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Other Name
CROWSON CAMPAIGN SIGN
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
PLASTIC, INK
Catalogue Number
P20170033002
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
CROWSON CAMPAIGN SIGN
Date
2017
Materials
PLASTIC, INK
No. Pieces
1
Length
61
Width
40.5
Description
PURPLE DOUBLE-SIDED SIGN PRINTED ON COROPLAST BOARD. SIGN HAS PURPLE PHOTOGRAPH OF BELINDA CROWSON BESIDE LARGE METAL WHEEL WITH THE LETHBRIDGE HIGH LEVEL BRIDGE AND WEST CITYSCAPE IN BACKGROUND; WHITE TEXT ON SIDE READS “BELINDA CROWSON FOR COUNCIL...BELINDA4COUNCIL@GMAIL.COM”. FRONT OF SIGN HAS TWO ROUND DENT ALONG LOWER EDGE FROM SIGN STAKES; BACK OF SIGN IS SCRATCHED ON UPPER AND LOWER LEFT EDGES. OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
POLITICS
History
ON NOVEMBER 16, 2017 COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BELINDA CROWSON REGARDING HER DONATION OF A MUNICIPAL CAMPAIGN SIGN AND BLACKWORK EMBROIDERY PIECE. CROWSON WAS EMPLOYED WITH THE GALT MUSEUM AS THE MUSEUM EDUCATOR, WITH A REPUTATION AS A RENOWNED LOCAL HISTORIAN, UNTIL HER ELECTION TO CITY OF LETHBRIDGE COUNCIL IN 2017. THE CAMPAIGN SIGN WAS USED BY CROWSON DURING HER 2017 CAMPAIGN FOR CITY OF LETHBRIDGE COUNCIL. ON THE SIGN, CROWSON RECALLED, “I SAT DOWN WITH LISA LAMBERT, JENN SCHMIDT-REMPEL, AND BARB LACEY, A WHOLE BUNCH OF PEOPLE. I GOT ALL KINDS OF INFORMATION. I KNEW ANINE [VONKEMAN] WAS GOING TO BE MY DESIGNER, BECAUSE I COULDN’T THINK OF ANYBODY BETTER TO DO IT. THE DESIGN FOR THIS CAME ABOUT FROM A CONVERSATION WITH LISA AND ANINE, BECAUSE LISA SAID, “THERE’S TWO THINGS EVERYBODY KNOWS ABOUT YOU – YOUR FACE, AND YOUR FIRST NAME.” SHE SAID, “ASK ME TO COMMENT ON ANYTHING YOU DO.” I TYPED THAT TO ANINE, AND SHE SAID THAT’S WHAT SHE HAD IN MIND, TOO. I DON’T THINK THERE WAS ANY DOUBT IN ANYBODY’S MIND THAT IT WOULD BE PURPLE-–NOT NENSHI PURPLE—BELINDA WAS PURPLE BEFORE HE EVER WAS. I ASKED FRIENDS, AND TONYA PLONKA WAS SUGGESTED AS THE PHOTOGRAPHER, AND THEY SAID, “YOU HAVE TO BE BELINDA AT ‘THE GALT’, WITHOUT SAYING ‘THE GALT’.” WE DID THE PICTURES OUT WITH THE WHEELS [AT THE GALT MUSEUM], AND THE TRAIN BRIDGE IN THE BACKGROUND. I GOT MY HAIR DONE…THAT DAY, AND SENT IT OFF TO ANINE. THE DESIGN IS VERY MUCH ANINE’S. SHE HAD AN IMAGE IN HER HEAD, AND YOU HAVE TO HAVE A CELLPHONE NUMBER, AND YOUR E-MAIL ON. THEY DON’T HAVE TO BE THAT LARGE BUT, BY BYLAW, YOU HAVE TO HAVE THEM ON. THE REST IS DEPENDING ON WHAT YOU WANT. WHAT I LOVE ABOUT ANINE’S DESIGN IS [IT’S] EASY TO READ. THEY STOOD OUT AMONGST ALL THE OTHER SIGNS; THEY WERE A VERY DIFFERENT DESIGN THAN ALL [THE OTHERS]. I HAD 100 OF THESE MADE, AND 5 BIG SIGNS. BECAUSE OF THE FULL BLEED, MINE WERE MORE EXPENSIVE [ABOUT TWICE AS MUCH AS THE OTHER SIGNS], SO THEY ARE $10.00 A SIGN TO BUY. BASED ON THE BUDGET, WE ONLY GOT 100 OF THEM. WE HAD WAY LESS THAN OTHER PEOPLE BY NUMBER, BUT BECAUSE OF THE STAND-OUT I HAD PEOPLE TELLING ME THAT THEY THOUGHT WE HAD MORE THAN EVERYBODY ELSE. THE SIGN FOOLED YOU.” “IT TAKES A COMMUNITY TO RUN AN ELECTION. I COULD NEVER SAY ENOUGH ABOUT MY FAMILY AND FRIENDS IN THIS. I HAD THREE SIGN CREWS; TWO MORE WHO WANTED TO BE SIGN CREWS, BUT THEY ALL GOT THEM DONE SO FAST. PEOPLE SUBMITTED NAMES-–PEOPLE E-MAILED ME, AND GAVE ME ADDRESSES WHO WANTED THE SIGNS, AND THEN [THE SIGN CREWS] ALSO TOOK DIFFERENT PARTS. THEY JUST WENT OUT AND PUT THEM UP. THERE ARE LAWS ABOUT WHERE YOU CAN PUT THEM, AND THEN THEY ALL BABYSAT THEIR SIGNS. THEY WATCHED THEM THROUGHOUT, AND, UNKNOWN TO ME, EVEN MY MOTHER WAS DRIVING AROUND. IF A SIGN WAS DOWN, SHE’D CLEAN IT AND PUT IT BACK UP, BECAUSE SHE JUST COULDN’T STAND SEEING THEM [DOWN]. I KNEW FROM TALKING TO SHANNON PHILLIPS, AND A FEW OTHERS, THAT ‘SIGN MANAGEMENT’ IS MUCH BIGGER PART OF IT, AND I MUST ADMIT, EXCEPT FOR PICKING A FEW SIGNS UP AT THE END OF IT, I DID NOTHING WITH MY SIGNS, PERSONALLY. THE VOLUNTEERS DID IT ALL. THEY TOOK THAT TO HEART, AND THEY DID THE SIGN TEAMS.” “THE OTHER THING I HAPPENED TO LEARN FROM PEOPLE LIKE RYAN PARKER AND JEFF CARLSON IS GETTING PEOPLE WITH THE RIGHT ADDRESSES FOR YOUR BIG SIGNS. THEY HAVE THE ‘CORNERS’. I HAD SOME GOOD ONES-–I HAD ONE ON CROWSNEST TRAIL. THE MAYES GAVE ME ONE RIGHT AT 28TH AND CROWSNEST, AND I HAD ONE ON WHOOP-UP DRIVE, AND A FEW FRIENDS WHO OFFERED ONES UP. I HAVE LEARNED A LOT, IN THAT YOU REALLY HAVE TO MAKE FRIENDS WITH PEOPLE WITH THE BEST ‘CORNERS’. THEN SOME PEOPLE ARE LIKE, “ARE SIGNS EVEN WORTH IT? LIKE, ARE THEY ENVIRONMENTAL?” BUT, I WAS TOLD, YOU DO EVERY ONE OF THE THINGS. THE OTHER THING ABOUT SIGNS IS YOU USE THEM WHEN WE DID OUR WAVING CAMPAIGN. SO, MYSELF, I DID 9 HOURS OF WAVING, AND PEOPLE JOINED ME AT DIFFERENT ONES…EVERY DAY OF THE CAMPAIGN, JUST STANDING WITH A SIGN, SOMETIMES THE HUGE ONES, EIGHT OF US, SOMETIMES THE LITTLE ONES, AND WAVING FOR AN HOUR, AT DIFFERENT SPOTS AROUND TOWN. THE SIGNS WERE WONDERFUL FOR THAT, IN THAT, BEFORE THEY EVEN SAW US, THEY RECOGNIZED THE SIGN. I HAVE HAD SO MANY PEOPLE TALK ABOUT THE DESIGN OF THE SIGN, AND THAT’S ANINE. MY GIANT PURPLE FACE ALL OVER TOWN!” CROWSON ELABORATED ON HER DECISION TO RUN FOR CITY OF LETHBRIDGE COUNCIL IN 2017, NOTING, “I’VE BEEN THINKING ABOUT RUNNING FOR COUNCIL FOR THE LAST 2 YEARS. I NEED TO BE GOING TOWARDS SOMETHING, AS MUCH AS I’M LEAVING SOMETHING. I SAT AND TALKED WITH SEVERAL FRIENDS WELL OVER A YEAR AGO ABOUT, “DO YOU THINK I COULD DO IT? WHAT WOULD I HAVE TO DO?” I WENT…THROUGH CAMPAIGN STUFF…IT WAS A YEAR AND A HALF BEFORE, THAT I STARTED MAKING PLANS, THINKING, “HOW MUCH MONEY DO YOU NEED? WHAT DO YOU NEED TO DO?” MY ROAD TRIP LAST SEPTEMBER—WYOMING—PART OF THAT TRIP WAS PREPARING…IT WAS A LOT OF PLANNING IN ADVANCE. WHEN DO YOU START TELLING PEOPLE? HOW DO I START WINDING THINGS DOWN, WITHOUT INDICATING THAT I’M WINDING THINGS DOWN?” “TO ME, THE MAIN PURPOSE OF HISTORY IS A BETTER FUTURE. WE LOOK AT THE CONTEXT; WE LOOK AT THAT, SO WE CAN MAKE BETTER PLANS. AS I LOOK BACK, IT BECAME A NO-BRAINER. YOU CAN’T JUST SAY, “MAN, I WISH I HAD DONE THIS.” AT SOME POINT, YOU’VE GOT TO STEP UP AND GO, “THIS IS WHAT WE HAVE TO DO, AND I NEED BE AROUND THAT TABLE”. I’M ABSOLUTELY LOVING THE BIG DISCUSSION. LIKE ANY JOB, YOU CAN GET STUCK IN THE MINUTIA OF, “WHY ARE YOU SENDING ME AN E-MAIL ABOUT THIS?” THE HUGE DISCUSSIONS THAT WE CAN HAVE ABOUT, “ARE WE GOING TO DENSIFY, OR ARE WE GOING TO DO THIS?”