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Other Name
WEDGE CAP, "ANDERSON SISTERS"
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1970
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
FELT, THREAD, PLASTIC
Catalogue Number
P20160044001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
WEDGE CAP, "ANDERSON SISTERS"
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1970
Materials
FELT, THREAD, PLASTIC
No. Pieces
1
Height
11
Length
30
Width
1.7
Description
BLACK FELT WEDGE CAP WITH RED ACCENTS STITCHING. TWO RED AND GOLD PLASTIC BEADS ON THE FRONT EDGE. CURSIVE “ANDERSON SISTERS” EMBROIDERED IN RED ON ONE SIDE AND “ALICE” ON THE OTHER. VERY GOOD CONDITION: MAKEUP STAINS PRESENT OF THE INSIDE BRIM OF THE HAT.
Subjects
CLOTHING-HEADWEAR
Historical Association
LEISURE
PERSONAL CARE
History
THE LATE ALICE PEARL HUMMEL (13 JUNE 1922 – 7 APRIL 2016) PERFORMED AS PART OF THE “ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA” ALONGSIDE HER SISTERS – FLORENCE JEANNETTE MCINTOSH (MAY 1917 – 18 MARCH 1999), MARIE EVELYN POPSON (C.1921 - 8 MARCH 2008) AND RUTH GINZER (C. 1926 - D. 2016). THE FOUR DAUGHTERS WERE BORN TO PARENTS, MARTIN EDWARD ANDERSON AND IDA JOHANNA ANDERSON (NEE JOHNSON). THE BAND WAS A FAMILY AFFAIR THAT SAW GREAT SUCCESS IN THE SOUTHERN ALBERTA REGION. ALICE’S DAUGHTERS, ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL, HONOURED THEIR MOTHER’S WISHES TO DONATE A NUMBER OF HER EFFECTS FROM HER TIME WITH LETHBRIDGE BAND TO THE MUSEUM. THIS WEDGE CAP WAS A COMPONENT OF THE UNIFORM THE SISTERS WORE WHEN THEY PERFORMED AT PLACES SUCH AS ARMY BASES AND DANCE HALLS. THIS CAP BELONGED TO ALICE, THE SECOND YOUNGEST OF THE SISTERS. IN 16 DECEMBER 2016, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE DAUGHTERS ABOUT THE DONATION. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM THAT EXCHANGE: RUTH STATES, “THE HAT WOULD BE AT LEAST FROM 1940 - ’41… ALL OF THE SISTERS HAD [A CAP AND] THEY WERE SPECIAL MADE FOR THEM. ‘ANDERSON SISTERS’ WAS EMBROIDERED ON ONE SIDE AND THEN THEIR NAMES ON THE OTHER. THEY WERE MADE TO GO WITH THESE MILITARY LOOKING DRESSES THAT THEY HAD. THEY TYPICALLY ALWAYS DRESSED ALIKE FOR THE PERFORMANCES. THE HATS WERE MADE TO GO ALONG WITH THEM WHEN THEY WERE DOING PERFORMANCES AT THE MILITARY BASES.” “[THE SISTERS] USUALLY CAME UP WITH [THE UNIFORM] COLLECTIVELY,” RUTH EXPLAINED, “AND THEY WORKED WITH A TAILOR IN TOWN WHO ACTUALLY DID SOME OF THEIR SUITS. THERE MIGHT BE A LABEL THAT I COULD FIND WITH REGARDS TO WHAT THAT COMPANY WAS….THERE WERE USUALLY ALWAYS TAILORS INVOLVED, AND WHEN THEY CAME UP WITH AN IDEA OR CONCEPT, THEY’D HAVE IT DONE AT THE SAME PLACE, BUT I DON’T HAVE THE DETAILS ON THAT.” MANY OF THE ARTIFACTS DONATED TO THE MUSEUM, INCLUDING THIS CAP, WERE KEPT TOGETHER IN ONE OF ALICE’S TRUNKS. WHEN RUTH AND ELEANOR WERE HELPING THEIR MOTHER SORT HER THINGS, SHE EXPLAINED THE ITEMS IN THE TRUNK TO THEM. THE WEDGE CAP CAME TO THE MUSEUM ENCLOSED IN A SHADOW BOX COMPLETE WITH ARTICLE CLIPPINGS AND PHOTOGRAPHS, WHICH WAS ASSEMBLED FOR A COMMUNITY DISPLAY. PERMISSION WAS GRANTED BY THE DONOR TO REMOVE THE CAP FROM THE BOX. SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR PHOTOGRAPH OF THE BOX. THE FOLLOWING IS A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AS TOLD BY DONORS ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW: “[THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS] THE LONGEST RUNNING GROUP AT WATERTON LAKES PAVILION … [WHERE THEY PLAYED] FOR FIVE YEARS STRAIGHT,” ELEANOR EXPLAINED, “IN ADDITION TO DOING ALL KINDS OF OTHER THINGS, THEY WERE CONSTANTLY TRAVELLING [AND] WE HAVE THE RECORDINGS OF THAT.” RUTH ADDED, “THEY WERE ORIGINALLY FROM MONITOR (SASK). IN THE DIRTY 30S, WHEN THINGS GOT BAD FOR A LOT OF FARMS, THEY FOUND A WAY TO HAVE MUSIC LESSONS AND…PLAY FOR LOCAL DANCES. [ULTIMATELY, THE FAMILY] DECIDED TO LEAVE THE FARM AND HEADED OUT IN THE DIRECTION OF LETHBRIDGE (VIA DRUMHELLER). IT WAS TOUGH TIMES FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE IN THE 30S IN ALBERTA, BUT THE GIRLS, WITH THE TALENT THEY HAD, … HAD A WAY OUT…THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY. AND THEN THE ORCHESTRA REALLY CAME OUT OF THAT...” THE OBITUARY OF DONORS’ GRANDFATHER, MARTIN ANDERSON, (PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD, 1981) STATES THE FAMILY ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940. “THEY WERE SERIOUS MUSICIANS - VERY HUMBLE AND VERY QUIET,” RUTH CONTINUED, “[AS FAR AS PROMOTING THE BAND,] THAT WAS MORE GRANDPA’S JOB. WHEN IT CAME TO MUSIC, IT WAS A GIFT THEY PASSED ON - IN THE LATE ‘30S, ‘40S AND INTO THE ‘50S A BIT – [AND] IT WAS SOMETHING THEY FELT REALLY PRIVILEGED TO BE ABLE TO CONTRIBUTE IN THEIR OWN COMMUNITIES. [DURING] THE WAR YEARS, [THEY PLAYED FOR] THE ARMY BASES THAT WERE ALL CLOSE HERE AND [THEY WERE] A PART OF THAT HISTORY.” “[THEY WERE] ON THE ROAD 6 DAYS A WEEK [WITH THEIR CAR AND TRAILER]… PLAYING NOT JUST IN LETHBRIDGE [BUT] FAR REACHING OVER IN B.C., THE NORTHERN STATES, AND QUITE FAR NORTH IN ALBERTA. SO THEY WERE A REAL PART OF THINGS AND WORKED REAL HARD. I THINK IT’S AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE MUSIC HISTORY IN ALBERTA. THEY WERE, AFTER THE ANDERSON SISTERS [BAND WAS FINISHED], PROUD TO TAKE [MUSIC] INTO THE COMMUNITIES WHERE THEY WERE TEACHERS AND STILL PERFORMERS EVEN PAST THE FOUR OF THEM BEING TOGETHER.” WHEN ASKED ABOUT THEIR PERSONAL MEMORIES OF THE SISTERS PERFORMING TOGETHER, RUTH ANSWERED, “WELL ELEANOR WOULD HAVE BEEN A TODDLER, MYSELF AS WELL, THE LAST FEW TIMES THAT THEY PERFORMED AS THE ANDERSON SISTERS IN THAT ERA. BUT GROWING UP THROUGH THE YEARS, THERE WASN’T A TIME WHEN WE GOT TOGETHER AS A FAMILY WHERE WE DIDN’T HAVE A LOT OF MUSIC. THEY WOULD PLAY FOR US [AND] THEY WERE CALLED BACK SOMETIMES TO PERFORM AT COMMUNITY EVENTS… THE LAST ONE THAT I RECALL WAS SOMETHING IN GRANUM FOR AN ELKS 5OTH ANNIVERSARY IN GRANUM…THAT WAS THE LAST TIME PUBLICLY I REMEMBER.” THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM A HISTORY PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD IN 24 MAY 2003 TITLED, “SISTER ACT: SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S SWINGIN’ ANDERSON SISTERS WERE ALL THE RAGE DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR.” “IT WAS THE ERA OF SWUNG, OF MUSIC WITH MEMORABLE LYRICS, AND OF DANCE. IT WAS ALSO THE TIME OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR AND THE HEYDAY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS, AND LITERALLY EVERY TOWN IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WAS SWINGING AND SWAYING TO THE SOUNDS OF FLORENCE, MARIE, ALICE, AND RUTH." "DUBBED THE FOUR MAIDS OF MELODY BY CJOC RADIO…" THE ARTICLE CONTINUED, "[THE SISTERS] WERE THE TOAST OF SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S DANCE HALLS." INTERVIEWED FOR THE ARTICLE WAS ONE OF THE SISTERS, MARIE POPSON. SHE WAS QUOTED, "WE PLAYED THE TRIANON A LOT, THE OLD BUCKET OF BLOOD. THEY CALLED IT THAT BECAUSE IT WAS DURING THE WAR AND THERE WERE A LOT OF FIGHTS. PRIOR TO AND AFTER THE TRIANON WAS OK, BUT IT WAS REAL LIVELY DURING THE WAR… THE CROWDS [THERE] WERE SO LARGE THEY WERE AFRAID THE FLOOR WOULD WEAKEN… THE DANCE FLOOR WAS ON THE SECOND STORY OF THE BUILDING." THE ARTICLE EXPLAINED, "FLORENCE WAS THE ELDEST OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND AS SUCH WAS THE BAND’S LEADER. [SHE] PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND THE PIANO. MARIE… PLAYED THE PIANO AND ALICE PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND CLARINET. RUTH, 'THE BABY,' … PLAYED THE DRUMS, CLARINET AND TRUMPET." THE ARTICLE READS, "'RUTH STARTED PLAYING THE DRUMS AT AGE 11 AND LATER SHE COULD HANDLE THE DRUMMING WITH HER FEET AND PLAY THE TRUMPET AT THE SAME TIME FOR SOME OF OUR NUMBERS,’ SAYS MARIE WITH A TWIRL OF THE HAND. ‘FLO AND ALICE WERE OUR MAIN SINGERS AND I MADE UP THE TRIO SOMETIMES. RUTH DIDN’T SING. WHEN WE SANG AS A TRIO RUTH WOULD PLAY THE PIANO. ALICE WOULD ALSO SING SOLO. WE PLAYED ALL THE POPULAR MUSIC OF THE DAY AND OLD-TIME MUSIC AS WELL… MY SISTERS COULD ALSO PLAY THAT FAST-PACED SQUARE DANCE MUSIC ON THE SAX, AND THAT WAS SOMETHING. WE PLAYED WALTZES, POLKAS AND EVERYTHING… YOU NAME IT, WE PLAYED IT... OUR THEME SONG WAS BREEZING ALONG WITH THE BREEZE BUT MY FAVOURITE HAD TO BE SIDE BY SIDE, WHICH WE WERE AS A GROUP. WE WERE VERY CLOSE.'" THAT ARTICLE STATES THAT MARTIN AND IDA HAD EIGHT DAUGHTERS, IN FACT, BUT ONLY FOUR LIVED TO BECOME TEENAGERS. THE FOUR SURVIVING SISTERS BEGAN THEIR MUSICAL EDUCATION AT AN EARLY AGE, ALL BEGINNING WITH PIANO. THEY BEGAN PLAYING FOR VARIOUS TYPES OF EVENTS NEAR MONITOR, WHERE THEY WERE BORN. WHILE FLORENCE WAS WITH THE ALL GIRLS BAND IN CALGARY, THE THREE YOUNGER SISTERS FORMED THEIR OWN ORCHESTRA, MAKING THEIR DEBUT IN 1937. THE FOLLOWING YEAR, AFTER FLORENCE’S RETURN, THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS FORMED. UPON ARRIVING IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940, THEY AUDITIONED FOR THE CJOC RADIO STATION. THE ARTICLE STATES, “FOUR DAYS LATER THEY WERE ON THE AIR, LIVE, ON THE CHRISTMAS SHOPPER PROGRAM HEARD THREE TIMES A WEEK. THEY WERE ALSO ON THE AIR MONDAY NIGHTS FROM 9:15 TO 9:30 PM.” A NOTE THAT CAME WITH THE DONATION SAYS THE WEEKLY SHOW WITH CJOC WAS “BROADCAST LIVE ‘FROM HIGH ATOP THE MARQUIS HOTEL.’” BACK IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW AT THE MUSEUM, ALICE’S DAUGHTER ELEANOR COMMENTS ON THE BAND’S LEGACY. “I VOLUNTEER AT THE HOSPITAL [AND PLAY THE PIANO]. I USUALLY HAVE SENIORS INVOLVED THERE… AND WHEN I MENTION MY MOM’S NAME OR MY AUNT’S NAME, THEY REMEMBER DANCING TO THE ANDERSON SISTERS. SO, YOU KNOW, EVEN IN THIS DAY AND AGE, [PEOPLE] REMEMBER HOW MUCH FUN THEY HAD. [IT SHOWS] HOW RESPECTED THEY WERE AND I FIND THAT [BACKGROUND] JUST THRILLING.” “[MUSIC] WAS THEIR LIVELIHOOD,” RUTH ILLUMINATED, “SO [IT] WAS DRIVING THEM [THROUGH] TOUGH TIMES (SUCH AS THE DEPRESSION IN ALBERTA). THE GIRLS TOGETHER [WITH] THE TALENT THEY HAD, HAD A WAY OUT, WHERE A LOT OF OTHER PEOPLE HAD SOME BIGGER STRUGGLES. AND IT WAS THE TALENT IN THEM BEING TOGETHER. THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY.” PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES AND CLIPPINGS ABOUT THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND THEIR SHOWS, AND FAMILY OBITUARIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160044001
Acquisition Date
2016-12
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1970
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
METAL
Catalogue Number
P20160044002
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1970
Materials
METAL
No. Pieces
1
Length
9.5
Width
0.6
Description
SMALL, METAL MECHANICAL PENCIL WITH ADJUSTABLE BALL CHAIN ATTACHMENT. PENCIL HAS RAISED FILIGREE-DESIGN ELEMENTS THAT IS DETACHABLE. GOOD CONDITION: OVERALL TARNISHING OF METAL
Subjects
WRITTEN COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
LEISURE
DOMESTIC
History
THE LATE ALICE PEARL HUMMEL (13 JUNE 1922 – 7 APRIL 2016) PERFORMED AS PART OF THE “ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA” ALONGSIDE HER SISTERS – FLORENCE JEANNETTE MCINTOSH (MAY 1917 – 18 MARCH 1999), MARIE EVELYN POPSON (C.1921 - 8 MARCH 2008) AND RUTH GINZER (C. 1926 - D. 2016). THE FOUR DAUGHTERS WERE BORN TO PARENTS, MARTIN EDWARD ANDERSON AND IDA JOHANNA ANDERSON (NEE JOHNSON). THE BAND WAS A FAMILY AFFAIR THAT SAW GREAT SUCCESS IN THE SOUTHERN ALBERTA REGION. ALICE’S DAUGHTERS, ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL, HONOURED THEIR MOTHER’S WISHES TO DONATE A NUMBER OF HER EFFECTS FROM HER TIME WITH LETHBRIDGE BAND TO THE MUSEUM. THIS PENCIL CAME FROM THE COLLECTION OF ITEMS ALICE SAVED FROM THE ANDERSON SISTERS ERA. IN 2016 DECEMBER 16, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE DAUGHTERS ABOUT THE DONATION. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM THAT EXCHANGE: RUTH EXPLAINS, “[THIS IS] A TINY LITTLE MECHANICAL PENCIL USED TO BE SITTING ON MOM’S MUSIC STAND, SO THAT IF THERE WAS A NOTATION OR SOMETHING THEY WANTED TO DO [SHE COULD WRITE IT DOWN]. [IT] WAS SOMETHING USEFUL, BUT VERY PRETTY TO BE UP WHERE THEY WERE DOING THEIR MUSIC. THEY TREATED THEIR SPACE ON STAGE VERY SPECIALLY AND THAT WAS SOMETHING THAT WAS ON HER MUSIC STAND ALL THESE YEARS.” PROFESSIONALISM IN HOW THEY PRESENTED THEMSELVES WAS IMPORTANT TO THE GROUP, THE SISTERS EXPLAINED, INCLUDING RIGHT DOWN TO THE SMALL DETAILS, SUCH AS THE PENCIL. MANY OF THE ARTIFACTS DONATED TO THE MUSEUM, INCLUDING THIS PENCIL, WERE KEPT TOGETHER IN ONE OF ALICE’S TRUNKS. WHEN RUTH AND ELEANOR WERE HELPING THEIR MOTHER SORT HER THINGS, SHE EXPLAINED THE ITEMS IN THE TRUNK TO THEM. THE FOLLOWING IS A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AS TOLD BY DONORS ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW: “[THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS] THE LONGEST RUNNING GROUP AT WATERTON LAKES PAVILION … [WHERE THEY PLAYED] FOR FIVE YEARS STRAIGHT,” ELEANOR EXPLAINED, “IN ADDITION TO DOING ALL KINDS OF OTHER THINGS, THEY WERE CONSTANTLY TRAVELLING [AND] WE HAVE THE RECORDINGS OF THAT.” RUTH ADDED, “THEY WERE ORIGINALLY FROM MONITOR (SASK). IN THE DIRTY 30S, WHEN THINGS GOT BAD FOR A LOT OF FARMS, THEY FOUND A WAY TO HAVE MUSIC LESSONS AND…PLAY FOR LOCAL DANCES. [ULTIMATELY, THE FAMILY] DECIDED TO LEAVE THE FARM AND HEADED OUT IN THE DIRECTION OF LETHBRIDGE (VIA DRUMHELLER). IT WAS TOUGH TIMES FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE IN THE 30S IN ALBERTA, BUT THE GIRLS, WITH THE TALENT THEY HAD, … HAD A WAY OUT…THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY. AND THEN THE ORCHESTRA REALLY CAME OUT OF THAT...” THE OBITUARY OF DONORS’ GRANDFATHER, MARTIN ANDERSON, (PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD, 1981) STATES THE FAMILY ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940. “THEY WERE SERIOUS MUSICIANS - VERY HUMBLE AND VERY QUIET,” RUTH CONTINUED, “[AS FAR AS PROMOTING THE BAND,] THAT WAS MORE GRANDPA’S JOB. WHEN IT CAME TO MUSIC, IT WAS A GIFT THEY PASSED ON - IN THE LATE ‘30S, ‘40S AND INTO THE ‘50S A BIT – [AND] IT WAS SOMETHING THEY FELT REALLY PRIVILEGED TO BE ABLE TO CONTRIBUTE IN THEIR OWN COMMUNITIES. [DURING] THE WAR YEARS, [THEY PLAYED FOR] THE ARMY BASES THAT WERE ALL CLOSE HERE AND [THEY WERE] A PART OF THAT HISTORY.” “[THEY WERE] ON THE ROAD 6 DAYS A WEEK [WITH THEIR CAR AND TRAILER]… PLAYING NOT JUST IN LETHBRIDGE [BUT] FAR REACHING OVER IN B.C., THE NORTHERN STATES, AND QUITE FAR NORTH IN ALBERTA. SO THEY WERE A REAL PART OF THINGS AND WORKED REAL HARD. I THINK IT’S AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE MUSIC HISTORY IN ALBERTA. THEY WERE, AFTER THE ANDERSON SISTERS [BAND WAS FINISHED], PROUD TO TAKE [MUSIC] INTO THE COMMUNITIES WHERE THEY WERE TEACHERS AND STILL PERFORMERS EVEN PAST THE FOUR OF THEM BEING TOGETHER.” WHEN ASKED ABOUT THEIR PERSONAL MEMORIES OF THE SISTERS PERFORMING TOGETHER, RUTH ANSWERED, “WELL ELEANOR WOULD HAVE BEEN A TODDLER, MYSELF AS WELL, THE LAST FEW TIMES THAT THEY PERFORMED AS THE ANDERSON SISTERS IN THAT ERA. BUT GROWING UP THROUGH THE YEARS, THERE WASN’T A TIME WHEN WE GOT TOGETHER AS A FAMILY WHERE WE DIDN’T HAVE A LOT OF MUSIC. THEY WOULD PLAY FOR US [AND] THEY WERE CALLED BACK SOMETIMES TO PERFORM AT COMMUNITY EVENTS… THE LAST ONE THAT I RECALL WAS SOMETHING IN GRANUM FOR AN ELKS 5OTH ANNIVERSARY IN GRANUM…THAT WAS THE LAST TIME PUBLICLY I REMEMBER.” THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM A HISTORY PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD IN 24 MAY 2003 TITLED, “SISTER ACT: SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S SWINGIN’ ANDERSON SISTERS WERE ALL THE RAGE DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR.” “IT WAS THE ERA OF SWUNG, OF MUSIC WITH MEMORABLE LYRICS, AND OF DANCE. IT WAS ALSO THE TIME OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR AND THE HEYDAY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS, AND LITERALLY EVERY TOWN IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WAS SWINGING AND SWAYING TO THE SOUNDS OF FLORENCE, MARIE, ALICE, AND RUTH." "DUBBED THE FOUR MAIDS OF MELODY BY CJOC RADIO…" THE ARTICLE CONTINUED, "[THE SISTERS] WERE THE TOAST OF SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S DANCE HALLS." INTERVIEWED FOR THE ARTICLE WAS ONE OF THE SISTERS, MARIE POPSON. SHE WAS QUOTED, "WE PLAYED THE TRIANON A LOT, THE OLD BUCKET OF BLOOD. THEY CALLED IT THAT BECAUSE IT WAS DURING THE WAR AND THERE WERE A LOT OF FIGHTS. PRIOR TO AND AFTER THE TRIANON WAS OK, BUT IT WAS REAL LIVELY DURING THE WAR… THE CROWDS [THERE] WERE SO LARGE THEY WERE AFRAID THE FLOOR WOULD WEAKEN… THE DANCE FLOOR WAS ON THE SECOND STORY OF THE BUILDING." THE ARTICLE EXPLAINED, "FLORENCE WAS THE ELDEST OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND AS SUCH WAS THE BAND’S LEADER. [SHE] PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND THE PIANO. MARIE… PLAYED THE PIANO AND ALICE PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND CLARINET. RUTH, 'THE BABY,' … PLAYED THE DRUMS, CLARINET AND TRUMPET." THE ARTICLE READS, "'RUTH STARTED PLAYING THE DRUMS AT AGE 11 AND LATER SHE COULD HANDLE THE DRUMMING WITH HER FEET AND PLAY THE TRUMPET AT THE SAME TIME FOR SOME OF OUR NUMBERS,’ SAYS MARIE WITH A TWIRL OF THE HAND. ‘FLO AND ALICE WERE OUR MAIN SINGERS AND I MADE UP THE TRIO SOMETIMES. RUTH DIDN’T SING. WHEN WE SANG AS A TRIO RUTH WOULD PLAY THE PIANO. ALICE WOULD ALSO SING SOLO. WE PLAYED ALL THE POPULAR MUSIC OF THE DAY AND OLD-TIME MUSIC AS WELL… MY SISTERS COULD ALSO PLAY THAT FAST-PACED SQUARE DANCE MUSIC ON THE SAX, AND THAT WAS SOMETHING. WE PLAYED WALTZES, POLKAS AND EVERYTHING… YOU NAME IT, WE PLAYED IT... OUR THEME SONG WAS BREEZING ALONG WITH THE BREEZE BUT MY FAVOURITE HAD TO BE SIDE BY SIDE, WHICH WE WERE AS A GROUP. WE WERE VERY CLOSE.'" THAT ARTICLE STATES THAT MARTIN AND IDA HAD EIGHT DAUGHTERS, IN FACT, BUT ONLY FOUR LIVED TO BECOME TEENAGERS. THE FOUR SURVIVING SISTERS BEGAN THEIR MUSICAL EDUCATION AT AN EARLY AGE, ALL BEGINNING WITH PIANO. THEY BEGAN PLAYING FOR VARIOUS TYPES OF EVENTS NEAR MONITOR, WHERE THEY WERE BORN. WHILE FLORENCE WAS WITH THE ALL GIRLS BAND IN CALGARY, THE THREE YOUNGER SISTERS FORMED THEIR OWN ORCHESTRA, MAKING THEIR DEBUT IN 1937. THE FOLLOWING YEAR, AFTER FLORENCE’S RETURN, THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS FORMED. UPON ARRIVING IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940, THEY AUDITIONED FOR THE CJOC RADIO STATION. THE ARTICLE STATES, “FOUR DAYS LATER THEY WERE ON THE AIR, LIVE, ON THE CHRISTMAS SHOPPER PROGRAM HEARD THREE TIMES A WEEK. THEY WERE ALSO ON THE AIR MONDAY NIGHTS FROM 9:15 TO 9:30 PM.” A NOTE THAT CAME WITH THE DONATION SAYS THE WEEKLY SHOW WITH CJOC WAS “BROADCAST LIVE ‘FROM HIGH ATOP THE MARQUIS HOTEL.’” BACK IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW AT THE MUSEUM, ALICE’S DAUGHTER ELEANOR COMMENTS ON THE BAND’S LEGACY. “I VOLUNTEER AT THE HOSPITAL [AND PLAY THE PIANO]. I USUALLY HAVE SENIORS INVOLVED THERE… AND WHEN I MENTION MY MOM’S NAME OR MY AUNT’S NAME, THEY REMEMBER DANCING TO THE ANDERSON SISTERS. SO, YOU KNOW, EVEN IN THIS DAY AND AGE, [PEOPLE] REMEMBER HOW MUCH FUN THEY HAD. [IT SHOWS] HOW RESPECTED THEY WERE AND I FIND THAT [BACKGROUND] JUST THRILLING.” “[MUSIC] WAS THEIR LIVELIHOOD,” RUTH ILLUMINATED, “SO [IT] WAS DRIVING THEM [THROUGH] TOUGH TIMES (SUCH AS THE DEPRESSION IN ALBERTA). THE GIRLS TOGETHER [WITH] THE TALENT THEY HAD, HAD A WAY OUT, WHERE A LOT OF OTHER PEOPLE HAD SOME BIGGER STRUGGLES. AND IT WAS THE TALENT IN THEM BEING TOGETHER. THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY.” PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES AND CLIPPINGS ABOUT THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND THEIR SHOWS, AND FAMILY OBITUARIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160044002
Acquisition Date
2016-12
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1970
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
BAKELITE
Catalogue Number
P20160044004
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1970
Materials
BAKELITE
No. Pieces
1
Height
3
Length
8.3
Width
0.7
Description
RED TRANSLUCENT BAKELITE KEY CASE. OVAL-SHAPED KEY HOLDER WITH FADED GOLD METALLIC TEXT ON ONE SIDE WHICH READS, “ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA." SLOTS ALONG BOTH SIDES TO HOLD TWO KEYS. GOOD CONDITION: MODERATE LOSS OF GOLD PAINT OF TEXT. OVERALL SCUFFING.
