITY. BUT ALSO, THERE’S FIRE CONTROL OF COURSE, YOU’RE ALWAYS LOOKING FOR SMOKE POPPING OUT SOMEWHERE. WE WERE ASSISTING FISH AND WILDLIFE AND THAT PRETTY WELL COVERS THAT AREA DOWN IN THERE. I WAS POSTED IN BLAIRMORE IN THE CROWSNEST PASS AT THE TIME, SO I DIDN’T GO OUT THERE VERY OFTEN… I DROVE OUT THERE FROM BLAIRMORE OF COURSE AND I PARKED THE TRUCK AND WAS ON FOOT AFTER THAT… " WHEN ASKED IF HE ENJOYED HIS JOB, LIGHTBOUND REPLIED, “OH I SURE DID! ... [I ENJOYED] BEING OUTDOORS MOST OF THE TIME, AND THE PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND QUITE OFTEN YOU’RE A LONG WAYS FROM THE OFFICE, SO NOBODY WAS TELLING YOU WHAT TO DO… I STARTED BACK IN THE EARLY ’50S, AND I WAS STILL THERE IN 1985.” LIGHTBOUND SPOKE TO WHY HE CHOOSE TO COLLECT THE SIGN FROM THE TREE, “WELL, I KNEW WHY IT WAS THERE, WHY IT HAD BEEN PUT THERE, AND IT MEANT SOMETHING TO ME. I THOUGHT IF I DON’T RESCUE THIS SIGN, IT’LL JUST BE THERE UNTIL IT ROTS, BECAUSE NOBODY ELSE IS GOING TO CLAMBER THROUGH ALL THIS DEADFALL LOOKING FOR IT… IT WAS KIND OF A REMINDER OR SOUVENIR OF MY DAYS OUT THERE.” THINKING ABOUT THE HISTORY WITH THE SIGN, LIGHTBOUND CONTINUED, “WELL, I WONDERED HOW LONG IT HAD BEEN THERE. I KNEW THAT THE POLL HAVEN AREA HAD BEEN INCLUDED IN THE PARK AT ONE TIME ALTHOUGH I WASN’T AWARE OF THE DATES. AND IT CROSSED MY MIND TOO, I WONDERED HOW MANY TRAVELERS HAD COME ALONG ON HORSEBACK OR WITH THEIR PACKHORSES AND WHAT HAVE YOU, HEADING FOR WATERTON LAKES PARK AND WONDERING WHEN THEY’D COME ACROSS A LITTLE BIT OF CIVILIZATION. AND HERE WAS SOMETHING TO ENCOURAGE THEM.” ON THE HISTORY OF BELLY RIVER STATION, MORRISON NOTED, “THE FIRST BELLY RIVER WARDEN STATION WAS BUILT IN 1917 AND WAS CONNECTED TO PARK HEADQUARTERS BY TELEPHONE. A WARDEN STATION CONTINUED TO SERVE THE AREA THROUGH TO THE EARLY 1970 WHEN OUTLYING WARDEN RESIDENCES WERE DISCONTINUED AND WARDENS WERE MOVED INTO THE TOWN SITE. THE DATES OF THE TRAILS TO THIS SITE IS NOT RECORDED IN THE WLNP [WATERTON LAKES NATIONAL PARK] ARCHIVES SPECIFICALLY BUT THE TRAILS WOULD HAVE BEEN BUILT (OR IMPROVED) AROUND 1917 FOR ACCESS TO THE STATION AND TO HAUL SUPPLIES FOR HUMANS AND HORSES. A ROUGH TOTE ROAD HAD BEEN BUILT NORTH TO MOUNTAIN VIEW YEARS BEFORE (NO DATE AVAILABLE) AND WAS USED AS A ROUTE TO GLACIER NATIONAL PARK, MONTANA." PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL, ANNOTATED INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND DONOR’S NOTE.
Catalogue Number
P20140032001
Acquisition Date
2014-08
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
PARKING SIGN
Date Range From
1978
Date Range To
2007
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
METAL, VINYL
Catalogue Number
P20160009002
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
PARKING SIGN
Date Range From
1978
Date Range To
2007
Materials
METAL, VINYL
No. Pieces
1
Length
30.4
Width
15.2
Description
LICENSE PLATE MADE OUT OF THIN SHEET METAL WITH BLACK VINYL LETTERING “LHB 15”. BLACK VINYL BORDERING THE PERIMETER OF THE PLATE. THE CORNERS ARE ROUNDED. THERE ARE 4 SLOTS THAT ARE 2.5 CM IN LENGTH FOR ATTACHING THE LICENSE PLATE TO A SUPPORT (TWO ON THE TOP AND TWO ON THE BOTTOM). GOOD - VERY GOOD CONDITION. THERE IS A HORIZONTAL BEND ACROSS THE CENTER OF THE PLATE. THERE ARE SLIGHT SCRATCHES OVERALL, ESPECIALLY AROUND THE SLOTS WHERE THE PLATE WOULD HAVE BEEN ATTACHED. THERE IS A SMALL LOSS OF VINYL ON THE BOTTOM BORDER. THE BACK HAS SLIGHT STAINS/DIRT AND SCRATCHES.
Subjects
SITE FEATURE
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
ASSOCIATIONS
TRANSPORTATION
History
THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION WAS A NOT-FOR-PROFIT ORGANIZATION THAT BEGAN IN 1975 WHEN THE KIWANIS CLUB DONATED THE FIRST VAN. ON AUGUST 1, 2007 – AFTER 32 YEARS OF SERVICE TO THE COMMUNITY – THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE. AT THAT POINT, THE ASSOCIATION HAD A FLEET OF 20 BUSES – MANY OF WHICH WERE DONATED BY LOCAL SERVICE CLUBS – THAT WERE ALL TRANSFERRED TO THE CITY. THE NAME OF THE SERVICE BECAME ACCESS-A-RIDE UNDER THE CITY’S MANAGEMENT. THESE ARTIFACTS WERE DONATED BY A LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION BOARD MEMBER, LYNN SPRING. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM AN INTERVIEW CONDUCTED BY COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN ON APRIL 12, 2016 WITH SPRING. HE EXPLAINS, “I WAS A MEMBER OF THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI BUS BOARD OF DIRECTORS FOR HALF A DOZEN YEARS AT LEAST AND SOME OF THESE ITEMS WERE GIVEN TO ME BY THE DRIVERS. THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI BUS STARTED IN 1975 AND ABOUT SEVEN YEARS AGO, LETHBRIDGE HANDI BUS STOPPED THEIR CHARTER AS A NOT- FOR -PROFIT ORGANIZATION BECAUSE OF THE NATIONAL RULING IN TRANSPORTATION THAT MUNICIPALITIES WOULD BE RESPONSIBLE FOR ACCESSIBILITY RIDES, HANDICAP TRANSPORTATION. SO THE CITY TOOK OVER ALL OF THE BUSES, THEY PURCHASED THEM AND MOST OF THE DRIVERS WENT OVER TO THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE BECAUSE WE HAD, I BELIEVE, TWENTY-SIX AT THAT TIME AND YOU JUST DON’T JUST DON’T FIND TWENTY-SIX DRIVERS. THAT WAS PART OF THE AGREEMENT ON SALE THAT THEY WOULD TAKE THE BUSES. WE TOOK OUR PLATES OFF AND THE NEXT DAY CITY PUT THEIR PLATES ON AND THEIR INSURANCE. THE DRIVERS WENT OVER EVENTUALLY. THEY WERE WEARING THE CITY TRANSIT, LETHBRIDGE CITY TRANSIT UNIFORMS.” OF HIS TIME AS A BOARD MEMBER, SPRING SAID, “I CAME TO LETHBRIDGE IN [2005]… THE MANAGER OF THE DAY, MURRAY CAMPBELL, WAS A LONGTIME FRIEND OF MINE AND HE ASKED ME [TO BE ON THE BOARD], AND I THOUGHT WELL IT IS A VERY WORTHWHILE ORGANIZATION. IT WAS A NOT-FOR -PROFIT ORGANIZATION AND DIDN’T INVOLVE A LOT OF HOURS.” SPRING WAS ON THE BOARD UNTIL 2011. SPRING REFERRED TO HIMSELF AS “A COLLECTOR AT HEART” AND AS A RESULT GATHERED THE DONATED ARTIFACTS DURING THE LAST DAYS OF THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION IN 2011. THEY