…WHAT I ALSO LOVE IS, SOME OF THE CONVERSATIONS, I CAN GO BACK AND GET A 1910 NEWSPAPER, AND THEY ARE THE SAME THINGS. “HOW DO WE MAKE THIS BETTER? WHAT DO WE DO?” I’M ABSOLUTELY LOVING THE FACT THAT, AS ONE OF MY GRADE FIVE STUDENTS SAID, “NOW, YOU NO LONGER TELL HISTORY; YOU MAKE HISTORY.” IN SOME RESPECTS, THAT’S THE CHANGE, BUT IT’S ALL STILL PART OF IT. I HAD SOME WORRIES, BECAUSE I KNEW SOME PEOPLE I THOUGHT WERE GOING TO RUN, “I DON’T KNOW IF I COULD BEAT THOSE PEOPLE.” BUT, AT SOME POINT IN YOUR LIFE [YOU JUST SAY], “CRAP. I’M JUST GOING TO DO IT-–I’M JUST GOING TO THROW MY NAME IN.”” “[I WAS ELECTED] THE 16TH [FRIDAY]…MY LAST DAY AT WORK…[WAS] THE 20TH OF OCTOBER.” “IT WAS FUNNY, BECAUSE I COULD NOT MAKE ANY DECISIONS AFTER OCTOBER 16TH. I DID NOT KNOW WHICH WAY MY LIFE WOULD GO. TO BE HONEST THOUGH, “WOULD I HAVE COME BACK?” I PROBABLY WOULD NOT HAVE. I WAS SO PREPARED TO MOVE ON, IF I HADN’T GOTTEN ELECTED. I PROBABLY WOULD HAVE PUT MY RESIGNATION IN, ANYWAYS. I HAD A BACK-UP PLAN TO GETTING ON COUNCIL, BECAUSE WHAT I SAID I LOVED ABOUT COUNCIL IS I WANTED TO MOVE FORWARD. THIS IS WHAT I REALLY WANTED TO DO, BUT I ALSO REALIZED I REALLY WAS DONE HERE, AS WELL. IT WASN’T ABOUT QUITTING A JOB, ONLY. IT WAS ABOUT QUITTING A JOB, AND MOVING INTO SOMETHING ELSE. IF YOU’RE NOT SCARED A LITTLE BIT EVERY DAY, IT’S NOT FUN ANYMORE. I’M A SEAT-OF-THE-PANTS-–HAVE TO HAVE FUN—DOING THINGS [PERSON]. I WILL ALWAYS, SOMEHOW, BE TEACHING AND DOING STUFF WITH KIDS. THAT’S JUST PART OF WHO I AM, BUT I NEEDED TO HAVE OTHER THINGS JUST AS LARGE AS THAT IN MY LIFE.” “IT’S VERY WEIRD. I HAVE ALWAYS SEEN MYSELF AS A TEACHER, WORKING IN A MUSEUM. EVEN THOUGH I HAVE DONE HISTORIAN [WORK], I’M A TEACHER. TO GO INTO A POLITICAL WORLD IS QUITE A DIFFERENT THING, BUT SOMEBODY SAID TO ME THAT I’VE ACTUALLY SPENT 20 YEARS GETTING READY FOR IT. I’VE SAT ON A LOT OF COMMITTEES. I DID ALL THAT, AND ACTUALLY SOME OF THE GRADE FIVE KIDS WERE ASKING, “WE DIDN’T KNOW YOU WERE INTO POLITICS.” I SAID, “THAT WAS BECOMING A MUCH BIGGER PART OF MY LIFE THAT YOU GUYS DIDN’T SEE.” WHEN I LOOK BACK [I THINK], “OBVIOUSLY YOU WERE PLANNING FOR THAT, AND PREPPING FOR THAT.” “LEARNING [THIS PART OF MY LIFE] IS LIKE ANYTHING. ALWAYS DO YOUR HOMEWORK, AND BE PREPARED, AND THEN BE FLEXIBLE, BECAUSE IT’S NEVER GOING TO WORK OUT THE WAY YOU THINK, BUT THAT’S MY ENTIRE LIFE. IF I READ EVERYTHING IN ADVANCE, AND TRY TO BE AS MUCH OF AN EXPERT BEFORE I WALK INTO A ROOM, I’M HAPPY KNOWING THAT YOU ALSO CAN’T ALWAYS BE THE EXPERT. THAT’S THE THING WITH THE ELECTION AS WELL. THANK HEAVENS I HAD PEOPLE WHO KNEW A LOT MORE THAN I DID, ABOUT WHAT TO DO. THE OTHER THING THAT’S ‘TAKE AWAY’ IS PEOPLE WERE SO VERY GRACIOUS WITH THEIR TIME, AND THEIR EFFORT, AND THEIR ENERGY. IF YOU ASK FOR HELP, YOU’D BE AMAZED HOW MANY PEOPLE WILL DO IT, WHO WILL GIVE YOU AN HOUR, AN HOUR AND A HALF, AND SIT AND TALK TO YOU, AND SAY, “THIS IS WHAT I LEARNED. THIS IS WHAT I WOULD DO.” THOSE ARE THE PEOPLE I TRY TO EMULATE. TO PASS ALONG TO THE NEXT GENERATION, THE NEXT ONE, AND TO BE LIKE THAT BECAUSE I THINK PEOPLE THOUGHT WE WERE HILARIOUS. WE WERE THE FIRST ELECTION CAMPAIGN WHERE ALL THE CANDIDATES WHO WERE THERE GOT TOGETHER FOR A GROUP PHOTOGRAPH AT THE END. YOU CAN DEBATE IDEAS BUT STILL BE CIVIL. THE CAMPAIGN WAS FUN.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20170033001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20170033002
Acquisition Date
2017-11
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
WOMEN'S MARCH
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
FOAMCORE BOARD, MARKER
Catalogue Number
P20170015005
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
WOMEN'S MARCH
Date
2017
Materials
FOAMCORE BOARD, MARKER
No. Pieces
1
Height
76
Length
51
Width
0.5
Description
WHITE FOAM CORE BOARD SIGN, 51 CM X 76 CM. RED-COLOURED FEMALE GENDER SYMBOL WITH RED-COLOURED HAND GRASPING BLACK AND WHITE FEATHER, DONE IN MARKER. SMALL BEND ON TOP RIGHT CORNER, DAMAGE ON BOTTOM LEFT CORNER; JAGGEDLY CUT EDGES. “© API’SOOMAAHKA 2017” ON BOTTOM LEFT CORNER.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
POLITICS
History
THE WOMEN’S MARCH LETHBRIDGE FIRST OCCURRED ON JANUARY 17, 2017. ORIGINATING IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA FOLLOWING THE ELECTION OF PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP, THE WOMEN’S MARCH WAS AN INTERNATIONAL MOVEMENT OF PROTESTS AND GATHERINGS IN SUPPORT OF WOMEN’S RIGHTS, HUMAN RIGHTS, LGBTQ+ RIGHTS AND STANDING AGAINST INTOLERANCE AND DISCRIMINATION. THE 2017 WOMEN’S MARCH IN LETHBRIDGE SAW A GATHERING OF 500-600 PARTICIPANTS ALONG MAYOR MAGRATH DRIVE SOUTH NEAR THE CORNER OF NINTH AVENUE. LORI BRAVE ROCK AND WILLIAM SINGER WERE A PART OF THE WOMEN’S MARCH STANDING FOR WOMEN’S AND INDIGENOUS RIGHTS. ON MARCH 2, 2017, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED LORI BRAVE ROCK AND WILLIAM SINGER REGARDING THEIR DONATION AND PARTICIPATION IN THE LETHBRIDGE WOMEN’S MARCH. WHEN ASKED ABOUT THE DESIGN ON THE POSTER, BRAVE ROCK EXPLAINED, “THE HAND AND THE FEATHER WERE ACTUALLY A DESIGN THAT WE HAD BEEN UTILIZING