Subjects
PERSONAL GEAR
Historical Association
LEISURE
DOMESTIC
History
THE LATE ALICE PEARL HUMMEL (13 JUNE 1922 – 7 APRIL 2016) PERFORMED AS PART OF THE “ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA” ALONGSIDE HER SISTERS – FLORENCE JEANNETTE MCINTOSH (MAY 1917 – 18 MARCH 1999), MARIE EVELYN POPSON (C.1921 - 8 MARCH 2008) AND RUTH GINZER (C. 1926 - D. 2016). THE FOUR DAUGHTERS WERE BORN TO PARENTS, MARTIN EDWARD ANDERSON AND IDA JOHANNA ANDERSON (NEE JOHNSON). THE BAND WAS A FAMILY AFFAIR THAT SAW GREAT SUCCESS IN THE SOUTHERN ALBERTA REGION. ALICE’S DAUGHTERS, ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL, HONOURED THEIR MOTHER’S WISHES TO DONATE A NUMBER OF HER EFFECTS FROM HER TIME WITH LETHBRIDGE BAND TO THE MUSEUM. THIS KEY HOLDER CAME TO THE MUSEUM WITH A NOTE THAT STATED, “EACH OF THE SISTERS HAD A KEY HOLDER. THIS ONE IS ALICE’S.” IN 2016 DECEMBER 16, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE DAUGHTERS ABOUT THE DONATION. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM THAT EXCHANGE. IN THE INTERVIEW, RUTH EXPLAINED THE KEY HOLDER WAS FROM THE EARLY 1940S (1940-41) AND ORIGINATED IN THE ERA THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS PERFORMING FREQUENTLY. “MOM SAID THAT EACH OF [THE SISTERS] HAD ONE OF THE KEY HOLDERS,” RUTH STATED, “YOU CAN SEE THROUGH IT [AND] THERE’S A LITTLE PLACE THAT A LITTLE KEY CAN BE KIND OF FOLDED IN OR TWO KEYS. I’M NOT SURE IF THE REASON THEY EVEN HAD ONE TO START WITH WAS SOMEONE THINKING THAT MAYBE THEY’D WANT TO SELL A BUNCH [TO] MAYBE MARKET AT THEIR CONCERTS, BUT THAT WASN’T SOMETHING THEY DID. THEY WERE THERE TO SELL MUSIC NOT ITEMS. THEY DIDN’T SELL ANYTHING BUT TICKETS.” “SO, THEY ALL ENDED UP WITH [A KEY HOLDER]. I BELIEVE MOM [WAS] THE ONLY ONE WHO HAD HERS STILL. THEY WERE ALWAYS GETTING APPROACHED WITH A MARKETING IDEA. I THINK UNLESS IT WAS SOMETHING THAT GRANDPA FELT COMPLIMENTED THINGS THEY DIDN’T GET INTO DOING THAT, WHICH MAYBE WAS A MISTAKE WHEN YOU THINK OF IT FROM A MARKETING STAND POINT. BUT THEY LOOKED AT THE MUSIC FIRST, AND THE TRINKETS WEREN’T SOMETHING THEY EVER REALLY GOT INTO.” MANY OF THE ARTIFACTS DONATED TO THE MUSEUM, INCLUDING THIS KEY HOLDER, WERE KEPT TOGETHER IN ONE OF ALICE’S TRUNKS. WHEN RUTH AND ELEANOR WERE HELPING THEIR MOTHER SORT HER THINGS, SHE EXPLAINED THE ITEMS IN THE TRUNK TO THEM. THE FOLLOWING IS A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AS TOLD BY DONORS ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW: “[THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS] THE LONGEST RUNNING GROUP AT WATERTON LAKES PAVILION … [WHERE THEY PLAYED] FOR FIVE YEARS STRAIGHT,” ELEANOR EXPLAINED, “IN ADDITION TO DOING ALL KINDS OF OTHER THINGS, THEY WERE CONSTANTLY TRAVELLING [AND] WE HAVE THE RECORDINGS OF THAT.” RUTH ADDED, “THEY WERE ORIGINALLY FROM MONITOR (SASK). IN THE DIRTY 30S, WHEN THINGS GOT BAD FOR A LOT OF FARMS, THEY FOUND A WAY TO HAVE MUSIC LESSONS AND…PLAY FOR LOCAL DANCES. [ULTIMATELY, THE FAMILY] DECIDED TO LEAVE THE FARM AND HEADED OUT IN THE DIRECTION OF LETHBRIDGE (VIA DRUMHELLER). IT WAS TOUGH TIMES FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE IN THE 30S IN ALBERTA, BUT THE GIRLS, WITH THE TALENT THEY HAD, … HAD A WAY OUT…THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY. AND THEN THE ORCHESTRA REALLY CAME OUT OF THAT...” THE OBITUARY OF DONORS’ GRANDFATHER, MARTIN ANDERSON, (PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD, 1981) STATES THE FAMILY ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940. “THEY WERE SERIOUS MUSICIANS - VERY HUMBLE AND VERY QUIET,” RUTH CONTINUED, “[AS FAR AS PROMOTING THE BAND,] THAT WAS MORE GRANDPA’S JOB. WHEN IT CAME TO MUSIC, IT WAS A GIFT THEY PASSED ON - IN THE LATE ‘30S, ‘40S AND INTO THE ‘50S A BIT – [AND] IT WAS SOMETHING THEY FELT REALLY PRIVILEGED TO BE ABLE TO CONTRIBUTE IN THEIR OWN COMMUNITIES. [DURING] THE WAR YEARS, [THEY PLAYED FOR] THE ARMY BASES THAT WERE ALL CLOSE HERE AND [THEY WERE] A PART OF THAT HISTORY.” “[THEY WERE] ON THE ROAD 6 DAYS A WEEK [WITH THEIR CAR AND TRAILER]… PLAYING NOT JUST IN LETHBRIDGE [BUT] FAR REACHING OVER IN B.C., THE NORTHERN STATES, AND QUITE FAR NORTH IN ALBERTA. SO THEY WERE A REAL PART OF THINGS AND WORKED REAL HARD. I THINK IT’S AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE MUSIC HISTORY IN ALBERTA. THEY WERE, AFTER THE ANDERSON SISTERS [BAND WAS FINISHED], PROUD TO TAKE [MUSIC] INTO THE COMMUNITIES WHERE THEY WERE TEACHERS AND STILL PERFORMERS EVEN PAST THE FOUR OF THEM BEING TOGETHER.” WHEN ASKED ABOUT THEIR PERSONAL MEMORIES OF THE SISTERS PERFORMING TOGETHER, RUTH ANSWERED, “WELL ELEANOR WOULD HAVE BEEN A TODDLER, MYSELF AS WELL, THE LAST FEW TIMES THAT THEY PERFORMED AS THE ANDERSON SISTERS IN THAT ERA. BUT GROWING UP THROUGH THE YEARS, THERE WASN’T A TIME WHEN WE GOT TOGETHER AS A FAMILY WHERE WE DIDN’T HAVE A LOT OF MUSIC. THEY WOULD PLAY FOR US [AND] THEY WERE CALLED BACK SOMETIMES TO PERFORM AT COMMUNITY EVENTS… THE LAST ONE THAT I RECALL WAS SOMETHING IN GRANUM FOR AN ELKS 5OTH ANNIVERSARY IN GRANUM…THAT WAS THE LAST TIME PUBLICLY I REMEMBER.” THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM A HISTORY PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD IN 24 MAY 2003 TITLED, “SISTER ACT: SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S SWINGIN’ ANDERSON SISTERS WERE ALL THE RAGE DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR.” “IT WAS THE ERA OF SWUNG, OF MUSIC WITH MEMORABLE LYRICS, AND OF DANCE. IT WAS ALSO THE TIME OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR AND THE HEYDAY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS, AND LITERALLY EVERY TOWN IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WAS SWINGING AND SWAYING TO THE SOUNDS OF FLORENCE, MARIE, ALICE, AND RUTH." "DUBBED THE FOUR MAIDS OF MELODY BY CJOC RADIO…" THE ARTICLE CONTINUED, "[THE SISTERS] WERE THE TOAST OF SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S DANCE HALLS." INTERVIEWED FOR THE ARTICLE WAS ONE OF THE SISTERS, MARIE POPSON. SHE WAS QUOTED, "WE PLAYED THE TRIANON A LOT, THE OLD BUCKET OF BLOOD. THEY CALLED IT THAT BECAUSE IT WAS DURING THE WAR AND THERE WERE A LOT OF FIGHTS. PRIOR TO AND AFTER THE TRIANON WAS OK, BUT IT WAS REAL LIVELY DURING THE WAR… THE CROWDS [THERE] WERE SO LARGE THEY WERE AFRAID THE FLOOR WOULD WEAKEN… THE DANCE FLOOR WAS ON THE SECOND STORY OF THE BUILDING." THE ARTICLE EXPLAINED, "FLORENCE WAS THE ELDEST OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND AS SUCH WAS THE BAND’S LEADER. [SHE] PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND THE PIANO. MARIE… PLAYED THE PIANO AND ALICE PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND CLARINET. RUTH, 'THE BABY,' … PLAYED THE DRUMS, CLARINET AND TRUMPET." THE ARTICLE READS, "'RUTH STARTED PLAYING THE DRUMS AT AGE 11 AND LATER SHE COULD HANDLE THE DRUMMING WITH HER FEET AND PLAY THE TRUMPET AT THE SAME TIME FOR SOME OF OUR NUMBERS,’ SAYS MARIE WITH A TWIRL OF THE HAND. ‘FLO AND ALICE WERE OUR MAIN SINGERS AND I MADE UP THE TRIO SOMETIMES. RUTH DIDN’T SING. WHEN WE SANG AS A TRIO RUTH WOULD PLAY THE PIANO. ALICE WOULD ALSO SING SOLO. WE PLAYED ALL THE POPULAR MUSIC OF THE DAY AND OLD-TIME MUSIC AS WELL… MY SISTERS COULD ALSO PLAY THAT FAST-PACED SQUARE DANCE MUSIC ON THE SAX, AND THAT WAS SOMETHING. WE PLAYED WALTZES, POLKAS AND EVERYTHING… YOU NAME IT, WE PLAYED IT... OUR THEME SONG WAS BREEZING ALONG WITH THE BREEZE BUT MY FAVOURITE HAD TO BE SIDE BY SIDE, WHICH WE WERE AS A GROUP. WE WERE VERY CLOSE.'" THAT ARTICLE STATES THAT MARTIN AND IDA HAD EIGHT DAUGHTERS, IN FACT, BUT ONLY FOUR LIVED TO BECOME TEENAGERS. THE FOUR SURVIVING SISTERS BEGAN THEIR MUSICAL EDUCATION AT AN EARLY AGE, ALL BEGINNING WITH PIANO. THEY BEGAN PLAYING FOR VARIOUS TYPES OF EVENTS NEAR MONITOR, WHERE THEY WERE BORN. WHILE FLORENCE WAS WITH THE ALL GIRLS BAND IN CALGARY, THE THREE YOUNGER SISTERS FORMED THEIR OWN ORCHESTRA, MAKING THEIR DEBUT IN 1937. THE FOLLOWING YEAR, AFTER FLORENCE’S RETURN, THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS FORMED. UPON ARRIVING IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940, THEY AUDITIONED FOR THE CJOC RADIO STATION. THE ARTICLE STATES, “FOUR DAYS LATER THEY WERE ON THE AIR, LIVE, ON THE CHRISTMAS SHOPPER PROGRAM HEARD THREE TIMES A WEEK. THEY WERE ALSO ON THE AIR MONDAY NIGHTS FROM 9:15 TO 9:30 PM.” A NOTE THAT CAME WITH THE DONATION SAYS THE WEEKLY SHOW WITH CJOC WAS “BROADCAST LIVE ‘FROM HIGH ATOP THE MARQUIS HOTEL.’” BACK IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW AT THE MUSEUM, ALICE’S DAUGHTER ELEANOR COMMENTS ON THE BAND’S LEGACY. “I VOLUNTEER AT THE HOSPITAL [AND PLAY THE PIANO]. I USUALLY HAVE SENIORS INVOLVED THERE… AND WHEN I MENTION MY MOM’S NAME OR MY AUNT’S NAME, THEY REMEMBER DANCING TO THE ANDERSON SISTERS. SO, YOU KNOW, EVEN IN THIS DAY AND AGE, [PEOPLE] REMEMBER HOW MUCH FUN THEY HAD. [IT SHOWS] HOW RESPECTED THEY WERE AND I FIND THAT [BACKGROUND] JUST THRILLING.” “[MUSIC] WAS THEIR LIVELIHOOD,” RUTH ILLUMINATED, “SO [IT] WAS DRIVING THEM [THROUGH] TOUGH TIMES (SUCH AS THE DEPRESSION IN ALBERTA). THE GIRLS TOGETHER [WITH] THE TALENT THEY HAD, HAD A WAY OUT, WHERE A LOT OF OTHER PEOPLE HAD SOME BIGGER STRUGGLES. AND IT WAS THE TALENT IN THEM BEING TOGETHER. THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY.” PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES AND CLIPPINGS ABOUT THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND THEIR SHOWS, AND FAMILY OBITUARIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160044004
Acquisition Date
2016-12
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1985
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
METAL, RHINESTONE
Catalogue Number
P20160044005
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1985
Materials
METAL, RHINESTONE
No. Pieces
2
Height
2.1
Length
2.5
Width
0.9
Description
A-B: PAIR OF GOLD-COLOURED COSTUME JEWELRY EARRINGS. CRESENT-SHAPED, CURVING OUT TO FRONT. WHITE RHINESTONES SET IN GOLD-COLOURED METAL VERTICALLY DOWN CURVE OF EARRING. SCREW-ON CLASP AT BACK. FAIR TO GOOD CONDITION: BOTTOM RHINESTONE MISSING OFF COMPONENT A AND SECOND FROM THE TOP RHINESTONE MISSING OFF B. METAL MODERATELY WORN/SCUFFED.
Subjects
ADORNMENT
Historical Association
LEISURE
PERSONAL CARE
History
THE LATE ALICE PEARL HUMMEL (13 JUNE 1922 – 7 APRIL 2016) PERFORMED AS PART OF THE “ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA” ALONGSIDE HER SISTERS – FLORENCE JEANNETTE MCINTOSH (MAY 1917 – 18 MARCH 1999), MARIE EVELYN POPSON (C.1921 - 8 MARCH 2008) AND RUTH GINZER (C. 1926 - D. 2016). THE FOUR DAUGHTERS WERE BORN TO PARENTS, MARTIN EDWARD ANDERSON AND IDA JOHANNA ANDERSON (NEE JOHNSON). THE BAND WAS A FAMILY AFFAIR THAT SAW GREAT SUCCESS IN THE SOUTHERN ALBERTA REGION. ALICE’S DAUGHTERS, ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL, HONOURED THEIR MOTHER’S WISHES TO DONATE A NUMBER OF HER EFFECTS FROM HER TIME WITH LETHBRIDGE BAND TO THE MUSEUM. IN 2016 DECEMBER 16, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE DAUGHTERS ABOUT THE DONATION. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM THAT EXCHANGE. OF THESE EARRINGS, RUTH RECALLED, “I KNOW THAT THESE WERE WORN WHEN THEY WERE PERFORMING. IF THEY WERE DRESSED ALIKE, THEY USUALLY HAD THE SAME JEWELRY AS WELL.” BOTH RUTH AND ELEANOR RECALLED THE EARRINGS BEING WORN BY THEIR MOTHER UP UNTIL THE 1980S. THE JEWELRY THE SISTERS WORE DURING THE PERFORMANCES “SHOWED A LOT OF USE,” RUTH EXPLAINED. “OTHER ONES REPLACED [OLDER PAIRS AS THEY WORE OUT] AND THEY WERE JUST SET ASIDE.” “ALL [THE SISTERS] LOVED TO DRESS UP. THERE WERE SOME OUTFITS THEY HAD THAT ACTUALLY HAVE GONE DOWN THROUGH FAMILY MEMBERS. HER GRANDDAUGHTER HAS A BEAUTIFUL FORMAL THAT [EACH SISTER] HAD. WHEN THEY DRESSED UP, THEY [REALLY] DRESSED UP. IT WAS WITH BRILLIANT, SHINY, BEAUTIFUL JEWELRY,” RUTH REMEMBERED. THE FOLLOWING IS A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AS TOLD BY DONORS ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW: “[THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS] THE LONGEST RUNNING GROUP AT WATERTON LAKES PAVILION … [WHERE THEY PLAYED] FOR FIVE YEARS STRAIGHT,” ELEANOR EXPLAINED, “IN ADDITION TO DOING ALL KINDS OF OTHER THINGS, THEY WERE CONSTANTLY TRAVELLING [AND] WE HAVE THE RECORDINGS OF THAT.” RUTH ADDED, “THEY WERE ORIGINALLY FROM MONITOR (SASK). IN THE DIRTY 30S, WHEN THINGS GOT BAD FOR A LOT OF FARMS, THEY FOUND A WAY TO HAVE MUSIC LESSONS AND…PLAY FOR LOCAL DANCES. [ULTIMATELY, THE FAMILY] DECIDED TO LEAVE THE FARM AND HEADED OUT IN THE DIRECTION OF LETHBRIDGE (VIA DRUMHELLER). IT WAS TOUGH TIMES FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE IN THE 30S IN ALBERTA, BUT THE GIRLS, WITH THE TALENT THEY HAD, … HAD A WAY OUT…THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY. AND THEN THE ORCHESTRA REALLY CAME OUT OF THAT...” THE OBITUARY OF DONORS’ GRANDFATHER, MARTIN ANDERSON, (PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD, 1981) STATES THE FAMILY ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940. “THEY WERE SERIOUS MUSICIANS - VERY HUMBLE AND VERY QUIET,” RUTH CONTINUED, “[AS FAR AS PROMOTING THE BAND,] THAT WAS MORE GRANDPA’S JOB. WHEN IT CAME TO MUSIC, IT WAS A GIFT THEY PASSED ON - IN THE LATE ‘30S, ‘40S AND INTO THE ‘50S A BIT – [AND] IT WAS SOMETHING THEY FELT REALLY PRIVILEGED TO BE ABLE TO CONTRIBUTE IN THEIR OWN COMMUNITIES. [DURING] THE WAR YEARS, [THEY PLAYED FOR] THE ARMY BASES THAT WERE ALL CLOSE HERE AND [THEY WERE] A PART OF THAT HISTORY.” “[THEY WERE] ON THE ROAD 6 DAYS A WEEK [WITH THEIR CAR AND TRAILER]… PLAYING NOT JUST IN LETHBRIDGE [BUT] FAR REACHING OVER IN B.C., THE NORTHERN STATES, AND QUITE FAR NORTH IN ALBERTA. SO THEY WERE A REAL PART OF THINGS AND WORKED REAL HARD. I THINK IT’S AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE MUSIC HISTORY IN ALBERTA. THEY WERE, AFTER THE ANDERSON SISTERS [BAND WAS FINISHED], PROUD TO TAKE [MUSIC] INTO THE COMMUNITIES WHERE THEY WERE TEACHERS AND STILL PERFORMERS EVEN PAST THE FOUR OF THEM BEING TOGETHER.” WHEN ASKED ABOUT THEIR PERSONAL MEMORIES OF THE SISTERS PERFORMING TOGETHER, RUTH ANSWERED, “WELL ELEANOR WOULD HAVE BEEN A TODDLER, MYSELF AS WELL, THE LAST FEW TIMES THAT THEY PERFORMED AS THE ANDERSON SISTERS IN THAT ERA. BUT GROWING UP THROUGH THE YEARS, THERE WASN’T A TIME WHEN WE GOT TOGETHER AS A FAMILY WHERE WE DIDN’T HAVE A LOT OF MUSIC. THEY WOULD PLAY FOR US [AND] THEY WERE CALLED BACK SOMETIMES TO PERFORM AT COMMUNITY EVENTS… THE LAST ONE THAT I RECALL WAS SOMETHING IN GRANUM FOR AN ELKS 5OTH ANNIVERSARY IN GRANUM…THAT WAS THE LAST TIME PUBLICLY I REMEMBER.” THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM A HISTORY PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD IN 24 MAY 2003 TITLED, “SISTER ACT: SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S SWINGIN’ ANDERSON SISTERS WERE ALL THE RAGE DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR.” “IT WAS THE ERA OF SWUNG, OF MUSIC WITH MEMORABLE LYRICS, AND OF DANCE. IT WAS ALSO THE TIME OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR AND THE HEYDAY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS, AND LITERALLY EVERY TOWN IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WAS SWINGING AND SWAYING TO THE SOUNDS OF FLORENCE, MARIE, ALICE, AND RUTH." "DUBBED THE FOUR MAIDS OF MELODY BY CJOC RADIO…" THE ARTICLE CONTINUED, "[THE SISTERS] WERE THE TOAST OF SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S DANCE HALLS." INTERVIEWED FOR THE ARTICLE WAS ONE OF THE SISTERS, MARIE POPSON. SHE WAS QUOTED, "WE PLAYED THE TRIANON A LOT, THE OLD BUCKET OF BLOOD. THEY CALLED IT THAT BECAUSE IT WAS DURING THE WAR AND THERE WERE A LOT OF FIGHTS. PRIOR TO AND AFTER THE TRIANON WAS OK, BUT IT WAS REAL LIVELY DURING THE WAR… THE CROWDS [THERE] WERE SO LARGE THEY WERE AFRAID THE FLOOR WOULD WEAKEN… THE DANCE FLOOR WAS ON THE SECOND STORY OF THE BUILDING." THE ARTICLE EXPLAINED, "FLORENCE WAS THE ELDEST OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND AS SUCH WAS THE BAND’S LEADER. [SHE] PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND THE PIANO. MARIE… PLAYED THE PIANO AND ALICE PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND CLARINET. RUTH, 'THE BABY,' … PLAYED THE DRUMS, CLARINET AND TRUMPET." THE ARTICLE READS, "'RUTH STARTED PLAYING THE DRUMS AT AGE 11 AND LATER SHE COULD HANDLE THE DRUMMING WITH HER FEET AND PLAY THE TRUMPET AT THE SAME TIME FOR SOME OF OUR NUMBERS,’ SAYS MARIE WITH A TWIRL OF THE HAND. ‘FLO AND ALICE WERE OUR MAIN SINGERS AND I MADE UP THE TRIO SOMETIMES. RUTH DIDN’T SING. WHEN WE SANG AS A TRIO RUTH WOULD PLAY THE PIANO. ALICE WOULD ALSO SING SOLO. WE PLAYED ALL THE POPULAR MUSIC OF THE DAY AND OLD-TIME MUSIC AS WELL… MY SISTERS COULD ALSO PLAY THAT FAST-PACED SQUARE DANCE MUSIC ON THE SAX, AND THAT WAS SOMETHING. WE PLAYED WALTZES, POLKAS AND EVERYTHING… YOU NAME IT, WE PLAYED IT... OUR THEME SONG WAS BREEZING ALONG WITH THE BREEZE BUT MY FAVOURITE HAD TO BE SIDE BY SIDE, WHICH WE WERE AS A GROUP. WE WERE VERY CLOSE.'" THAT ARTICLE STATES THAT MARTIN AND IDA HAD EIGHT DAUGHTERS, IN FACT, BUT ONLY FOUR LIVED TO BECOME TEENAGERS. THE FOUR SURVIVING SISTERS BEGAN THEIR MUSICAL EDUCATION AT AN EARLY AGE, ALL BEGINNING WITH PIANO. THEY BEGAN PLAYING FOR VARIOUS TYPES OF EVENTS NEAR MONITOR, WHERE THEY WERE BORN. WHILE FLORENCE WAS WITH THE ALL GIRLS BAND IN CALGARY, THE THREE YOUNGER SISTERS FORMED THEIR OWN ORCHESTRA, MAKING THEIR DEBUT IN 1937. THE FOLLOWING YEAR, AFTER FLORENCE’S RETURN, THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS FORMED. UPON ARRIVING IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940, THEY AUDITIONED FOR THE CJOC RADIO STATION. THE ARTICLE STATES, “FOUR DAYS LATER THEY WERE ON THE AIR, LIVE, ON THE CHRISTMAS SHOPPER PROGRAM HEARD THREE TIMES A WEEK. THEY WERE ALSO ON THE AIR MONDAY NIGHTS FROM 9:15 TO 9:30 PM.” A NOTE THAT CAME WITH THE DONATION SAYS THE WEEKLY SHOW WITH CJOC WAS “BROADCAST LIVE ‘FROM HIGH ATOP THE MARQUIS HOTEL.’” BACK IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW AT THE MUSEUM, ALICE’S DAUGHTER ELEANOR COMMENTS ON THE BAND’S LEGACY. “I VOLUNTEER AT THE HOSPITAL [AND PLAY THE PIANO]. I USUALLY HAVE SENIORS INVOLVED THERE… AND WHEN I MENTION MY MOM’S NAME OR MY AUNT’S NAME, THEY REMEMBER DANCING TO THE ANDERSON SISTERS. SO, YOU KNOW, EVEN IN THIS DAY AND AGE, [PEOPLE] REMEMBER HOW MUCH FUN THEY HAD. [IT SHOWS] HOW RESPECTED THEY WERE AND I FIND THAT [BACKGROUND] JUST THRILLING.” “[MUSIC] WAS THEIR LIVELIHOOD,” RUTH ILLUMINATED, “SO [IT] WAS DRIVING THEM [THROUGH] TOUGH TIMES (SUCH AS THE DEPRESSION IN ALBERTA). THE GIRLS TOGETHER [WITH] THE TALENT THEY HAD, HAD A WAY OUT, WHERE A LOT OF OTHER PEOPLE HAD SOME BIGGER STRUGGLES. AND IT WAS THE TALENT IN THEM BEING TOGETHER. THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY.” PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES AND CLIPPINGS ABOUT THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND THEIR SHOWS, AND FAMILY OBITUARIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160044005
Acquisition Date
2016-12
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1985
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
METAL, PAINT
Catalogue Number
P20160044006
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1985
Materials
METAL, PAINT
No. Pieces
1
Height
3.7
Length
5
Width
0.6
Description
SILVER AND BLACK OVAL BROOCH; 3 RAISED SILVER METAL LINES (LIKE A STAFF ON SHEET MUSIC) HORIZONTALLY ACROSS BROOCH WITH A SILVER SIXTEENTH NOTE SET ON TOP OF THE LINES. BACKGROUND IS COATED IN MATTE BLACK VARNISH. GOOD CONDITION: BLACK PAINT PRESENT ON SILVER METAL IN A COUPLE OF SPOTS. SLIGHT LOSS OF VARNISH IN SOME PLACES ON FRONT OF BROOCH.