WERE IN HIS POSSESSION FOR 5 TO 7 YEARS. HE EXPLAINS, “WELL I WAS ONE OF THREE THAT CLOSED DOWN AND CLOSED OUT HANDI BUS. WE HAD TO FILE WITH TAX CANADA AND OF COURSE, WORKERS COMP AND ALL THOSE THINGS SO FINALLY WE’RE AT THAT STAGE WHERE WE CAN GET RID OF A LOT OF THE PAPER RECORDS. IT PROMPTED THAT I SHOULD MAYBE DONATE THESE TO THE GALT MUSEUM FOR PROSPERITY… [T]HAT’S JUST MY NATURE, I GUESS, TO RETAIN THINGS AND SAY ‘WELL SOMEBODY WOULD BE INTERESTED IN THIS IN A FUTURE DATE.’” OF THE PLACE MARKERS, SPRING EXPLAINS, “THESE OTHER METAL PIECES ARE NOT LICENSE PLATES, THEY ARE IN FACT THE MARKERS FOR WHERE THE BUSES PARKED… THEY WERE WIRED ONTO THE PAGE WIRE FENCE, THE COMPOUND WHERE ALL THE BUSES PARKED.” THE NUMBERS ON THE PLACE MARKERS MATCHED THE NUMBERS PLACED ON THE BUSES, WHICH WERE SMALLER, BUT SIMILAR DECALS NEAR THE DOOR OF THE BUS. EACH BUS HAD A DIFFERENT LABEL ON IT TO RECOGNIZE THE DIFFERENT SPONSORS: “FRATERNAL ORDER OF EAGLES, THE LEGION, THE MOOSE LODGE, EXAMPLE THE COLOUR OF THE BUSES WERE YELLOW AND WHITE AT THAT TIME. LATER ON THEY WERE BASICALLY WHITE WITH SOME MAROON CORPORATE STRIPE ON THEM.” PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES.
Catalogue Number
P20160009002
Acquisition Date
2016-04
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS DRIVER'S UNIFORM SHIRT
Date Range From
1975
Date Range To
2007
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
COTTON, POLYESTER
Catalogue Number
P20160009003
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS DRIVER'S UNIFORM SHIRT
Date Range From
1975
Date Range To
2007
Materials
COTTON, POLYESTER
No. Pieces
1
Height
66
Length
69
Description
LIGHT BLUE COLLARED SHIRT. THERE ARE SEVEN WHITE, PEARLIZED BUTTONS DOWN THE FRONT OF THE SHIRT. THERE ARE TWO POCKETS, EACH WITH ONE BUTTON, ON EITHER SIDE OF THE CHEST. A LOGO IS EMBROIDERED ON THE LEFT CHEST WITH “LHB” IN WHITE. THE LOGO IS AN INVERTED MAROON TRIANGLE WITH A WHITE BORDER. THERE IS A PARTIAL HANDICAP SYMBOL IN THE CENTER, EMBROIDERED IN WHITE. THE INSIDE TAG ON THE BACK OF THE COLLAR READS, “MARK’S … XL”. THE TAG STATES IT IS A COTTON/POLYESTER SHIRT. THE SLEEVES ARE 61.5 CM LONG. VERY GOOD – EXCELLENT CONDITION. THERE IS A LOOSE THREAD AT THE TOP BUTTON, NEAR THE COLLAR AND ONE ON THE INSIDE TRIM AT THE FRONT BOTTOM LEFT SIDE.
Subjects
CLOTHING-OUTERWEAR
Historical Association
ASSOCIATIONS
TRANSPORTATION
History
THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION WAS A NOT-FOR-PROFIT ORGANIZATION THAT BEGAN IN 1975 WHEN THE KIWANIS CLUB DONATED THE FIRST VAN. ON AUGUST 1, 2007 – AFTER 32 YEARS OF SERVICE TO THE COMMUNITY – THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE. AT THAT POINT, THE ASSOCIATION HAD A FLEET OF 20 BUSES – MANY OF WHICH WERE DONATED BY LOCAL SERVICE CLUBS – THAT WERE ALL TRANSFERRED TO THE CITY. THE NAME OF THE SERVICE BECAME ACCESS-A-RIDE UNDER THE CITY’S MANAGEMENT. THESE ARTIFACTS WERE DONATED BY A LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION BOARD MEMBER, LYNN SPRING. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM AN INTERVIEW CONDUCTED BY COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN ON APRIL 12, 2016 WITH SPRING. HE EXPLAINS, “I WAS A MEMBER OF THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI BUS BOARD OF DIRECTORS FOR HALF A DOZEN YEARS AT LEAST AND SOME OF THESE ITEMS WERE GIVEN TO ME BY THE DRIVERS. THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI BUS STARTED IN 1975 AND ABOUT SEVEN YEARS AGO, LETHBRIDGE HANDI BUS STOPPED THEIR CHARTER AS A NOT- FOR -PROFIT ORGANIZATION BECAUSE OF THE NATIONAL RULING IN TRANSPORTATION THAT MUNICIPALITIES WOULD BE RESPONSIBLE FOR ACCESSIBILITY RIDES, HANDICAP TRANSPORTATION. SO THE CITY TOOK OVER ALL OF THE BUSES, THEY PURCHASED THEM AND MOST OF THE DRIVERS WENT OVER TO THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE BECAUSE WE HAD, I BELIEVE, TWENTY-SIX AT THAT TIME AND YOU JUST DON’T JUST DON’T FIND TWENTY-SIX DRIVERS. THAT WAS PART OF THE AGREEMENT ON SALE THAT THEY WOULD TAKE THE BUSES. WE TOOK OUR PLATES OFF AND THE NEXT DAY CITY PUT THEIR PLATES ON AND THEIR INSURANCE. THE DRIVERS WENT OVER EVENTUALLY. THEY WERE WEARING THE CITY TRANSIT, LETHBRIDGE CITY TRANSIT UNIFORMS.” OF HIS TIME AS A BOARD MEMBER, SPRING SAID, “I CAME TO LETHBRIDGE IN [2005]… THE MANAGER OF THE DAY, MURRAY CAMPBELL, WAS A LONGTIME FRIEND OF MINE AND HE ASKED ME [TO BE ON THE BOARD], AND I THOUGHT WELL IT IS A VERY WORTHWHILE ORGANIZATION. IT WAS A NOT-FOR -PROFIT ORGANIZATION AND DIDN’T INVOLVE A LOT OF HOURS.” SPRING WAS ON THE BOARD UNTIL 2011. SPRING REFERRED TO HIMSELF AS “A COLLECTOR AT HEART” AND AS A RESULT GATHERED THE DONATED ARTIFACTS DURING THE LAST DAYS OF THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION IN 2011. THEY WERE IN HIS POSSESSION FOR 5 TO 7 YEARS. HE EXPLAINS, “WELL I WAS ONE OF THREE THAT CLOSED DOWN AND CLOSED OUT HANDI BUS. WE HAD TO FILE WITH TAX CANADA AND OF COURSE, WORKERS COMP AND ALL THOSE THINGS SO FINALLY WE’RE AT THAT STAGE WHERE WE CAN GET RID OF A LOT OF THE PAPER RECORDS. IT PROMPTED THAT I SHOULD MAYBE DONATE THESE TO THE GALT MUSEUM FOR PROSPERITY… [T]HAT’S JUST MY NATURE, I GUESS, TO RETAIN THINGS AND SAY ‘WELL SOMEBODY WOULD BE INTERESTED IN THIS IN A FUTURE DATE.’” SPRING WOULD HAVE WORN THIS SHIRT AS A BOARD MEMBER: ”WE WOULD WEAR THAT AT FUNDRAISERS AND DIFFERENT OCCASIONS LIKE THAT. THE ODD TIME AT THE BOARD MEETINGS, BUT MAINLY THE FUNDRAISERS, OR WHEN WE HAD MEDIA PEOPLE OR, SOME RECORDING OF THAT NATURE.” IT IS IDENTICAL TO THE SHIRTS WORN BY THE HANDI-BUS DRIVERS. SPRING DESCRIBES THE SHIRT’S DESIGN, “IT’S A DENIM SHIRT, AND OF COURSE A LOT OF OUR MATERIAL WAS FROM MARK’S WORK WAREHOUSE AS YOU SEE ON THE LABEL. THAT’S SIMPLY DENIM AND THE DISTINCTION IS HAVING THE LHB LOGO ON IT… THE LOGO LHB IS IN MAROON AND GRAY COLOURS, THAT WAS THEIR COLOUR AND OF COURSE LHB FOR LETHBRIDGE HANDI BUS.” PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES.