FOR THE IDLE NO MORE MOVEMENT, FOR THE BLOOD TRIBE CHAPTER OF THE IDLE NO MORE MOVEMENT, SO FOR ALL OF OUR SIGNAGE, FOR ANYTHING THAT WE DID FOR THE IDLE NO MORE BLOOD TRIBE…THE ORIGINAL IDLE NO MORE IMAGE THAT HAD BEEN ADOPTED ACROSS CANADA HAD THE HAIDA ART…WE KIND OF WANTED SOMETHING THAT WAS A LITTLE BIT MORE ‘OURS’, AND REFLECTIVE OF US BEING A PLAINS TRIBE, AND THAT WAS THE DESIGN…WHEN WE WERE THINKING OF A POSTER TO BRING ALONG FOR THE DAY, I JUST THOUGHT THIS KIND OF ENCAPSULATED EVERYTHING THAT WE DID WITH IDLE NO MORE, AND JUST TIED IN WITH THE WOMEN’S SYMBOL. I’M NOT SURE WHAT YOU ACTUALLY CALL THAT SYMBOL, BUT, WITH THE WOMEN’S SYMBOL - PUTTING THE HAND AND FEATHER INSIDE OF THAT—AND JUST KIND OF TYING THOSE TWO THINGS TOGETHER FOR THIS. ONCE IT WAS DONE, WE DIDN’T EVEN NEED WORDS. IT REALLY KIND OF STRUCK PEOPLE THAT DAY. IT WAS SOMETHING THAT A LOT OF PEOPLE WERE STOPPING AND ASKING TO TAKE PICTURES OF IT. TO ME, WE COULDN’T FIGURE OUT ANY OTHER SIGN—IT WAS A LAST MINUTE THING. [WILLIAM] DID IT THE MORNING OF—AND IT REALLY KIND OF STRUCK A CHORD WITH PEOPLE…” “[THE HAIDA DESIGN] WAS MORE NATIONAL, AND I LOVE THE DESIGN AND EVERYTHING, BUT, WITH US BEING PLAINS…I DIDN’T REALLY FEEL THAT [THE NATIONAL DESIGN] REFLECTED OUR RESERVE, AND OUR INVOLVEMENT IN THE IDLE NO MORE MOVEMENT. WE JUST WANTED TO MAKE IT A LITTLE BIT MORE PERSONALIZED, AND IT WAS ACTUALLY ADOPTED BY THE PUBLIC SERVICE ALLIANCE OF CANADA FOR THE PRAIRIE REGION. THEY HAD ADOPTED THIS AS A BUTTON DESIGN, AND THEY HAD MADE A WHOLE BUNCH OF BUTTONS FOR EVERY PRAIRIE CHAPTER THAT THEY HAD…THAT DESIGN WAS ACTUALLY UTILIZED IN ALL OF THEIR PRAIRIE REGION OFFICES.” ON THE WOMEN’S MARCH, BRAVE ROCK ELABORATED, “FOR ME, AS A WOMAN, THERE IS NO OTHER PLACE I COULD THINK OF TO BE, ON THAT DAY THAT WAS MORE IMPORTANT. I WAS HAPPY TO SEE THAT THERE WERE OTHER FIRST NATIONS [PEOPLE] THERE…AS A FIRST NATIONS WOMAN, GROWING UP, MY MOTHER WAS IN A VERY ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP. MY GRANDFATHER WENT THROUGH RESIDENTIAL SCHOOL, AND HE WAS VERY ABUSIVE TO MY GRANDMOTHER, AND MY MOTHER, GROWING UP, SO IT WAS A CYCLE. THE OLDER I GOT, I LEARNED THAT ALL OF THIS IS A CYCLE…BEFORE I WAS WITH WILLIAM, I WAS IN AN ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP…LEARNING TO TRY TO BREAK THAT CYCLE…I THINK THAT’S WHY [WILLIAM AND I HAVE] BEEN TOGETHER AS LONG AS WE HAVE. WE’VE BEEN TOGETHER OVER 21 YEARS NOW, [AND IT’S] BECAUSE WE’RE LOOKING AT TRYING TO CHANGE THE NEGATIVITY THAT WE’VE GROWN UP IN. IT’S A WORK IN PROGRESS. IT’S ALWAYS GOING TO BE WORK TO DEAL WITH WHAT WE’VE GONE THROUGH.” “WHEN I WAS 19 YEARS OLD, MY BEST FRIEND WAS KILLED BY HER HUSBAND. HE SERVED APPROXIMATELY TWO YEARS IN JAIL BEFORE HE WAS FREED, AND HE IS FREE ON THE RESERVE, LIVING HIS LIFE, HAVING A FAMILY, ALL OF THAT, WHILE SHE’S BEEN DEAD AND GONE NOW OVER 20 YEARS…WITH THIS BEING THE WOMEN’S MARCH, FOR ME IT IS VERY PERSONAL. THESE ARE THE THINGS THAT DRIVE ME, BECAUSE [MY FRIEND IS] NOT HERE. SHE’S NOT HERE ANYMORE; MY UNCLE’S NOT HERE ANYMORE, AND FOR ALL OF THESE PEOPLE, I LOOK AT MY LIFE, AND I THINK IF I CAN DO SOMETHING TO HONOR THE LEGACY OF THEIR LIFE—THEM NOT BEING HERE ANYMORE, THESE ARE THE THINGS THAT REALLY DRIVE ME, ARE THE PEOPLE THAT ARE IN OUR COMMUNITY THAT ARE SUFFERING THE MOST.” “WITH LOSING [MY FRIEND] ANGIE WHEN I WAS 19, THE WHOLE THING WITH TRUMP THAT SPARKED THE WHOLE WOMEN’S MARCH, THE WOMEN’S MOVEMENT…WHEN I LOOK AT THINGS LIKE THIS, I THINK WOMEN HAVE HAD A LOT OF CHALLENGES THAT THEY HAVE FACED OVER THE YEARS, JUST TO GET TO BE ON THE SAME LEVEL [AS MEN]. WE WERE JUST LISTENING TO THE CBC AND THEY WERE SAYING CANADA GOT SUCH A POOR GRADE RECENTLY…BECAUSE THERE’S NOT ENOUGH WOMEN IN HIGH POSITIONS IN COMPANIES. THE WOMEN ARE STILL GETTING VERY MUCH UNDER-PAID THAN MEN, AND WHENEVER I LOOK AT THESE ISSUES, I THINK ‘YEAH—AND IF SHE IS INDIGENOUS, THAT MEANS [SHE’S PAID] EVEN LESS.’ IN ALL OF THESE INSTANCES, I THINK, IF SHE IS INDIGENOUS, I THINK SHE IS EVEN CONSIDERED LESS WORTH THAN SOMEONE WHO IS NON-INDIGENOUS. THE WHOLE MURDERED AND MISSING INDIGENOUS WOMEN ISSUE, AGAIN, HAVING BEEN TOUCHED PERSONALLY BY THAT—HAVING THAT FEAR OF LOSING ANYONE ELSE TO THAT—IT’S VERY MUCH ALIVE IN ME. BECAUSE I’VE ALREADY GONE THROUGH IT, I JUST CAN’T STAND TO SEE SOMEONE ELSE TO LOSE SOMEONE ELSE LIKE THIS…I THINK EVEN SHANNAN [LITTLE] HAD COME ACROSS AND SAID, ‘IT’S REALLY IMPORTANT…TO HAVE YOU GUYS THERE.’ AND I SAID, ‘FOR SURE. WE’RE ON BOARD. WE’RE THERE. WE CAN’T KNIT OR DO THOSE HATS, BUT FOR SURE, WE’RE THERE, WE’RE SUPPORTING YOU.’” “TO ME [WOMEN’S RIGHTS ARE] AN ISSUE. IT’S VERY, VERY PERSONAL TO ME…BY THE TIME I WAS A TEENAGER, MY UNCLE WAS GONE, MY GRANDPA WASN’T A PART OF MY LIFE, MY STEP-DAD WAS SO ABUSIVE, WE DIDN’T SPEND AS MUCH TIME WITH HIM…I FEEL LIKE I GREW UP OUT OF A FAMILY OF WOMEN, AND PEOPLE TELL ME ALL THE TIME, ‘YOU’RE SO STRONG.’ IF YOU KNEW MY GRANDMOTHER—TO HAVE GONE THROUGH WHAT SHE HAS GONE THROUGH, TO LOSE HER HOME, TO HAVE KEPT US ALL TOGETHER…TO WHERE SHE NOW HAS ANOTHER HOME HERE ON THE RESERVE, TO HAVE ACCOMPLISHED WHAT SHE HAS DONE. MY MOM…I LOOK AT HER SOMETIMES, AND, ‘YOU’RE THIS OLD, AND YOU ARE STILL IN THAT STRUGGLE, AND YOU’RE STILL TRYING. AND I’M TRYING TO HELP YOU.’ ALL OF US ARE TRYING TO DO WHAT WE CAN TO HELP HER, SO, TO ME, THERE’S STILL SO MANY ISSUES FOR WOMEN, AND TO BE INDIGENOUS IS JUST ANOTHER STRIKE AGAINST THEM. IT’S SO IMPORTANT, I THINK, FOR US TO SEE HOW IMPORTANT OUR WOMEN REALLY ARE TO US, AND WHAT THEY MEAN TO US. THEY ARE OUR FUTURE. THEY ARE THE ONES THAT ARE BRINGING OUR FUTURE TO US…I STILL FEEL STRONGLY ABOUT IT—I’M ON BOARD FOR ANY OTHER ACTIVITIES THEY HAVE PLANNED. I’M VERY MUCH ON BOARD FOR THEM—PROBABLY BOTH OF US, NOW THAT [WILLIAM] HAS A GRANDDAUGHTER. WE WANT TO SEE THINGS CHANGE. WE’RE NOT THE DECISION MAKERS, BUT, AT LEAST, IF WE ARE SOME KIND OF INFLUENCE, AT LEAST, IF WE’RE SOME KIND OF INSPIRATION TO ANYBODY, GOING FORWARD, THEN WE DID OUR JOB.” SINGER NOTED, “THE REASON BEING, IT IS PART OF OUR WORK, AND TO SUPPORT MY WIFE, AND EVERYONE THAT’S THERE. FOR MYSELF, AT LEAST ONE OF MY GOALS IS TO MAKE SURE EVERYONE IS SAFE, SO I’M THERE LOOKING AT IT, MAKING SURE NOTHING GOES WRONG, AND IF ANYTHING IS GOING TO HAPPEN, TO ACT. I ALWAYS RECRUIT OTHER MEN BEHIND THE SCENES TO BE SECURITY, SO I’M ALWAYS AT THE READY TO MAKE SURE EVERYBODY IS SAFE…IT’S IMPORTANT [TO BE AT THE MARCH]. WE WORK TOGETHER, AND IN THE BLACKFOOT WORLD, WE WORK TOGETHER AS WELL. COUNCIL HELPS THE WOMEN; WOMEN HELP THE MEN. ANYTIME THERE’S ANY TYPE OF CONFRONTATION, THE MEN ARE THERE TO TAKE CARE OF THE WOMEN AND CHILDREN, AND THE MEN, AS WARRIORS, THEIR MAIN JOB, FOR THEIR EXISTENCE, IS TO TAKE CARE OF THE LAND, AND THE PEOPLE. WELL, THAT’S THE WARRIOR, THAT’S THE ETHIC, SO I GO BY THAT. I WANT TO MAKE SURE NO ONE GETS HURT. THERE’S MYSELF, AND OTHERS ARE, AS WELL.” ON HER ACTIVISM WITHIN HER COMMUNITY, BRAVE ROCK RECALLED, “WE HAD FORMED COMMUNITIES IN UNITY…WITH OUR TRIBE BEING IN CLOSE PROXIMITY TO THE TOWNS OF CARDSTON…AND FORT MACLEOD, AND THEN LETHBRIDGE…WE WERE ALWAYS HAVING INCIDENCES OF RACISM. A GOOD EXAMPLE IS THE BIG FIRE THAT WE HAD, THAT STARTED ON THE RESERVE, AND IT CAME INTO THE LETHBRIDGE COUNTY, AND IT HAD CAUSED QUITE A BIT OF DAMAGE. THERE WAS A LOT OF BACKLASH AT COMMUNITY MEMBERS JUST FOR THAT. COMMUNITIES IN UNITY CAME ABOUT FROM AN ATTACK BY A TRIBAL MEMBER, ON A NON-NATIVE COMMUNITY MEMBER OF LETHBRIDGE. WHEN THIS ATTACK HAPPENED, RIGHT AWAY, AGAIN, THE BACKLASH STARTED WITH OUR COMMUNITY MEMBERS BEING TARGETED, AND WE SAW THIS AS AN OPPORTUNITY, TO BASICALLY TRY TO BRIDGE THE COMMUNITIES, AND FIND A WAY FOR COMMUNITY MEMBERS, FROM BOTH THE RESERVE, AND FROM LETHBRIDGE, TO WORK TOGETHER—TO TRY TO HAVE EVENTS THAT WERE INCLUSIVE, AND INVITING TO EVERYBODY, AND THAT’S WHERE THE COMMUNITIES IN UNITY IMAGE CAME ABOUT, AND, AGAIN, I THINK WE JUST DESIGNED THAT AT THE MEETING THAT WE HAD. WE HAD OUR ROUND DANCE EVENT, AND WE HAD DESIGNED THAT AT THE MOMENT THAT WE ALL HAD SAT TOGETHER, AND WE ALL CONTRIBUTED TO IT, AND PLANNED FOR THAT. SO WE ARE STILL DOING THINGS UNDER COMMUNITIES IN UNITY, AND THE IDLE NO MORE MOVEMENT, SO WHENEVER THERE IS AN ISSUE, WE ARE PRETTY MUCH INVOLVED WITH IT, BECAUSE ONE WAY OR ANOTHER, OUR TRIBAL MEMBERS ARE MOST LIKELY BEING AFFECTED BY THE ISSUE...” “THE THING THAT REALLY DRIVES US SOMETIMES IS THAT—THIS IS OUR LAND! THIS IS OUR HOME! IT HAS ALWAYS BEEN…WE ARE ONE OF THE TRIBES THAT WERE NEVER MOVED. WE WERE ONE OF THE TRIBES WHO HUNG ONTO OUR SUN DANCE, AND IT’S IN THAT SPIRIT THAT…WE NEED TO REMIND OUR PEOPLE WHO WE REALLY ARE, WHAT WE CAME FROM, AND THAT THE WAY THINGS ARE TODAY IS NOT THE WAY THAT IT’S SUPPOSED TO BE…WE HAVE THIS THING IN OUR CULTURE, OUR WAY OF LIFE, WHERE EVEN THE WHOLE SUN DANCE…IS TO HELP PEOPLE. OUR WHOLE CULTURE, WHEN WE PRAY, IT’S TO HELP PEOPLE. AND IN ALL OF THESE SITUATIONS, THAT’S WHAT BRINGS ME BACK TO IT…WHEN SOMEONE IS BEING RACIST…IT’S ALMOST THE SAME THING AS IN THE BIBLE. YOU TURN THE OTHER CHEEK. BUT FOR US, ALL WE CAN DO IS PRAY FOR THAT PERSON. AND PRAY THAT THEY WILL FIND THE KNOWLEDGE AND THEY WILL FIND A WAY TO COME TO THIS PLACE WHERE THEY ARE NOT IN THAT FRAME OF MIND ANYMORE. FOR US, I THINK THAT’S ANOTHER THING THAT WE REALLY TAKE TO HEART IS THAT OUR CULTURE HAS ALWAYS TAUGHT US TO HELP PEOPLE…WHAT I AM TRYING TO REMIND PEOPLE IS THAT IT’S NOT THAT WE WERE STUPID, OR WE DIDN’T UNDERSTAND…OUR WHOLE CULTURE IS BASED ON THE FACT THAT WE ARE HERE TO HELP PEOPLE…I COULD FOCUS ON ALL OF THE NEGATIVITY, AND I SEE WHAT THAT DOES TO PEOPLE, AND I SEE HOW HARD IT IS…WE HAVE OUR MOMENTS WHEN THINGS ARE VERY DARK, BUT WHEN WE LOOK AT THIS KIND OF WORK, WE FOCUS MORE ON WHAT HAS TO BE DONE, AND WHAT COULD BE DONE, AS OPPOSED TO WHAT’S NOT HAPPENING.” “RIGHT NOW, THE WHOLE THING WITH CARDSTON, I JUST HAD A DISCUSSION WITH ONE OF THE LADIES THAT WAS SUPPORTING OUR ACTIONS, AND SHE WAS SAYING, ‘WELL, WHAT’S GOING TO HAPPEN NOW?’ AND, I TOLD HER, ‘WELL, AT THIS POINT, THE REASON WHY WE WERE DOING WHAT WE WERE DOING WAS BECAUSE NOBODY WAS DOING ANYTHING ABOUT IT,’ AND I’VE BEEN INVOLVED WITH THE ISSUE OF RACISM FOR SUCH A LONG TIME NOW…I WANTED TO GET IT OUT THERE. I WANTED PEOPLE TO START TALKING ABOUT IT…EVERY TIME THESE THINGS HAPPEN, WE PUT OUT A MESSAGE, BUT IF WE’RE NOT ACTUALLY SHOWING THAT WE CAN COME TOGETHER AS A COMMUNITY, I DON’T THINK THE MESSAGE IS REALLY GETTING OUT THERE…MY HOPE IS THAT THINGS GROW FROM THIS…WHEN [IDLE NO MORE] CAME ABOUT, WE LOOKED AT HOW WE COULD LEARN WAYS THAT WE COULD TAKE ACTION…A LOT OF THE NEGATIVITY AND THE BAD THINGS THAT HAPPEN, WE ACKNOWLEDGE IT, AND WE KNOW IT’S GOING TO HAPPEN AGAIN. WE KNOW THERE WILL BE MORE INCIDENCES, BUT I LOOK AT EVERYTHING NOW AS AN OPPORTUNITY, TO LEARN FROM THEM…THAT’S WHY WE’VE BEEN SO ACTIVE, BECAUSE WE KNOW WE ARE PROBABLY THE ONLY TWO THAT ARE REALLY WILLING TO JUST GET UP AND ACT ON THESE THINGS, AND AGAIN, WE THINK ABOUT THE FUTURE GENERATIONS…WE WANT TO SEE THINGS CHANGE. WE DON’T WANT TO SEE WHAT WE WENT THROUGH TO BE REPEATED. WE WANT TO LEARN FROM WHAT WE HAVE EXPERIENCED, AND GO FORWARD IN A POSITIVE WAY, AND REALLY THIS KIND OF WORK IS THE ONLY THING THAT WE SEE RIGHT NOW TO BE ABLE TO DO THAT IN A POSITIVE MANNER.” “[WILLIAM AND I] WERE BOTH IN RESIDENTIAL SCHOOL. I WAS IN THE LATER YEARS, WHERE OUR TRIBE HAD BEEN RUNNING THEM, BUT WHEN HE WAS THERE—MY MOM WAS THERE—THEY WERE STILL UNDER THE NUNS, AND THE PRIESTS…WE BOTH