Subjects
ADORNMENT
Historical Association
LEISURE
PERSONAL CARE
History
THE LATE ALICE PEARL HUMMEL (13 JUNE 1922 – 7 APRIL 2016) PERFORMED AS PART OF THE “ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA” ALONGSIDE HER SISTERS – FLORENCE JEANNETTE MCINTOSH (MAY 1917 – 18 MARCH 1999), MARIE EVELYN POPSON (C.1921 - 8 MARCH 2008) AND RUTH GINZER (C. 1926 - D. 2016). THE FOUR DAUGHTERS WERE BORN TO PARENTS, MARTIN EDWARD ANDERSON AND IDA JOHANNA ANDERSON (NEE JOHNSON). THE BAND WAS A FAMILY AFFAIR THAT SAW GREAT SUCCESS IN THE SOUTHERN ALBERTA REGION. ALICE’S DAUGHTERS, ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL, HONOURED THEIR MOTHER’S WISHES TO DONATE A NUMBER OF HER EFFECTS FROM HER TIME WITH LETHBRIDGE BAND TO THE MUSEUM. THE ANDERSON SISTERS HAD MATCHING UNIFORMS THEY WOULD OFTEN WEAR FOR PERFORMANCES, WHICH INCLUDED PIECES SUCH AS THIS BROOCH. IN 2016 DECEMBER 16, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE DAUGHTERS ABOUT THE DONATION. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM THAT EXCHANGE. RUTH EXPLAINED, “IF THEY WERE DRESSED ALIKE, THEY USUALLY HAD THE SAME JEWELRY AS WELL.” BOTH RUTH AND ELEANOR RECALLED THE BROOCH BEING WORN BY THEIR MOTHER UP UNTIL THE 1980S. THE JEWELRY THE SISTERS WORE DURING THE PERFORMANCES “SHOWED A LOT OF USE,” RUTH EXPLAINED. “OTHER ONES REPLACED [OLDER PAIRS AS THEY WORE OUT] AND THEY WERE JUST SET ASIDE.” “ALL [THE SISTERS] LOVED TO DRESS UP. THERE WERE SOME OUTFITS THEY HAD THAT ACTUALLY HAVE GONE DOWN THROUGH FAMILY MEMBERS. HER GRANDDAUGHTER HAS A BEAUTIFUL FORMAL THAT [EACH SISTER] HAD. WHEN THEY DRESSED UP, THEY [REALLY] DRESSED UP. IT WAS WITH BRILLIANT, SHINY, BEAUTIFUL JEWELRY,” RUTH REMEMBERED. THE FOLLOWING IS A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AS TOLD BY DONORS ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW: “[THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS] THE LONGEST RUNNING GROUP AT WATERTON LAKES PAVILION … [WHERE THEY PLAYED] FOR FIVE YEARS STRAIGHT,” ELEANOR EXPLAINED, “IN ADDITION TO DOING ALL KINDS OF OTHER THINGS, THEY WERE CONSTANTLY TRAVELLING [AND] WE HAVE THE RECORDINGS OF THAT.” RUTH ADDED, “THEY WERE ORIGINALLY FROM MONITOR (SASK). IN THE DIRTY 30S, WHEN THINGS GOT BAD FOR A LOT OF FARMS, THEY FOUND A WAY TO HAVE MUSIC LESSONS AND…PLAY FOR LOCAL DANCES. [ULTIMATELY, THE FAMILY] DECIDED TO LEAVE THE FARM AND HEADED OUT IN THE DIRECTION OF LETHBRIDGE (VIA DRUMHELLER). IT WAS TOUGH TIMES FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE IN THE 30S IN ALBERTA, BUT THE GIRLS, WITH THE TALENT THEY HAD, … HAD A WAY OUT…THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY. AND THEN THE ORCHESTRA REALLY CAME OUT OF THAT...” THE OBITUARY OF DONORS’ GRANDFATHER, MARTIN ANDERSON, (PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD, 1981) STATES THE FAMILY ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940. “THEY WERE SERIOUS MUSICIANS - VERY HUMBLE AND VERY QUIET,” RUTH CONTINUED, “[AS FAR AS PROMOTING THE BAND,] THAT WAS MORE GRANDPA’S JOB. WHEN IT CAME TO MUSIC, IT WAS A GIFT THEY PASSED ON - IN THE LATE ‘30S, ‘40S AND INTO THE ‘50S A BIT – [AND] IT WAS SOMETHING THEY FELT REALLY PRIVILEGED TO BE ABLE TO CONTRIBUTE IN THEIR OWN COMMUNITIES. [DURING] THE WAR YEARS, [THEY PLAYED FOR] THE ARMY BASES THAT WERE ALL CLOSE HERE AND [THEY WERE] A PART OF THAT HISTORY.” “[THEY WERE] ON THE ROAD 6 DAYS A WEEK [WITH THEIR CAR AND TRAILER]… PLAYING NOT JUST IN LETHBRIDGE [BUT] FAR REACHING OVER IN B.C., THE NORTHERN STATES, AND QUITE FAR NORTH IN ALBERTA. SO THEY WERE A REAL PART OF THINGS AND WORKED REAL HARD. I THINK IT’S AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE MUSIC HISTORY IN ALBERTA. THEY WERE, AFTER THE ANDERSON SISTERS [BAND WAS FINISHED], PROUD TO TAKE [MUSIC] INTO THE COMMUNITIES WHERE THEY WERE TEACHERS AND STILL PERFORMERS EVEN PAST THE FOUR OF THEM BEING TOGETHER.” WHEN ASKED ABOUT THEIR PERSONAL MEMORIES OF THE SISTERS PERFORMING TOGETHER, RUTH ANSWERED, “WELL ELEANOR WOULD HAVE BEEN A TODDLER, MYSELF AS WELL, THE LAST FEW TIMES THAT THEY PERFORMED AS THE ANDERSON SISTERS IN THAT ERA. BUT GROWING UP THROUGH THE YEARS, THERE WASN’T A TIME WHEN WE GOT TOGETHER AS A FAMILY WHERE WE DIDN’T HAVE A LOT OF MUSIC. THEY WOULD PLAY FOR US [AND] THEY WERE CALLED BACK SOMETIMES TO PERFORM AT COMMUNITY EVENTS… THE LAST ONE THAT I RECALL WAS SOMETHING IN GRANUM FOR AN ELKS 5OTH ANNIVERSARY IN GRANUM…THAT WAS THE LAST TIME PUBLICLY I REMEMBER.” THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM A HISTORY PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD IN 24 MAY 2003 TITLED, “SISTER ACT: SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S SWINGIN’ ANDERSON SISTERS WERE ALL THE RAGE DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR.” “IT WAS THE ERA OF SWUNG, OF MUSIC WITH MEMORABLE LYRICS, AND OF DANCE. IT WAS ALSO THE TIME OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR AND THE HEYDAY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS, AND LITERALLY EVERY TOWN IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WAS SWINGING AND SWAYING TO THE SOUNDS OF FLORENCE, MARIE, ALICE, AND RUTH." "DUBBED THE FOUR MAIDS OF MELODY BY CJOC RADIO…" THE ARTICLE CONTINUED, "[THE SISTERS] WERE THE TOAST OF SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S DANCE HALLS." INTERVIEWED FOR THE ARTICLE WAS ONE OF THE SISTERS, MARIE POPSON. SHE WAS QUOTED, "WE PLAYED THE TRIANON A LOT, THE OLD BUCKET OF BLOOD. THEY CALLED IT THAT BECAUSE IT WAS DURING THE WAR AND THERE WERE A LOT OF FIGHTS. PRIOR TO AND AFTER THE TRIANON WAS OK, BUT IT WAS REAL LIVELY DURING THE WAR… THE CROWDS [THERE] WERE SO LARGE THEY WERE AFRAID THE FLOOR WOULD WEAKEN… THE DANCE FLOOR WAS ON THE SECOND STORY OF THE BUILDING." THE ARTICLE EXPLAINED, "FLORENCE WAS THE ELDEST OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND AS SUCH WAS THE BAND’S LEADER. [SHE] PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND THE PIANO. MARIE… PLAYED THE PIANO AND ALICE PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND CLARINET. RUTH, 'THE BABY,' … PLAYED THE DRUMS, CLARINET AND TRUMPET." THE ARTICLE READS, "'RUTH STARTED PLAYING THE DRUMS AT AGE 11 AND LATER SHE COULD HANDLE THE DRUMMING WITH HER FEET AND PLAY THE TRUMPET AT THE SAME TIME FOR SOME OF OUR NUMBERS,’ SAYS MARIE WITH A TWIRL OF THE HAND. ‘FLO AND ALICE WERE OUR MAIN SINGERS AND I MADE UP THE TRIO SOMETIMES. RUTH DIDN’T SING. WHEN WE SANG AS A TRIO RUTH WOULD PLAY THE PIANO. ALICE WOULD ALSO SING SOLO. WE PLAYED ALL THE POPULAR MUSIC OF THE DAY AND OLD-TIME MUSIC AS WELL… MY SISTERS COULD ALSO PLAY THAT FAST-PACED SQUARE DANCE MUSIC ON THE SAX, AND THAT WAS SOMETHING. WE PLAYED WALTZES, POLKAS AND EVERYTHING… YOU NAME IT, WE PLAYED IT... OUR THEME SONG WAS BREEZING ALONG WITH THE BREEZE BUT MY FAVOURITE HAD TO BE SIDE BY SIDE, WHICH WE WERE AS A GROUP. WE WERE VERY CLOSE.'" THAT ARTICLE STATES THAT MARTIN AND IDA HAD EIGHT DAUGHTERS, IN FACT, BUT ONLY FOUR LIVED TO BECOME TEENAGERS. THE FOUR SURVIVING SISTERS BEGAN THEIR MUSICAL EDUCATION AT AN EARLY AGE, ALL BEGINNING WITH PIANO. THEY BEGAN PLAYING FOR VARIOUS TYPES OF EVENTS NEAR MONITOR, WHERE THEY WERE BORN. WHILE FLORENCE WAS WITH THE ALL GIRLS BAND IN CALGARY, THE THREE YOUNGER SISTERS FORMED THEIR OWN ORCHESTRA, MAKING THEIR DEBUT IN 1937. THE FOLLOWING YEAR, AFTER FLORENCE’S RETURN, THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS FORMED. UPON ARRIVING IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940, THEY AUDITIONED FOR THE CJOC RADIO STATION. THE ARTICLE STATES, “FOUR DAYS LATER THEY WERE ON THE AIR, LIVE, ON THE CHRISTMAS SHOPPER PROGRAM HEARD THREE TIMES A WEEK. THEY WERE ALSO ON THE AIR MONDAY NIGHTS FROM 9:15 TO 9:30 PM.” A NOTE THAT CAME WITH THE DONATION SAYS THE WEEKLY SHOW WITH CJOC WAS “BROADCAST LIVE ‘FROM HIGH ATOP THE MARQUIS HOTEL.’” BACK IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW AT THE MUSEUM, ALICE’S DAUGHTER ELEANOR COMMENTS ON THE BAND’S LEGACY. “I VOLUNTEER AT THE HOSPITAL [AND PLAY THE PIANO]. I USUALLY HAVE SENIORS INVOLVED THERE… AND WHEN I MENTION MY MOM’S NAME OR MY AUNT’S NAME, THEY REMEMBER DANCING TO THE ANDERSON SISTERS. SO, YOU KNOW, EVEN IN THIS DAY AND AGE, [PEOPLE] REMEMBER HOW MUCH FUN THEY HAD. [IT SHOWS] HOW RESPECTED THEY WERE AND I FIND THAT [BACKGROUND] JUST THRILLING.” “[MUSIC] WAS THEIR LIVELIHOOD,” RUTH ILLUMINATED, “SO [IT] WAS DRIVING THEM [THROUGH] TOUGH TIMES (SUCH AS THE DEPRESSION IN ALBERTA). THE GIRLS TOGETHER [WITH] THE TALENT THEY HAD, HAD A WAY OUT, WHERE A LOT OF OTHER PEOPLE HAD SOME BIGGER STRUGGLES. AND IT WAS THE TALENT IN THEM BEING TOGETHER. THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY.” PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES AND CLIPPINGS ABOUT THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND THEIR SHOWS, AND FAMILY OBITUARIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160044006
Acquisition Date
2016-12
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
GUN OIL
Date Range From
1935
Date Range To
1950
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
GLASS, CORK, OIL
Catalogue Number
P20190002003
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
GUN OIL
Date Range From
1935
Date Range To
1950
Materials
GLASS, CORK, OIL
No. Pieces
1
Height
10.4
Length
3.5
Width
4.6
Description
GLASS BOTTLE CONTAINING AMBER OIL, WITH CRACKED AND TORN CORK IN TOP OPENING. BOTTLE HAS ROUND NECK, DOMED TOP AND SQUARE BODY; BOTTLE HAS BLUE AND WHITE LABEL ON FRONT. FRONT LABEL BLUE BACKGROUND WITH WHITE CROWN ABOVE WHITE SHIELD WITH RED AND BLUE TEXT; LABEL IS TORN ACROSS SHIELD MAKING RED TEXT INDECIPHERABLE, BLUE TEXT BELOW READS “PURE VANILLA”; SHIELD HAS WHITE DOTS AROUND BASE AND WHITE TEXT BELOW “FLAVORING EXTRACTS, CAMPBELL BROS & WILSON LIMITED, WINNIPEG – CANADA, EST. 1882”. BACK OF BOTTLE HAS EMBOSSED IN GLASS “2 FL. OZ”. BASE OF BOTTLE HAS EMBOSSED IN GLASS “1, 4818, FDJ” WITH “D” IN A DIAMOND. CORK IS TORN OFF AT THE TOP OF THE BOTTLE NECK; LABEL IS WORN AND DISCOLORED; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
CONTAINER
Historical Association
SAFETY SERVICES
History
ON JANUARY 10, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED JEAN BUCHANAN REGARDING HER DONATION OF A REVOLVER AND FIREARM ACCESSORIES. THE FIREARM WAS USED BY BUCHANAN’S FATHER, EDWARD ETTERSHANK BUCHANAN, DURING HIS CAREER WITH THE ALBERTA PROVINCIAL POLICE AND ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE. BUCHANAN ELABORATED ON THE USE OF THE GUN OIL, NOTING, “[DAD HAD A BAG] BECAUSE, IN HIS YOUNGER DAYS, HE OFTEN HAD TO GO OUT ON HORSEBACK. HE’D BE GONE, HUNTING DOWN A MURDERER, AND HE MIGHT HAVE HAD A GUIDE WITH HIM. HE TOOK SOME OF HIS CLEANING EQUIPMENT FOR THE REVOLVER, AND HIS RIFLE, TOO…HE COULD PACK HIS LUNCH…KNIVES, SURVIVAL, AND HIS DIRTY OLD CLEANING CLOTH THAT HE USED, AND AN OLD BOTTLE OF GUN OIL, SO HE COULD CLEAN THE GUN IN CASE HE HAPPENED TO DROP IT IN SOME MUD. YOU NEVER KNOW [WHAT MIGHT HAPPEN] WHEN YOU’RE OUT…YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR GUN VERY CLEAN. HE KEPT EVERYTHING VERY CLEAN…YOU HAVE TO KEEP THE GUN CLEAN IF YOU’RE GOING TO USE IT, BECAUSE YOU COULD DAMAGE IT IF YOU HAVE ANY DIRT IN THE BARREL.” ON HER FATHER’S REVOLVER, BUCHANAN RECALLED, “[MY DAD] USED [THE SMITH AND WESSON REVOLVER]…STARTING IN 1932, WITH THE RCMP, MAY BE WHEN HE GOT THAT GUN. HE HAD IT REGISTERED IN 1940, AND GETTING ANOTHER 5 YEARS REGISTRATION IT MUST HAVE BEEN 1935. [THE GUN] WAS HIS SIDEARM…HIS SERVICE WEAPON…HE HAD THAT ALL THE TIME…IT WOULD GO RIGHT ON HIS BELT THERE.” “[DAD KEPT THE GUN] IN [MY PARENTS’] BEDROOM. RIGHT ON THE BEDROOM CLOSET DOOR, RIGHT OPEN. I NEVER TOUCHED IT, BECAUSE HE HAD GIVEN ME MY TRAINING AND LET ME USE IT WHEN I WAS YOUNG. I HAD RESPECT FOR IT, AND I HAD NO SPECIAL CURIOSITY, WHICH IS A GOOD THING. [DAD KNEW I WAS] AN ADVENTUROUS PERSON, BUT I NEVER EVER TOUCHED IT, OUT OF COMPLETE RESPECT FOR DAD AND WHAT HE HAD THERE.” “ALL I CAN REMEMBER [IS HE HAD TWO HANDGUNS OR SIDEARMS]…HE DIDN’T GO OUT PRACTICING VERY MUCH; HE DIDN’T HAVE TO. HE COULD PASS HIS MARKSMANSHIP, AND THEN, EVERY TIME THERE WERE THINGS AT REGINA DEPOT TRAINING COURSES (UPGRADING, REFRESHER COURSES) THEY DID THEIR MARKSMANSHIP THERE, TOO. THEY WERE ALWAYS TESTED ON THEIR MARKSMANSHIP, AT REGINA DEPOT.” “I THINK [THE REVOLVER HAD] QUITE A BIT [OF MEANING TO MY DAD], BECAUSE HE HAD IT IN HIS HOUSE. IT WAS REALLY STRANGE BECAUSE I ASKED HIM WHERE IT WAS, WHEN HE SHOWED ME THE PAPERS, AND HE HAD IT IN A SHOE BOX IN HIS BEDROOM CLOSET. YOU DIDN’T HAVE TO HAVE GREAT [HIDING] PLACES FOR IT IN THOSE DAYS, BUT THAT’S WHERE HE KEPT IT. HE MADE SURE IT WAS THERE, AND HE KNEW WHERE IT WAS.” “[I HAVE NO] KNOWLEDGE ABOUT HIM HAVING TO FIRE THIS WEAPON…AT ANYONE. IF HE WOULD HAVE, HE WOULD HAVE FIRED TO MISS SOMEONE, JUST AS A WARNING SHOT. HE DEFINITELY WENT FOR WARNING SHOTS, BUT HE NEVER SHOT ANYBODY WITH IT." “[HE WOULD HAVE STOPPED CARRYING THE GUN] AT THE VERY END OF 1950, WHEN HE RETIRED FROM THE R.C.M.P.” “[I’VE HAD THE REVOLVER] SINCE 1998—THE PASSING OF MY FATHER, BECAUSE I WAS THE SOLE EXECUTRIX. IT WAS AUTOMATICALLY MY RESPONSIBILITY TO TAKE ALL OF HIS FIREARMS, IN MY POSSESSION.” “I WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR [THE CARE OF] IT, AND IT WAS A REAL KEEPSAKE. [THE GUN WAS] WAS VERY PERSONAL, BECAUSE I’M SURE [MY DAD] OWNED THAT EVEN BY BACK IN 1935, [WHEN] HE WAS IN WESTLOCK, IN CHARGE OF THE DETACHMENT THERE FOR 10 YEARS. IT WAS OF SENTIMENTAL VALUE BECAUSE HE TOOK ME OUT (I’M PRETTY SURE I WAS 8 YEARS OLD, WHEN HE HAD ME IN THE BACKYARD)—WE HAD FARMLAND AND FOREST—AND HE HAD A TARGET PRACTICE OUT THERE. HE HAD ME USE THAT FIREARM. HE SHOWED ME HOW TO USE IT, HOW TO AIM, AND HOW TO HANDLE IT SAFELY. I ALWAYS RESPECTED THAT, AND THAT WAS GOOD. THAT’S THE ORIGINAL HOLSTER FOR THAT GUN, WHICH YOU CAN SEE IS LOOPED, TO PUT ON HIS BELT. HE ALSO CARRIED A .32 COLT SEMI-AUTOMATIC.” “I’VE ALWAYS APPRECIATED REVOLVERS, AND RIFLES. IT’S NEVER BEEN ANYTHING THAT I THOUGHT ANY DANGER OF. YOU LEARN THE SAFETY, AND YOU TAKE YOUR COURSE. I HAVE MY COURSE DONE, AND I PASSED IT WITH FLYING COLORS. I HAD MY PERMIT TO HAVE IT. I HAVE TAKEN IT OUT, ON MY OWN ACREAGE, AND FIRED IT A BIT, BUT IT ISN’T SOMETHING I WANT TO DO. IT’S A SENTIMENTAL THING THAT I CAN NOW FEEL I’D LIKE TO HAVE IT IN YOUR MUSEUM. I KNOW IT’S NOW IN A SAFE PLACE, SO I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT EVER FALLING INTO THE WRONG HANDS. AND, IF I WANT TO COME AND VISIT IT, I CAN COME AND SEE IT.” ON JUNE 8, 2018, MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BUCHANAN REGARDING HER FATHER’S CAREER WITH THE ALBERTA PROVINCIAL POLICE AND ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE. BUCHANAN ELABORATED ON HER FATHER’S HISTORY, “[MY DAD WAS EDWARD BUCHANAN, WHO RETIRED AT THE RANK OF] SENIOR STAFF SERGEANT…HE RETIRED IN 1950 FROM THE [R.C.M.P].” “HE JOINED THE A.P.P. WHEN HE WAS TWENTY AND HE WAS STATIONED OUT NEAR ST. PAUL. IN ’21, HE MET MY MOTHER IN EDMONTON…BUT HE STAYED AT ST. PAUL AND THEN AFTER, HE GOT POSTED TO GRANDE PRAIRIE. HE WAS GOING TO GO TO GRANDE PRAIRIE BUT THEN IN ’22, THEY GOT MARRIED. A.P.P. HAD NO RESTRICTIONS ON THEIR MEMBERS GETTING MARRIED, LIKE THE R.C.M.P. HE DIDN’T HAVE TO WAIT TO GET MARRIED…THAT’S WHEN THEY WENT OUT TO BRAINARD.” “EVEN IN THE A.P.P., TO START WITH, HE HAD SOME SERVICE DOWN HERE AT THE LETHBRIDGE PRISON…BRINGING PRISONERS DOWN AND THEN MAYBE, AT THE VERY FIRST WINTER AS A ROOKIE, HE WAS ON JOB TO BE ON GUARD AT THE STATION. IT WASN’T LONG AND HE WAS SENT OUT TO ST. PAUL AND INTO MORE OF THE REAL POLICING.” “WHEN HE WAS IN THE A.P.P. [IN 1932] HE WAS THE TOP CLASS OF [THE] A.P.P. THAT AUTOMATICALLY WERE ACCEPTED INTO THE R.C.M.P. HE WAS PUT IN CHARGE, WHEN HE WAS IN THE A.P.P.—FIRST HE STARTED OUT IN CHARGE OF BRAINARD—HORSE LAKE—A LITTLE PLACE NEAR THE HORSE LAKE INDIAN RESERVATION. THEY CLOSED THAT DOWN AND TRANSFERRED HIM TO WEMBLEY, A LITTLE VILLAGE, AND HE WAS THE ONLY ONE IN CHARGE, THE ONLY OFFICER IN CHARGE OF WEMBLEY. THAT’S WHEN THAT 1932 [CHANGE] CAME ALONG AND HE JUST CHANGED THE SIGN UP THERE FROM A.P.P. TO R.C.M.P. AND WENT FROM THERE.” “IN ’32, IT WAS R.C.M.P. AND THAT STAYED R.C.M.P. UNTIL ’34. THEN HE WAS TRANSFERRED TO TAKE CHARGE OF THE WESTLOCK DETACHMENT WHICH WAS A BIG AREA. [THERE] WAS NO DETACHMENT IN BARRHEAD. HE HAD A HUGE AREA THERE TO COVER.” “[A.P.P. MEMBERS] WERE NOT AUTOMATICALLY TAKEN INTO THE R.C.M.P. THEY HAD THREE CATEGORIES THERE, OF THE A.P.P. MEMBERS…[THERE WERE] ONES THAT WERE NOT ACCEPTABLE, THAT THEY HADN’T DONE A VERY GOOD JOB IN THE A.P.P.; THEY SHOWED UP, GOOFIN’ AROUND, DOING THINGS THEY SHOULDN’T BE DOING. THEY WERE NOT ACCEPTABLE. THEN THERE [WERE THE ONES THAT] COULD BE GIVEN A LITTLE TRIAL RUN. THEY COULD APPLY. THEN THERE [WERE] ONES THAT COULD GET IN FOR A FULL YEAR AND THEN RE-APPLY. THEY’D BE ACCEPTED FOR A YEAR. THEN THERE’S THE TOP GRADE AND [THEY] WERE AUTOMATICALLY ACCEPTABLE. DAD WAS RIGHT UP THERE IN THAT TOP GRADE.” “A.P.P. MEMBERS WERE TRAINED BY THE NORTHWEST MOUNTED POLICE, NOT SOME GOOFBALLS THAT DIDN’T KNOW WHAT THEY WERE DOING. THESE WERE TRAINED BY THE BEST-TRAINED POLICE OFFICERS.” “ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER HANCOCK KNEW DAD REALLY WELL, HE’D EVEN BEEN IN THE A.P.P. HE CALLED DAD INTO THE OFFICE AND HE SAID, “BUCK, [DAD WAS EDWARD ETTERSHANK BUCHANAN BUT THEY CALLED HIM ‘BUCK’, A LOT] I WAS GOING TO SEND YOU DOWN TO TAKE CHARGE OF THE RED DEER DETACHMENT BUT I’VE HAD SO MUCH PROBLEM GETTING SOMEBODY TO GO DOWN TO TAKE THE LETHBRIDGE DETACHMENT…YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE, I THINK, THAT CAN HANDLE THE SITUATION WE’VE GOT DOWN THERE. THERE’S A LOT OF PROBLEMS AND I’M SURE YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE THAT CAN HANDLE IT. WILL YOU GO?” “[WE CAME DOWN HERE IN] ’44…I NEVER HAD ANY PROBLEM [WITH THE MOVE]. I WAS ALWAYS ADVENTUROUS. I HAD LOTS OF FRIENDS BUT I WAS ALWAYS HAPPY TO GO.” “WE RENTED A HOUSE ON 538 – 7TH STREET. IT’S ALL TORN DOWN NOW. DAD HAD TO COME DOWN A MONTH OR SO AHEAD OF US AND THEN HE COULDN’T FIND A HOUSE READY, SO WE CAME DOWN AND STAYED IN A HOTEL FOR ABOUT TWO MONTHS. I HAD TO START GRADE TEN; I WAS ONLY FOURTEEN, HERE. THAT WAS, TO ME, THE ONLY SAD PART OF MY LIFE, LEAVING THE WESTLOCK SCHOOL AND STARTING LCI. THE PERSONALIZATION WAS GONE WITH THE TEACHERS.” “[DAD] HAD TO OVERSEE THE POW CAMPS…HE TALKED ABOUT THE POW’S IN THIS RESPECT, THAT THERE WAS A LOT OF VERY GOOD GERMANS THAT WERE IN THERE. [THEY] WOULDN’T HAVE CHOSEN TO EVEN BE IN THE GERMAN ARMY…THEY WERE CONSCRIPTED OVER IN GERMANY, THEY DIDN’T HAVE ANY CHOICE, AND THEY WERE VERY DECENT, GOOD GUYS. HE RESPECTED THEM FOR THAT AND HELPED THEM, [GAVE] THEM ADVICE, “YOU KNOW, YOU GOTTA GO BACK TO GERMANY AND THEN APPLY TO COME BACK.” THERE WAS A TRUST THERE TO LET SOME OF THEM OUT TO WORK…‘CAUSE THERE [WAS] A LABOUR SHORTAGE FOR THE FARMERS AND THEY NEEDED THAT HELP. SOME OF THOSE FARMERS WERE VERY PLEASED TO GET SOME OF THESE GERMANS, AND SOME OF THE FARMERS’ DAUGHTERS WERE VERY PLEASED TO GET THAT, TOO. THEN THERE’S SOME LATER MARRIAGES AFTER THAT. IT WOULD BE A SHAME TO CONDEMN ALL THOSE POW’S BECAUSE A LOT OF THEM WERE VERY DECENT, GOOD, MORAL FELLOWS THAT DIDN’T WANT TO BE INVOLVED WITH ANY KILLING.” “HE WAS A PLAIN STAFF SERGEANT, NCO, SECOND IN CHARGE OF THE SUBDIVISION.” “[THEN HE] WENT BACK TO EDMONTON [TO RETIRE IN 1950], HIS HOME CITY WHERE HIS PARENTS WERE AND A LOT OF FRIENDS. HE JOINED THE R.C.M. P. VETS BUT WITH HIS RECORD, THE ATTORNEY GENERAL’S DEPARTMENT WERE NOT GOING TO LET HIM LOOSE. THEY MADE IT A FIRST APPOINTMENT OF AN INSPECTOR OF JAILS FOR THE PRISONS OF ALBERTA WHICH, AT THAT TIME, THERE WERE ONLY TWO: LETHBRIDGE AND FORT SASKATCHEWAN. [THE] ONLY PLACE IN FORT SASKATCHEWAN WAS FOR WOMEN, SO [WOMEN] HAD TO GO ALL THE WAY TO FORT SASKATCHEWAN, EVEN IF [THEY] WAS FROM LETHBRIDGE. THAT WASN’T A VERY GOOD DEAL, SO DAD COULD SEE A REAL NEED [FOR WORK]. IT WAS A REAL MESS WHEN HE LOOKED AT THE PRISONS.” “HE REALIZED, BEING AN R.C.M.P., THAT MANY OF THE YOUNG CITY POLICE, TOWN SHERIFFS, SOME OF THESE MAGISTRATES, THEY MESSED THINGS UP. HE STARTED A TRAINING SCHOOL FOR THESE MUNICIPAL POLICE AND THAT JUST WENT TERRIFICALLY. THEY HAD [THE SCHOOLS] IN CALGARY AND IN EDMONTON TWICE A YEAR. THEY HAD A BIG GROUP FROM MEDICINE HAT COME UP AND [TAKE] THE SCHOOLING, LETHBRIDGE CAME UP, AND SOME OF THE PRISON GUARDS TOOK [THE TRAINING], TOO.” “[HE] WORKED ON THAT FOR FIFTEEN/SIXTEEN YEARS. AFTER TWELVE YEARS, HE WAS SO BUSY THAT THEY MADE HIM SUPERINTENDENT OF PRISONS BECAUSE…THE FIRST THING HE HAD TO DO WAS TO DEVELOP THE PRISONS FOR ALBERTA. TWO WAS NOT SUFFICIENT.” “[DAD’S] PERSONALITY WAS ALWAYS QUIET, FIRM, NO-NONSENSE, HUMOROUS, BUT HE WAS NEVER ARROGANT. I NEVER HEARD HIM SWEAR OR GET MAD AT ANYBODY, NOT EVEN PRISONERS. HE HANDLED THEM VERY QUIETLY, AND VERY FIRMLY. THE STAFF…ALL LOVED HIM. I [HAVE] LETTERS AND THEY CAME ALL THE WAY UP TO THEIR ANNIVERSARIES LATER IN EDMONTON…“YOU’RE THE BEST BOSS WE EVER HAD.” ALL HE HAD WAS A VISION OF WHAT NEEDED TO BE DONE…HE COULD GO AND EXPLAIN THE NEED FOR THE JAILS, WHAT IT WOULD COST AND WHAT IT NEEDED TO FIX THE PROBLEM. HE NEVER HAD PROBLEM GETTING EXACTLY WHAT HE NEEDED FROM THEM.” ON THE DONATION OF THE REVOLVER AND AMMUNITION, BUCHANAN NOTED, “MY DAD KNEW I WOULD LOOK AFTER [HIS BELONGINGS] AND WANTED TO GET IT TO A MUSEUM. [DAD KNEW] THAT I WASN’T ONE TO PUT IT IN MY BASEMENT TO HAVE GOODNESS-KNOWS-WHAT-HAPPEN TO IT. HE HAD LEFT ALL OF THAT IN CHARGE OF ME. I WAS THE SOLE EXECUTOR OF THE ESTATE.” “I AM NOW AT THE YOUNG AGE OF 88; I’M NOT WORRIED ABOUT LIVING ANOTHER 10 YEARS. I DIDN’T WANT THE CHANCE OF ANYBODY STEALING IT, OR GETTING THEIR HANDS ON IT, SO I WANTED TO MAKE SURE YOU GOT IT. AND, I DON’T NEED IT, SO WHY KEEP IT? IF I GET LONESOME, AND WANT TO SEE IT, I’LL COME TO THE MUSEUM AND LOOK AT IT.” “I’LL FEEL HAPPY, TO KNOW IT’S GOT A GOOD HOME. I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL TRANSCRIPTIONS FROM INTERVIEWS AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190002001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20190002003