Catalogue Number
P20160009003
Acquisition Date
2016-04
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS DRIVER'S WINTER COAT
Date Range From
1975
Date Range To
2007
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
NYLON, POLYESTER, PLASTIC
Catalogue Number
P20160009004
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS DRIVER'S WINTER COAT
Date Range From
1975
Date Range To
2007
Materials
NYLON, POLYESTER, PLASTIC
No. Pieces
2
Length
78.5
Width
77
Description
A: DARK GREY WINTER JACKET. EMBROIDERED “LHB” LOGO ON THE PROPER LEFT SIDE OF THE CHEST (MAROON INVERTED TRIANGLE WITH LETTERS AND HANDICAP SYMBOL IN WHITE). THE JACKET HAS A HIGH COLLAR AND A GREY, PLASTIC ZIPPER DOWN THE FRONT. THERE ARE 5 METAL SNAP FASTENERS TO CLOSE THE JACKET IN ADDITION TO THE ZIPPER. THERE IS A POCKET ON EITHER SIDE OF THE CHEST, BOTH WITH VELCRO-ED FLAPS. THERE IS REFLECTIVE MATERIAL ATTACHED TO THESE POCKETS. THERE ARE TWO POCKETS AT THE LOWER SIDES OF THE JACKET WITH ZIPPERS TO CLOSE. THERE ARE TWO STUDS FROM SNAP FASTENERS ON THE OUTSIDE OF THE JACKET (FRONT, LOWER LEFT SIDE). THERE IS ELASTIC AROUND THE BOTTOM HEM AND VELCRO AROUND THE CUFFS OF THE SLEEVES. A 20 CM REFLECTIVE STRIPE IS ATTACHED TO THE CENTER BACK OF THE JACKET. THE SLEEVES ARE 58 CM LONG. THE TAG AT THE BACK COLLAR READS "MARK'S 3XL" AND "MADE IN KOREA". B: A REMOVABLE BLACK FLEECE LINING IS ATTACHED TO THE INSIDE OF THE JACKET WITH A ZIPPER. THE FLEECE LINING HAS AN LHB LOGO IDENTICAL TO THE JACKET'S ON THE PROPER LEFT SIDE OF THE CHEST. THE INSIDE TAG READS “MARK’S… 3XL”. GOOD CONDITION. THE COLOUR OF THE GREY IS FADING OVERALL. THE FLEECE ON THE INSIDE IS BALLING. THERE ARE LOOSE THREADS AT VARIOUS PLACES OF THE JACKET. THE LOGO IS DIRTY/DISCOLOURED. THE VELCRO IS SLIGHTLY DIRTY. THE LEFT CHEST POCKET IS WRINKLED/MISSHAPED AND STICKING TO THE VELCRO. THERE IS A WHITE NEAR THE ZIPPER ON THE UPPER, LEFT SIDE OF THE JACKET.
Subjects
CLOTHING-OUTERWEAR
Historical Association
ASSOCIATIONS
TRANSPORTATION
History
THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION WAS A NOT-FOR-PROFIT ORGANIZATION THAT BEGAN IN 1975 WHEN THE KIWANIS CLUB DONATED THE FIRST VAN. ON AUGUST 1, 2007 – AFTER 32 YEARS OF SERVICE TO THE COMMUNITY – THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE. AT THAT POINT, THE ASSOCIATION HAD A FLEET OF 20 BUSES – MANY OF WHICH WERE DONATED BY LOCAL SERVICE CLUBS – THAT WERE ALL TRANSFERRED TO THE CITY. THE NAME OF THE SERVICE BECAME ACCESS-A-RIDE UNDER THE CITY’S MANAGEMENT. THESE ARTIFACTS WERE DONATED BY A LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION BOARD MEMBER, LYNN SPRING. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM AN INTERVIEW CONDUCTED BY COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN ON APRIL 12, 2016 WITH SPRING. HE EXPLAINS, “I WAS A MEMBER OF THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI BUS BOARD OF DIRECTORS FOR HALF A DOZEN YEARS AT LEAST AND SOME OF THESE ITEMS WERE GIVEN TO ME BY THE DRIVERS. THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI BUS STARTED IN 1975 AND ABOUT SEVEN YEARS AGO, LETHBRIDGE HANDI BUS STOPPED THEIR CHARTER AS A NOT- FOR -PROFIT ORGANIZATION BECAUSE OF THE NATIONAL RULING IN TRANSPORTATION THAT MUNICIPALITIES WOULD BE RESPONSIBLE FOR ACCESSIBILITY RIDES, HANDICAP TRANSPORTATION. SO THE CITY TOOK OVER ALL OF THE BUSES, THEY PURCHASED THEM AND MOST OF THE DRIVERS WENT OVER TO THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE BECAUSE WE HAD, I BELIEVE, TWENTY-SIX AT THAT TIME AND YOU JUST DON’T JUST DON’T FIND TWENTY-SIX DRIVERS. THAT WAS PART OF THE AGREEMENT ON SALE THAT THEY WOULD TAKE THE BUSES. WE TOOK OUR PLATES OFF AND THE NEXT DAY CITY PUT THEIR PLATES ON AND THEIR INSURANCE. THE DRIVERS WENT OVER EVENTUALLY. THEY WERE WEARING THE CITY TRANSIT, LETHBRIDGE CITY TRANSIT UNIFORMS.” OF HIS TIME AS A BOARD MEMBER, SPRING SAID, “I CAME TO LETHBRIDGE IN [2005]… THE MANAGER OF THE DAY, MURRAY CAMPBELL, WAS A LONGTIME FRIEND OF MINE AND HE ASKED ME [TO BE ON THE BOARD], AND I THOUGHT WELL IT IS A VERY WORTHWHILE ORGANIZATION. IT WAS A NOT-FOR -PROFIT ORGANIZATION AND DIDN’T INVOLVE A LOT OF HOURS.” SPRING WAS ON THE BOARD UNTIL 2011. SPRING REFERRED TO HIMSELF AS “A COLLECTOR AT HEART” AND AS A RESULT GATHERED THE DONATED ARTIFACTS DURING THE LAST DAYS OF THE LETHBRIDGE HANDI-BUS ASSOCIATION IN 2011. THEY WERE IN HIS POSSESSION FOR 5 TO 7 YEARS. HE EXPLAINS, “WELL I WAS ONE OF THREE THAT CLOSED DOWN AND CLOSED OUT HANDI BUS. WE HAD TO FILE WITH TAX CANADA AND OF COURSE, WORKERS COMP AND ALL THOSE THINGS SO FINALLY WE’RE AT THAT STAGE WHERE WE CAN GET RID OF A LOT OF THE PAPER RECORDS. IT PROMPTED THAT I SHOULD MAYBE DONATE THESE TO THE GALT MUSEUM FOR PROSPERITY… [T]HAT’S JUST MY NATURE, I GUESS, TO RETAIN THINGS AND SAY ‘WELL SOMEBODY WOULD BE INTERESTED IN THIS IN A FUTURE DATE.’” THE WINTER JACKET WAS WORN BY A DRIVER NAMED WAYNE HALES WHO WAS ONE OF THE LHB EMPLOYEES WHO TRANSFERRED TO THE CITY WHEN THE ORGANIZATION WAS TAKEN OVER. WHEN SPRING WAS GATHERING ITEMS RELATED TO THE ASSOCIATION HE REACHED OUT TO HALES: “I SPOKE WITH WAYNE HALES, AND SAID I HAD SOME OTHER THINGS DID HE HAVE ANYTHING? AND HE SAID, ‘OH, I THINK I’VE GOT A COAT IN THE CLOSET’, SO HE DUG IT OUT AND I ADDED IT TO THESE OTHER ITEMS.” PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES.