KNOW WHAT THE EFFECT [IS]…THE EFFECT THAT IT’S STILL HAVING ON OUR FAMILY TODAY. WE ALSO COME FROM VERY POOR BACKGROUNDS. WE DON’T COME FROM MONEY. WE DON’T COME FROM FAMILIES THAT HAD PROMINENCE…WE GREW UP IN THE MOSES LAKE COMMUNITY WHICH HAS A LOT OF SOCIAL ISSUES. WE KNOW PERSONALLY WHAT IT IS LIKE TO HAVE THE OVER-CROWDING—THE LACK OF WATER…THROUGHOUT OUR LIVES, THOUGH, EDUCATION WAS VERY IMPORTANT. I DID EVERYTHING…I DIDN’T GRADUATE HERE IN CANADA—I ACTUALLY ENDED UP GOING TO A JOB CORPS CENTER IN THE UNITED STATES. WHEN I WENT THERE, I THINK THE RACISM WAS SO BAD IN CARDSTON, I TRULY BELIEVED THAT I WAS INCAPABLE OF LEARNING. I TRULY BELIEVED THAT I WAS STUPID—THAT I WOULD NEVER LEARN MATH…BUT WHEN I WENT TO THIS JOB CORPS—IT WAS AN ALL-NATIVE JOB CORPS…ALL OF THE STUDENTS THERE WOULD COME FROM ALL OF THE STATES IN THE U.S. ALL OF THESE TRIBES, AND THEY WENT TO THIS ONE JOB CORE CENTER OUTSIDE OF RONAN, MONTANA. IT WAS CALLED KICKING HORSE JOB CORPS CENTER…IT WAS ON THE FLATHEAD RESERVATION, SO THEIR KEY GOAL WAS THAT THEY WANTED THE MAJORITY OF PEOPLE WORKING THERE TO BE FROM THAT TRIBE. WE HAD PEOPLE THAT WERE NATIVES THAT WERE TEACHING US ALL OF THE COURSES…I EXCELLED WHEN I GOT THERE…SO ONCE I LEFT THAT PLACE, I CAME TO THE REALIZATION THAT I WASN’T STUPID, THAT I COULD DO SOMETHING WITH MY LIFE, THAT I WASN’T GOING TO BE STUCK IN THIS RUT…I THINK WE LOOK NOW AT THE STATE OF THINGS, AND WE ARE LIKE—THIS IS THE TIME THAT THINGS NEED TO START CHANGING. WE SEE THAT A LOT OF THESE ISSUES AND HOW THEY’VE HURT [OUR COMMUNITIES]…[WE SEE] THE PEOPLE THAT ARE SUFFERING THE MOST IN OUR COMMUNITY—THAT, SO EASILY COULD HAVE BEEN US…A LOT OF MY RELATIVES I EVEN FEEL FOR, BECAUSE I WAS ABLE TO ESCAPE THAT LIFE, WHEN WE WERE KIDS, AND WHAT WE WERE GOING THROUGH, AND I KNOW THAT NOT EVEN SOME OF MY RELATIVES HAVE ESCAPED THAT, SO FOR US, A LOT OF THESE ISSUES ARE VERY, VERY PERSONAL.” “WE ARE ABLE TO USE OUR TALENTS, AND I KNOW THAT NOT EVERYBODY IS GIFTED WITH SUCH TALENTS. WE ARE BOTH ARTISTS, AND I HAVE ALWAYS LOOKED AT IT AS A BLESSING. MY MOM HAS ALWAYS BEEN AN ARTIST, EVEN THOUGH SHE’S STRUGGLED A LOT IN HER LIFE, AND SHE’S STILL STRUGGLING…I THINK IT’S EASY FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE TO DRIVE BY THE RESERVE AND NOT UNDERSTAND WHAT’S REALLY HAPPENING THERE, BUT WE LIVE THERE…WE EVEN HAD A DISCUSSION WITH A GUY WHO JUST COULDN’T BELIEVE WHY WE WOULD EVER WANT TO MOVE BACK TO THE RESERVE, BUT THE WAY I SEE IT IS THAT, FOR THOSE OF US WHO HAVE AN EDUCATION, WE ARE LOSING OUR MOST IMPORTANT RESOURCE, WHICH IS OUR PEOPLE IF WE ARE EDUCATING THEM—SENDING THEM OFF THE RESERVE TO GET EDUCATED, BUT THEN WE ALSO HAVE TO SEND THEM OFF THE RESERVE TO FIND EMPLOYMENT. IF WE CAN’T BE BRINGING THOSE PEOPLE BACK, WE ARE NOT GOING TO BE CHANGING OUR SITUATION AT ALL, AND THIS IS ONE OF THE REASONS WHY WE WANTED TO MOVE BACK HOME, AND TRY TO MAKE THESE CHANGES. OUR BIGGEST THING IS EDUCATION AND AWARENESS—NO MATTER WHAT IT IS THAT WE ARE TRYING TO DO, AND WHY WE ARE REALLY OUT THERE IS, BECAUSE, IF PEOPLE ARE TALKING ABOUT THIS, THEN WE HAVE ACCOMPLISHED OUR GOAL. BUT, GOING BACK TO WHAT DRIVES US, IT IS REALLY…OUR PEOPLE; IT IS THE PEOPLE THAT ARE HERE, AND THE PEOPLE THAT WE HAVE ALREADY LOST, THAT REALLY KEEPS US GOING, AND THAT REALLY DO DRIVE US.” “I BELIEVE [ALLIES ARE PART OF THE SUCCESS]. BEING ABLE TO HAVE THAT IMAGE OF US, NOT ONLY ATTENDING THESE EVENTS TOGETHER, BUT PLANNING THEM TOGETHER, WORKING TOGETHER ON THAT SAME GOAL, WE’VE JUST BECOME FRIENDS WITH SHANNAN [LITTLE], AND HER HUSBAND, DAVE, OVER THE YEARS…FOR US, HAVING THOSE ALLIES, IT REALLY…I FEEL THAT IT GIVES US THIS BOOST [TOO]…THESE GUYS REALLY SUPPORT ALL OF OUR ACTIONS. WE VOLUNTEER, AND I THINK THE BEST PRICE THAT WE GET PAID IS THAT PEOPLE SHOW UP, AND THEY SUPPORT US, AND SHANNAN HAS BEEN A GREAT SOURCE OF SUPPORT…WE ARE ALSO INVOLVED IN ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES. I THINK THAT’S WHERE I—EVEN AS A TEENAGER—WAS ALWAYS INVOLVED IN THAT AND COMPELLED BY WHAT WAS HAPPENING ENVIRONMENTALLY, JUST BY SEEING WHAT WAS HAPPENING ON THE RESERVE. WHEN I GREW UP WE HAD A LAKE, DOWN IN THE COULEE. WE DID ALL OUR FISHING/SWIMMING/BOATING/ EVERYTHING THERE, AND THAT WATER ISN’T EVEN THERE ANYMORE. I’M TELLING MY MOM, I’M REALLY TRYING TO PREPARE MYSELF FOR THE DAY WHEN I’M NOT GOING TO SEE ANY WATER COMING THROUGH THIS PLACE ANYMORE, AND IT’S GOING TO BE REALLY HARD, BUT I’M TRYING TO PREPARE MYSELF FOR THAT, SO WE HAVE OTHER ALLIES ON THAT FRONT. NOW WE’RE SEEING OUR ALLIES COMING FROM DIFFERENT AREAS, WHENEVER WE COME TO THESE ISSUES, AND TO ME IT’S, EVEN THOUGH WE HAVEN’T KNOWN THEM FOR VERY LONG, I JUST FEEL AT HOME WHEN I’M AROUND THEM, BECAUSE TO KNOW THAT THEY CARE AS MUCH AS WE DO ABOUT THESE THINGS REALLY, REALLY INSPIRES US. I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT AN EVENT, SHANNAN OR SOMEBODY WILL BE THERE, AND I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IS SOMEBODY GOING TO SHOW UP, OR IS ANYBODY GOING TO SHOW UP. THAT’S HOW THEY HAVE BEEN SUPPORTING US OVER THIS TIME…WE HAVE OUR ALLIES, BUT WE ALSO HAVE OUR OTHER COMMUNITY MEMBERS. I UNDERSTAND WE HAVE A LOT OF SUPPORTERS FROM THE TRIBE, WHO COME UP TO US, AND THEY TALK TO US AND SAY, ‘GEEZ, IF I WASN’T DEALING WITH THIS, I WOULD HAVE BEEN THERE.’