Acquisition Date
2019-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, LEATHER, METAL
Catalogue Number
P20180001001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Materials
WOOD, LEATHER, METAL
No. Pieces
2
Height
9
Length
58.5
Width
22
Description
A. BANJOLELE, 53 CM LONG X 19 CM WIDE X 5.5 CM TALL. BODY IS POLISHED BROWN WOOD WITH WHITE LEATHER DRUM/HEAD; BODY HAS SILVER METAL TAIL PIECE AND TONE RING AROUND DRUM/HEAD. NECK AND HEAD-STOCK ARE COVERED IN PEARL/TORTOISE SHELL; FRET ON NECK IS STRUNG WITH ONE SILVER WIRE AND ONE CLOTH STRING; FRETBOARD IS LINED WITH SILVER METAL FRETS. HEAD-STOCK HAS FOUR SILVER METAL TUNING PEGS AND BLACK AND GOLD TEXT LABEL “VALENCIA”. BACK HAS FOUR DISCOLORED WHITE, WOODEN TUNING PEGS AND SILVER METAL SPRING AT JUNCTION OF NECK AND HEAD-STOCK. BACK OF DRUM BODY HAS CUT-OUT SWIRLS IN WOOD. WOOD BODY IS SCRATCHED AND WORN AT EDGES; BACK OF NECK HAS PEELING FINISH ON WOOD; LEATHER OF DRUM/HEAD IS WORN AND STAINED BLACK. OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. B. CASE, 58.5 CM LONG X 9 CM TALL X 22 CM WIDE. CASE IS BROWN CLOTH COVERING A PAPER BOARD IN SHAPE OF BANJOLELE, WITH WIDER BASE. CASE OPENS AT BASE AND HAS BROWN LEATHER HINGE AND SILVER METAL CLASP. BROWN LEATHER HANDLE ON SIDE OF CASE IS BROKEN AND DETACHED AT END. INSIDE OF CASE IS LINED WITH DARK GREEN FABRIC. TOP OF CASE HAS “L W” HANDWRITTEN IN BLACK INK. CASE IS WORN AROUND EDGES AND CLOTH IS FRAYING; BOTTOM OF CASE HAS WATER DAMAGE AND WHITE STAINING; TOP OF CASE HAS WHITE STAINING AND SCRATCHES. LEATHER HINGE AND HANDLE ARE CRACKED AND FADED. OVERALL GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
MUSICAL T&E
Historical Association
LEISURE
HOME ENTERTAINMENT
History
ON JANUARY 24, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BEVE SPENGLER AND RUTH HILL REGARDING RUTH’S DONATION OF A BANJOLELE AND GUITAR. THE INSTRUMENTS WERE KEPT AND PLAYED BY THEIR FATHER, SYDNEY JAMES WOMACK, IN THE 1930S AND 1940S. ON THE BANJOLELE, RUTH RECALLED, “I CAN’T REMEMBER [MUCH] ABOUT [IT] AT ALL, BECAUSE HE BOUGHT [THE GUITAR] BUT SOMEHOW HE MUST HAVE SEEN THIS, AND THEN HE THOUGHT FOR LORNE [OUR BROTHER] HE WOULD BUY THAT [BANJOLELE] TO MATCH THE GUITAR.” “MY DAD USED TO PLAY ME TO SLEEP FROM THE TIME…WE WENT OUT TO THE FARM IN ’30. I WAS BORN IN ’27, SO ALL THE ‘30S HE PLAYED ME TO SLEEP EVERY NIGHT…I NEVER SAW MY DAD PLAY [THE BANJOLELE] YET HE BOUGHT IT BECAUSE HE KNEW THERE WAS A MATCHING PAIR. HE COULDN’T AFFORD BOTH OF THEM AT THE SAME TIME. HE BOUGHT HIS GUITAR AND THEN, LATER ON WHEN HE HAD SOME MORE MONEY, HE WENT AND GOT THAT FOR LORNE, BUT I CAN’T REMEMBER HIM PLAYING IT.” “[HE BOUGHT THE BANJOLELE] HERE IN LETHBRIDGE. HE BROUGHT [HIS] VIOLIN FROM THE STATES, BUT THOSE TWO PIECES WERE BOUGHT IN LETHBRIDGE. I DON’T KNOW WHERE AT, BUT I KNOW IT WAS IN THE EARLY ‘20S BECAUSE THEY CAME TO THE FARM WITH US IN ’30. THEY CAME HERE IN ’18…HE WORKED AT THE CPR AS AN OILER AND THEN HE ENDED UP AT THE GALT GARDENS WORKING WITH THE PLANTS. WHEN THAT FIZZLED OUT, HE WANTED A FARM SO WE WENT FARMING.” HILL ELABORATED ON HER FATHER’S MUSICAL BACKGROUND, NOTING, “[MY PARENTS] MOVED FROM ENGLAND TO IOWA. THEY WERE THERE FOR SEVEN YEARS AND DADDY LEARNED TO PLAY THE VIOLIN IN THE TOILET, IN THE OUTHOUSE. THAT’S WHAT HE TOLD US.” “HE LOVED MUSIC AND ACTUALLY HIS BEST WAS HAWAIIAN GUITAR…THAT’S WHY HE GOT [THE GUITAR], BECAUSE HE LOVED HAWAIIAN MUSIC. HE LOVED TO PLAY HAWAIIAN SONGS ON [THE GUITAR] BECAUSE THEY WERE SLOWER. THE VIOLIN HE COULD REALLY GO TO TOWN AND PLAY TWO STEPS.” “[WE] USED TO GO [TO DANCES] EVERY MONTH. I CAN SEE HIM WITH THE OLD MODEL T—HE WOULD HAVE TO PUT A FIRE UNDER IT TO GET IT STARTED AT HOME, THEN WE WOULD GO FOR THE CHRISTMAS CONCERT AND HE WOULD START PLAYING UNTIL TWO IN THE MORNING. THEN HE HAS TO PUT THE FIRE UNDER TO GET THE CAR GOING AGAIN. THEY WERE BAD YEARS BUT THEY WERE WONDERFUL YEARS…FROM [1933] UNTIL I WENT OUT IN GRADE NINE HE USED TO COME, WE USED TO HAVE DANCES, ALL THROUGH THE THIRTIES WE HAD DANCES AT LEAST TWICE A MONTH.” BEVE ADDED, “HE PLAYED WITH OTHER MEN, HE DIDN’T PLAY BY HIMSELF.” RUTH ELABORATED, “THEY HAD A LADY ON THE PIANO, THEY HAD DADDY ON THE VIOLIN, AND THEN THEY HAD ANOTHER CHAP ON THE DRUMS…[OUR FATHER] TOOK THE LEAD. THE VIOLIN WOULD ALWAYS START BEFORE, BECAUSE HE HAD THE MEMORY OF THE PIECES HE WANTED TO PLAY AND NOBODY ELSE KNEW NOTHING UNTIL HE GOT STARTED. THEN THEY’D JOIN IN.” “HE WAS STILL PLAYING THE VIOLIN, HE USED TO LIKE TO PLAY THE VIOLIN. EVEN IN THE ‘40S [HE LIKED TO PLAY THE VIOLIN], I CAN REMEMBER THAT. HE DIDN’T SO MUCH PLAY [THE OTHER INSTRUMENTS] BUT HE PLAYED THE VIOLIN. “ “HE WAS GOOD. THAT DANCE FLOOR IN THE SCHOOL THERE WOULD BE LOADED AS SOON AS HE STARTED PLAYING. AS SOON AS HE STARTED TO PLAY THEY WERE ALL UP, AND AT NIGHT NOBODY LEFT UNTIL TWO IN THE MORNING…HE USED TO TAKE THE GUITAR AND PLAY THE WALTZES ON THAT, BUT THE VIOLIN HE WOULD PLAY THE OTHERS.” “THAT CLASSICAL [MUSIC], HE HAD NO USE FOR [IT]. HE USED TO SAY, “THERE’S NO BEAT THERE.” THEY WERE HIS WORDS. THERE WAS NO BEAT AND HE SAID, “IF THEY CAN’T PLAY THIS, I’M NOT LISTENING.” HE COULDN’T READ MUSIC, BUT IF HE COULD SEE THE [NOTES] AS [THEY] WENT UP OR DOWN…THAT’S WHAT HE’D LOOK AT, AND THEN HE’D LEARN TO PLAY THAT SONG. THAT WAS ON THE GUITAR, THAT WAS FOR THE HAWAIIAN PART.” “[HE HAD THE INSTRUMENTS] ON OUR FARM AT KIPP, ALBERTA AND ON THE FARMHOUSE, I’M IN THE BED. HE [WOULD BE] PLAYING THAT AND THEN I’D GO TO SLEEP TO HIM PLAYING THAT DAY IN, WEEK AFTER WEEK. YEAR AFTER YEAR. HE ALWAYS PLAYED ME TO SLEEP.” “HE [PLAYED] IN THE FRONT ROOM. [THE INSTRUMENTS] STAYED IN THE CORNER, HE BUILT A SHELF FOR THE RADIO AND THEN [THE GUITAR] STOOD UNDERNEATH THAT SHELF. THAT’S WHERE [THEY] STAYED…[THE INSTRUMENTS WERE] WITH MY DAD UNTIL ’93, THEN HE CAME TO LIVE WITH ME AND OF COURSE HE BROUGHT HIS THINGS WITH HIM. I NEVER THOUGHT THEY WERE IN MY CLOSET AND I HADN’T DONE A BIG CLEANING, SO THEY’VE JUST BEEN THERE. NOW I THOUGHT IT’S TIME TO LET SOMEBODY ELSE LOOK AT THEM...[OUR FATHER] DIED IN ’98.” “I DIDN’T WANT THE INSTRUMENTS TO BE GARBAGED. I WANTED THEM TO MEAN SOMETHING, AND I KNEW…THE MUSEUM WOULD ACCEPT THEM…IT WAS ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL [FOR MY DAD TO PLAY FOR ME] BECAUSE I LOVE MUSIC TOO. THAT WAS REALLY SOMETHING TO HAVE HIM PLAYING TO ME ALL THE TIME [AT BEDTIME].” “LET SOMEBODY ELSE LOOK AT [THE INSTRUMENTS] NOW. I’VE GOT ALL THE MEMORIES…I CAN SEE HIM PLAYING [THEM], I CAN HEAR HIM PLAYING [THEM], I CAN SEE IT AT THE DANCEHALL, I’VE GOT IT RIGHT THERE. SO SOMEBODY ELSE CAN LOOK AT [THEM] NOW.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND PHOTOGRAPHS, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20180001001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20180001001
Acquisition Date
2018-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, METAL, SHELL
Catalogue Number
P20180001002
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Materials
WOOD, METAL, SHELL
No. Pieces
2
Height
9
Length
94
Width
32.5
Description
A. GUITAR, 94 CM LONG X 32.5 CM WIDE X 9 CM TALL. WOODEN BODY WITH PEARL/TORTOISE SHELL INLAID AS PICK GUARD AND ALONG FRET BOARD; GUITAR IS STRUNG WITH SIX WIRE STRINGS. GUITAR HAS SIX TUNING KNOBS AT HEAD WITH WHITE PLASTIC HANDLES ON METAL SCREWS. GUITAR BODY HAS DECORATIVE BROWN, RED AND GREEN TRIM AROUND EDGE; GUITAR HAS BLACK KNOB AT BASE. “VALENCIA” LABEL AT TOP OF HEAD; GUITAR SHOWS WEAR AND STAINING ON PICK GUARD AND FRET BOARD; GUITAR HAS SOILING INSIDE; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. B. GUITAR CASE, 100 CM LONG X 37 CM WIDE X 13 CM TALL. BLACK FAUX-LEATHER EXTERIOR WITH LEATHER BUCKLE AT BASE AND LEATHER HANDLE FIXED TO TOP WITH SILVER RINGS; CASE OPENS AT BASE. BASE OF CASE HAS BLACK METAL SNAP AROUND LEATHER BUCKLE STRAP. INSIDE OF CASE LINED WITH BROWN FAUX-FUR. CASE IS HEAVILY WORN ON EDGES AND PEELING; CASE IS SCRATCHED ON SIDES; LEATHER BUCKLE STRAP AT BASE IS CRACKED AND FADED; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
MUSICAL T&E
Historical Association
LEISURE
HOME ENTERTAINMENT
History
ON JANUARY 24, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BEVE SPENGLER AND RUTH HILL REGARDING RUTH’S DONATION OF A BANJOLELE AND GUITAR. THE INSTRUMENTS WERE KEPT AND PLAYED BY THEIR FAMER, SYDNEY JAMES WOMACK, IN THE 1930S AND 1940S. ON THE GUITAR, RUTH HILL RECALLED, “HE BOUGHT IT AND STARTED STRUMMING ON IT…IT WAS ALWAYS ON HIS LAP…MY DAD USED TO PLAY ME TO SLEEP FROM THE TIME…WE WENT OUT TO THE FARM IN ’30. I WAS BORN IN ’27, SO ALL THE ‘30S HE PLAYED ME TO SLEEP EVERY NIGHT…I NEVER SAW MY DAD PLAY [THE BANJOLELE] YET HE BOUGHT IT BECAUSE HE KNEW THERE WAS A MATCHING PAIR. HE COULDN’T AFFORD BOTH OF THEM AT THE SAME TIME. HE BOUGHT HIS GUITAR AND THEN, LATER ON WHEN HE HAD SOME MORE MONEY, HE WENT AND GOT [THE BANJOLELE] FOR LORNE.” “HE LOVED MUSIC AND ACTUALLY HIS BEST WAS HAWAIIAN GUITAR…THAT’S WHY HE GOT [THE GUITAR], BECAUSE HE LOVED HAWAIIAN MUSIC. HE LOVED TO PLAY HAWAIIAN SONGS ON [THE GUITAR] BECAUSE THEY WERE SLOWER. THE VIOLIN HE COULD REALLY GO TO TOWN AND PLAY TWO STEPS.” “[HE BOUGHT THE GUITAR] HERE IN LETHBRIDGE. HE BROUGHT [HIS] VIOLIN FROM THE STATES, BUT THOSE TWO PIECES WERE BOUGHT IN LETHBRIDGE. I DON’T KNOW WHERE AT, BUT I KNOW IT WAS IN THE EARLY ‘20S BECAUSE THEY CAME TO THE FARM WITH US IN ’30. THEY CAME HERE IN ’18…HE WORKED AT THE CPR AS AN OILER AND THEN HE ENDED UP AT THE GALT GARDENS WORKING WITH THE PLANTS. WHEN THAT FIZZLED OUT, HE WANTED A FARM SO WE WENT FARMING.” HILL ELABORATED ON HER FATHER’S MUSICAL BACKGROUND, NOTING, “[MY PARENTS] MOVED FROM ENGLAND TO IOWA. THEY WERE THERE FOR SEVEN YEARS AND DADDY LEARNED TO PLAY THE VIOLIN IN THE TOILET, IN THE OUTHOUSE. THAT’S WHAT HE TOLD US.” “[WE] USED TO GO [TO DANCES] EVERY MONTH. I CAN SEE HIM WITH THE OLD MODEL T—HE WOULD HAVE TO PUT A FIRE UNDER IT TO GET IT STARTED AT HOME, THEN WE WOULD GO FOR THE CHRISTMAS CONCERT AND HE WOULD START PLAYING UNTIL TWO IN THE MORNING. THEN HE HAS TO PUT THE FIRE UNDER TO GET THE CAR GOING AGAIN. THEY WERE BAD YEARS BUT THEY WERE WONDERFUL YEARS…FROM [1933] UNTIL I WENT OUT IN GRADE NINE HE USED TO COME, WE USED TO HAVE DANCES, ALL THROUGH THE THIRTIES WE HAD DANCES AT LEAST TWICE A MONTH.” BEVE ADDED, “HE PLAYED WITH OTHER MEN, HE DIDN’T PLAY BY HIMSELF.” RUTH ELABORATED, “THEY HAD A LADY ON THE PIANO, THEY HAD DADDY ON THE VIOLIN, AND THEN THEY HAD ANOTHER CHAP ON THE DRUMS…[OUR FATHER] TOOK THE LEAD. THE VIOLIN WOULD ALWAYS START BEFORE, BECAUSE HE HAD THE MEMORY OF THE PIECES HE WANTED TO PLAY AND NOBODY ELSE KNEW NOTHING UNTIL HE GOT STARTED. THEN THEY’D JOIN IN.” “HE WAS STILL PLAYING THE VIOLIN, HE USED TO LIKE TO PLAY THE VIOLIN. EVEN IN THE ‘40S [HE LIKED TO PLAY THE VIOLIN], I CAN REMEMBER THAT. HE DIDN’T SO MUCH PLAY [THE OTHER INSTRUMENTS] BUT HE PLAYED THE VIOLIN. “ “HE WAS GOOD. THAT DANCE FLOOR IN THE SCHOOL THERE WOULD BE LOADED AS SOON AS HE STARTED PLAYING. AS SOON AS HE STARTED TO PLAY THEY WERE ALL UP, AND AT NIGHT NOBODY LEFT UNTIL TWO IN THE MORNING…HE USED TO TAKE THE GUITAR AND PLAY THE WALTZES ON THAT, BUT THE VIOLIN HE WOULD PLAY THE OTHERS.” “THAT CLASSICAL [MUSIC], HE HAD NO USE FOR [IT]. HE USED TO SAY, “THERE’S NO BEAT THERE.” THEY WERE HIS WORDS. THERE WAS NO BEAT AND HE SAID, “IF THEY CAN’T PLAY THIS, I’M NOT LISTENING.” HE COULDN’T READ MUSIC, BUT IF HE COULD SEE THE [NOTES] AS [THEY] WENT UP OR DOWN…THAT’S WHAT HE’D LOOK AT, AND THEN HE’D LEARN TO PLAY THAT SONG. THAT WAS ON THE GUITAR, THAT WAS FOR THE HAWAIIAN PART.” “[HE HAD THE INSTRUMENTS] ON OUR FARM AT KIPP, ALBERTA AND ON THE FARMHOUSE, I’M IN THE BED. HE [WOULD BE] PLAYING THAT AND THEN I’D GO TO SLEEP TO HIM PLAYING THAT DAY IN, WEEK AFTER WEEK. YEAR AFTER YEAR. HE ALWAYS PLAYED ME TO SLEEP.” “HE [PLAYED] IN THE FRONT ROOM. [THE INSTRUMENTS] STAYED IN THE CORNER, HE BUILT A SHELF FOR THE RADIO AND THEN [THE GUITAR] STOOD UNDERNEATH THAT SHELF. THAT’S WHERE [THEY] STAYED…[THE INSTRUMENTS WERE] WITH MY DAD UNTIL ’93, THEN HE CAME TO LIVE WITH ME AND OF COURSE HE BROUGHT HIS THINGS WITH HIM. I NEVER THOUGHT THEY WERE IN MY CLOSET AND I HADN’T DONE A BIG CLEANING, SO THEY’VE JUST BEEN THERE. NOW I THOUGHT IT’S TIME TO LET SOMEBODY ELSE LOOK AT THEM...[OUR FATHER] DIED IN ’98.” “I DIDN’T WANT THE INSTRUMENTS TO BE GARBAGED. I WANTED THEM TO MEAN SOMETHING, AND I KNEW…THE MUSEUM WOULD ACCEPT THEM…IT WAS ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL [FOR MY DAD TO PLAY FOR ME] BECAUSE I LOVE MUSIC TOO. THAT WAS REALLY SOMETHING TO HAVE HIM PLAYING TO ME ALL THE TIME [AT BEDTIME].” “LET SOMEBODY ELSE LOOK AT [THE INSTRUMENTS] NOW. I’VE GOT ALL THE MEMORIES…I CAN SEE HIM PLAYING [THEM], I CAN HEAR HIM PLAYING [THEM], I CAN SEE IT AT THE DANCEHALL, I’VE GOT IT RIGHT THERE. SO SOMEBODY ELSE CAN LOOK AT [THEM] NOW.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND PHOTOGRAPHS, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20180001001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20180001002
Acquisition Date
2018-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
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
Other Name
STAGE PERFORMANCE BORDER
Date Range From
1918
Date Range To
1950
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
PLYWOOD, PAINT
Catalogue Number
P20110031021
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
STAGE PERFORMANCE BORDER
Date Range From
1918
Date Range To
1950
Materials
PLYWOOD, PAINT
No. Pieces
5
Height
303.5
Length
114.3
Description
STAGE PERFORMANCE BORDER, IN FIVE PANEL PIECES. .001 TOP CENTRE PANEL. RECTANGULAR. VERY THIN PLYWOOD. GREEN BACKGROUND WITH PINK/RED FLOWERS. TWO FLAGS IN THE CENTRE: THE KUOMINTANG/NATIONAL LEAGUE FLAG IS ON THE LEFT (NAVY BLUE WITH A GOLDEN YELLOW SUN IN THE MIDDLE) AND THE FLAG OF THE REPUBLIC OF CHINA IS ON THE RIGHT (RED BODY, WITH A NAVY BLUE RECTANGLE IN THE TOP LEFT CORNER AND A GOLDEN YELLOW SUN IN THE MIDDLE OF THIS NAVY SECTION). BETWEEN THE FLAGS IS A NAVY BLUE, ROUGHLY OCTAGON SHAPE, WITH ANOTHER GOLDEN YELLOW SUN IN THE CENTRE. ALONG THE BOTTOM IS A REPEATING PATTERN IN RED AND YELLOW OF TWO DOTS, A LINE, AND A DOT. SCREW HOLES ALONG THE TOP AND SIDES FOR MOUNTING. ON THE FAR RIGHT SIDE OF THE PANEL IS A SMALL RECTANGULAR PIECE, ATTACHED WITH WIRE, ROUGHLY 19CM X 7.6CM. PANEL IS 241.6CM X 47.6CM POOR TO FAIR CONDITION. PANEL IS WELL WORN, THE COLOURS ARE FADED, AND THE PAINT IS CHIPPED IN SEVERAL SPOTS. .002 TOP SIDE PANEL. RECTANGULAR. VERY THIN PLYWOOD. ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE PANEL ARE THE TOPS OF TWO COLUMNS. A SMALL PINK/RED FLOWER ON A GREEN VINE IS VISIBLE ON THE COLUMN. TO THE LEFT OF THE COLUMNS IS A SECTION OF GREEN WITH PINK/RED FLOWERS. ALONG THE BOTTOM IS A REPEATING PATTERN IN RED AND YELLOW OF TWO DOTS, A LINE, AND A DOT. BELOW THE RED AND YELLOW SECTION IS A NAVY BLUE SECTION, WITH A YELLOW SECTION JUST TO THE RIGHT OF THE COLUMN. SCREW HOLES ALONG THE TOP AND SIDES FOR MOUNTING. PANEL IS 200.7CM X 56.2CM POOR TO FAIR CONDITION. PAINT SCRATCHED OFF, ESPECIALLY ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE GREEN FLOWER SECTION. NOT AS FADED OR AS WORN AS .001. TAPE REMNANTS IN THE GREEN SECTION TO THE RIGHT OF COLUMNS. .003 TOP SIDE PANEL. RECTANGULAR. VERY THIN PLYWOOD. ON THE LEFT SIDE OF THE PANEL ARE THE TOPS OF TWO COLUMNS. TO THE LEFT OF THE COLUMNS IS A SECTION OF GREEN WITH PINK/RED FLOWERS. ALONG THE BOTTOM IS A REPEATING PATTERN IN RED AND YELLOW OF TWO DOTS, A LINE, AND A DOT. BELOW THE RED AND YELLOW SECTION IS A NAVY BLUE SECTION, WITH A YELLOW SECTION JUST TO THE RIGHT OF THE COLUMN. SCREW HOLES ALONG THE TOP AND SIDES FOR MOUNTING. PANEL IS 243.2CM X 55.2CM POOR TO FAIR CONDITION. TAN PAINT ALONG THE BOTTOM, OVER THE GREEN SECTION, IN SEVERAL AREAS. THE NAVY BLUE SECTION HAS A LOT OF HAIRLINE CRACKS IN THE PAINT. .004 SIDE PANEL. RECTANGULAR. VERY THIN PLYWOOD. ON THE BOTTOM OF THE PANEL IS A RECTANGLE IN THREE SHADES OF BROWN/TAN. ALONG THE LEFT SIDE OF THE PANEL THERE ARE TWO COLUMNS, WHICH HAVE PINK/RED FLOWERS ON GREEN VINES WRAPPED AROUND THEM. NAVY BLUE CURTAIN TO THE RIGHT OF COLUMNS. THERE IS A VERTICAL RECTANGLE OVER THIS NAVY CURTAIN. THE RECTANGLE HAS A LIGHT BLUE/GREEN BACKGROUND AND HAS SEVEN CHINESE CHARACTERS IN YELLOW. THERE IS ORNAMENTATION AROUND THIS RECTANGLE. THE NAVY CURTAIN IS HELD BACK WITH A GOLDEN YELLOW TIEBACK NEAR THE TOP. ON THE FAR RIGHT SIDE IS A VERTICAL RECTANGLE WITH AN ORANGE BACKGROUND AND SEVEN CHINESE CHARACTERS IN BLACK. SCREW HOLES FOR MOUNTING AROUND EDGE OF PANEL. PANEL IS 303.5CM X 114.3CM POOR TO FAIR CONDITION. IN WORSE CONDITION THAN .005. LOTS OF LITTLE HOLES, ESPECIALLY ON THE NAVY CURTAIN. LOTS OF WALL PAINT FLECKS, ESPECIALLY ON THE COLUMNS. THE BLUE VERTICAL RECTANGLE IS MORE GREEN THAN ON .005 AND THE PAINT IS VERY, VERY WORN. .005 SIDE PANEL. RECTANGULAR. VERY THIN PLYWOOD. ON THE BOTTOM OF THE PANEL IS A RECTANGLE IN THREE SHADES OF BROWN/TAN. ALONG THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE PANEL THERE ARE TWO COLUMNS, WHICH HAVE PINK/RED FLOWERS ON GREEN VINES WRAPPED AROUND THEM. NAVY BLUE CURTAIN TO THE LEFT OF COLUMNS. THERE IS A VERTICAL RECTANGLE OVER THIS NAVY CURTAIN. THE RECTANGLE HAS A LIGHT BLUE/GREEN BACKGROUND AND HAS SEVEN CHINESE CHARACTERS IN YELLOW. THERE IS ORNAMENTATION AROUND THIS RECTANGLE. BELOW THIS BLUE RECTANGLE, ON THE NAVY CURTAIN, ARE SEVERAL CHINESE CHARACTERS ON A DIAGONAL, PAINTED ON IN RED. THE NAVY CURTAIN IS HELD BACK WITH A GOLDEN YELLOW TIEBACK NEAR THE TOP. ON THE FAR LEFT SIDE IS A VERTICAL RECTANGLE WITH AN ORANGE BACKGROUND AND SEVEN CHINESE CHARACTERS IN BLACK. SCREW HOLES FOR MOUNTING AROUND EDGE OF PANEL. PANEL IS 303.5CM X 114.3CM POOR TO FAIR CONDITION. LOTS OF CHIPPED PAINT. PANEL IS FADED/DISCOLOURED. BOTTOM BACK IS IN ESPECIALLY POOR CONDITION AND IS VERY DIRTY.