Catalogue Number
P20160009004
Acquisition Date
2016-04
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
Date Range From
1985
Date Range To
2002
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
PLASTIC
Catalogue Number
P20160008002
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1985
Date Range To
2002
Materials
PLASTIC
No. Pieces
1
Length
22.8
Width
5.0
Description
SIGN. PLASTIC. BLACK BACKGROUND. “FROG SHOP” ENGRAVED INTO PLASTIC, REVEALING IVORY LETTERING. TWO SMALL HOLES ON EITHER END OF SIGN FOR HANGING. REVERSE IS IVORY. EXCELLENT CONDITION. SLIGHT DISCOLOURATION OF IVORY PLASTIC.
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 DOOR PLAQUE 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 [FROG SHOP] 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 PLAQUE HUNG ON THE DOOR: “[I] 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.” HE DESCRIBED THE LOCATION OF THE PLAQUE: “THE SMALL FROG SHOP SIGN – THE CHEAP, LITTLE 2-PIECE PLASTIC LAMINATED SIGN –WAS SCREWED TO THE DOORWAY ON THE ENTRANCE TO THE SHOP FROM THE HALLWAY. THERE WAS A SAFETY GLASS WINDOW ABOVE IT. SO THAT WOULD’VE SAT ABOUT WAIST-HIGH AND THEY HAD THOSE SORTS OF SIGNS ON THE VARIOUS ROOMS AND OFFICES AND SHOPS IN THE FACILITY. YEAH, 2 LITTLE SCREWS. AND IT JUST SEEMED – IT NEEDED TO COME WITH THIS.” JOHN DESCRIBED WHAT A FROG IS: ”A FROG IS A PIECE OF TRACK – WELL IT’S A TRACK APPLIANCE, I’D GUESS YOU’D SAY, THAT IS A PORTION OF A SWITCH. IT’S THE PORTION OF A SWITCH, WHICH IS IMMOBILE AND ALLOWS A TRAIN TO TRAVEL EITHER ON THE MAIN LINE, WELL ON BOTH THE MAINLINE AND THE DIVERGING TRACK. IT’S DEPENDING ON THE WAY IN WHICH YOU APPROACH IT – EITHER IN THE FRONT OR BEHIND THE SWITCH. IT’S TWO LONG, HOT-BENT AND SHAVED WRAP RAILS THAT EXTEND ON BEYOND THE CASTING, AND TWO SHORT HEEL RAILS IN THE MIDDLE. THE CASTING IS EXPLOSION HARDENED MANGANESE. IT’S A MATERIAL. THEY’RE FOR THE MOST PART MANUFACTURED ONLY IN THE U.S. IN NORTH AMERICA – THE NEW ONES. AND EXPLOSION HARDENED MANGANESE IS A STRATEGIC MATERIAL AS DECLARED BY THE DEFENSE DEPARTMENT. CONSEQUENTIALLY, IF THEY DECIDE THAT NONE – NO MORE – IS LEAVING THE COUNTRY THIS YEAR – NO MORE LEAVES THE COUNTRY. AND THE CASTINGS ARE ONLY EXPLOSION HARDENED IN THE US, BECAUSE HERE THE FROST DOESN’T COME OUT OF THE GROUND UNTIL FAR TOO LATE IN THE YEAR. THERE USED TO BE A FACILITY IN WINNIPEG THAT DID IT. IF THE GROUND’S FROZEN THE SHOCKWAVES TRAVEL TOO FAR AND CREATE HAVOC WITH INFRASTRUCTURE AND GROUNDWATER, AND NO ONE LIKES TO LIVE CLOSE TO A FACILITY THAT IS CONSTANTLY BUSTING OFF EXPLOSIVE SHOTS. EXPLOSION HARDENING OF MANGANESE ALLOWS THE HARDENING PROCESS TO BE DRIVEN INTO THE CASTING AT LEAST A QUARTER OF AN INCH, IF NOT AN INCH, AND IT MAKES THE MATERIAL (AN ALREADY VERY HARD MATERIAL) ANYWHERE FROM ONE AND A HALF TIMES TO TWO TIMES STRONGER THAN IT OTHERWISE WOULD BE, WHICH ALLOWS IT NOT TO WEAR. AND MANGANESE, UNDER THE BEST OF CIRCUMSTANCES, HARDENED IN THIS FASHION DOESN’T READILY BREAK OUT. IT MAINTAINS ITS STRUCTURAL INTEGRITY. IT WILL OVER TIME AS WEAR TAKES PLACE. BUT IN THE END WHEN WE SCRAP THINGS, THE RAIL WOULD GO IN ONE CAR, THE MILD STEEL IN THE CASTINGS WOULD GO TO NATIONAL SALVAGE HERE IN LETHBRIDGE AT A LOWER PRICE - MUCH LOWER PRICE. THE RAILS WERE HIGH CHROME STEEL AND THEY WENT FOR A HIGH PRICE AND WERE SHIPPED BY RAILCAR IN LARGE VOLUME. BUT THE CASTINGS WERE SET ASIDE, AND THEY WERE ONLY SHIPPED BY TRUCK BECAUSE THEY WERE VERY VALUABLE. THEY WERE ALWAYS PUT UP TO TENDER, AND YEAH, I WOULD EXPECT THAT THE CASTING MORE THAN PAID OUR WAGES EVERY YEAR.” ASKED IF THERE WERE OTHER FROG SHOPS IN CANADA, JOHN SAID THE FOLLOWING: “NO, THERE WAS ONLY – CANADA PACIFIC ONLY EVER HAD ONE FROG SHOP. THAT WAS LETHBRIDGE. AND CN AT ONE TIME HAD ONE BACK EAST, WHERE I DON’T KNOW. I THINK IN WINNIPEG, THEY MIGHT’VE DONE SOME WORK FOR A PERIOD OF IN WHAT BECAME A BUTT WELDING PLANT, BUT I’M REALLY NOT CERTAIN. I’M REALLY NOT CERTAIN.” HE DISCUSSED VISITING ANOTHER FROG SHOP IN WASHINGTON STATE: “WORKING WITH PEOPLE FROM A WELDING WIRE MANUFACTURER IN KENTUCKY, AND ACTUALLY WITH A GREAT DEAL OF HELP FROM THE PEOPLE OF THE BURLINGTON NORTHERN’S FROG SHOP IN SPOKANE, WASHINGTON. MADE A FEW TRIPS DOWN THERE, SAW WHAT THEY WERE DOING. WE MUCH IMPROVED THE PROCESS AND IN THE END OUR REMANUFACTURED FROGS WERE APPROXIMATELY, OH I’D SAY, MAYBE A SIXTH – BETWEEN A QUARTER AND A SIXTH OF THE COST OF THEM NEW. AND ACCORDING TO A GREAT MANY FIELD SUPERVISORS, THEY STOOD UP BETTER THAN THE NEW ONES BECAUSE OF THE WAY THAT WE DID THINGS AND WHAT WE LEARNED – NOT ONLY FROM THE PEOPLE AT TRACKWELD, BUT FROM OUR FRIENDS AT BURLINGTON NORTHERN. SOMETHING THAT WOULD NEVER HAPPEN TODAY AND MAY