...A LOT OF TIMES I TELL PEOPLE ‘I KNOW.’” “I THINK WE HAVE BEEN AFFECTED BY LITERALLY EVERY ISSUE THAT FACES INDIGENOUS PEOPLE…ONE YEAR, I LOST 4 PEOPLE THAT HAD COMMITTED SUICIDE, AND I KNEW ALL OF THEM. TWO OF THEM WERE [WILLIAM’S] FIRST [COUSINS], MY SECOND COUSIN, WITHIN MONTHS OF EACH OTHER. AND, MY FRIEND, ANOTHER FOUR MONTHS AFTER THAT. THEN, ANOTHER FRIEND, ANOTHER FOUR MONTHS AFTER THAT. IN ONE YEAR, I HAD LOST FOUR PEOPLE TO SUICIDE, SO I TELL PEOPLE, THE REASON WHY WE’RE OUT HERE DOING THIS…IT’S BECAUSE WE KNOW OUR PEOPLE ARE SO BUSY…OUR PEOPLE HAVE TO WORK SO MUCH HARDER JUST TO MAKE ENDS MEET—JUST TO GET TO [THEIR] GOALS…I UNDERSTAND THAT, IF WE CAN BE HERE…BUT WE KNOW YOU’RE SUPPORTING US—IF YOU EVEN WANT TO HELP US OUT WITH A DONATION—THESE ARE THE KIND OF THINGS THAT JUST KEEP US GOING. TO HAVE OUR ALLIES, IT REALLY, REALLY HELPS. IT REALLY GIVES US THAT BOOST.” “IT WAS SURPRISING TO ME THAT WE WERE ACTUALLY GETTING CARDSTON COMMUNITY MEMBERS [AT THE PROTESTS], BECAUSE IT WAS OPEN TO EVERYBODY, BUT I WAS REALLY SURPRISED THEY ACTUALLY SHOWED UP…THE MAYOR CAME TO BOTH OF THE EVENTS, SO I WAS REALLY SURPRISED…THERE ARE GOING TO BE SOME VERY OPEN-MINDED PEOPLE [IN LETHBRIDGE], BUT CARDSTON, IT WAS REALLY SURPRISING. IT’S BEEN A PLEASANT SURPRISE, IN THE END, THAT WE’VE HAD SOME POSITIVE REACTION COME OUT OF THAT TOWN. SOMETIMES PEOPLE ASK ME ‘HOW DID IT GO?’ LIKE I SAID, IT WAS A SUCCESS IF ONE PERSON SHOWED UP. I’M JUST BLOWN AWAY IF MORE THAN FIVE PEOPLE SHOW UP.” SINGER SHARED, “FOR ME, [MY ACTIVISM] STARTED EARLY. I WAS A PART OF AN EXPERIMENT WHERE THEY HAD RESERVE CHILDREN THAT WERE LIVING IN RESIDENTIAL SCHOOLS, OR GO TO SCHOOL ON THE RESERVE. THEY WERE FORCED TO GO TO AN OFF-RESERVE SCHOOL. I WAS PART OF THAT GROUP, SO I STARTED OUT AT ST. PAUL’S RESIDENTIAL SCHOOL, AND THEN I WAS MOVED TO CARDSTON ELEMENTARY…FROM GRADE TWO ON, UNTIL I WENT INTO GRADE SEVEN IN CARDSTON, LIFE WAS PRETTY TOUGH, BECAUSE THAT WAS THE FIRST TIME A LOT OF US SEE NON-NATIVE KIDS…THEY CALLED US ALL KINDS OF NAMES—THAT STARTED FROM GRADE TWO ‘TIL GRADE SEVEN—AND THE THING THAT REALLY USED TO BOTHER ME A LOT WAS THAT THE TEACHERS WOULD SEE THAT AND THEY WOULDN’T DO ANYTHING TO THE NON-NATIVE KIDS, BUT YOU WOULD GET PUNISHED ANYWAY, EVEN THOUGH YOU DID NOTHING. IN GRADE SEVEN, I THOUGHT IT WOULD BE DIFFERENT, BEING IN A HIGH SCHOOL, BUT IT WASN’T. THIS TIME IT WASN’T STUDENTS. THIS TIME AROUND, IT WAS TEACHERS. I WAS SYSTEMATICALLY PICKED ON BY TWO TEACHERS IN CARDSTON, AND THAT’S WHEN I DECIDED ‘I’M TIRED OF THIS. TIRED OF GOING TO SCHOOL. LOOK WHAT IT’S DOING TO MYSELF. I CAN’T BE AROUND THESE PEOPLE.’ IT STARTED MAKING ME MORE NOT WANTING TO BE A PART OF THIS WORLD…I WAS SENT TO ST. MARY’S RESIDENTIAL SCHOOL. I FINISHED MY GRADE SEVEN THERE. I WENT BACK TO CARDSTON TO GIVE IT A CHANCE, AND IT WAS STILL THE SAME. SO, I STUCK IT OUT A YEAR, AND GRADE NINE, I WENT BACK AND I GRADUATED. FROM GRADE NINE, WHEN I WAS OUT AT ST. MARY’S, UNTIL I GRADUATED, I FELT A LOT BETTER BEING AROUND MY OWN PEOPLE…IT OPENED UP A LOT MORE AREAS WHERE—THINGS THAT I NEED TO KNOW—THE REQUIRED KNOWLEDGE—WAS THERE. IT WASN’T [THERE] IN CARDSTON.” “[THE SCHOOLS] DIDN’T TEACH YOU ABOUT ANYTHING. IF YOU WANTED TO KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT YOUR HISTORY, YOU’D HAVE TO TELL YOUR GRANDMOTHER OR GRANDFATHER…AT ST. MARY’S ON THE RESERVE, IT WAS ALL BLOODS THERE. I GOT ALONG WITH THEM, AND THAT’S WHEN I STARTED REALIZING, AT THAT TIME, HOW DIFFERENT THINGS ARE, AND HOW THINGS HAVEN’T REALLY CHANGED, FROM THE TIME THAT WE MADE OUR WAY INTO THIS NEW WAY OF LIFE. SO FROM THERE, I DECIDED TO START [TRYING] TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT—TRY TO GET OTHERS INVOLVED. IT WAS AROUND THAT TIME I MET [LORI’S] GRANDFATHER. HE STARTED TALKING ABOUT THE AMERICAN INDIAN MOVEMENT, AND I STARTED ASKING HIM, ‘WELL, WHAT’S IT ABOUT?’…ANOTHER GUY, TOO, HE WAS ALL ABOUT THE AMERICAN INDIAN MOVEMENT. HE HAD AN OVER-ALL JACKET, HE HAD PATCHES, HE WAS JUST ‘EVERYTHING’. SO, I ASKED HIM, AND HE TOLD ME THE EXACT SAME THING. A LOT OF PEOPLE WOULD REALLY MAKE FUN OF HIM, SO, FOR ME, I DECIDED THAT THAT’S WHAT I WANTED TO DO, SO EVENTUALLY I ENDED UP HAVING TO BE A PART OF A GROUP ON THE RESERVE, CALLED THE KAINAI YOUTH SOCIETY. THEY WERE THE ONES THAT PUT UP THE MAJOR BLOCKADES IN THE ‘80S…I STARTED DOING THAT [ACTIVISM] WORK, AND I KNEW THAT THAT WASN’T JUST THE ONLY ISSUE THERE. THERE WAS A LOT MORE THAN LAND CLAIMS. THERE WAS THE RACISM ISSUE, THAT SORT OF WENT HAND-IN-HAND…FOR MYSELF, I’M IN THIS 100%. EVEN IF THERE’S A SMALL CROWD, STILL THOSE PEOPLE SHOWED UP—THEY MADE THAT EFFORT. LIKE I ALWAYS TELL LORI, IT’S ALWAYS US TWO, IT’S STRANGE…BUT SOMEONE’S GOT TO DO IT. I’VE SPOKE TO ONE OF THE OLDER FELLOWS THAT USED TO DO THIS TYPE OF WORK, LAST WEEK, AND WE’RE JUST CARRYING ON THE WORK THAT HE DID, SO, IT’S IMPORTANT TO STAND UP, TO QUESTION, AND JUST TO KNOW WHAT’S GOING ON, KNOW WHAT IN YOUR WORLD IS GOING ON. THAT’S WHY WE REALLY DO EVERY EFFORT TO EDUCATE NATIVE AND NON-NATIVE PEOPLE. FOR OURSELVES, THAT’S WHAT IT IS—IT’S EDUCATION. WE’VE GOT TO THE POINT WHERE WE HAVE A PACKAGE THAT WE GIVE OUT…IT’S ALL ABOUT EDUCATING PEOPLE ABOUT BLACKFOOT HISTORY, BECAUSE THE INFORMATION THAT IS OUT THERE IS NOT ACCURATE, AND A LOT OF TIMES IT’S NOT FROM A BLOOD TRIBE MEMBER…[EDUCATION IS] THE BIGGEST PART OF IT. IT SORT OF CONTAINS INFORMATION, SOME ARTICLES THAT WE HAND OUT AT OUR INFORMATION TABLES—GIVES PEOPLE SOME UNDERSTANDING OF THE ISSUES THAT WE BOTH FACE.” “MOSES LAKE IS JUST BORDERING ON THE TOWN OF CARDSTON, ON THE NORTH. WE ACTUALLY HAVE A LAND CLAIM FOR THAT PORTION OF LAND THAT THEY’RE ON, BECAUSE, I GUESS, AT ONE POINT, WE HAD TAKEN PITY ON THEM, AND ALLOWED THEM TO STAY THERE, MADE AN AGREEMENT, AND THEY JUST NEVER LEFT…A LOT OF THESE ISSUES ARISE AND [IS] ESPECIALLY ONE OF THE REASONS WE WERE SO COMPELLED TO DO THE COMMUNITIES IN UNITY IS THAT I DID NOT WANT TO SEE OUR TRIBAL MEMBERS GETTING HURT. IN THE TOWN OF CARDSTON WE HAD A RALLY THERE, EVEN BEFORE THE IDLE NO MORE MOVEMENT BEGAN. I THINK THAT WAS 2011, AND, AT THAT TIME, IT WAS BECAUSE ONE OF OUR TRIBAL MEMBERS WAS WALKING ON