Subjects
PUBLIC ENTERTAINMENT DEVICE
Historical Association
ASSOCIATIONS
FINE ARTS
LEISURE
History
THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION ABOUT THIS ARTIFACT COMES FROM INTERVIEWS HELD WITH MAY LEE AND JUDY CHAN, RICHARD LOO, AND HONG WONG AND JANICE WONG. PERSONAL DETAILS ABOUT THE LIVES OF MAY LEE, RICHARD LOO, AND HONG WONG THEIR IMMIGRATION TO CANADA ARE FOUND BELOW THE ARTIFACT DETAILS AND BELOW THE INFORMATION ABOUT THE CHINESE NATIONAL LEAGUE SOCIETY BUILDING. MAY RECALLED THAT THERE WERE OPERAS AT THE SOCIETY BUILDING, BUT THAT THEY DIDN’T COME VERY OFTEN. SHE DIDN’T RECALL ATTENDING MANY OPERAS, BUT DID REMEMBER THAT “HONG WONG WAS SINGING THERE.” RICHARD, MEANWHILE, THOUGHT THAT THE OPERAS WERE FINISHED BEFORE HE ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE. HE NEVER SAW AN OPERA PRODUCTION AT THE SOCIETY BUILDING, BUT DID RECALL THAT PROJECTION FILMS WERE SHOWN. RICHARD SUGGESTED “ASK HONG. HE LIKED A LITTLE BIT OF OPERA TOO … HE SANG IN STUFF LIKE THAT.” HONG INDICATED THAT THERE WAS NO OPERAS AT THE SOCIETY BUILDING WHEN HE CAME IN 1951, BUT THAT THE SOCIETY DID STAGE PRODUCTIONS AT THE UNIVERSITY. ASKED WHERE THE COSTUMES CAME FROM, HONG SAID “WE GOT THEM FROM CALGARY AT THAT TIME, WELL, ACTUALLY WE JUST BORROWED THEM. WE DIDN’T HAVE THE MONEY TO BUY THEM.” HONG CONTINUED SAYING THAT THIS STAGE PERFORMANCE BORDER WAS USED IN CONJUNCTION WITH A LARGE MURAL (SEE P20010027000) AND A STAGE. A SERIES OF ARTICLES PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD GIVE BACKGROUND INFORMATION ABOUT THE CHINESE NATIONAL LEAGUE SOCIETY AND ITS BUILDING: THE BUILDING THAT HOUSED THE CHINESE NATIONAL LEAGUE SOCIETY WAS BUILT IN 1909-1910 IN THE 300 BLOCK OF 2 AVENUE SOUTH AND IT WAS ORIGINALLY A RESTAURANT. BY 1915 IT HAD BECOME THE HEADQUARTERS FOR THE LETHBRIDGE BRANCH OF THE KAO MIN TANG (ALTERNATIVE SPELLINGS INCLUDE KUOMINTANG, KUO MIN TANG, GUOMINDANG, AND GUO MIN DANG). THE BUILDING WAS DESIGNATED AS A PROVINCIAL HERITAGE RESOURCE IN 1995 BECAUSE OF ITS VALUE AS A SOCIAL AND CULTURAL CENTRE FOR THE LETHBRIDGE CHINESE COMMUNITY. THE BUILDING WAS USED IN A VARIETY OF WAYS BY THE SOCIETY AND INCLUDED, AT VARIOUS TIMES, A RESTAURANT, A SCHOOL, AND LIVING ACCOMODATIONS. IN FEBRUARY 2011 A SECTION OF THE BRICK FAÇADE FELL OFF THE BUILDING AND CITY INSPECTORS DETERMINED THAT THE TIMBER AND RED BRICK STRUCTURE WAS POTENTIALLY UNSTABLE. THE BUILDING WAS TORN DOWN A SHORT TIME LATER. LETHBRIDGE'S CHINATOWN EMERGED IN 1901, A RESULT OF THE CHINESE POPULATION BEING RELEGATED TO A SECTION OF THE CITY BETWEEN GALT GARDENS AND THE COULEES. IN A JANUARY 7, 2002 ARTICLE ALBERT LEONG EXPLAINS THAT NO ONE REALLY WANTED CHINESE PEOPLE AROUND AND THAT “’ THEY WERE TOLD THAT THE ONLY PLACE THEY COULD START BUSINESSES WAS BETWEEN THE COULEES AT THE PARK, BECAUSE THE CITY DIDN’T WANT ANY COMPETITION FOR THE WHITE BUSINESSMEN … BUT ‘GHETTO-IZED’ OR NOT, THE CHINESE WHO CAME TO LETHBRIDGE FORMED AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE BACKBONE OF THIS CITY, [AND MADE] NOTEWORTHY [CONTRIBUTIONS] TO THE HISTORY OF THIS PLACE.’” BUSINESSES SUCH AS LAUNDRIES, MARKET GARDENS, AND RESTAURANTS WERE OPENED IN CHINATOWN, WITH THE RESIDENTS LIVING IN ROOMS ABOVE THE BUSINESSES. IN 1912 THERE WERE ABOUT 100 PEOPLE LIVING IN CHINATOWN AND BY THE 1930S, IT WAS A BUSTLING COMMUNITY. THE POPULATION OF CHINATOWN DWINDLED FOLLOWING THE SECOND WORLD WAR. JANICE WONG, PRESIDENT OF THE SOCIETY IN 2015, GAVE THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION ABOUT THE SOCIETY IN AN INTERVIEW: AS OF 2015, THE SOCIETY EXISTS MORE AS A SOCIAL CLUB AND THE SOCIETY HOLDS THREE CELEBRATORY DINNERS EACH YEAR, USUALLY HELD AT THE NEW DYNASTY RESTAURANT. THE SOCIETY ALSO VISITS THE CEMETERY ON A YEARLY BASIS “TO HONOUR THE ANCESTORS, CLEAN THE TOMBS, BRING FOOD, DO THE USUAL THINGS THAT WE USED TO DO – EAT ON GRAVES, BURN THE INCENSE. WE DO THAT EVERY YEAR STILL TO HONOUR OUR ANCESTORS. IT IS USUALLY IN THE SPRING … IN APRIL.” JANICE BRIEFLY DISCUSSED THE FUTURE OF THE SOCIETY, INDICATING THAT THERE IS SOME TALK ABOUT RE-BUILDING “BUT THAT INVOLVES A LOT OF PLANNING, AND MONEY, AND FUNDRAISING” AND SHE QUESTIONS WHETHER OR NOT THERE IS ENOUGH OF A MEMBERSHIP BASE TO GO FORWARD WITH RE-BUILDING. SHE ALSO EXPLAINED THAT PREVIOUS CHINESE IMMIGRANTS HAD TENDED TO COME FROM THE SAME GEOGRAPHIC REGION, BUT THAT PRESENTLY IMMIGRANTS ARE COMING FROM ALL OVER CHINA: “THERE’S A LOT OF INFLUX OF PEOPLE FROM CHINA THAT AREN’T FROM THE SAME AREA, BECAUSE TRADITIONALLY, THE PEOPLE WERE ALL FROM THE SAME AREA AND SPOKE THE SAME DIALECT AND HAD THAT SORT OF THING KEEPING THEM TOGETHER AS A COMMUNITY OVERSEAS FROM CHINA.” PERSONAL DETAILS ABOUT THE LIVES OF MAY LEE, RICHARD LOO, AND HONG WONG AND THEIR IMMIGRATION TO CANADA ARE BELOW: MAY LEE: MAY WAS ACTUALLY BORN IN CANADA AND IS KNOWN AS A GOLD MOUNTAIN GIRL, BECAUSE SHE IS A CANADIAN-BORN CHINESE WOMAN. MAY EXPLAINS: “I WAS BORN IN CANADA. I WAS BORN IN NANOOSE BAY. WHEN I WAS 4 YEARS OLD, WE MOVED TO VICTORIA. WHEN I WAS 9 YEARS OLD AND THE WHOLE FAMILY, IN 1930, GO BACK TO CHINA.” DURING THE WAR, THE JAPANESE BOMBED THE GIRLS’ HIGH SCHOOL IN TOCSIN CITY AND MAY’S MOTHER DECIDED TO SEND MAY AND HER BROTHER TO HONG KONG TO START THE PROCESS OF COMING TO CANADA. MAY STARTED ENGLISH SCHOOL IN HONG KONG, BUT OFTEN MISSED CLASSES BECAUSE SHE WAS SICK FROM THE HEAT. SHE SAYS THAT SHE’S LEARNED MOST OF HER ENGLISH FROM HER HUSBAND, HER CHILDREN, GRANDCHILDREN, AND EVEN GREAT-GRANDCHILDREN. SHE WAS MARRIED TO HOM MEN LEE, AKA JIMMY LEE, ON NOVEMBER 16, 1938 IN VICTORIA, BC. JIMMY WAS BORN IN LETHBRIDGE AT THE GALT HOSPITAL, BUT WAS SENT BACK TO CHINA AS A CHILD FOR HIS EDUCATION. JIMMY’S FAMILY HAD COME TO LETHBRIDGE IN 1914 AND OWNED LEE-DUC CLEANERS. THE LEE FAMILY LIVED ABOVE THE SHOP, WHICH WAS ON 13TH STREET NORTH, NEAR HIGA’S JEWELERS. MAY’S MAIN MEMORY OF CHINATOWN: “ALL I REMEMBER IN CHINATOWN, IN SUMMERTIME, LOTS OF OLD GUYS SITTING IN FRONT OF GUOMINDANG. AUNTIE HELEN GREW UP IN CHINATOWN. I THINK SHE KNOWS MORE ABOUT CHINATOWN. IN THE OLDEN DAYS, I HARDLY GO OUT, JUST TO BUY GROCERIES.” JUDY ADDED THAT MAY HAD 8 CHILDREN AND WAS KEPT BUSY AT HOME RAISING THEM. RICHARD LOO: RICHARD ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1953, HAVING LEFT THE MAINLAND OF CHINA IN 1949. RICHARD’S GRANDFATHER HAD MOVED TO CANADA IN EITHER LATE 1800S OR THE EARLY 1900S AND HAD HAD TO PAY THE HEAD TAX. HIS GRANDFATHER WORKED AS A COOK IN RESTAURANTS, EITHER IN LETHBRIDGE OR IN TABER (ACCORDING TO RICHARD, HIS GRANDFATHER WORKED THROUGH THE WAR YEARS IN TABER). RICHARD’S GRANDFATHER HAD PLANNED ON MOVING BACK TO CHINA WHEN HE RETIRED, BUT THEN THE COMMUNISTS TOOK OVER, AND HE ELECTED TO STAY. AT THAT TIME, HE INVITED RICHARD TO MOVE TO LETHBRIDGE AS WELL. RICHARD LEFT HONG KONG, AFTER LIVING THERE FOR 8 MONTHS, ON A FRIDAY AFTERNOON AT 2PM LOCAL TIME. HE FINALLY ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE SUNDAY AFTERNOON. HE WAS LUCKY IN THAT HE WAS ABLE TO GET HIS FLIGHTS ON SALE. NORMALLY A TICKET FROM HONG KONG TO VANCOUVER WOULD HAVE COST $700, BUT RICHARD WAS ABLE TO SECURE A FLIGHT FOR ONLY $500. HE ALSO INDICATED THAT HIS FLIGHT TO LETHBRIDGE WAS ONLY $39.95. ON RECALLING HIS FIRST TIME IN LETHBRIDGE, RICHARD RECOUNTED THE FOLLOWING STORY: “SO, BY THE TIME I GOT TO THE AIRPORT, I DIDN’T KNOW HOW TO SAY NOTHING. DIDN’T KNOW – MAYBE COULD SAY ‘GOOD MORNING’ – THAT’S ALL YOU COULD SAY, JUST ANYWAYS HOW TO SAY ‘HELLO’ – SO, ANYWAY, SO IN THE MEANTIME, THE FELLOW AT THE AIRPORT MUST HAVE KNOWN ZEKE, YOU KNOW ZEKE QUAN [OWNER OF] THE LOTUS INN [RESTAURANT], AND HE PHONED HIM UP. HE SAYS, ‘ZEKE.’ I DIDN’T KNOW WHAT HE WAS TALKING ABOUT – NOTHING. AND THEN HE SAYS, ‘HEY, THIS IS A CHINA BOY HERE. WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO WITH HIM?’ SO, ZEKE SAYS, ‘OH, JUST TAKE HIM TO CHINATOWN AND DUMP HIM.’ NOW, I DIDN’T KNOW THOSE, NOT UNTIL LATER ON. ZEKE’S SON GO TO SAME SCHOOL I DID – CENTRAL SCHOOL.” RICHARD INITIALLY LIVED IN THE SOCIETY BUILDING FOR SEVERAL YEARS, OCCUPYING A ROOM THAT HAD BEEN RECENTLY VACATED BY ANOTHER MAN NAMED LOO WHO HAD GONE TO WORK IN PICTURE BUTTE. RICHARD RECALLED THAT THE SOCIETY WAS A GOOD PLACE TO FEEL A SENSE OF COMMUNITY AND THAT IT WAS A WELCOMING PLACE FOR NEW CHINESE IMMIGRANTS, A PLACE WHERE THEY WEREN’T DISCRIMINATED AGAINST. HONG WONG: HONG ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1951 AND WAS INVITED TO THE CITY BY HIS UNCLE SHUEY WONG, WHO WAS ALREADY LIVING HERE. UNCLE SHUEY HAD COME TO CANADA SEVERAL YEARS BEFORE AND HAD HAD TO PAY THE $500 HEAD TAX. HONG TRAVELED WITH HIS BROTHER FROM MAINLAND CHINA TO HONG KONG, IN ORDER TO GO TO THE CANADIAN EMBASSY. ON HIS FERRY RIDE TO HONG KONG, HE WAS SHOT BY BANDITS AND WAS REQUIRED TO STAY IN THE HOSPITAL FOR QUITE SOME TIME TO RECOVER. HIS BROTHER ELECTED TO REMAIN IN HONG KONG, AS HIS MOTHER-IN-LAW LIVED IN THE CITY AND GOT HONG’S BROTHER WORK IN A THEATRE. TO GET TO CANADA, HONG FLEW FROM JAPAN TO GUAM, TO VANCOUVER, AND THEN FINALLY TO LETHBRIDGE. HIS FIRST IMPRESSION OF LETHBRIDGE: COLD. HONG SAID: “’WELL, IN HONG KONG IT WAS AROUND MAYBE 20 SOME 30 ABOVE. AND HERE, AT THAT TIME, MAYBE 20 BELOW, OR 20 SOME BELOW. I DIDN’T HAVE THE EAR MUFFS. I SAID, ‘GEE, I’M NOT SO HAPPY HERE, IT SEEMS SO COLD.’” UNCLE SHUEY TOLD HONG THAT IT WAS ONE OF THE COLDEST WINTERS HE COULD REMEMBER. HONG WORKED FOR HIS UNCLE IN HIS SHOP ON 9TH AVENUE, DOING CHORES AROUND THE STORE, UNTIL HIS ENGLISH HAD IMPROVED ENOUGH SO THAT HE COULD SERVE CUSTOMERS. HE JOINED THE CHINESE NATIONALIST LEAGUE SOCIETY ALMOST AS SOON AS HE ARRIVED: “WHEN I CAME HERE, I JOINED IN THE SAME YEAR BECAUSE MY UNCLE WAS A MEMBER. SO THAT’S WHY HE GOT ME IN TO BE A MEMBER. OH, AT THAT TIME, I BET, 95% OF THE CHINESE PEOPLE THEY BELONG TO THE CHINESE NATIONAL LEAGUE, I BELIEVE.” HE CONTINUED, SAYING THAT YOU COULDN’T BE A MEMBER OF BOTH THE SOCIETY AND THE MASONS, AND HE BELIEVES ABOUT 5% OF THE CITY’S CHINESE POPULATION WOULD HAVE BELONGED TO THE MASONS. HE ADDED: “BUT WE ARE STILL FRIENDS, STILL FRIENDS. WE’RE NOT ENEMY OR ANYTHING BUT, IT’S JUST THAT THE ORGANIZATIONS ARE DIFFERENT. THAT’S ALL.” HONG ENJOYED THE CAMARADERIE OF THE SOCIETY. HE SAID: “I REMEMBER, I LIKE IT BECAUSE THEY HAVE THE PARTY AND SO MANY PEOPLE. AND THEN YOU MEET ALL THE CHINESE PEOPLE THERE IN THE ONE GROUP. WELL, ANYWAY, WHEN YOU SEE SO MANY PEOPLE IN ONE PARTY, AND THEN WHEN THEY COME OUT MOSTLY THE PEOPLE THAT PARTY AND IT FEELS LIKE A LOTS OF FRIENDS OR EVEN LIKE THE FAMILY. SO YOU FEEL GOOD, YOU FEEL BETTER, AND THEN, WELL, MY UNCLE BELONGS THERE TOO AND THEN THE OTHERS BELONG THERE TOO, YEAH, EVERYBODY LIKE IN THE BIG FAMILY. YES, NICE, OTHERWISE YOU DON’T HAVE ANY FRIENDS, YOU DON’T MEET ANYBODY, IF YOU NOT BELONG THERE, I THINK NOT SO FRIENDLY TO YOU.” HONG INDICATED THAT WHEN A SPECIAL MEAL WAS HELD AT THE SOCIETY, IT WAS THE MEN WHO DID THE COOKING: “AT THAT TIME JUST ABOUT EVERYBODY KNOWS HOW TO COOK BECAUSE MOSTLY WE WORK IN THE KITCHEN WHEN THEY CAME HERE.” HE SAID THAT DINERS WOULD PAY A SMALL FEE TO EAT AT THE LEAGUE WHEN SPECIAL MEALS WERE PUT ON. SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR COPIES OF LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES AND FOR INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTS.
Catalogue Number
P20110031021
Acquisition Date
2011-11
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
ALBERTA RANCH BOYS UNIFORM PANTS
Date Range From
1937
Date Range To
1962
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
SYNTHETIC FABRIC
Catalogue Number
P20150016007
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
ALBERTA RANCH BOYS UNIFORM PANTS
Date Range From
1937
Date Range To
1962
Materials
SYNTHETIC FABRIC
No. Pieces
1
Length
104.5
Width
35.5
Description
MEN’S PANTS, COMMERCIALLY MADE. KHAKI-COLOURED, SYNTHETIC FABRIC BODY WITH BLUE FABRIC ACCENTS AT SEAT, THE BELT LOOPS, SCALLOPED POCKET FLAPS AND CENTER LEG STRIPE. INSIDE WAISTBAND AND POCKET LINING DISPLAY MULTIPLE HAND INK MARKINGS, INCLUDING NUMBERS AND “HORHOZER”. ATTACHED TO THE HEM OF THE PANTS ARE ELASTIC STIRRUPS (ONE BLACK AND ONE KHAKI-COLOURED). THERE IS A STRONG CREASE DOWN THE CENTER OF THE PANTS. FAIR TO GOOD CONDITION. ON THE RIGHT SIDE THERE IS A STAIN AND SLIGHT TEARING AT THE BOTTOM HEM. THERE IS A STAIN AT THE KNEE, AND TEARING AT THE POCKET. THE BOTTOM BUTTON OF THE FLY HAS BEEN LOST. THERE IS TEARING AT THE CROTCH SEAM. ON THE LEFT SIDE, THERE IS TEARING NEAR THE POCKET. THERE IS SLIGHT STAINING ON THE OVERALL SURFACE OF THE PANTS.
Subjects
CLOTHING-OUTERWEAR
Historical Association
PERSONAL CARE
LEISURE
PROFESSIONS
History
EVERAL HORHOZER (NÉE SUPINA) WAS BORN IN LETHBRIDGE IN THE YEAR OF 1927 TO HER PARENTS DONAH (NÉE HILL) AND NICHOLAS SUPINA. SUPINA WAS THE OWNER OF SUPINA’S MERCANTILE ON 13TH STREET NORTH, LETHBRIDGE. THESE PANTS WERE PART OF THE STAGE OUTFIT WORN BY JOE HORHOZER WHEN HE WAS THE ACCORDION PLAYER AND MUSIC ARRANGER FOR A WELL-KNOWN LETHBRIDGE MUSICAL GROUP CALLED THE ALBERTA RANCH BOYS. THE GROUP FORMED IN THE SUMMER OF 1937 WITH MEMBERS LOUIS (LOU) GONZY, MATT (BUCK) WASOWICH, PETER (CURLY) GURLOCK, REMO BACEDA, AND ‘LITTLE JOE’ HORHOZER. COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN CONDUCTED A SERIES OF INTERVIEWS (ON APRIL 2, APRIL 16, AND MAY 7, 2015) WITH HORHOZER REGARDING A GROUP OF ARTIFACTS SHE DONATED TO THE MUSEUM. THE INFORMATION BELOW HAS COME FROM THESE INTERVIEWS AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD RESEARCH REGARDING THE HORHOZER FAMILY HISTORY. IN THE INTERVIEW, HORHOZER DESCRIBED HOW SHE MET HER HUSBAND, JOE HORHOZER, WHEN HE CAME TO WORK FOR SUPINA’S MERCANTILE. FOR THE STORY OF HOW THEY MET, PLEASE SEE RECORDS P20150016003 AND P20150016004. JOE HORHOZER WAS THE ACCORDION PLAYER AND MUSIC ARRANGER FOR A WELL-KNOWN LETHBRIDGE MUSICAL GROUP CALLED THE ALBERTA RANCH BOYS. THE GROUP FORMED IN THE SUMMER OF 1937 WITH MEMBERS LOUIS (LOU) GONZY, MATT (BUCK) WASOWICH, PETER (CURLY) GURLOCK, REMO BACEDA, AND ‘LITTLE JOE’ HORHOZER. HORHOZER SAYS OF HER HUSBAND: “I WOULD CALL HIM THE LEAD INSTRUMENT BECAUSE AN ACCORDION IS, EH? AND HE WAS EXCEPTIONALLY GIFTED WITH THE ACCORDION; THAT’S WHAT EVERYBODY SAID, THAT THERE ISN’T ANYONE, AT LEAST AROUND THIS COUNTRY, THAT COULD COMPARE WITH HIM.” DESCRIBED IN THEIR SOUVENIR BOOK PUBLISHED IN 1941 AS “PROFESSIONAL RADIO ENTERTAINERS”, THE ‘ALBERTA RANCH BOYS’ WERE FORMED WHEN THE LOCAL EXHIBITION AND STAMPEDE PARADE WAS FOUND WANTING FOR A “COWBOY BAND” AS PART OF ITS LINEUP. ACCOLADES FOR THE PARADE ACT FOLLOWED, INSPIRING THE GROUP “TO EMBARK ON THE LONG ROAD TO FAME AND FORTUNE”. IN A YEAR’S TIME – AND AFTER TOURING THROUGH ALBERTA AND BC – THE BAND ENDED UP IN VANCOUVER. THERE, IT ESTABLISHED ITSELF, ACCORDING TO THE BOOKLET, AS “WESTERN CANADA’S MOST VERSATILE STAGE AND DANCE FAVOURITE,” BROADCASTING ITS COWBOY MELODIES FOR OVER TWO CONTINUOUS YEARS VIA CKWX (VANCOUVER’S LARGEST RADIO STUDIO AT THE TIME). DURING THE WAR, IT DONATED ITS TALENTS TO THE PROMOTION OF WAR SAVINGS CERTIFICATES. ONE VICTORY RALLY SONG FOR STAMPS WAS “WE’VE BOUGHT THEM BEFORE AND WE’LL BUY THEM AGAIN.” BY EARLY JAN-FEB 1943, THE BAND HAD PEAKED. ONE MEMBER IS REPORTED TO HAVE ENLISTED IN THE CANADIAN ARMY WHILE OTHERS, ACCORDING TO THE DONOR, “GOT SICK”. “THEY DID A LOT IN TORONTO.” RECALLED EVERAL IN AN INTERVIEW. “[IT WAS FROM] TORONTO THEN THEY COULD HAVE GONE [TO NEW YORK] - THAT’S WHERE THEY WERE OFFERED THE BIG JOB OF RECORDING AND BEING ON TV…BUT THEN [JOE] SAYS THAT HE DOESN’T CARE, BECAUSE HE SAYS IF HE WOULD HAVE WENT, HE WOULDN’T HAVE MET ME, SO, I MEAN, THAT WAS A NICE THING TO SAY. HE SAYS LIFE TURNED OUT GOOD FOR HIM.” EVERAL WAS NOT AWARE OF THIS AT THE TIME OF THEIR MEETING. AFTER FINDING OUT, SHE SAID, “WELL, I THOUGHT, GEE WHIZ, HE JUST ISN’T AN EVERYDAY JOE AND EVERYBODY IN TOWN KNEW HIM AND ADMIRED HIM. YEAH, IT MADE ME A LITTLE MORE HAPPY.” OF THE PERFORMANCE COSTUME EVERAL HORHOZER SAID: “THEY WORE [THE SAME UNIFORM] WHEN THEY PLAYED AT THE TRIANON FOR A WHILE AND THEY JUST STARTED TO USE SUITS … WELL HE DIDN’T WANT - SEE, WHEN THEY STARTED PLAYING AT THE TRIANON. THEN I TELL YOU, THEY START WEARING MORE BAND [CLOTHING] - LIKE, THEY HAD DIFFERENT BLAZERS, COLOURED BLAZERS – BLUE ONES AND RED ONES AND ALL WORE BLAZERS THEN. ‘CAUSE THEY WANTED TO BECOME LIKE A DANCE BAND, I GUESS YOU’D SAY.” “HE WOULD NEVER FORGET THAT TIME [WITH THE RANCH BOYS],” HORHOZER SAID OF HER HUSBAND, “HE TALKED ABOUT IT ALL THE TIME. HOW THEY MET SO MANY [PEOPLE], LIKE THEY’D PLAY AT PRIVATE PARTIES FOR WEALTHY PEOPLE. HE ABSOLUTELY LOVED HIS MUSIC. HE LIVED FOR HIS MUSIC.” BACK HERE IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1958, EVERAL’S HUSBAND JOE WENT ON TO PERFORM WITH THE COUNTRY CAPERS, PLAYING ACCORDION FOR A WEEKLY BROADCAST VIA THE LOCAL TV STATION CJLH. IN 1961, THE STATION AND THE BROADCAST WERE PRESENTED WITH A NATIONAL LIBERTY AWARD FOR “TV STATION SHOWMANSHIP” AND “BEST LOCAL PROGRAMMING.” IN HIS TIME, ‘LITTLE JOE’ PLAYED WITH ROY ROGERS, GENE AUTRY, AND TOMMY HUNTER. HE DIED IN 2010 AT AGE 89. EVERAL HORHOZER PASSED AWAY IN LETHBRIDGE 6 YEARS LATER ON JUNE 6, 2016 AT THE AGE OF 88 YEARS. PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTS, LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, AND FURTHER PUBLICATIONS.