NOT HAVE HAPPENED THEN, WHERE UPPER LEVEL MANAGEMENT AT BURLINGTON TO KNOW WHAT THEY WERE DOING WITH WHAT’S FUNDAMENTALITY A DIRECT COMPETITOR OF THEIRS. BUT THEY WERE WONDERFUL. THEY WERE REALLY, REALLY WONDERFUL TO US. AND IT ALSO MEANT THAT THEY EFFECTIVELY RECYCLED THE NON-REBUILDABLE MATERIALS. THE FROG IN ONE PIECE, SCRAPPED, IS NOT WORTH A GREAT DEAL BECAUSE IT IS COMPRISED OF FOUR HIGH CHROME RAILS, THEY’RE BOLTED INTO BIG CAST IRON BLOCKS INTO AN EXPLOSION HARDENED MANGANESE CASTING IN THE MIDDLE.” KEVIN ASKED IF THERE WAS A PHOTOGRAPH OF JOHN IN THE FROG SHOP, JOHN REPLIED THAT HE DOESN’T LIKE HIS PICTURE TO BE TAKEN AND SUGGESTED: “I WOULD EXPECT – LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARCHIVES WILL HAVE A PICTURE OF WALTER – CAN’T REMEMBER HIS LAST NAME – FROM STERLING, OR MAGRATH RATHER, WHO WAS A LONGTIME FROG SHOP FOREMAN. HE RETIRED NOT LONG AFTER I WENT IN THERE. I KNOW THERE WAS THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLE THAT HAD A PICTURE OF WALTER, AND PROBABLY HAD A PICTURE OF THE SHOP. MAYBE THROUGH THE OFFICE WINDOW. THE OFFICE WAS IN THE SECOND FLOOR WITH A LARGE WINDOW. KIND OF LIKE A JAIL CELL – I MEAN IT WAS KIND OF LIKE A PRISON YARD TOWN. SO YOU COULD LOOK OUT OVER THE PRISONERS. THE PICTURE MIGHT HAVE BEEN TAKEN THROUGH THAT, THOUGH THERE WAS GRILL-WORK – WIRE GRILL-WORK – IN THE GLASS. BUT AS I RECALL, SOMEWHERE IN THE ‘90S AND I’M THINKING JUST BEFORE I CAME TO WORK THERE OR SHORTLY THEREAFTER, THERE WAS A PICTURE IN THE HERALD. I KNOW THAT IN YOUR ARCHIVES THERE ARE GREAT PICTURES OF THE ROUNDHOUSE. WHEN AN OLD FELLOW THAT I WORKED WITH FOR A LONG TIME RETIRED, CAME IN HERE – HE WORKED AS A KID WITH HIS BROTHER ON THE TURNTABLE. THE TURNTABLE WAS STILL IN OPERATION AND HIS BROTHER LEFT AND FRANK CONTINUED ON TO WORK WITH THE RAILWAY. SO WE CAME IN, I CAME IN HERE AND GOT SOME PHOTOS FROM YOUR ARCHIVES. ONE SHOT FROM THE ROOF OF THE BREWERY OUT IN THE YARD. ANOTHER TAKEN IN THE YARD, UP CLOSE TO THE TURNTABLE, AND THEN A COUPLE OF TERRY BLAND’S COLOUR SHOTS AFTER, IN THE TIME THAT INTERVENED BETWEEN THE ROUNDHOUSE BEING TORN, WELL THE YARD BEING MOVED TO KIPP AND EVERYTHING BEING TORN UP. YEAH, THERE WERE SOME BEAUTIFUL PICTURES, YOU KNOW … WHAT HE DID FOR LETHBRIDGE WAS JUST MAGNIFICENT AND WHAT A FINE PHOTOGRAPHER HE WAS. AND WHAT A LESSON TO PEOPLE, TO OTHER PHOTOGRAPHERS, TO WEAR A CARBON-FILTER MASK. BECAUSE THAT’S WHAT KILLED HIM, THE FIXATIVE ON HIS DEVELOPING AND HE WAS SHY TO SHARE THAT.” FROM NEWSPAPER ARTICLES: AN ARTICLE PUBLISHED MARCH 25, 1927 IN THE MONTREAL GAZETTE EXPLAINS WHAT A FROG IS: “IN THE RAILROAD TRACK CIRCLES, A ‘FROG’ IS NOT AN AMPHIBIOUS QUADRUPED, BUT THE TIE THAT BINDS AND HOLDS THE RAILS.” A JANUARY 17, 2002 ARTICLE IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD DESCRIBES A FROG: “THE FROG IS AN X-SHAPED COMPONENT WHERE THE LEFT RAIL CROSS THE RIGHT RAIL AT A SIDING. ‘PURCHASING NEW FROGS IS A MORE EFFICIENT ALTERNATIVE TO INTERNAL REMANUFACTURING OF TRACK COMPONENTS,’ SAYS IAN LACOUVEE, A CPR SPOKESMAN IN CALGARY. THE LETHBRIDGE SHOP, PART OF THE COMPANY’S SOUTHERN ALBERTA OPERATION FOR DECADES, HANDLED REBUILDS FOR ALL OF THE CPR’S TRACK NETWORKS ACROSS WESTERN CANADA. IT WAS MOVED TO THE KIPP SITE IN THE EARLY 1980S WHEN CANADIAN PACIFIC SOLD ITS DOWNTOWN LETHBRIDGE RAILYARDS AND ROUNDHOUSE AREA TO THE CITY FOR REDEVELOPMENT.” THE 2002 ARTICLE CONTINUES, DISCUSSING THE CLOSURE OF THE SHOP IN KIPP: “IT’S THE RAILWAY’S LAST REPAIR SHOP OF ITS KIND IN WESTERN CANADA. BUT CANADIAN PACIFIC IS CLOSING ITS RAIL FROG REBUILDING FACILITY AT KIPP THIS SPRING. EIGHT JOBS WILL BE LOST … WHEN THE RAILWAY BEGINS TO BUY ALL ITS TRACK SWITCHING EQUIPMENT FROM AN OUTSIDE SUPPLIER INSTEAD OF REBUILDING WORN COMPONENTS … NOW THE COMPANY HOPES TO SELL THE KIPP FROG REPAIR BUILDING AND ABOUT FOUR ACRES OF INDUSTRIAL LAND, LOCATED TO THE WEST OF CP’S FREIGHT CAR REPAIR SHOP AND OFFICE BUILDING.” THE ARTICLE CARRIES ON TO SAY: “THE LETHBRIDGE SHOP WAS ONE OF MANY OPERATED BY CANADIAN PACIFIC ACROSS CANADA. UNTIL MAY, IT WILL BE THE LAST FACILITY REBUILDING FROGS AND RELATED EQUIPMENT FOR TRACK MAINTENANCE CREWS ACROSS WESTERN CANADA. NEW COMPONENTS, BUILT BY PROGRESS RAIL IN WINNIPEG, WILL BE INSTALLED INSTEAD WHEN EXISTING EQUIPMENT NEEDS REPLACEMENT. OLDER COMPONENTS WILL BE SCRAPPED. LETHBRIDGE EMPLOYEES WERE GIVEN 120-DAY NOTICE OF THE COMPANY’S PLANS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THEIR UNION AGREEMENT.” A MAY 20, 1982 ARTICLE HAD THE FOLLOWING TO SAY ABOUT THE PROPERTY: “WORK IS ABOUT 20 PER CENT COMPLETE ON CP RAIL’S NEW TRAIN MARSHALLING YARDS AT KIPP. THE $25.2-MILLION CONSTRUCTION PROJECT, EXPECTED TO BE COMPLETE DEC. 3, INCLUDES NEW ADMINISTRATION HEADQUARTERS AND A 2,322 SQUARE-METRE REPAIR SHOP.” MORE DETAILS ABOUT THE PROPERTY, INCLUDING A FLOOR PLAN (SEE PERMANENT FILE) COME FROM A BANKERS COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE ADVERTISEMENT: “BUILDING TOTALS 18,400 SQ. FT. MAIN FLOOR, AS WELL AS 1,000 SQ. FT. MEZZANINE. BUILDING DIVIDED UP INTO 3 MAIN AREAS WITH LARGE BAY DOORS IN EACH AREA. THE BUILDING HAS A 5 TON OVERHEAD CRANE AND UPWARDS OF 600 VOLTS FOR ELECTRICAL. LAND DIMENSIONS – APPROXIMATELY 3.2 ACRES. 