THE ROAD THERE, HAD GOT BUMPED AND KILLED. THE DRIVER JUST DROVE ON, WENT ON WITH THE REST OF HIS NIGHT. HE SAID THAT HE THOUGHT HE HIT A DOG. AND THERE WAS A THREE YEAR-OLD THAT WAS KILLED, AGAIN, IN THE MOSES LAKE COMMUNITY…AGAIN, THE [DRIVER] SAID SHE THOUGHT SHE HIT A DOG. THERE WAS ANOTHER GIRL THAT WAS STRUCK ON A CROSS-WALK, AND THE SAME GUY THAT HIT HER WAS THE GUY THAT BUMPED AND KILLED [THE FIRST MEMBER], AND, IN ALL OF THESE SITUATIONS, THE RACISM IN CARDSTON IS COSTING PEOPLE THEIR LIVES. WE SEE THINGS THAT HAPPEN HERE IN LETHBRIDGE, AND WE KNOW THAT THERE ARE SITUATIONS WHERE THINGS LIKE THIS HAVE HAPPENED, WHERE WE HAVE BEEN SUSPICIOUS, AS COMMUNITY MEMBERS, ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED TO THIS PERSON. WE JUST TRY TO, AT LEAST, HAVE SOME KIND OF OUTLET, BECAUSE, IF WE DON’T DO SOMETHING POSITIVE…THESE THINGS WILL JUST STAY OUT THERE. RECENTLY, WE DID THE WHOLE ISSUE WITH THE CARRIAGE HOUSE THEATER IN CARDSTON DOING THE WHOLE PETER PAN PRODUCTION. A LOT OF PEOPLE WERE SAYING, ‘THIS IS…JUST A PLAY’…I DIDN’T EVEN SEE THE THING, BUT I JUST THOUGHT, THIS IS THE ONE TIME WHERE WE CAN ACTUALLY SAY ‘THIS IS BLATANT RACISM.’ ALL THESE OTHER INSTANCES, WE CAN SAY THAT THIS WAS A FACTOR IN WHATEVER HAPPENED, BUT THERE WAS NO ACTUAL WAY TO PROVE IT, WHERE THIS ACTUALLY HAPPENED…THIS IS SHOWING HOW BLATANT THE RACISM IS, THAT WE ARE DEALING WITH, AND IF WE DON’T CALL THEM ON IT, IT’S NOT GOING TO STOP; IT’S NOT GOING TO END.” “SPEAKING WITH OUR ALLIES, THE WORK THAT WE STARTED, FROM 2012…WHEN THE IDLE NO MORE MOVEMENT STARTED, THINGS PICKED UP REALLY QUICK, AND IT WASN’T TOO LONG, WE GOT TO KNOW SHANNAN [LITTLE], AND FROM SHANNAN STARTED GIVING US INFORMATION FOR OTHER AVENUES [WE SHOULD EXPLORE]—WE GO INTO A BUDGET MEETING WITH THE LATE JIM HILLIER…LORI’S A BOARD MEMBER WITH THE OLDMAN WATERSHED COUNCIL. I’M A MEMBER—A VOLUNTEER WITH THEM—AND, WITH THE WORK THAT WE’VE DONE, I’D SAY THE KAINAI ECOSYSTEM PROTECTION AGENCY CAME OUT OF THAT, BECAUSE WE’VE BEEN PRESSING A LOT OF ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES ON THE RESERVE. THIS GROUP HAS FORMED—WE’RE A PART OF THAT GROUP. NOW OLDMAN WATERSHED COUNCIL WANTED TO DO A DOCUMENTARY ABOUT OUR WATER…THE HEADWATERS. WE BROUGHT THEM ONTO THE RESERVE, AND THAT REALLY CHANGED EVERYTHING ABOUT WHAT THEY PERCEIVED, OF WHAT OUR RESERVE IS. FROM THAT, A FILM WAS MADE. FROM THAT DAY, OUR TRIBAL MEMBERS ARE DOING A SOUND TRACK, SO, FROM THE WORK THAT WE HAVE DONE, YOU SEE A LOT OF OTHER PEOPLE GETTING INVOLVED IN WHATEVER WAY. IT’S OUR TRIBAL MEMBERS THAT ARE INVOLVED WITH THE WATERSHED COUNCIL NOW. THAT MAKES ME FEEL GOOD, BECAUSE EVEN THOUGH IT DOESN’T SEEM LIKE YOU’VE DONE A LOT, WHEN YOU LOOK AROUND OUTSIDE, ALL THESE DIFFERENT AVENUES WHERE WE’VE CREATED SOMETHING, AND THAT’S THE THING THAT WE’RE PROUD OF—THAT THAT HAPPENED, AND WE’D LIKE TO KEEP DOING THAT, BECAUSE THE ISSUES THAT WE DEAL WITH ARE EVERYTHING—ENVIRONMENT, LANGUAGE. GOING BACK TO THE MURDERED AND MISSING INDIGENOUS WOMEN, MY FATHER WAS MURDERED. EVEN THEN, A LOT OF MEN WERE MURDERED, AND NOTHING WAS DONE ABOUT IT…I THINK ABOUT MY DAD—I THINK ABOUT MY UNCLES—MY RELATIVES THAT WERE MURDERED. NOTHING WAS DONE. THAT’S WHY I’M THERE, TOO…WE’VE CREATED SOME IN-ROADS. I KNOW THE TOUGHEST ONE IS WITH RACISM—AND IT’S WITH CARDSTON, THE TOUGHEST PLACE TO DEAL WITH, SO, IT’S A START NOW, SO, HOPEFULLY SOMEONE ELSE CAN TAKE IT ON.” BRAVE ROCK NOTED, “YOU CAN ALWAYS HAVE HOPE, AND THAT’S WHY EDUCATION AND AWARENESS IS SO KEY, BECAUSE IF YOU DON’T BRING THESE THINGS TO THE FOREFRONT, TO HAVE PEOPLE TO OPEN THAT DISCUSSION, HOW CAN CHANGE EVER HAPPEN? I DON’T THINK [SOME ISSUES LIKE RACISM ARE] EVER GOING TO BE GONE IN OUR LIFETIME, OR EVEN IN OUR KID’S LIFETIMES—BUT, AGAIN, YOU CAN SIT AND WALLOW IN THE NEGATIVITY OF THE WHOLE THING, OR YOU CAN GET UP AND DO SOMETHING THAT MAY POSSIBLY INSPIRE SOMEBODY…I LIKED ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WHEN IDLE NO MORE MOVEMENT CAME OUT, THERE WERE ALL THESE MEETINGS…IT WAS SAYING THAT A TRUE LEADER DOES NOT CREATE FOLLOWERS. A TRUE LEADER CREATES OTHER LEADERS…I MAY NOT HAVE HOPE THAT WE’RE EVER GOING TO ACHIEVE/GET RID OF SOME OF THE ISSUES THAT WE’RE DEALING WITH, BECAUSE THEY ARE SO HUGE, AND SO ALL-ENCOMPASSING…I WOULD FEEL VINDICATED IN ALL THE THINGS WE DID, IF WE INSPIRED SOMEBODY ELSE TO TAKE THE LEAD ON ANY OF THESE ISSUES.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND PHOTOS FROM THE PROTESTS, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20170015001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20170015005
Acquisition Date
2017-04
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOL, DYE
Catalogue Number
P20160003006
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date
1929
Materials
WOOL, DYE
No. Pieces
1
Length
182.5
Width
117.5
Description
HAND-WOVEN RUG MADE FROM HAND-DYED, HANDSPUN WOOL. THERE IS A 3-4 CM WIDE BLACK BORDER AROUND ALL LENGTHS OF THE RUG, WITH FRINGE ON THE SHORT ENDS. INSIDE THE BLACK BORDER IS A SINGLE WOVEN BORDER OF LIGHT BLUE WOOL. INSIDE OF THIS BORDER IS A PATTERN SET ON A DARK BURGUNDY-COLOURED BACKGROUND. THERE IS A BLUE FLOWER IN THE CENTER OF THE RUG. ON ONE END THE DATE “1924” IS WOVEN IN RAW-COLOURED WOOL. THE “9” HAS BEEN WOVEN UPSIDE DOWN. ON THE OPPOSITE END OF THE RUG, THE INITIALS “ ” FOR THE NAME LISAVETA PETROVNA WISHLOW, ARE WOVEN IN LIGHT BLUE. THERE ARE 20 HARPS COLOURED EITHER BLUE, ORANGE, PINK, OR YELLOW AROUND ALL LENGTHS OF THE RUG. UNDER THE HARPS IS A GREEN VINE PATTERN AND A RED DECORATIVE BORDER. THE DESIGN ELEMENTS ARE LAID OUT SYMMETRICALLY OVER THE RUG AND CONSIST OF FLOWERS, DUCKS, AND BUTTERFLIES. VERY GOOD TO EXCELLENT CONDITION. SLIGHT WEAR TO THE WOOL FROM USE.