Catalogue Number
P20150016007
Acquisition Date
2015-05
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
Other Name
ACME BOOT
Date Range From
1937
Date Range To
1962
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
LEATHER
Catalogue Number
P20150016005
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
ACME BOOT
Date Range From
1937
Date Range To
1962
Materials
LEATHER
No. Pieces
2
Height
28.5
Length
30.5
Description
A-B: RED COWBOY BOOTS (LEFT AND RIGHT BOOT). THE LEATHER BOOT BODIES ARE RED WITH GOLD ACCENTS AND GOLD OPENING TRIMS. LEATHER SOLES HAVE BEEN RE-HEELED. INTERIORS LABELLED “ACME BOOT” AND INK STAMPED, “MADE IN THE USA”. GOOD CONDITION. ON BOTH BOOTS, THERE IS A RED DYE LOSS IN VARIOUS PLACES, ESPECIALLY AT THE TOES. SOME OF THE GOLD ACCENTS ARE SCUFFED. REGULAR WEAR TO THE BOTTOM SOLES. THERE IS WEAR TO THE INSIDE SOLES (MORE SEVERELY ON BOOT A). BOTH BOOTS ARE MISSHAPEN (BOOT B TO A GREATER EXTENT). ON BOOT A, THERE IS A LOOSE THREAD ON THE TOE DESIGN. THERE IS A LOOSE YELLOW THREAD ON THE INSIDE HEEL ON BOOT B.
Subjects
CLOTHING-FOOTWEAR
Historical Association
PERSONAL CARE
PROFESSIONS
LEISURE
History
EVERAL HORHOZER (NÉE SUPINA) WAS BORN IN LETHBRIDGE IN THE YEAR OF 1927 TO HER PARENTS DONAH (NÉE HILL) AND NICHOLAS SUPINA. SUPINA WAS THE OWNER OF SUPINA’S MERCANTILE ON 13TH STREET NORTH, LETHBRIDGE. THESE COWBOY BOOTS WERE PART OF THE STAGE OUTFIT WORN BY JOE HORHOZER WHEN HE WAS THE ACCORDION PLAYER AND MUSIC ARRANGER FOR A WELL-KNOWN LETHBRIDGE MUSICAL GROUP CALLED THE ALBERTA RANCH BOYS. THE GROUP FORMED IN THE SUMMER OF 1937 WITH MEMBERS LOUIS (LOU) GONZY, MATT (BUCK) WASOWICH, PETER (CURLY) GURLOCK, REMO BACEDA, AND ‘LITTLE JOE’ HORHOZER. COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN CONDUCTED A SERIES OF INTERVIEWS (ON APRIL 2, APRIL 16, AND MAY 7, 2015) WITH HORHOZER REGARDING A GROUP OF ARTIFACTS SHE DONATED TO THE MUSEUM. THE INFORMATION BELOW HAS COME FROM THESE INTERVIEWS AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD RESEARCH REGARDING THE HORHOZER FAMILY HISTORY. IN THE INTERVIEW, HORHOZER EXPLAINED SHE MET HER HUSBAND, JOE HORHOZER, WHEN HE CAME TO WORK FOR SUPINA’S MERCANTILE. FOR THE STORY OF HOW THEY MET, PLEASE SEE RECORDS P20150016003 AND P20150016004. WHEN DESCRIBING HER HUSBAND'S MUSIC CAREER, HORHOZER SAID, “I WOULD CALL HIM THE LEAD INSTRUMENT BECAUSE AN ACCORDION IS, EH? AND HE WAS EXCEPTIONALLY GIFTED WITH THE ACCORDION; THAT’S WHAT EVERYBODY SAID, THAT THERE ISN’T ANYONE, AT LEAST AROUND THIS COUNTRY, THAT COULD COMPARE WITH HIM.” DESCRIBED IN THEIR SOUVENIR BOOK PUBLISHED IN 1941 AS “PROFESSIONAL RADIO ENTERTAINERS”, THE ‘ALBERTA RANCH BOYS’ WERE FORMED WHEN THE LOCAL EXHIBITION AND STAMPEDE PARADE WAS FOUND WANTING FOR A “COWBOY BAND” AS PART OF ITS LINEUP. ACCOLADES FOR THE PARADE ACT FOLLOWED, INSPIRING THE GROUP “TO EMBARK ON THE LONG ROAD TO FAME AND FORTUNE”. IN A YEAR’S TIME – AND AFTER TOURING THROUGH ALBERTA AND BC – THE BAND ENDED UP IN VANCOUVER. THERE IT ESTABLISHED ITSELF, ACCORDING TO THE BOOKLET, AS “WESTERN CANADA’S MOST VERSATILE STAGE AND DANCE FAVOURITE,” BROADCASTING ITS COWBOY MELODIES FOR OVER TWO CONTINUOUS YEARS VIA CKWX (VANCOUVER’S LARGEST RADIO STUDIO AT THE TIME). DURING THE WAR, IT DONATED ITS TALENTS TO THE PROMOTION OF WAR SAVINGS CERTIFICATES. ONE VICTORY RALLY SONG FOR STAMPS WAS “WE’VE BOUGHT THEM BEFORE AND WE’LL BUY THEM AGAIN.” BY EARLY JAN-FEB 1943, THE BAND HAD PEAKED. ONE MEMBER IS REPORTED TO HAVE ENLISTED IN THE CANADIAN ARMY WHILE OTHERS, ACCORDING TO THE DONOR, “GOT SICK”. “THEY DID A LOT IN TORONTO.” RECALLED EVERAL IN AN INTERVIEW. “[IT WAS FROM] TORONTO THEN THEY COULD HAVE GONE [TO NEW YORK] - THAT’S WHERE THEY WERE OFFERED THE BIG JOB OF RECORDING AND BEING ON TV…BUT THEN [JOE] SAYS THAT HE DOESN’T CARE, BECAUSE HE SAYS IF HE WOULD HAVE WENT, HE WOULDN’T HAVE MET ME, SO, I MEAN, THAT WAS A NICE THING TO SAY. HE SAYS LIFE TURNED OUT GOOD FOR HIM.” EVERAL WAS NOT AWARE OF THIS AT THE TIME OF THEIR MEETING. AFTER FINDING OUT, SHE SAID, “WELL, I THOUGHT, GEE WHIZ, WELL, HE JUST ISN’T AN EVERYDAY JOE AND EVERYBODY IN TOWN KNEW HIM AND ADMIRED HIM. YEAH, IT MADE ME A LITTLE MORE HAPPY.” THESE RED COWBOY BOOTS WERE PART OF THE COSTUME JOE HORHOZER WORE WHEN HE PERFORMED WITH THE ALBERTA RANCH BOYS, AND LATER THE 'COUNTRY CAPERS,' A LETHBRIDGE-BASED BAND FOR WHICH HE PLAYED THE ACCORDION BEGINNING IN 1958. IT WAS EVERAL WHO DYED THEM THE BRIGHT RED COLOUR: “HE ASKED ME [TO DYE THE BOOTS]. HE SAID HE WANTED TO CHANGE, THEY WERE GETTING TO LOOK KIND OF SHABBY, AND I DON’T KNOW WHY HE PICKED RED, BUT THAT’S WHAT HE DID SO, THAT’S WHAT I - ACTUALLY THESE STOOD UP QUITE WELL [LAUGHS]. THE REGULAR COLOUR WAS - I THINK THEY WERE BLACK-LIKE. BLACK WITH WHITE... THOSE WERE THE ONLY BOOTS THAT HE HAD.” OF THE PERFORMANCE COSTUME EVERAL HORHOZER SAID: “WHEN THEY STARTED PLAYING AT THE TRIANON THEN, I TELL YOU, THEY START WEARING MORE BAND [CLOTHES] - LIKE THEY HAD DIFFERENT BLAZERS, COLOURED BLAZERS – BLUE ONES AND RED ONES AND ALL WORE BLAZERS THEN ‘CAUSE THEY WANTED TO BECOME LIKE A DANCE BAND, I GUESS YOU’D SAY.” “HE WOULD NEVER FORGET THAT TIME [WITH THE RANCH BOYS],” HORHOZER SAID OF HER HUSBAND, “HE TALKED ABOUT IT ALL THE TIME. HOW THEY MET SO MANY [PEOPLE], LIKE THEY’D PLAY AT PRIVATE PARTIES FOR WEALTHY PEOPLE. HE ABSOLUTELY LOVED HIS MUSIC. HE LIVED FOR HIS MUSIC.” BACK HERE IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1958, EVERAL’S HUSBAND JOE WENT ON TO PERFORM WITH THE COUNTRY CAPERS, PLAYING ACCORDION FOR A WEEKLY BROADCAST VIA THE LOCAL TV STATION CJLH. IN 1961, THE STATION AND THE BROADCAST WERE PRESENTED WITH A NATIONAL LIBERTY AWARD FOR “TV STATION SHOWMANSHIP” AND “BEST LOCAL PROGRAMMING.” IN HIS TIME, ‘LITTLE JOE’ PLAYED WITH ROY ROGERS, GENE AUTRY AND TOMMY HUNTER. HE DIED IN 2010 AT AGE 89. EVERAL HORHOZER PASSED AWAY IN LETHBRIDGE 6 YEARS LATER ON JUNE 6, 2016 AT THE AGE OF 88 YEARS. PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTS, LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, AND FURTHER PUBLICATIONS.
Catalogue Number
P20150016005
Acquisition Date
2015-05
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
ALBERTA RANCH BOYS UNIFORM SHIRT
Date Range From
1937
Date Range To
1962
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
SYNTHETIC FABRIC
Catalogue Number
P20150016006
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
ALBERTA RANCH BOYS UNIFORM SHIRT
Date Range From
1937
Date Range To
1962
Materials
SYNTHETIC FABRIC
No. Pieces
1
Length
78
Width
38
Description
COLLARED MEN’S SHIRT. TAILOR-MADE WITH LONG-SLEEVED, OFF-WHITE SYNTHETIC SILK BODY AND NAVY BLUE FABRIC ACCENTS EDGING FRONT CLOSURE, ON SHOULDERS, AND BORDERING CUFFS. OPEN CRESCENT POCKETS AT BREASTS. BLUE IRIDESCENT SNAP CLOSURES. 5 SNAPS ON THE CUFFS AND 7 SNAPS DOWN THE FRONT OF THE SHIRT. THE LENGTH IS 78 CM, THE WIDTH ACROSS THE BACK IS 38 CM, AND THE SLEEVES ARE 60 CM LONG. FAIR CONDITION. AT LEAST 11 STAINS ON THE FRONT. DARK BROWN STAIN ON THE BOTTOM OF THE LEFT SLEEVE.
Subjects
CLOTHING-OUTERWEAR
Historical Association
PERSONAL CARE
LEISURE
PROFESSIONS
History
EVERAL HORHOZER (NÉE SUPINA) WAS BORN IN LETHBRIDGE IN THE YEAR OF 1927 TO HER PARENTS DONAH (NÉE HILL) AND NICHOLAS SUPINA. SUPINA WAS THE OWNER OF SUPINA’S MERCANTILE ON 13TH STREET NORTH, LETHBRIDGE. THIS DRESS SHIRT WAS PART OF THE STAGE OUTFIT WORN BY JOE HORHOZER WHEN HE WAS THE ACCORDION PLAYER AND MUSIC ARRANGER FOR A WELL-KNOWN LETHBRIDGE MUSICAL GROUP CALLED THE ALBERTA RANCH BOYS. THE GROUP FORMED IN THE SUMMER OF 1937 WITH MEMBERS LOUIS (LOU) GONZY, MATT (BUCK) WASOWICH, PETER (CURLY) GURLOCK, REMO BACEDA, AND ‘LITTLE JOE’ HORHOZER. COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN CONDUCTED A SERIES OF INTERVIEWS (ON APRIL 2, APRIL 16, AND MAY 7, 2015) WITH HORHOZER REGARDING A GROUP OF ARTIFACTS SHE DONATED TO THE MUSEUM. THE INFORMATION BELOW HAS COME FROM THESE INTERVIEWS AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD RESEARCH REGARDING THE HORHOZER FAMILY HISTORY. IN THE INTERVIEW, HORHOZER DESCRIBED HOW SHE MET HER HUSBAND, JOE HORHOZER, WHEN HE CAME TO WORK FOR SUPINA’S MERCANTILE. FOR THE STORY OF HOW THEY MET, PLEASE SEE RECORDS P20150016003 AND P20150016004. JOE HORHOZER WAS THE ACCORDION PLAYER AND MUSIC ARRANGER FOR A WELL-KNOWN LETHBRIDGE MUSICAL GROUP CALLED THE ALBERTA RANCH BOYS. THE GROUP FORMED IN THE SUMMER OF 1937 WITH MEMBERS LOUIS (LOU) GONZY, MATT (BUCK) WASOWICH, PETER (CURLY) GURLOCK, REMO BACEDA, AND ‘LITTLE JOE’ HORHOZER. HORHOZER SAYS OF HER HUSBAND: “I WOULD CALL HIM THE LEAD INSTRUMENT BECAUSE AN ACCORDION IS, EH? AND HE WAS EXCEPTIONALLY GIFTED WITH THE ACCORDION; THAT’S WHAT EVERYBODY SAID, THAT THERE ISN’T ANYONE, AT LEAST AROUND THIS COUNTRY, THAT COULD COMPARE WITH HIM.” DESCRIBED IN THEIR SOUVENIR BOOK PUBLISHED IN 1941 AS “PROFESSIONAL RADIO ENTERTAINERS”, THE ‘ALBERTA RANCH BOYS’ WERE FORMED WHEN THE LOCAL EXHIBITION AND STAMPEDE PARADE WAS FOUND WANTING FOR A “COWBOY BAND” AS PART OF ITS LINEUP. ACCOLADES FOR THE PARADE ACT FOLLOWED, INSPIRING THE GROUP “TO EMBARK ON THE LONG ROAD TO FAME AND FORTUNE”. IN A YEAR’S TIME – AND AFTER TOURING THROUGH ALBERTA AND BC – THE BAND ENDED UP IN VANCOUVER. THERE, IT ESTABLISHED ITSELF, ACCORDING TO THE BOOKLET, AS “WESTERN CANADA’S MOST VERSATILE STAGE AND DANCE FAVOURITE,” BROADCASTING ITS COWBOY MELODIES FOR OVER TWO CONTINUOUS YEARS VIA CKWX (VANCOUVER’S LARGEST RADIO STUDIO AT THE TIME). DURING THE WAR, IT DONATED ITS TALENTS TO THE PROMOTION OF WAR SAVINGS CERTIFICATES. ONE VICTORY RALLY SONG FOR STAMPS WAS “WE’VE BOUGHT THEM BEFORE AND WE’LL BUY THEM AGAIN.” BY EARLY JAN-FEB 1943, THE BAND HAD PEAKED. ONE MEMBER IS REPORTED TO HAVE ENLISTED IN THE CANADIAN ARMY WHILE OTHERS, ACCORDING TO THE DONOR, “GOT SICK”. “THEY DID A LOT IN TORONTO.” RECALLED EVERAL IN AN INTERVIEW. “[IT WAS FROM] TORONTO THEN THEY COULD HAVE GONE [TO NEW YORK] - THAT’S WHERE THEY WERE OFFERED THE BIG JOB OF RECORDING AND BEING ON TV…BUT THEN [JOE] SAYS THAT HE DOESN’T CARE, BECAUSE HE SAYS IF HE WOULD HAVE WENT, HE WOULDN’T HAVE MET ME, SO, I MEAN, THAT WAS A NICE THING TO SAY. HE SAYS LIFE TURNED OUT GOOD FOR HIM.” EVERAL WAS NOT AWARE OF THIS AT THE TIME OF THEIR MEETING. AFTER FINDING OUT, SHE SAID, “WELL, I THOUGHT, GEE WHIZ, HE JUST ISN’T AN EVERYDAY JOE AND EVERYBODY IN TOWN KNEW HIM AND ADMIRED HIM. YEAH, IT MADE ME A LITTLE MORE HAPPY.” OF THE PERFORMANCE COSTUME EVERAL HORHOZER SAID: “THEY WORE [THE SAME UNIFORM] WHEN THEY PLAYED AT THE TRIANON FOR A WHILE AND THEY JUST STARTED TO USE SUITS … WELL HE DIDN’T WANT - SEE, WHEN THEY STARTED PLAYING AT THE TRIANON. THEN I TELL YOU, THEY START WEARING MORE BAND [CLOTHING] - LIKE, THEY HAD DIFFERENT BLAZERS, COLOURED BLAZERS – BLUE ONES AND RED ONES AND ALL WORE BLAZERS THEN. ‘CAUSE THEY WANTED TO BECOME LIKE A DANCE BAND, I GUESS YOU’D SAY.” “HE WOULD NEVER FORGET THAT TIME [WITH THE RANCH BOYS],” HORHOZER SAID OF HER HUSBAND, “HE TALKED ABOUT IT ALL THE TIME. HOW THEY MET SO MANY [PEOPLE], LIKE THEY’D PLAY AT PRIVATE PARTIES FOR WEALTHY PEOPLE. HE ABSOLUTELY LOVED HIS MUSIC. HE LIVED FOR HIS MUSIC.” BACK HERE IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1958, EVERAL’S HUSBAND JOE WENT ON TO PERFORM WITH THE COUNTRY CAPERS, PLAYING ACCORDION FOR A WEEKLY BROADCAST VIA THE LOCAL TV STATION CJLH. IN 1961, THE STATION AND THE BROADCAST WERE PRESENTED WITH A NATIONAL LIBERTY AWARD FOR “TV STATION SHOWMANSHIP” AND “BEST LOCAL PROGRAMMING.” IN HIS TIME, ‘LITTLE JOE’ PLAYED WITH ROY ROGERS, GENE AUTRY, AND TOMMY HUNTER. HE DIED IN 2010 AT AGE 89. EVERAL HORHOZER PASSED AWAY IN LETHBRIDGE 6 YEARS LATER ON JUNE 6, 2016 AT THE AGE OF 88 YEARS. PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTS, LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, AND FURTHER PUBLICATIONS.