600FT EAST TO WEST, APPROXIMATELY. 20FT ON EAST SIDE OF BUILDING. 25FT ON NORTH SIDE OF BUILDING. SHARED ROAD ON SOUTH SIDE. 400FT TO WEST OF BUILDING, APPROXIMATELY.” RELOCATING THE RAIL YARDS TO KIPP IS COVERED IN DETAIL IN SEVERAL 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
P20160008002
Acquisition Date
2016-03
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
SELF-CONTAINED BREATHING APPARATUS / AIR MASK AND HARNESS
Date Range From
1975
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
PLASTIC, METAL, COTTON
Catalogue Number
P20150010017
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
SELF-CONTAINED BREATHING APPARATUS / AIR MASK AND HARNESS
Date Range From
1975
Date Range To
2000
Materials
PLASTIC, METAL, COTTON
No. Pieces
5
Height
29.2
Length
68.8
Width
50.7
Description
SELF-CONTAINED BREATHING APPARATUS, INCLUDES CASE, HARNESS ASSEMBLY, MASK WITH STRAP, AND PAPER PASS CERTIFICATE. .A: CASE. BLACK MOULDED, TEXTURED PLASTIC CASE. ROUGHLY RECTANGULAR SHAPED. HINGED AT THE BACK, CASE HAS THREE HANDLES ON THE FRONT: ONE IS IN THE CENTRE OF THE CASE, WITH THE OTHER TWO ARE ON THE CORNERS OF THE BOX. THERE ARE TWO PLASTIC LATCHES BETWEEN THE THREE HANDLES. BLACK AND SILVER COLOURED STICKER ON THE TOP OF THE BOX READS: "MSA AIRMASK". A SECOND BLACK AND SILVER STICKER, ABOVE ONE OF THE LATCHES, READS: "ULTRALITE PRESSURE DEMAND" AND ALSO HAS "PASS IN BOX" HANDWRITTEN IN BLACKMARKER. A THIRD BLACK AND SILVER STICKER THAT READS "MSA AIRMASK" IS ON THE BOTTOM OF THE BOX. YELLOW PIECE OF DUCT TAPE ON RIGHT SIDE, HANDWRITTEN IN BLACK INK: "ULTRALITE BMR". INSIDE THE BOX IS SUBDIVIDED INTO COMPARTMENTS. AFFIXED TO THE INSIDE TOP OF THE LID IS A PAGE OF INSTRUCTIONS TITLED "MSA AIR MASK, PRESSURE DEMAND TYPE". A SMALL PIECE OF PAPER AFIXED TO THE INSIDE OF THE LID IS TITLED "PACKING ARRANGEMENT" AND HAS AN ILLUSTRATION OF HOW THE UNIT SHOULD BE PACKED AWAY. DIMENSIONS PROVIDED ABOVE CORRESPOND TO THIS CASE. OVERALL IN FAIR TO GOOD CONDITION. THE TWO "MSA AIRMASK" STICKERS HAVE PARTIALLY PEELED AWAY, WITH THE TOP STICKER MISSING THE BOTTOM OF "ASK" IN "MASK" AND WITH THE BOTTOM STICKER MISSING PARTS OF THE "MSA": THE "M" AND "A" ARE PARTIALLY MISSING, WHILE THE "S" IS ENTIRELY GONE; "MASK" OF THIS STICKER IS ALSO VERY DAMAGED. LATCH BELOW THE "ULTRALITE" STICKER IS IN GOOD CONDITION, WHILE THE OTHER IS PARTIALLY BROKEN. SEVERAL SCUFFS AND SCRATCHES IN THE PLASTIC, ESPECIALLY ALONG THE BOTTOM. .B: HARNESS ASSEMBLY. BLACK PLASTIC, METAL, AND FABRIC WITH SILVER COLOURED METAL. OUTER PORTION OF HARNESS DESIGNED TO HOLD BOTTLE OF COMPRESSED AIR. BLACK METAL BRACKET RUNS VERTICALLY UP AND DOWN THE HARNESS AND HAS A SILVER COLOURED CIRCULAR METAL BAND TO HOLD TANK IN PLACE. THE SILVER BAND IS 7.7CM WIDE AND HAS TWO BLACK STICKERS WITH “MSA” IN YELLOW STUCK ON. BOTTOM OF BLACK METAL BRACKET HAS A TRIANGULAR SHAPED PIECE, WITH A ROUND RUBBER TIP, TO HOLD THE BOTTOM OF THE AIR TANK IN PLACE. BELOW SILVER BAND IS A STICKER, WITH A DISCOLOURED WHITE BACKGROUND AND BLACK LETTERS GIVING INSTRUCTIONS FOR USE, ENTITLED: “CUSTOM 4500/ULTRALITE BELT MOUNTED SCBA. OPEN CIRCUIT, PRESSURE-DEMAND ENTRY AND ESCAPE SELF-CONTAINED BREATHING APPARATUS OR COMBINATION SELF-CONTAINED BREATHING APPARATUS AND TYPE C SUPPLIED AIR RESPIRATOR.” SILVER BAND FOR TANK HAS A HANDLE THAT EXPANDS AND CONTRACTS THE BAND, TO ALLOW FOR REMOVAL AND INSTALLATION OF AIR TANK. AT THE TOP OF THE BLACK METAL BRACKET, THERE IS A CIRCULAR SECTION WHICH ALLOWS FOR THE ATTACHMENT OF TWO BLACK PADDED FABRIC SHOULDER STRAPS. THESE STRAPS ARE BOLTED ON WITH BLACK AND SILVER COLOURED BOLTS. BLACK METAL BRACKET ATTACHES AT WAIST AREA TO BLACK MOULDED PIECE OF PLASTIC. BLACK MOULDED PLASTIC FITS AROUND THE HIP AREA OF THE WEARER. SHOULDER STRAPS COME DOWN FROM TOP OF METAL BRACKET AND ATTACH TO THIS BLACK PLASTIC JUST ABOVE THE HIP. SHOULDER STRAPS ARE PADDED AND HAVE A SECOND SMALLER STRAP, WHICH WOULD CROSS THE WEARER’S CHEST WITH A BLACK SIDE RELEASE PLASTIC BUCKLE, WITH THE FEMALE COMPONENT ON THE RIGHT STRAP. ON EACH STRAP BELOW THE PLASTIC BUCKLE IS A SILVER COLOURED “D” RING. ABOVE THE BUCKLE ON EACH STRAP IS A SILVER COLOURED SILK SCREEN SECTION