Catalogue Number
P20150016006
Acquisition Date
2015-05
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
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
SAXOPHONE W/CASE AND ACCESSORIES
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
BRASS, VELVET, WOOD
Catalogue Number
P20190003000
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
SAXOPHONE W/CASE AND ACCESSORIES
Date Range From
1930
Date Range To
1940
Materials
BRASS, VELVET, WOOD
No. Pieces
9
Height
15.3
Length
61.2
Width
26
Description
A. CASE, BLACK SYNTHETIC LEATHER EXTERIOR, 61.2 CM LONG X 26 CM WIDE X 15.3 CM TALL. LINED WITH BLUE COTTON VELVET; CASE HAS BLACK LEATHER HANDLE ON FRONT WRAPPED IN BLACK PLASTIC TAPE; FRONT HAS TWO SILVER METAL CLASPS AND SILVER METAL LOCK IN CENTER. FRONT HAS BROWN PAPER LABEL WITH HANDWRITTEN TEXT IN BLACK INK “S.R. SMEREK”. FRONT AND TOP HAVE WORN BROWN PAPER LABELS; WORN LABEL ON TOP HAS REMAINING TEXT “CANADIAN PACIFIC EXPRESS COMPANY”. CORNERS OF CASE HAVE SILVER METAL GUARDS. CASE EXTERIOR HAS METAL GUARD ALONG EDGE OF LID COVERED SYNTHETIC LEATHER. INSIDE HAS INDENT FOR SAXOPHONE BODY; INSIDE HAS SQUARE COMPARTMENT WITH BLACK LEATHER STRAP AND SILVER BUTTON SNAP FOR STORING MOUTHPIECE, NECK, REEDS, AND CLEANING CLOTH. CASE EXTERIOR IS WORN, SCRATCHED, AND STAINED ON ALL SIDES; EDGES OF CASE ARE HEAVILY WORN WITH WOOD UNDER OUTER LINING VISIBLE IN PATCHES. METAL CORNERS AND CLASPS ARE TARNISHED; LABELS ARE DISCOLOURED AND BRITTLE. INSIDE OF CASE HAS WORN LINING. OVERALL GOOD CONDITION. B. SAXOPHONE BODY, BRASS, 57 CM LONG X 22.5 CM WIDE. SAXOPHONE KEYS INLAID WITH PEARL; BOW HAS RED FELT RESTS ON VALVES. BELL HAS INSCRIPTION ON FRONT, “INDIANA, INDIANA BAND INST. CO., ELKHART, IND., U.S.A.” WITH LOGO OF THE PROFILE OF A NATIVE AMERICAN MAN IN HEADDRESS. BACK OF BODY HAS WHITE PAPER LABEL TAPED ON WITH BLACK PRINTED TEXT “STEVE SMEREK, ROYAL ALBERTANS ORCHESTRA 1940’S, LETHBRIDGE, AB”. INCLUDED INSIDE IS YELLOW COTTON-FELT RING FOR FITTING TO BODY AT NECK IN TRANSPORT. BACK OF BODY HAS BRASS LOOP FOR ATTACHING NECK STRAP. BODY IS TARNISHED AND CORRODED ON BACK, KEYS, AND BELL; BELL HAS WHITE RESIDUE AROUND BASE OF VALVES AND BASES OF VALVE GUARDS; INSIDE NECK AND BELL OPENINGS ARE TARNISHED AND CORRODED; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. C. SAXOPHONE NECK, 16,3 CM LONG X 2.2 CM DIAMETER. BRASS NECK PIECE WITH CORK AT END TO ATTACH TO MOUTHPIECE. BASE HAS ROUND OCTAVE PIN RING WITH OCTAVE KEY THAT RUNS ALONG TOP; OCTAVE KEY HAS RED COTTON PAD ON BASE AND CORK ALONG UNDERSIDE THAT TOUCHES NECK. INSIDE OF NECK IS TARNISHED AND CORRODED; OUTSIDE OF NECK IS TARNISHED; CORK AT MOUTHPIECE END HAS TARNISHING WORN THROUGH; TARNISHING VISIBLE AROUND BODY END. OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. D. CLEANING CLOTH, 48 CM LONG X 21 CM WIDE. YELLOW COTTON CLOTH WITH BROWN STITCHED EDGING AT ENDS; CLOTH IS FRAYED AT UPPER EDGE. CLOTH IS STAINED WITH BROWN, BLACK AND GREEN ON FRONT AND BACK; OVERALL GOOD CONDITION. E. MOUTHPIECE IN BOX. MOUTHPIECE 10 CM LONG X 2.5 CM DIAMETER; BOX 12.5 CM LONG X 4.3 CM WIDE X 4.2 CM TALL. MOUTHPIECE BLACK PLASTIC WITH SILVER METAL CAP, WOODEN REED, SILVER METAL CLASP AND TWO SILVER METAL PINS. BACK OF MOUTHPIECE HAS WHITE SQUARE PATCH; BACK OF CLASP HAS ENGRAVED “A”. BOX BASE IS BLUE CARDBOARD WITH BLUE INSERT AND ATTACHED BLACK ELASTIC BAND. BOX LID IS LIGHT BLUE CARDBOARD WITH DARK BLUE TEXT ON TOP “BRILLHART” WITH IMAGES OF MOUTHPIECE AND REED; SIDE OF LID HAS DARK BLUE TEXT “TOMALIN, CLARINET, SERIAL NO. FACING, 24607, 3” WITH IMAGE OF STAR BESIDE “3”; SIDE OF LID HAS HANDWRITTEN PENCIL INSCRIPTION “SCCC, 15.50”. MOUTHPIECE HAS TARNISHING ON CAP AND METAL CLASP AND PINS; BOX BASE IS WORN ON INSIDE AND OUTER SIDES; BOX LID IS WORN AT EDGES AND ON SIDES. OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. F. TWO REEDS IN PAPER SLEEVE, 11.4 CM LONG X 3.2 CM WIDE. ORANGE CARDBOARD SLEEVE WITH GREY CARDBOARD INSERT; CANE REED INSERTED ON EITHER SIDE OF CENTER CARDBOARD. ORANGE CARDBOARD STAPLED CLOSED AT EDGES. CANE REEDS DISCOLORED PINK; REEDS STAMPED IN BLACK AT BASES “RICO” WITH BARS AND TREBLE CLEF BACKGROUND IMAGE, “REGISTERED U.S. PAT. OFFICE” AND “REG. U.S. PAT.”, “V1” AND “V2” STAMPED AT BASE. REEDS HAVE RESIDUE AT TOPS; LABELS FADED ON REEDS; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. G. CANE REED IN CARDBOARD SLEEVE, 9.1 CM LONG X 3.8 CM WIDE. CARDBOARD SLEEVE FOLDED OVER; FRONT HAS BLACK PRINTED IMAGE OF REED AND TEXT “MICRO “PLASTICOAT” REED, A GUARANTEED “MICRO” PRODUCT” AND FADED STAMP AT BOTTOM EDGE “ALTO SAX. NO. 2”. BACK OF SLEEVE HAS BLACK PRINTED TEXT “PLEASE NOTE: AFTER USING YOUR MACRO “PLASTICOAT” REED FOR A WHILE THE PLASTI-COATING MAY PEEL OFF. WHEN THIS HAPPENS YOUR REED IS READY TO GIVE YOU EVEN MORE SATISFACTION AS TO TONE AND PLAYING SERVICE. IT IS ONLY THE EXCESS COATING THAT PEELS OFF.” INSIDE OF SLEEVE HAS BLACK PRINTED TEXT “CAUTION: TO AVOID DAMAGE TO TIP, DO NOT PUSH REED TOO FAR IN. IMPORTANT: FOR BEST RESULTS, WET REED THOROLY, SAME AS CANE REED, BEFORE PLAYING.” REED IS WOODEN WITH WORN BLACK COATING ON BACK AND FRONT; REED FRONT HAS BLACK AND GOLD LABEL AT BASE, “MICRO PLASTICOAT CANE REED, REG. U.S. PAT. OFF., MADE IN U.S.A., 2”. SLEEVE IS WORN AT EDGES AND CREASED; BACK OF SLEEVE HAS RED STAINING AT LOWER EDGES; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. H. CANE REED IN CARDBOARD SLEEVE, 9.1 CM LONG X 3.7 CM WIDE. CARDBOARD SLEEVE FOLDED OVER; FRONT HAS BLACK PRINTED IMAGE OF REED AND TEXT “MICRO “PLASTICOAT” REED, A GUARANTEED “MICRO” PRODUCT” AND FADED STAMP AT BOTTOM EDGE “ALTO SAX. NO. 3”. BACK OF SLEEVE HAS BLACK PRINTED TEXT “PLEASE NOTE: AFTER USING YOUR MACRO “PLASTICOAT” REED FOR A WHILE THE PLASTI-COATING MAY PEEL OFF. WHEN THIS HAPPENS YOUR REED IS READY TO GIVE YOU EVEN MORE SATISFACTION AS TO TONE AND PLAYING SERVICE. IT IS ONLY THE EXCESS COATING THAT PEELS OFF.” INSIDE OF SLEEVE HAS BLACK PRINTED TEXT “CAUTION: TO AVOID DAMAGE TO TIP, DO NOT PUSH REED TOO FAR IN. IMPORTANT: FOR BEST RESULTS, WET REED THOROLY, SAME AS CANE REED, BEFORE PLAYING.” REED IS WOODEN WITH GROOVED BACK OF BASE; REED HAS FADED BLACK STAMP ON BASE OF FRONT “VIBRATOR, CHIRON, FRANCE, M.F.G. U.S.A.” SLEEVE IS WORN AT EDGES AND CREASED ON FRONT AND BACK; SLEEVE HAS RIP ON FRONT RIGHT EDGE; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. I. NECK STRAP, 40.8 CM LONG X 10.3 CM WIDE. BROWN LEATHER AT NECK WITH COTTON CORDS ATTACHED. CORDS ATTACH AT BASE WITH BLACK PLASTIC FITTING; CORDS ARE TWINED AT BASE TO ATTACH TO SILVER METAL HOOK. COTTON CORDS STAINED GREEN; LEATHER IS WORN AND STAINED GREEN; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
MUSICAL T&E
Historical Association
LEISURE
MILITARY
History
ON JANUARY 24, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BARBARA LEGGE AND ROBERT SMEREK REGARDING THEIR DONATION OF A SAXOPHONE, CASE, AND ACCESSORIES. LEGGE AND SMEREK RECALLED THAT THE SAXOPHONE BELONGED TO THEIR FATHER, STEVE SMEREK, WHO PLAYED IN LETHBRIDGE. ON THE SAXOPHONE, LEGGE ELABORATED, “IT WAS STILL MY DAD’S…HE DIED IN 1970. MY DAD [WAS] STEVE SMEREK, THE ORCHESTRA LEADER OF THE ROYAL ALBERTAN’S ORCHESTRA.” “[DAD] PLAYED IN…THE ROYAL ALBERTAN’S ORCHESTRA…FROM IN THE EARLY ‘40S, TILL 1951. [ROB AND I WERE] VERY SMALL [ROB WAS BORN IN ’43, AND I WAS BORN IN 1948], AND THEY PLAYED TILL ’51, AS FAR AS I COULD CAPTURE [FROM] THE NEWSPAPER ARTICLES. I ONLY REMEMBER GOING TO A PRACTICE WITH HIM. I THINK IT WAS AT THE TRIANON…WHEN I WAS YOUNG…WHEN HE WAS WORKING, WE WOULD PLAY ON THE PIANO…” “I PLAYED WITH MY DAD, WHILE ON THE PIANO, AND THEN HE ACCOMPANIED ME WITH THE SAXOPHONE [THAT WAS IN JUNIOR HIGH, I GUESS]…WE STARTED BAND IN GRADE TEN, SO THAT WAS PROBABLY IN 1964, THAT I ACTUALLY HAD [THE SAXOPHONE] IN MY HANDS.” “MY BIGGEST MEMORY IS HIM COMING IN AND PLAYING THE SAXOPHONE, JOINING ME ON WHATEVER I WAS PRACTICING ON THE PIANO. [MY] BEGINNER PIANO LESSONS WERE IN CLASSICAL MUSIC. I WAS PROBABLY PLAYING POPULAR MUSIC BY THAT TIME. I HAD SWITCHED TO A MRS. SINCLAIR, TO LEARN POPULAR MUSIC. THAT’S WHEN I REMEMBER HIM COMING IN. I’D PLAY SOME OF HIS OLD SONGS, BECAUSE HE HAD BOOKS OF OLD SONGS THAT I USED TO PLAY ON PIANO, SO HE WOULD KNOW ALL THE MUSIC.” ROBERT SMEREK ADDED, “I WAS THERE ONCE, AT THE TRIANON BALLROOM…IT WAS A PRACTICE. THEY MIGHT HAVE BEEN RECORDING TOO…IN THE ‘50S, THE BIG BANDS WERE ON THE WAY OUT, SO THAT’S WHEN THE BAND TERMINATED, AND I WAS ONLY 8 YEARS OLD.” “I DON’T THINK THEY TRAVELED. THEY PLAYED THE TRIANON BALLROOM, HENDERSON LAKE PAVILION, THE RAINBOW BALLROOM IS ANOTHER ONE.” LEGGE CONTINUED, “BEFORE THAT, HE WAS IN OTHER BANDS, WITH SOME OF [THE SMALLER BANDS]. [HE WAS] IN A MELODY QUEEN’S BAND, WHEN HE WAS YOUNGER. THEN [HE WAS] IN THE 18TH BRIGADE BAND, DURING THE WAR. SOME PEOPLE FROM OTHER BANDS IN LETHBRIDGE, THEY WERE ALL KIND OF MUSICAL FRIENDS, (LOU GONZY AND THE RANCH BOYS, A FEW PEOPLE), AND I HAVE NO IDEA HOW [THE BAND MEMBERS] ALL GOT TOGETHER FOR THIS ORCHESTRA. THEY ALL PLAYED, AS FAR AS I COULD TELL, DIFFERENT INSTRUMENTS, BECAUSE THERE’S DIFFERENT PICTURES THAT WE HAVE. IN ONE, MY DAD’S PLAYING THE SAXOPHONE, BUT THERE’S ANOTHER ONE WHERE HE’S PLAYING THE CLARINET. IN SOME OF THE MUSIC, I THINK HE’S PLAYING THE TRUMPET. I DON’T KNOW IF IT’S HIM, FOR SURE. THEY WOULD SWITCH INSTRUMENTS, EXCEPT FOR MY UNCLE MIKE, WHO WAS THE DRUMMER IN THE BAND.” “SOME OF THE ANNOUNCEMENTS…WERE AT THE MARQUIS HOTEL, WHICH ISN’T HERE ANYMORE, AND THE LEGION MEMORIAL HALL. THERE’S A FEW WHERE, I THINK, THEY PROBABLY WENT OUT OF TOWN, BUT PROBABLY NO FARTHER THAN COALDALE. I THINK MOST, OR ALL THESE ANNOUNCEMENTS, ARE MOSTLY AT THE HENDERSON LAKE PAVILION, UNTIL THE END, THERE IS A TRIANON ONE…[DAD] HAD A FAMILY, SO HE DIDN’T REALLY TRAVEL…THE STORY TOLD BY MY AUNT, HIS SISTER-IN-LAW, WAS THAT, WHEN TOMMY DORSEY WAS HERE IN [JULY] 1951, THAT HE WANTED MY DAD TO JOIN HIS BAND WHEN HE WAS ON TOUR HERE. BUT MY DAD DIDN’T WANT TO GO, BECAUSE HE DIDN’T WANT TO LEAVE HIS FAMILY. WE WERE ALL SMALL THEN. AS FAR AS I KNOW, HE DIDN’T REALLY GO OUT OF TOWN. IT WAS ALL LAKE PAVILION, AND WORKING AT HIS REGULAR JOB.” “THE DANCES WERE…EVERY SATURDAY, AND TUESDAYS…I REMEMBER WEDNESDAYS IN LETHBRIDGE, THE STORES WERE CLOSED, AT LEAST FOR HALF A DAY, BECAUSE MY MOM USED TO WORK AT EATON’S, AND WEDNESDAY WAS THEIR DAY OFF, AT LEAST AFTER 12:00 NOON. SO, THERE WAS A LOT OF DANCING ON TUESDAYS, AND SATURDAYS.” “[MY DAD STARTED PLAYING MUSIC WHEN] MY GRANDMA (HIS MOM) WAS TOLD BY A DOCTOR THAT HIS LUNGS WERE A BIT WEAK, AND THAT THE BEST THING TO DO WAS TO START BLOWING AN INSTRUMENT…HIS LUNGS WERE KIND OF WEAK SO THE BEST THING TO DO WAS BLOW AN INSTRUMENT. THEY TELL YOU THAT TODAY, TOO. YOU CAN STRENGTHEN YOUR LUNGS BY BLOWING AN INSTRUMENT…THERE WAS MUSIC IN OUR FAMILY, PRIOR TO THAT, SO I’M NOT SURE WHY [DAD CHOSE] THE SAXOPHONE…[OUR DAD’S] GRANDFATHER HAD BEEN IN BANDS. THERE’S A FUNNY STORY ABOUT THE SMEREK’S – THERE WERE TWO SISTERS MARRIED TWO BROTHERS…AND THEY’RE ALL SINGERS, AND MUSICAL BACKGROUNDS FROM THE OLD COUNTRY. [THAT WAS] THE STORY WE WERE TOLD WHY HE STARTED PLAYING THE SAXOPHONE. MY GRANDMA DIDN’T WANT HIM TO GO INTO THE MINE…BECAUSE AN OLDER BROTHER WAS KILLED IN THE MINE–-THE #9 OR #6 MINE ON THE NORTH SIDE.” “[ROBERT] PLAYED THE TENOR, SO I RECEIVED THE ALTO SAX [FROM DAD], BECAUSE [DAD] TOLD ME IT WAS EASIER TO PLAY THAN HIS CLARINET, TO LEARN ON A SAXOPHONE INSTEAD. THAT WAS JUST IN HIGH SCHOOL, WHEN [MOM AND DAD WERE] STILL IN LETHBRIDGE.” ON THE MOTIVATIONS FOR DONATING THE SAXOPHONE, LEGGE ELABORATED, “AFTER OUR DAD DIED, OUR MOTHER KEPT ALL THE INSTRUMENTS TILL WE WANTED THEM…I HAVE BEEN HOLDING [ONTO] THE SAXOPHONE [SINCE 1970], BECAUSE MY CHILDREN PLAYED IT IN BAND, IN HIGH SCHOOL [IN FORT MCMURRAY, ALBERTA], AND I PLAYED IT IN BAND, IN CATHOLIC CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL…ROB PLAYED THIS SAXOPHONE IN HIGH SCHOOL BAND AT ST. FRANCIS HIGH SCHOOL, LETHBRIDGE…WE’RE GETTING OLDER NOW, AND MOST OF THE PEOPLE THAT WE HAVE THE HISTORY FROM ARE NO LONGER WITH US. I DECIDED THAT IT WAS TIME TO PUT IT SOMEWHERE WHERE EVERYBODY CAN LOOK AT IT AND ENJOY IT…THE INSTRUMENT ITSELF. [I] WANT IT SOMEWHERE PROTECTED.” “IT’S VERY DIFFICULT FOR ME [TO GIVE IT UP], AND IT TOOK A WHILE FOR ME TO WANT TO DO THIS, AND KNOW THAT IT’S GOING TO BE HERE. I JUST HAVE TO ADJUST TO IT, BUT IT’S STILL, TODAY, A VERY DIFFICULT DAY FOR ME TO ACTUALLY GIVE YOU THIS [SAXOPHONE].” “IT’S ‘HIM’. IT JUST IS, BUT I STILL THINK [DONATING THE SAXOPHONE IS] A GOOD THING FOR US TO DO…[DAD] PLAYED A BIG ROLE IN LETHBRIDGE, IN THE BAND ERA, IN THE ‘40S. I JUST WANT HIM TO BE REMEMBERED, AND I WANT HIS STUFF TO BE ENJOYED BY OTHER PEOPLE, ESPECIALLY MY KIDS, BECAUSE THEY HAVEN’T REALLY HEARD THESE RECORDS DIRECTLY, LIKE I HAVE. [MY KIDS] THOUGHT IT WAS A GOOD IDEA. I RAN IT BY EVERYBODY, TO SEE HOW THEY FELT ABOUT IT. THEY’RE OK WITH IT, BUT IT’S STILL HARD TO DO.” ROBERT SMEREK ADDED, “I’D LIKE TO HAVE OTHER PEOPLE SEE IT, AND REMEMBER [DAD]. [BARBARA] WOULD HAVE MORE CONNECTION TO IT THAN I’D HAVE.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND COPIES OF LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190003000-GA
Catalogue Number
P20190003000
Acquisition Date
2019-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1942
Date Range To
1946
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD
Catalogue Number
P20160007002
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1942
Date Range To
1946
Materials
WOOD
No. Pieces
34
Height
8.7
Length
20.5
Width
16.2
Description
.1: BOX, BOTTOM. WOOD. PAINTED RED ON THREE SIDES (TWO LONG AND ONE SHORT SIDE). FOURTH SIDE REMAINS UNFINISHED. PARTIALLY PAINTED BOTTOM. GROOVE ALONG TOP ON THREE SIDES FOR LID TO SLIDE INTO. H: 8.7CM L: 20.5CM W: 16.2CM POOR TO GOOD CONDITION. GROOVE FOR LID MISSING ALONG ONE LONG SIDE OF THE BOX. INTERIOR OF BOX IS STAINED, POSSIBLY WITH AN OILY SUBSTANCE. .2: BOX, LID. WOOD. PAINTED RED ON OUTSIDE, UNFINISHED INSIDE. CREST SHAPED INDENTATION IN LID, TO ALLOW IT TO BE OPENED. THREE SIDES OF LID HAVE A THIN SECTION OF WOOD, WHICH FITS INTO THE GROOVE OF THE BOX. H: 1.0CM L: 19.7CM W: 14.7CM POOR TO GOOD CONDITION. MISSING THIN SECTION OF WOOD ON ONE LONG SIDE. .3: ROOK. BLACK. WOOD. H: 4.7CM D: 3.1CM. GOOD CONDITION. SMALL CHIP ON BOTTOM. .4: ROOK. BLACK. WOOD. H: 4.7CM D: 3.1CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .5: KNIGHT. BLACK. WOOD. H: 5.0CM D: 3.1CM. GOOD CONDITION. SMALL CHIP ON BOTTOM. .6: KNIGHT. BLACK. WOOD. H: 5.0CM D: 3.1CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .7: BISHOP. BLACK. WOOD. H: 5.6CM D: 3.1CM. GOOD CONDITION. SMALL CIRCLE ON VERY TOP SUGGESTS THAT PIECE IS MISSING, ABOVE THE GROOVE. SMALL CHIP ON SHOULDER. .8: BISHOP. BLACK. WOOD. H: 5.6CM D: 3.1CM. GOOD CONDITION. SMALL CIRCLE ON VERY TOP SUGGESTS THAT PIECE IS MISSING, ABOVE THE GROOVE. LARGE CHIPS ON SHOULDER SO THAT ABOUT HALF IS MISSING. .9: QUEEN. BLACK. WOOD. H: 7.1CM D: 3.5CM. GOOD CONDITION. SMALL CIRCLE ON VERY TOP SUGGESTS THAT TOP IS MISSING, ABOVE THE CROWN. SMALL CHIP IN CROWN. SMALL CHIP ON SHOULDER. SMALL INDENTATION ON UPPER PORTION OF THE BASE. .10: KING. BLACK. WOOD. H: 8.5CM D: 3.5CM. VERY GOOD CONDITION. TOP CROSS PORTION BROKEN, LEAVING A THIN PIECE WOOD THAT IS 0.9CM TALL STICKING OUT OF THE TOP. .11: PAWN. BLACK. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .12: PAWN. BLACK. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. GOOD CONDITION. CHIP ON SHOULDER, ALMOST HALF IS MISSING. .13: PAWN. BLACK. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. GOOD CONDITION. CHIP ON SHOULDER, ALMOST HALF IS MISSING. .14: PAWN. BLACK. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .15: PAWN. BLACK. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. GOOD CONDITION. CHIP ON SHOULDER, ALMOST HALF IS MISSING. .16: PAWN. BLACK. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. GOOD CONDITION. SMALL CHIP ON SHOULDER. TWO WHITE SPOTS ON ROUND TOP. .17: PAWN. BLACK. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. GOOD CONDITION. TWO SMALL CHIPS ON BOTTOM. .18: PAWN. BLACK. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. GOOD CONDITION. CHIP ON SHOULDER, ALMOST HALF IS MISSING. .19: ROOK. WHITE. WOOD. H: 4.7CM D: 3.1CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .20: ROOK. WHITE. WOOD. H: 4.7CM D: 3.1CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .21: KNIGHT. WHITE. WOOD. H: 5.0CM D: 3.1CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. DIRT HAS ACCUMULATED IN THE DETAILED CARVINGS OF THE KNIGHT. .22: KNIGHT. WHITE. WOOD. H: 5.0CM D: 3.1CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. DIRT HAS ACCUMULATED IN THE DETAILED CARVINGS OF THE KNIGHT. .23: BISHOP. WHITE. WOOD. H: 5.6CM D: 3.1CM. GOOD CONDITION. SMALL CIRCLE ON VERY TOP SUGGESTS THAT PIECE IS MISSING, ABOVE THE GROOVE. SMALL GREEN SPOT JUST BLOW THE GROOVE. DIRTY JUST BELOW SHOULDER. .24: BISHOP. WHITE. WOOD. H: 5.6CM D: 3.1CM. GOOD CONDITION. SMALL CIRCLE ON VERY TOP SUGGESTS THAT PIECE IS MISSING, ABOVE THE GROOVE. SMALL CHIP ON SHOULDER. .25: QUEEN. WHITE. WOOD. H: 7.1CM D: 3.5CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. SMALL CIRCLE ON VERY TOP SUGGESTS THAT TOP IS MISSING, ABOVE THE CROWN. .26: KING. WHITE. WOOD. H: 8.5CM D: 3.5CM. 3.5CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .27: PAWN. WHITE. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. GOOD CONDITION. SMALL CHIP ON BOTTOM. .28: PAWN. WHITE. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .29: PAWN. WHITE. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .30: PAWN. WHITE. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .31: PAWN. WHITE. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .32: PAWN. WHITE. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .33: PAWN. WHITE. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. EXCELLENT CONDITION. .34: PAWN. WHITE. WOOD. H: 4.3CM D: 2.5CM. FAIR TO GOOD CONDITION. ROUND PORTION ABOVE SHOULDER COMPLETELY MISSING.
Subjects
GAME
Historical Association
LEISURE
MILITARY
History
THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM AN INTERVIEW WITH HILARY WHITE AND WENDY RUSSELL, CONDUCTED BY KEVIN MACLEAN IN FEBRUARY 2016. WENDY IS THE DAUGHTER OF SERGEANT DENZIL ASHBY, WHO WAS IN CHARGE OF THE RCMP DETACHMENT IN MEDICINE HAT WHERE WILLI MUELLER WAS HELD PRIOR TO HIS HANGING IN 1946. HILARY IS WENDY’S NIECE AND IS THE DAUGHTER OF ROSEMARY WELLS. WILLI MUELLER GAVE THE PAINTING AND THE CHESS SET TO DENZIL ASHBY. UPON HIS DEATH IN 1983, THE ITEMS WERE GIVEN TO ROSEMARY. SHE IN TURN GAVE THE TWO PIECES TO HER NEPHEW (AND WENDY’S SON) MICHAEL RUSSELL. WENDY EXPLAINED THAT MICHAEL “WAS VERY INTERESTED IN ANYTHING TO DO WITH MILITARY, PARTICULARLY CANADIAN MILITARY HISTORY.” UPON MICHAEL’S DEATH, THE ITEMS WERE TRANSFERRED TO HILARY, WHO HAS DONATED THEM TO THE GALT. IN EXPLAINING HER MOTIVATIONS TO DO SO, HILARY SAID “I LIVE IN SINGAPORE AND I AM A RESEARCHER AT THE NATIONAL MUSEUM OF SINGAPORE, AND I KNOW HOW MUCH THESE THINGS ARE TREASURES, AND THE STORIES THAT GO WITH THEM. SO I WAS ENCOURAGED, WHILE WENDY HAS THE STORIES STILL FRESH IN HER MIND, (LAUGHTER) TO HOPEFULLY SHARE THEM WITH YOU.” THE RCMP DETACHMENT IN MEDICINE HAT HOUSED NOT ONLY THE PRISONERS, BUT THE ASHBY FAMILY AS WELL. WENDY EXPLAINED: “IT WAS JUST A RANCH HOME THAT HAD JUST BEEN DIVIDED AND MADE INTO A DETACHMENT. ON THE FRONT PART OF THE DETACHMENT, I REMEMBER, THERE WERE THE OFFICES, THE JAIL – I THINK THERE WERE TWO CELLS IN THE BASEMENT, AND I ONLY SORT OF PEEKED THROUGH A HOLE IN THE WALL TO SEE THEM. I DON’T THINK I EVER WENT NEAR THEM. AND THEN ON THE UPPER FLOOR, I THINK THE THIRD FLOOR, WAS WHERE THE CONSTABLES SLEPT. THERE WAS ONLY ONE MARRIED OFFICER AND THAT WAS MY FATHER AND THE REST WERE ALL CONSTABLES. SO WE WOULD USUALLY HAVE TWO OR THREE.” SHE ELABORATED, SAYING: “I CAN REMEMBER SITTING ON THE BASEMENT STEPS BECAUSE THE HOUSE WAS DIVIDED. IT WAS AN RCMP DETACHMENT AND SO THE JAILS WERE IN THE BASEMENT ON THE OFFICE SIDE, AND THE PERSONAL WAS ON THE OTHER, AND I WOULD SIT ON THE STAIRS AND LISTEN TO WILLI PLAY HIS HARMONICA. AND IT WAS LILI MARLENE. I GET ALL TEARY WHEN I THINK – BUT HE WAS A VERY, VERY PLEASANT YOUNG MAN. I DON’T REALLY VISUALIZE – I, SEEING PICTURES OF HIM NOW, I CAN RECALL HIS NICE COUNTENANCE. HE HAD A VERY FRIENDLY FACE AND VERY RELAXED, VERY, VERY PERSONABLE, VERY RELIABLE, VERY RESPECTFUL. AND I KNOW MY MOTHER, OF COURSE, DID ALL THE HOME COOKING FOR THE PRISONERS THERE, SO WILLI HAD NICE HOME COOKING, CHOCOLATE CAKE, AND I CAN’T REMEMBER ANYTHING THAT WAS BAD BECAUSE I THINK MY FATHER KEPT EVERYTHING VERY CALM. I HAD NO IDEA THAT THERE WAS A PRISONER OF WAR CAMP. I WOULDN’T KNOW WHAT THAT MEANT, AND EVEN THAT WILLI WAS GOING TO BE HANGED. BUT OF COURSE, MY SISTER DID.” SHE CONTINUED: “BEING A SMALL CHILD, I WAS JUST AWARE THAT HE WAS THERE. HE WAS CUTTING THE GRASS AND HE WAS A PLEASANT PERSON AND ROSEMARY WAS VERY FOND OF HIM. SHE WAS A TEENAGER AND HE WAS A NICE LOOKING YOUNG MAN AND I THINK SHE SORT OF HAD A CRUSH ON HIM. HE WAS VERY GENTLE AND AS I SAY, VERY RESPECTFUL.” SHE DESCRIBED WILLI FURTHER: “HE WAS VERY RESPECTFUL; HE WASN’T A PUSHY PERSON, OR LIKE, WE OFTEN THINK OF THE GERMANS AS BEING ALOOF AND – BUT HE WASN’T. HE WAS JUST A VERY NATURAL AND VERY – MY FATHER LEFT HIM IN CHARGE OF THE DETACHMENT ONCE. IT WAS A BIT OF – THIS IS ALL HEARSAY, BUT THERE WAS A FIRE SOMEWHERE NEAR MEDICINE HAT AND IT WAS SPREADING AND THEY NEEDED TO GO, SO DAD TOOK ALL THE – MAYBE TWO CONSTABLES AND HIMSELF, AND THEY HAD TO GO, SO HE LEFT WILLI CUTTING THE GRASS AND APPARENTLY HE TOLD HIM, HE SAID, ‘NOW WE HAVE AN EMERGENCY.’ HE SAID, ‘YOU’RE IN CHARGE OF THE DETACHMENT. I EXPECT YOU TO BE HERE WHEN I GET BACK.’ AND HE SAID, ‘YES,’ AND HE WAS.” WENDY’S MOTHER ALSO FOUND WILLI CHARMING: “MY MOTHER THOUGHT HE WAS LOVELY, BECAUSE HE WAS SUCH A GENTLEMAN, I THINK.” WENDY HAD THE FOLLOWING TO SAY ABOUT THE CHESS SET: “I THINK MY FATHER MENTIONED THAT THEY WERE PROVIDED WITH CHESS SETS OR THINGS TO OCCUPY THEIR TIME IN SOME OF THE CAMPS, AND THAT WILLI HAD THIS SET WITH HIM AND HE USED TO PLAY IT IN THE – I DON’T KNOW IF HE PLAYED WITH, YOU KNOW, BY HIMSELF OR SOMEBODY ELSE - ONE OF THE OTHER BOYS THAT WERE IN THE STATION WOULD PLAY WITH HIM. I DO KNOW THAT [THE PAINTING AND CHESS SET] BELONGED TO HIM, AND WHEN HE WAS TAKEN AWAY, HE PRESENTED THESE TO MY FATHER.” WENDY RECALLS BEING TOO YOUNG TO KNOW THAT WILLI HAD BEEN HANGED, BUT FIGURED THAT HER SISTER ROSEMARY KNEW: “WE JUST KNEW THAT HE HAD GONE. BUT ROSEMARY WOULD HAVE KNOWN [THAT HE WAS EXECUTED], AND THAT’S MAYBE WHY – I DON’T KNOW WHAT HILARY CAN TELL YOU, HOW, IF ROSEMARY TOLD HER HOW SHE FELT ABOUT IT.” HILARY RESPONDED, SAYING: “SHE DID A LOT. SHE TOLD ME LOTS OF STORIES, BUT I WAS LIKE, “AAH, MOM.” YOU KNOW I WAS FAIRLY YOUNG, PROBABLY ROLLING MY EYES ABOUT SOME ROMANCE OR SOMETHING SHE HAD WITH THIS GUY, AND I JUST REMEMBER HER TELLING ME THAT HE DIED ON HER BIRTHDAY AND IT WAS DEVASTATING, AND SHE STILL CRIED ABOUT IT … SHE MUST HAVE BEEN VERY EMOTIONALLY ATTACHED TO HIM … BUT I DON’T REALLY KNOW ANY OF THE DETAILS. I’M JUST READING ABOUT IT NOW, AND I DON’T WANT TO MIX IT UP BETWEEN WHAT SHE TOLD ME AND WHAT I’M READING.” WHEN ASKED IF THE PAINTING HAD BEEN DISPLAYED, WENDY REPLIED: “YES. [MY DAD DENZIL] HAD THIS IN HIS DEN AND HE HAD A DEN/OFFICE BECAUSE HE LATER BECAME A PROVINCIAL COURT JUDGE IN B.C. AND THIS WAS ALWAYS ON HIS WALL IN THAT LITTLE ROOM IN THE BASEMENT THAT HE HAD. THAT WAS JUST IN HIS DISPLAY CASE.” WENDY THINKS HER FATHER HELD ONTO THE PAINTING AND CHESS SET BECAUSE HE FELT WILLI SHOULDN’T HAVE BEEN HANGED: “I HAVE A FEELING [DAD] THOUGHT AT THE TIME, THAT WILLI SHOULD NEVER HAVE BEEN HANGED. AND I THINK THAT THAT WEIGHED ON HIM, BUT THIS IS MY FEELING, BECAUSE WILLI THOUGHT THAT BECAUSE HE WAS GIVING EVIDENCE. THIS WAS A TIME OF WAR WHEN WE ALLOWED, IF I UNDERSTAND, THE CAMPS BE RUN BY THE OFFICERS – THEY HAD THEIR OWN HIERARCHY – AND HE WAS COMMANDED OR ORDERED TO COMMIT THIS CRIME, AND DAD, I THINK, FELT BADLY ABOUT THIS. THIS WAS NOT THE – HE WAS ORDERED AND IN A TIME OF WAR, IF YOU DIDN’T DO WHAT YOUR OFFICER SAID, YOU WERE KILLED. YOU KNOW, YOU WERE – SO I THINK THAT, PERHAPS WAS A PART OF IT.” A SPECIAL SERIES FROM THE EDMONTON JOURNAL ENTITLED “HANGED: A SPECIAL SERIES ABOUT THE HISTORY OF CAPITAL PUNISHMENT IN ALBERTA” INDICATES THAT THE GERMAN P.O.W.S PLAYED CHESS TO PASS THE TIME: “THE FOUR GERMANS SPENT THE DAYS BEFORE THEIR EXECUTION PLAYING CHEST, SHOUTING THEIR MOVES TO EACH OTHER FROM SEPARATE CELLS. NONE OF THE MEN WOULD SPEAK TO [DONALD SHERMAN] STALEY, WHO SPENT HIS FINAL DAYS DOING JIGSAW PUZZLES ALONE.” THE FOLLOWING PARAGRAPHS PULL THEIR INFORMATION FROM A SERIES OF LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES. BIOGRAPHIC DETAILS FOR WILLI MUELLER ARE FOUND IN AN ARTICLE PUBLISHED ON APRIL 30, 1946: FELDWEBEL (SERGEANT MAJOR) WILLI MUELLER WAS BORN IN SILESIA, HIS NATIVE CITY BEING KLEINA IN THE PROVINCE OF GORSEROTZ. HE MADE HIS HOME IN ROSETZ IN TROCHENG, WHERE HE WORKED AS AN ENGINE MECHANIC IN CIVILIAN LIFE. MUELLER WENT INTO THE GERMAN NAVY IN 1934 AND THE FOLLOWING YEAR TRANSFERRED TO THE AIR FORCE.” AT THE TIME THE ARTICLE WAS PUBLISHED, MUELLER WAS A “32-YEAR-OLD LUFTWAFFE MECHANIC, WHO WAS CAPTURED NEAR GLASGOW, SCOTLAND, ON MAY 6, 1941, AFTER HIS BOMBER WAS SHOT DOWN INTO A SWAMP BY A SPITFIRE FIGHTER. HE WEARS BOTH THE FIRST AND SECOND CLASS VERSIONS OF THE IRON CROSS AND COMPLETED 87 OPERATIONAL FLIGHTS.” THE ARTICLE CONTINUED: “WHEN HIS PLANE WAS SHOT DOWN INTO A SWAMP NEAR GLASGOW, BOTH MUELLER’S LEGS WERE BROKEN AND HE ALSO SUFFERED A FRACTURE OF A VERTEBRA. THE CAPTAIN AND LIEUTENANT IN THE BOMBER WERE KILLED. AFTER BEING RELEASED FROM HOSPITAL AND REGAINING HIS HEALTH, MUELLER WAS BROUGHT TO CANADA AND FOR SIX MONTHS WORKED IN A LUMBER CAMP NEAR FLANDERS, ONT. A SINGLE MAN, HE SPEAKS SPANISH AND ONLY A LITTLE ENGLISH.” MUELLER WAS PUT ON TRIAL FOR HIS INVOLVEMENT IN THE MURDER OF UNTEROFFIZIER (CORPORAL) DR. KARL LEHMANN, A FELLOW GERMAN PRISONER OF WAR, ON SEPTEMBER 10, 1944, AT THE MEDICINE HAT PRISONER OF WAR CAMP, NUMBER 132. LEHMANN “WAS BELIEVED TO BE A GERMAN DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY AND AN ANTI-NAZI” ACCORDING TO AN APRIL 20, 1946 ARTICLE. A JULY 30, 1946 ARTICLE SAID THE FOLLOWING: “LEHMANN’S REPUTATION PRIOR TO HIS DEATH WAS THAT HE WAS A ‘GOOD SPORTSMAN’ AND A ‘GOOD COMRADE.’ AFTER HIS DEATH THE RUMOR HAD BEEN THAT HE WAS A ‘TRAITOR.’” THREE OTHER P.O.W.S WERE IMPLICATED IN THE MURDER AS WELL: BRUNO PERZENOWSKI (ALSO SPELT PERZONOWSKY), WALTER WOLF, AND HEINRICH BUSCH. AN ARTICLE PUBLISHED ON MAY 3, 1946 EXPLAINS THE MOTIVATION BEHIND THE KILLING OF LEHMANN: “PERZENOWSKI INFORMED THEM THAT HE HAD ‘ORDERS TO PUT LEHMANN ASIDE’ BECAUSE HE WAS PLANNING A COMMUNISTIC OVERTHROW AND THAT LEHMANN WAS SUPPOSED TO BE ‘THE CHIEF OF THIS COMMUNISTIC GROUP.’ MUELLER WROTE [IN A STATEMENT GIVEN TO POLICE VOLUNTARILY] THAT AS ‘I WAS A STRONG MAN, PERZENOWSKI GAVE ME THE ORDER TO HELP DO AWAY WITH LEHMANN.” ANOTHER ARTICLE PUBLISHED JUNE 27, 1946 GIVES ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: “MUELLER TOLD … THAT ON THE AFTERNOON OF LEHMANN’S HANGING HE HAD BEEN SUMMONED TO PERZENOWSKI’S QUARTERS. HERE HE WAS TOLD BY [PERZENOWSKI] OF AN ORDER RECEIVED FROM THE ‘HIGHER-UPS’ STATING THAT A ‘COURT HAD TAKEN PLACE AND THAT DURING THAT COURT THREE OR FIVE MEN HAD STATED UNDER OATH THAT CPL. LEHMANN HAD BEEN THE RINGLEADER OF A COMMUNISTIC GROUP WHICH THREATENED TO OVERTHROW THE CAMP LEADERSHIP.’ THE ORDER FURTHER STATED ‘THAT LEHMANN WAS TO BE REMOVED AND THAT I (MUELLER) WOULD HAVE TO ASSIST IN IT.’” IN AN ADDITIONAL ARTICLE, PUBLISHED MAY 13, 1946, AN UNIDENTIFIED GERMAN P.O.W. TESTIFIED THAT KARL LEHMANN WAS HANGED BECAUSE HE WAS “‘SUPPOSED TO BE DANGEROUS FOR THE GENERAL CAMP PUBLIC.’” FINALLY, AN ARTICLE FROM DECEMBER 18, 1946 EXPLAINS FURTHER: “NAZI LEADERS HAD ORDERED LEHMANN KILLED WHEN HE WAS A PRISONER OF WAR IN BRITAIN AFTER HAVING BEEN SHOT DOWN WHILE SERVING WITH THE LUFTWAFFE, BECAUSE HE WAS AN ANTI-NAZI. AT THAT TIME HE WAS DETAINED AT A CAMP WITH PERZENOWSKI, MUELLER, AND BUSCH BUT WAS TRANSFERRED TO CANADA BEFORE THE ORDERS COULD BE EXECUTED. HE AGAIN MET SOME OF HIS FORMER FELLOW CAPTIVES AT THE MEDICINE HAT CAMP AND AFTER THE ATTEMPT ON HITLER’S LIFE. NAZI LEADERS IN THAT CAMP WERE ORDERED BY HIDDEN SHORT WAVE RADIO TO KILL ALL TRAITORS TO NAZISM AND ALL COMMUNISTS. LEHMANN HAD BEEN LECTURING AGAINST NAZI IDEOLOGY AT THE CAMP.” AT HIS TRIAL, PERZENOWSKI TRIED TO TAKE THE BLAME FOR THE MURDER. AN ARTICLE FROM JUNE 28, 1946 GIVES THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION: SERGEANT-MAJOR BRUNO PERZENOWSKI “ADMITTED THAT WITHOUT HAVING BEEN DIRECTLY ORDERED TO DO SO, HE HAD GIVEN THE ORDER TO HAVE LEHMANN REMOVED, AND HE EXPRESSED THE DESIRE THAT FULL RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE MURDER BE PLACED ON HIM AND THAT THOSE HE HAD ORDERED TO ASSIST HIM IN THE HANGING BE NOT BLAMED.” IT CONTINUED SAYING THAT “…THE ACCUSED HAD CONSIDERED [THAT] HE WAS ACTING ACCORDING TO GERMAN MILITARY LAW WHEN ORDERING THE HANGING.” IN AN ARTICLE FROM JUNE 27, 1946, MUELLER EXPLAINED THAT THE MURDER “HAD BEEN PLANNED AND ALL PREPARATIONS MADE PRIOR TO HIS GOING TO THE HEAD BARRACKS OF HUTS DZ.” IT CONTINUED: “IT HAD ALSO BEEN ARRANGED THAT AT A GIVEN SIGNAL HE (MUELLER) WAS TO HIT LEHMANN ON THE CHIN AND KNOCK HIM DOWN. THEN THE NOOSE WAS TO BE PUT OVER HIS NECK AND HE WAS TO BE HANGED.” THE ARTICLE CONTINUED: “‘AS I ARRIVED AT THE HUT I WAS HANDED A ROPE AND A STICK BY SOMEONE AND I WAS INSTRUCTED TO HIT LEHMANN WITH THE STICK. I THREW THE STICK AWAY AND STUCK THE ROPE IN MY POCKET,’ [MUELLER] TESTIFIED. SHORTLY AFTER LEHMANN ARRIVED AND WAS ASKED BY PERZENOWSKI ‘IF HE KNEW ANYTHING ABOUT THE COMMUNISTIC ACTIVITIES. THAT WAS THE SIGNAL FOR ME TO HIT HIM.’ MUELLER SAID WHEN HE HIT HIM WITH HIS FIST, LEHMANN FELL OFF THE BENCH ON WHICH HE WAS SITTING AND THE REST OF THOSE IN THE ROOM ‘FELL UPON HIM.’ THE ROPE WAS THEN ADJUSTED ON THE VICTIM’S NECK BY ‘MYSELF AND BUSCH.’ LEHMANN WAS THEN LIFTED UP AND WHEN THE OTHER END OF THE ROPE HAD BEEN TIED, ‘I BELIEVE BY BUSCH’ TO THE GAS PIPE, ‘I LEFT.’ … [MUELLER] HAD NOT SEEN THE ORDER WHICH PERZENOWSKI SAID HE RECEIVED FROM THE ‘HIGHEST AUTHORITY’ AND HE ‘HAD THE IMPRESSION PERZENOWSKI DID NOT WANT HIM TO SEE IT.’” THE FOUR GERMAN P.O.W.S WERE FOUND GUILTY OF MURDER AND ALL WERE SENTENCED TO HANG. THREE OF THE MEN ATTEMPTED TO COMMIT SUICIDE PRIOR TO THEIR HANGING, INCLUDING MUELLER. THE MEN EXPLAINED, IN A DECEMBER 18, 1946 ARTICLE, “THAT THEY TRIED TO COMMIT SUICIDE IN A DETERMINED EFFORT TO ESCAPE HANGING LIKE CRIMINALS … THEY HAD MADE APPEALS TO BE SHOT ‘LIKE SOLDIERS.’” THE ARTICLE CONTINUED SAYING: “THE TRAP DOOR FOR MUELLER AND WOLF WAS SPRUNG AT 1242 AND THE LATTER WAS PRONOUNCED DEAD IN 12 MINUTES AND MUELLER WAS DEAD THREE MINUTES LATER.” THE FOUR P.O.W.S WERE HUNG AT THE SAME TIME AS DONALD SHERMAN STALEY, WHO WAS CONVICTED OF THE MURDER OF TWO YOUNG BOYS. THE DECEMBER 18 ARTICLE CONTINUED: “EACH OF THE NAZIS EXPRESSED RESENTMENT AT BEING SCHEDULED TO HANG WITH STALEY, THE GERMANS REGARDING HIM AS ‘A CRIMINAL’ BECAUSE HE MURDERED TWO YOUNG BOYS. THEY TREATED HIM WITH CONTEMPT … EACH OF THE MURDERERS WAS HANGED WEARING REGULAR PRISON CLOTHING CONSISTING OF A BLUE SHIRT, KHAKI TROUSERS AND A PAIR OF CANVAS SLIPPERS.” SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR A COPY OF THE INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT, A COPY OF THE SPECIAL “HANGED” FROM THE EDMONTON JOURNAL, AND FOR COPIES OF THE HERALD ARTICLES.
Catalogue Number
P20160007002
Acquisition Date
2016-03
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
TOY, STUFFED
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1950
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
LEATHERETTE, LEATHER
Catalogue Number
P20150013001
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
TOY, STUFFED
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1950
Materials
LEATHERETTE, LEATHER
No. Pieces
2
Height
21.5
Length
29.5
Width
5.5
Description
A: STUFFED DOG, GREEN LEATHERETTE BODY, RED LEATHERETTE EARS. RED STITCHING AROUND EDGE OF DOG’S BODY. SAME RED THREAD MAKES A SMALL TAIL. BLACK BUTTON EYES. TOY DESIGNED WITH ONLY 2 LEGS, FRONT AND BACK. B: ADJUSTABLE BLACK LEATHER COLLAR WITH SILVER COLOURED METAL BUCKLE. MINOR REPAIRS WITH OFF-WHITE THREAD VISIBLE AT TAIL AND ABOVE LEFT EYE. MINOR REPAIR WITH STAPLES ON FRONT LEFT FOOT. LEATHERETTE RUBBED OFF AT NOSE AREA AND UNDER BUTTON EYES. SEAMS WHERE LEGS MEET BODY ARE WELL-WORN AND LOOSE, SOME STUFFING IS VISIBLE, ESPECIALLY ON RIGHT FRONT LEG.
Subjects
TOY
Historical Association
LEISURE
History
THIS STUFFED DOG BELONGED TO ROBERT ALLAN SMITH (THE DONOR) AS A CHILD AND WAS SAVED FOR DONATION TO THE MUSEUM BY HIS MOTHER, PHYLLIS SMITH. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION ON THE SMITH FAMILY WAS PROVIDED BY THE DONOR IN AN ORAL INTERVIEW CONDUCTED BY KEVIN MACLEAN IN NOVEMBER 2015. BEGINNING IN THE 1940S, THE SMITH FAMILY RESIDED AT 1254 7 AVENUE SOUTH. PHYLLIS REMAINED IN THE HOUSE UNTIL HER DEATH AT 104 YEARS OF AGE, ON SEPTEMBER 26, 2009. WHILE CLEANING UP HIS MOTHER’S HOUSE, THE DONOR CAME ACROSS SEVERAL BAGS MARKED ‘FOR MUSEUM’. THE ITEMS WERE USED BY THE DONOR FROM AN INFANT UNTIL THE AGE OF APPROXIMATELY 9 YEARS OLD. IN THE INTERVIEW, KEVIN ASKS IF ROBERT FELT HIS CHILDHOOD WAS IDYLLIC. ROBERT RESPONDS, SAYING: “FOR ME IT WAS. I MEAN, I WAS BORN IN WARTIME STILL AND MAYBE IT WASN’T IDYLLIC FOR MY PARENTS, BUT IT WAS FOR ME. AND THE NEIGHBOURHOODS WERE DIFFERENT THEN. YOU WERE JUST LET OUT THE DOOR AND YOU WENT OUT TO PLAY WITH THE NEIGHBOURHOOD KIDS AND THERE WERE NO CONCERNS THAT THE PARENTS HAVE TODAY. YES, A VERY HAPPY TIME, I WOULD SAY.” ROBERT WAS BORN IN OCTOBER 1940 TO PHYLLIS (NEE GROSS) AND ALLAN F. SMITH, AT ST. MICHAEL’S HOSPITAL. PHYLLIS WAS BORN TO FELIX AND MAGDALENA (NEE FETTIG) GROSS IN HARVEY, ND AND MOVED WITH HER FAMILY TO A FARM IN THE GRASSY LAKE AREA. SHE MOVED INTO LETHBRIDGE AND ATTENDED ST. BASIL’S SCHOOL IN THE 1910s. ALLAN WAS BORN IN ECHO BAY, ON, TO REV D.B. AND MRS. SMITH. HIS FATHER WAS A UNITED CHURCH MINISTER AND MOVED THE FAMILY TO EDMONTON. ALLAN WAS OFFERED A JOB AT WESTERN GROCERS IN LETHBRIDGE AND MET PHYLLIS WHILE IN THE CITY. THEY WERE MARRIED ON SEPTEMBER 2, 1939. ROBERT IS AN ONLY CHILD AND SUFFERED FROM RHEUMATIC FEVER AS A CHILD. HE BELIEVES THIS MAY BE PART OF THE REASON HIS MOTHER SAVED THESE ITEMS. HE EXPLAINS, SAYING: “I’M AN ONLY CHILD AND THEY WOULD BE MORE MEANINGFUL AND I WENT THROUGH A CHILDHOOD ILLNESS. I HAD RHEUMATIC FEVER. I MIGHT NOT HAVE SURVIVED. SOME OTHER KIDS DIDN’T SURVIVE, BUT I DID.” HE ALSO DESCRIBES HIS MOTHER AS BEING “A SAVER OF THINGS. HAVING GONE THROUGH THE DEPRESSION … THEY SAVED LOTS OF STUFF … ANYTHING THEY THINK THEY MIGHT USE IN THE FUTURE WAS SAVED.” PHYLLIS WAS ALSO A MEMBER OF THE LETHBRIDGE HISTORICAL SOCIETY IN THE 1970s AND WORKED AT THE GALT MUSEUM AS PART OF THE HISTORICAL SOCIETY. ACCORDING TO THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD, ROBERT RECEIVED MANY AWARDS WHILE IN HIGH SCHOOL AND UNIVERSITY, INCLUDING THE SCHLUMBERGER OF CANADA SCHOLARSHIP FOR PROFICIENCY IN ENGINEERING, A GOLD MEDAL FROM THE ASSOCIATION OF PROFESSIONAL ENGINEERS OF ALBERTA, AND RECEIVED THE HIGHEST GENERAL AVERAGE IN GRADUATION IN ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING AT THE UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA. SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTS AND COPIES OF LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES.
Catalogue Number
P20150013001
Acquisition Date
2015-03
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
TEDDY BEAR
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1950
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
FAKE FUR, WOOL, COTTON
Catalogue Number
P20150013003
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
TEDDY BEAR
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1950
Materials
FAKE FUR, WOOL, COTTON
No. Pieces
3
Height
37
Length
31.5
Width
13
Description
A: TEDDY BEAR, MEDIUM BROWN FAKE FUR BODY WITH YELLOW FAKE FUR ON EARS, NOSE, AND PAWS. TWO RED BUTTON EYES. NOSE AND MOUTH ARE BLACK YARN SEWN ONTO YELLOW SNOUT. FAKE FUR HAS RUBBED OFF ON BEAR'S SNOUT AND AROUND SEVERAL SEAMS, ESPECIALLY ON EARS AND FEET. MINOR REPAIRS EVIDENT BELOW SNOUT, ABOVE LEFT EYE, BACK OF NECK, AND BOTTOM OF RIGHT FOOT. B: TEAL GREEN WOOL CARDIGAN WITH 5 GOLD-COLOURED BUTTONS. BUTTONS EMBOSSED WITH AIRPLANE FLYING OVER WAVY WATER. C: RED ROMPER PANTS UNDER SWEATER. MATERIAL HAS RED BACKGROUND AND WHITE BOWS WITH NAVY BLUE CENTRES. STRAPS OF PANTS AFFIXED IN FRONT WITH TWO TAN BUTTONS.
Subjects
TOY
Historical Association
LEISURE
History
THIS TEDDY BEAR BELONGED TO ROBERT ALLAN SMITH (THE DONOR) AS A CHILD AND WAS SAVED FOR DONATION TO THE MUSEUM BY HIS MOTHER, PHYLLIS SMITH. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION ON THE SMITH FAMILY WAS PROVIDED BY THE DONOR IN AN ORAL INTERVIEW CONDUCTED BY KEVIN MACLEAN IN NOVEMBER 2015. BEGINNING IN THE 1940S, THE SMITH FAMILY RESIDED AT 1254 7 AVENUE SOUTH. PHYLLIS REMAINED IN THE HOUSE UNTIL HER DEATH AT 104 YEARS OF AGE, ON SEPTEMBER 26, 2009. WHILE CLEANING UP HIS MOTHER’S HOUSE, THE DONOR CAME ACROSS SEVERAL BAGS MARKED ‘FOR MUSEUM’. THE ITEMS WERE USED BY THE DONOR FROM AN INFANT UNTIL THE AGE OF APPROXIMATELY 9 YEARS OLD. IN THE INTERVIEW, KEVIN ASKS IF ROBERT FELT HIS CHILDHOOD WAS IDYLLIC. ROBERT RESPONDS, SAYING: “FOR ME IT WAS. I MEAN, I WAS BORN IN WARTIME STILL AND MAYBE IT WASN’T IDYLLIC FOR MY PARENTS, BUT IT WAS FOR ME. AND THE NEIGHBOURHOODS WERE DIFFERENT THEN. YOU WERE JUST LET OUT THE DOOR AND YOU WENT OUT TO PLAY WITH THE NEIGHBOURHOOD KIDS AND THERE WERE NO CONCERNS THAT THE PARENTS HAVE TODAY. YES, A VERY HAPPY TIME, I WOULD SAY.” ROBERT WAS BORN IN OCTOBER 1940 TO PHYLLIS (NEE GROSS) AND ALLAN F. SMITH, AT ST. MICHAEL’S HOSPITAL. PHYLLIS WAS BORN TO FELIX AND MAGDALENA (NEE FETTIG) GROSS IN HARVEY, ND AND MOVED WITH HER FAMILY TO A FARM IN THE GRASSY LAKE AREA. SHE MOVED INTO LETHBRIDGE AND ATTENDED ST. BASIL’S SCHOOL IN THE 1910s. ALLAN WAS BORN IN ECHO BAY, ON, TO REV D.B. AND MRS. SMITH. HIS FATHER WAS A UNITED CHURCH MINISTER AND MOVED THE FAMILY TO EDMONTON. ALLAN WAS OFFERED A JOB AT WESTERN GROCERS IN LETHBRIDGE AND MET PHYLLIS WHILE IN THE CITY. THEY WERE MARRIED ON SEPTEMBER 2, 1939. ROBERT IS AN ONLY CHILD AND SUFFERED FROM RHEUMATIC FEVER AS A CHILD. HE BELIEVES THIS MAY BE PART OF THE REASON HIS MOTHER SAVED THESE ITEMS. HE EXPLAINS, SAYING: “I’M AN ONLY CHILD AND THEY WOULD BE MORE MEANINGFUL AND I WENT THROUGH A CHILDHOOD ILLNESS. I HAD RHEUMATIC FEVER. I MIGHT NOT HAVE SURVIVED. SOME OTHER KIDS DIDN’T SURVIVE, BUT I DID.” HE ALSO DESCRIBES HIS MOTHER AS BEING “A SAVER OF THINGS. HAVING GONE THROUGH THE DEPRESSION … THEY SAVED LOTS OF STUFF … ANYTHING THEY THINK THEY MIGHT USE IN THE FUTURE WAS SAVED.” PHYLLIS WAS ALSO A MEMBER OF THE LETHBRIDGE HISTORICAL SOCIETY IN THE 1970s AND WORKED AT THE GALT MUSEUM AS PART OF THE HISTORICAL SOCIETY. ACCORDING TO THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD, ROBERT RECEIVED MANY AWARDS WHILE IN HIGH SCHOOL AND UNIVERSITY, INCLUDING THE SCHLUMBERGER OF CANADA SCHOLARSHIP FOR PROFICIENCY IN ENGINEERING, A GOLD MEDAL FROM THE ASSOCIATION OF PROFESSIONAL ENGINEERS OF ALBERTA, AND RECEIVED THE HIGHEST GENERAL AVERAGE IN GRADUATION IN ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING AT THE UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA. UPDATE: ON 26 OCTOBER 2017, DONOR ROBERT SMITH RESPONDED BY EMAIL TO AN ENQUIRY BY MUSEUM STAFF ON THIS OBJECT’S MANUFACTURE, SAYING THAT, “MY MOTHER DID KNIT AND SEW, AND HAD A TREADLE-TYPE SINGER SEWING MACHINE [AND] WHILE I CAN'T BE SURE, IT IS LIKELY THAT SHE MADE THE BEAR'S CLOTHES AND THE BABY BONNET.” IN ANOTHER EMAIL, THE FOLLOWING DAY (27 OCTOBER), HE ADDED, “THE BEAR WAS PROBABLY STORE BOUGHT, AND THE CLOTHES ADDED TO PERSONALIZE IT. [I] DON'T KNOW IF IT WAS A GIFT.” SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTS AND COPIES OF LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES.
Catalogue Number
P20150013003
Acquisition Date
2015-03
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail

21 records – page 1 of 2.