WITH “MSA”. AT THE BOTTOM WAIST PORTION OF THE MOULDED PLASTIC IS ANOTHER BLACK FABRIC STRAP, TO GO AROUND THE WEARER’S WAIST. THE BELT ATTACHES WITH A SILVER COLOURED METAL LATCH PLATE ON THE RIGHT SIDE, WHICH FITS INTO A BLACK PLASTIC BUCKLE, WITH A BLACK PLASTIC BUTTON TO RELASE, ON THE WEARER’S LEFT SIDE. ATTACHED TO THE LEFT SIDE OF THE BELT IS A PRESSURE REGULATOR AND HIGH PRESSURE SUPPLY HOSE. THE PRESSURE REGULATOR CONSISTS OF BLACK METAL AND PLASTIC, AND GOLD AND RED COLOURED METAL. A CIRCULAR GOLD COLOURED METAL PIECE HAS REMNANTS OF TWO STICKERS ON ITS FACE: “MSA AIR MASK – MFD BY MINE SAFETY APPLIANCES COMPANY – PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA – PRESSURE DEMAND.” BELOW IT IS A HOSE COUPLING. THIS COUPLING HAS A BLACK RUBBER CAP, EMBOSSED WITH “FHR”. BESIDE THIS IS AN AIR PRESSURE GAUGE: BLACK METAL TEXTURED EDGE, GLASS FACE, AND RUBBER ENCASING. THE FACE OF THE GAUGE IS OFF-WHITE WITH A DIAL INCREASING IN INCREMENTS OF 5 (5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30), WITH A RED SECTION FROM 0-5, A YELLOW SECTION BETWEEN 20 AND 25, AND A GREY SECTION AT 30. BELOW THE DIAL IS “PSI X 100 – USE NO OIL – MSA 18” BESIDE THE GAUGE IS A RED COLOURED METAL KNOB, WITH “ß OPEN – BY PASS” EMBOSSED ON FRONT FACE. BESIDE THIS RED KNOB IS A GOLD COLOURED KNOB WITH A SILVER COLOURED TAB “^PUSH^”. ON THE FACE OF THE GOLD KNOB, EMBOSSED, IS “MAIN LINE ^” WITH “MSA” IN CENTRE. OPPOSITIE THE PRESSURE GAUGE IS A HIGH PRESSURE SUPPLY HOSE. THE HOSE IS BLACK PLASTIC AND FABRIC. ON THE END OF THIS HOSE IS A SILVER COLOURED BELL, USED AS A LOW AIR ALARM. AT THE VERY END OF THE HOSE IS A BLACK TEXTURED METAL COUPLING. .C: MASK WITH HOSE. BLACK PLASTIC RESPIRATOR MASK WITH CLEAR PLASTIC VISOR. FITTED NOSE PIECE WITH TWO SMALL CIRCLES ON EITHER SIDE OF BRIDGE OF NOSE PIECE. EACH CIRCLE HAS BLACK PLASTIC SPOKES AND A TRANSPARENT FLAP, WHICH IS ON THE INSIDE OF THE NOSE PIECE. HANDWRITTEN IN GOLD COLOURED INK, ON THE INSIDE OF NOSE PIECE, “G29C” OR “929C”. FRONT OF NOSE PIECE, VISIBLE THROUGH THE VISOR, HAS “MEDIUM” EMBOSSED ONTO MASK. FIVE BLACK PLASTIC STRAPS WITH SILVER COLOURED BUCKLES ALLOW MASK TO BE SECURELY TIGHTENED ONTO THE HEAD. STRAPS MEET AT A ROUGHLY STAR-SHAPED PIECE THAT SITS AT THE BACK OF THE HEAD. THIS STAR-SHAPED PIECE HAS THE FOLLOWING EMBOSSED ONTO THE PLASTIC: “M2 C5 – MSA – PULL FRONT STRAP LAST – U”. ABOVE THE “M2 C5” IS AN EMBOSSED MULTI-SPOKED CIRCLE. EMBOSSED IN THE CENTRE OF THE CIRCLE: “93 – 94 – 95” EACH OF THE FIVE STRAPS ARE LABELLED; TWO AT THE BASE OF MASK, EACH LABELLED “NECK”, NEXT TWO UP ARE “SIDE”, AND THE FIFTH STRAP AT THE TOP OF THE MASK IS “FRONT”. ON FRONT OF MASK, AT THE MOUTH AREA, IS A LONG ACCORDION-STYLE HOSE. IT IS ATTACHED TO THE MASK WITH A SILVER COLOURED METAL CLAMP. ON THE NUT OF THIS CLAMP IS WRITTEN “ALL STAINLESS BREEZE”. BELOW IS A BLACK METAL BAND, WHICH IS STAMPED IN YELLOW WITH “-18 TINNERMAN”. BELOW THAT THERE IS A SILVER COLOURED METAL RING, WHICH HAS A BLACK FABRIC STRAP ATTACHED (SEE BELOW FOR DESCRIPTION OF THIS ITEM, P20150010017D). THE BOTTOM OF THE HOSE HAS A BLACK METAL BAND AND THEN A SILVER COLOURED, TEXTURED METAL PIECE TO CONNECT TO THE AIR SUPPLY CANISTER. BELOW THE HOSE CONNECTION, AT THE CHIN AREA OF THE MASK, IS A MEDIUM-LIGHT GREY CIRCLE, EMBOSSED WITH “MSA – U.S. PAT. 4,007,758”. TO THE RIGHT OF THE HOSE ATTACHEMENT HANDWRITTEN IN GREEN INK IS “#4”. ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE MASK, BETWEEN THE “NECK” AND “SIDE” STRAPS IS A FAINT STAMP IN YELLOW “7-212-“. EMBOSSED IN CENTRE OF MASK, ABOVE FACE VISOR, IS “MSA” IN A CIRCLE. INSIDE OF THE HOSE ATTACHMENT, BELOW THE MOULDED NOSE AREA, IS A BLACK DISK WITH HOLES IN IT. VISIBLE THROUGH THESE HOLES IS A PIECE OF GOLD-COLOURED METAL. DIMENSIONS OF MASK: HOSE IS 83.5CM LONG; VISOR IS 18CM WIDE. .D: STRAP ON MASK. BLACK FABRIC STRAP, WITH TWO BLACK SNAPS. SNAPS ONTO SILVER-COLOURED METAL RING AROUND THE HOSE. STRAP IS 92.5CM LONG AND 1.9CM WIDE. OVERALL CONDITION OF B, C, D: WELL WORN. ALL STICKERS SHOW SIGNS OF WEAR: DISCOLOURATION AND FINISH OF STICKERS SCRATCHED. STRUCTRUALLY IN GOOD CONDITION. MANY SCUFFS AND SCRATCHES ALL OVER. ALL FABRIC IN GOOD CONDITION. RUBBER RETAINS FLEXIBILITY AND PLASTICS ARE IN GOOD SHAPE WITH NO CRACKS. .E: PAPER PASS CERTIFICATE. GOLDENROD COLOURED PAPER. READS: "MSA - ULTRALITE DP - B.M.R. C/W FACEMASK. THIS UNIT TESTED AND HAD ACCEPTABLE PERFORMANCE ON SEPTEMBER 02, 2008. KEN HOBIAK" (WITH KEN'S SIGNATURE ABOVE HIS TYPED NAME). REVERSE OF PAPER: "THIS UNI PERFORM KEN H" (APPEARS TO HAVE MISPRINTED ON THIS SIDE). PAPER IS STANDARD LETTER SIZE. CONDITION IS GOOD: PAPER HAS BEEN CRUMBLED AND HAS A FEW SMALL TEARS AROUND THE OUTSIDE.
Subjects
MINING & MINERAL HARVESTING T&E
Historical Association
SAFETY SERVICES
History
THIS SELF-CONTAINED BREATHING APPARATUS (SCBA) WAS USED BY THE LETHBRIDGE FIRE DEPARTMENT. IN A WRITTEN STATEMENT PROVIDED AT THE TIME OF DONATION, JESSE KURTZ, DEPUTY CHIEF – SUPPORT SERVICES (RETIRED), EXPLAINED THAT THE MASK WAS “USED BY ALL FIREFIGHTERS TO CONNECT TO THE BELT MOUNTED REGULATOR SCBA TO ENTER HAZARDOUS ATMOSPHERES” AND THAT THE HARNESS WAS “USED BY ALL FIREFIGHTERS TO BREATH IN HAZARDOUS (SMOKY) ATMOSPHERES.” HE CONTINUED SAYING THAT THERE ARE “MORE MODERN MASK MOUNTED REGULATOR SCBAS [THAT HAVE BEEN] DEVELOPED AND PURCHASED.” IN THE SUMMER OF 2015, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN, CONDUCTED A SERIES OF INTERVIEWS WITH CURRENT AND FORMER MEMBERS OF THE FIRE DEPARTMENT, INCLUDING: CLIFF “CHARLIE” BROWN (HIRED IN 1966, RETIRED 2004), TREVOR LAZENBY (HIRED IN 1994), AND LAWRENCE DZUREN (HIRED 1959, RETIRED 1992). BROWN EXPLAINED THAT THIS SCBA “WAS AN ON-DEMAND REGULATOR. THAT WAS NICE TO HAVE DEMAND, BECAUSE NO MATTER WHO IT WAS, THE HARDER YOU BREATHED, THE MORE AIR IT WOULD GIVE YOU. THE HARNESS IS PROBABLY MORE COMFORTABLE [THAN PREVIOUS ONES]. SOME GUYS WOULD USE THREE TANKS, SO THE HARNESS WAS A LITTLE BIT MORE COMFORTABLE FOR THEM. THEY’D COME OUT, THEY’D TURN AROUND, THEY WOULDN’T EVEN TAKE OFF THEIR GEAR. THEY’D TURN AROUND, THERE’D BE GUYS WHO WOULD TAKE THE TANK OFF, PUT ANOTHER TANK ON, HOOK IT ALL UP, A GOOD PAT ON THE BACK, AND BACK IN THEY’D GO WITH ANOTHER TANK. THEY’D DO THAT THREE TIMES BEFORE … THEY WERE JUST TOO TIRED … WE DIDN’T HAVE AN AIR COMPRESSOR TO FILL OUR OWN TANKS. I CAN’T REMEMBER WHERE THEY WENT. THEY MUST HAVE WENT TO THE SWIMMING POOL.” LAZENBY CONTINUED SAYING THAT THIS SCBA WAS “A VERY, VERY OLDER GENERATION SCBA BOTTLE. THESE WERE KIND OF RUDIMENTARY DESIGN. THE BOTTLE WAS STEEL ON THESE, WHICH MADE THEM VERY, VERY HEAVY. MODERN BOTTLES ARE FIBERGLASS WRAPPED WHICH MAKES THEM MUCH, MUCH LIGHTER; ADDED TO WHICH, IT HAD A BARELY PADDED HARNESS SYSTEM ON IT AND BASICALLY A GLORIFIED SEATBELT STRAP FOR A WAIST STRAP. SO WITH THESE KINDS OF THINGS, YOU DON’T WANT TO KEEP A TON OF WEIGHT ON YOUR SHOULDERS BECAUSE IT FATIGUES YOUR UPPER BODY VERY, VERY QUICKLY WHEN YOU’RE WORKING. BUT WITH THIS TYPE OF HARNESS ON THEM, IF YOU CINCHED THE WAIST UP REALLY TIGHT AND TOOK THE PRESSURE OFF YOUR SHOULDERS, THIS JUST SEEMED TO DIG INTO YOUR WAIST LIKE CRAZY, LIKE IT WAS VERY UNCOMFORTABLE TO WEAR … THAT BEING SAID, WHEN GUYS WENT TO THIS FROM LIKE THE CANISTERS THAT THEY USED TO WEAR, THIS MUST HAVE BEEN LIKE A NEW LEASE ON LIFE FOR THESE GUYS … I WORE THESE IN TRAINING – I DON’T THINK I EVER WORE ONE OF THESE BOTTLES ON AN ACTUAL FIRE CALL … WE HAD THE FIBERGLASS ONES IN FRONTLINE SERVICE WHEN I STARTED SO THIS WOULD BE PRE-1994, IF I’M NOT MISTAKEN. I DON’T THINK WE HAD THESE ON THE TRUCKS IN ’94. THEY WERE AROUND AND THEY WERE BACKUPS, BUT THEY WEREN’T FRONTLINE.” HE ELABORATED FURTHER, SAYING: “WE DIDN’T HAVE INDIVIDUAL MASKS; WE SHARED MASKS ON THE FIRE DEPARTMENT BACK THEN … THERE WASN’T ENOUGH MONEY FOR THEM TO BUY US OUR OWN INDIVIDUAL FACE PIECE … SO WHAT WE USED TO DO IS AFTER EVERY INCIDENT OR AFTER EVERY TIME YOU WORE ONE OF THESE THINGS, IT WOULD COME OFF THE TRUCK, WE WOULD HAVE A BOTTLE OF MSA MASK CLEANER THAT WE WOULD PUT INTO A TUB, WE WOULD MAKE A SOAPY WATER SOLUTION, WE WOULD WASH THE MASK, RINSE THE MASK, LET IT HANG TO DRY, AND THE NEXT PERSON WOULD USE IT AS THE NEXT SHIFT CAME ON.” HE ADDED THAT NOW EVERYONE IN THE DEPARTMENT HAS THEIR OWN MASK: “WE’VE HAD OUR OWN MASKS FOR 10-12 YEARS. WE STILL SHARE THE SCBAS AS FAR AS THE BOTTLE AND THE HARNESS GOES … THEY’RE IN THE RACKS ON THE TRUCK, IN THE BACKS OF THE SEATS AND DOWN IN BY THE HOSE OR THE PUMP COMPARTMENTS.” IN DISCUSSING WHY THIS MODEL IS NO LONGER USED, LAZENBY STATED: “THIS HOSE EASILY CRIMPED SO YOUR AIR SUPPLY COULD BE CUT OFF. THE AIR SUPPLY THAT NOW GOES FROM THE TANK TO YOUR MASK IS A MUCH MORE RIGID HOSE THAT, REALLY, YOU’D HAVE TO BASICALLY BEND IT IN HALF TO STOP THE FLOW OF AIR.” DZUREN ADDED FURTHER: “PRIOR TO [THIS] OUR BREATHING APPARATUS WAS WHAT THEY CALLED A CANISTER TYPE OF BREATHING APPARATUS … IT WAS JUST A CANISTER THAT YOU HAD IN FRONT OF YOU HERE AND IT WAS LAYERS OF … GEL, AND SAND, AND SILICA … THERE WAS A SHELF-LIFE WITH THOSE THINGS. IF YOU USED THEM, YOU PRETTY WELL HAD TO DISCARD THEM AFTER YOU USED THEM.” WHEN ASKED WHEN THIS TYPE OF SCBA CAME INTO SERVICE, DZUREN STATED: “I WOULD PROBABLY SAY MAYBE IN THE ‘70S SOMETIME? … I RECALL GUYS GOING IN WHEN WE JUST HAD THOSE CANISTERS. THEY WOULD GO WITHOUT ANYTHING. AND THEY WOULD COME OUT AFTER A WHILE AND THEY WOULD BE BARFING THEIR GUYS OUT … IT SEEMED TO BE, EVEN PRIOR TO MY TIME, WHEN THE STORIES I HEARD FROM GUYS THERE LONGER THAN MYSELF, THAT SEEMED TO BE THE MACHO THING. GET IN THERE AND THEY’D GET IN THERE WITHOUT A MASK. BUT EVENTUALLY, YOU KNOW, BETTER THINKING CAME ALONG AND SAID ‘DON’T BE SILLY, GET SOME STUFF ON THERE.’ BUT ONCE THEY GOT IT, AND THEY STARTED TO USE IT, YOU DID FEEL A LOT BETTER GOING IN, ‘CAUSE PRIOR TO USE GETTING THAT WE HEARD THE HORROR STORIES OF GUYS WHO DID SUCCUMB TO THE ELEMENTS BECAUSE OF ALL THOSE CANISTER TYPES, BUT ONCE THEY GOT [THIS SCBA] IT WAS BETTER.” SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTS AND ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT THE LETHBRIDGE FIRE DEPARTMENT.
Catalogue Number
P20150010017
Acquisition Date
2015-02
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail

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