Subjects
FLOOR COVERING
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. THIS RUG WAS HAND-WOVEN BY ELIZABETH KONKIN IN 1924. THE RUG WAS USED AS A WALL COVER IN THE WINTER AND ACTED AS AN INSULATOR. LATER IT WAS USED ON THE FLOOR AT CHRISTMASTIME. IT WAS INHERITED BY MORRIS PRIOR TO THE PASSING OF HER MOTHER: “I CAME INTO POSSESSION [OF IT] FROM MY MOTHER. SHE DIED IN 2003 AND I GOT THE RUG SLIGHTLY BEFORE THEN AND YES THAT WOULD BE ABOUT THE TIME… I HAVE NO OTHER SIBLINGS AND SO OBVIOUSLY EVERYTHING SHE MADE WOULD GO TO ME. MY SON SAID HE WOULD LIKE TO HAVE THE RUG, BUT CHANGED HIS MIND. HIS WIFE WAS NOT KEEN ON HAVING IT, SO I HAD TO DO SOMETHING WITH IT. TO ME IT IS A VERY BEAUTIFUL RUG AND I WANTED IT SOME PLACE WHERE IT WON’T GET TRASHED BY DOGS OR ANIMALS.” AFTER ACQUIRING THE RUG, MORRIS PLACED IT ON THE FLOOR OF HER HOME IN LETHBRIDGE: “THE LINO [ON THE FLOOR] STARTED TO WEAR OUT AND I THOUGHT YOU CAN’T PUT A RUG LIKE THAT ON ANOTHER LINO. IT JUST DOESN’T GO. BUT I DO LIKE HARDWOOD SO WE HAD HARDWOOD PUT THROUGHOUT THE BEDROOMS. THE LAST ROOM IS MY OFFICE, FIRST OF ALL, I HAD THE RUG IN THIS BEDROOM AND THEN IT WASN’T VERY CONVENIENT TO CLEAN BECAUSE THERE WASN’T THAT MUCH SPACE SO I PUT IT IN MY OFFICE WHERE I LOVED IT, BUT I KEPT STUMBLING OVER IT. I THOUGHT I MIGHT BREAK A LEG IF I DO THIS SO I BETTER GET RID OF IT… THE HARDWOOD WAS PUT IN BEFORE THE GST WENT IN. I DIDN’T HAVE THE RUG THEN BUT I THOUGHT THAT I WOULD BE GETTING THE RUG AND SO I WOULD HAVE IT HARDWOOD… WAS IT 1995? ANYWAY BEFORE GST WENT IN.” THE RUG HAD BEEN PRESENT THROUGHOUT MORRIS’ LIFE – FROM TIME SPENT ON THE DOUKHOBOR COLONY IN SHOULDICE, ALBERTA TO LIFE ON A FARM OUTSIDE OF VAUXHALL, ALBERTA: “I CAN REMEMBER WHEN I WAS BORN. THE RUG WAS IN MY PARENT’S HOME. WE LIVED ON A DOUKHOBOR COLONY, WE HAD MUD PLASTERED WALLS AND OUR HOUSE WAS WELL BUILT. MY DAD BUILT IT. SOME OF THE HOUSES ONLY HAD ONE LAYER OF WOOD AND THEY WERE VERY COLD, HOWEVER OUR BEDROOMS HAD WALLS ON THE NORTH SIDE. IN WINTER THEY GOT CHILLY, SO EVERY WINTER THEY WOULD NAIL UP THIS RUG UP AGAINST THE WALL. IT STAYED THERE FOR THE WINTER. FOR SUMMER IT CAME DOWN, I DON’T [KNOW] WHERE SHE STORED IT, I THINK POSSIBLY IN ONE OF THE BIGGER TRUNKS AND THEN TOOK IT OUT… THIS HOME [WHERE THE RUG WAS PLACED], IT’S OUTSIDE OF VAUXHALL. WE LEFT THE COLONY, MOVED TO VAUXHALL AND MOVED THE HOUSE. THE HOUSE WAS EXPANDED AND THEN WE LIVED IN THAT HOUSE. I LEFT HOME AND MY PARENTS HAD A HOUSE IN LETHBRIDGE WHICH DAD BUILT ALSO AND HE SOLD THE FARM. THEY ASKED IF WE WANTED TO GO AND WE DIDN’T. SO THEY SOLD THE FARM AND THERE WAS A BEAUTIFUL POND WHERE WE SWAM AND BOATED AND WE HAD LOTS OF TREES AROUND THE HOUSE. IT WAS ABOUT AN ACREAGE IF NOT MORE AND WHEN HE SOLD IT THE NEW OWNERS, VERY FRUGAL PEOPLE, [THEY] BURNT DOWN THE HOUSE, THE STEAM BATHROOM, THE GARAGE, THE WORKS. NOW MIND THEY WERE OLD STATE BY NOW AND THEY PLOWED [IT ALL INTO] IN THE POND BECAUSE THEY WANTED TO MAKE MONEY FROM THE GRAIN [FIELDS], SO WHEN I WENT THERE A COUPLE OF YEARS LATER, [I WAS] SURPRISED EVERYTHING WAS GONE, SO THAT WAS THAT." THE RUG MAY HAVE BEEN WOVEN BY MORRIS’ MOTHER ON THE DOUKHOBOR COLONY IN SHOULDICE OR DURING THE WINTER SPENT IN COWLEY: “… IT COULD HAVE BEEN WOVEN IN COWLEY BECAUSE THEY STAYED IN COWLEY FOR THE WINTER BUT I CAN’T BE TOO SURE. IT ALSO COULD HAVE BEEN MADE ON THE COLONY… TWENTY MILES EAST OF MOSSLEIGH.” ELIZABETH KONKIN WAS MARRIED IN 1927, SO THE INITIALS WOVEN ON THE RUG ARE OF HER MAIDEN NAME: “THAT’S AN “L” [ ] THAT’S LISAVETA (SIC.) BUT HER NAME IS YALALISAVETA (SIC.) BUT SHE PUT DOWN LISAVETA. PETROVNA THAT’S A “P” [ ] THAT’S DAUGHTER OF PETRO AND WISHLOW [ ] THAT WAS HER MAIDEN NAME. ... [AFTER MAKING THE RUG] THERE WAS SOME WARP LEFT OVER. … WARP IS THE STUFF THAT RUNS DOWN AND WEFT IS WHAT YOU PUT IN BETWEEN WITH A SHUTTLE BUT THIS WASN’T PUT IN WITH A SHUTTLE. EACH INDIVIDUAL THREAD WAS KNOTTED. IT’S LIKE DIFFAGHAN (SIC.) - A SWEDISH METHOD - AND THAT’S HOW IT WAS DONE. IF THERE WAS SOME LEFT OVER AND HER MOM INSISTED THAT SHE DO ANOTHER RUG. WELL SHE DIDN’T WANT TO DO IT. SHE SAYS “YOU MAKE IT FOR YOUR BROTHER.” SHE FELT HIS WIFE SHOULD DO HER OWN HOPE CHEST BUT SHE DID AND THE INTERESTING THING IS THAT HIS RUG THEY USED IT ON THE FLOOR. MY MOTHER DIDN’T USE THIS ONE ON THE FLOOR EXCEPT AT CHRISTMAS TIME SO THE WISHLOW FAMILY WHO HAD THE OTHER RUG, THE MOTHER WASN’T TOO KEENLY INTERESTED IN IT. THEY HAD IT IN THE LIVING ROOM AND THEN IT WENT UP FOR SALE TO A PLACE THAT WAS OWNED BY A MAN NAMED, HIS LAST NAME WAS EWASHEN (SIC.) …THAT’S [THE RUG’S] TWIN, YES.” MORRIS THEN GOES ON TO DESCRIBE SOME OF THE OTHER PATTERNING FOUND ON THE RUG: “OKAY THOSE ARE HARPS. SHE HAD PATTERNS TO GET THEM FROM OTHER WEAVERS AND THEN SHE’D TRACE THEM OUT. I DON’T KNOW WHAT SHE USED TO TRACE THEM ON THE WARP [WITH] AND THEN SHE’D WEAVE AWAY WITH THE THREAD THAT WERE THE WEFT. SHE PUT THE DESIGNS HERSELF ONTO THE RUG” THE RUG WAS BROUGHT TO LETHBRIDGE WHEN ELIZABETH AND WILLIAM KONKIN RETIRED THERE: “I WAS TEACHING SCHOOL IN COALDALE WHEN THEY MOVED AND DAD MADE THE HOUSE IN NORTH LETHBRIDGE… THE HOUSE IS NICELY BUILT AND IT’S WARM, IT’S COMFORTABLE SO THERE’S NO USE PUTTING IT UP ON THE WALL. EVERY CHRISTMAS SHE’D TAKE IT OUT AND WE’D ROLL AROUND ON THIS RUG AND SHE WOULD HANG IT UP AFTER THE NEW YEAR SO I SAID TO HER ‘WHY DON’T YOU PUT IT ON THE FLOOR?’ AND SHE SAID, 'WELL I DON’T WANT TO MESS IT UP.' HOWEVER, I SAID, 'WELL I’M GOING TO PUT IT ON THE FLOOR,' SO THAT’S WHERE IT WAS UNTIL I STARTED STUMBLING OVER IT.” AMONG THE OTHER ARTIFACTS DONATED BY MORRIS THAT WERE OWNED BY HER MOTHER, THE RUG WAS A SIGNIFIER OF THE HARD WORK REQUIRED WITHIN THE DOUKHOBOR LIFESTYLE: “[THE BLANKET AND THE SPINNING WHEEL] MEANT A LOT WELL AFTER THE WAR AND THINGS WERE CHEAP. THEY DIDN’T HAVE TO WEAVE THEIR OWN STUFF. PRIOR TO THAT, NOT IN MY MOTHER’S TIME EVEN BEFORE THAT MY GRANDMOTHER’S TIME, EVERY GIRL HAD TO WEAVE A TROUSSEAU FOR HERSELF TO LAST A LIFETIME BECAUSE SHE STARTED HAVING CHILDREN AND SHE WOULDN’T HAVE THE TIME TO DO IT. THERE WERE THINGS THAT WERE ANCIENT THAT WERE USED AND USED UNTIL THEY DIED HOWEVER, IN MY MOTHER’S DAY THEY KNITTED THEIR OWN SOCKS, THEY MADE THEIR OWN QUILTS. THE MEN DID THE BUILDING AND THEY LIVED OFF THE GARDENS BECAUSE THEY WERE VEGETARIANS SO THEY DIDN’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT MEAT. THEY BOUGHT EGGS FROM THE NEIGHBOURS WHO WERE FARMERS. THE INTERESTING THING THERE WAS THAT THEY WEREN’T SUPPOSED TO EAT MEAT AND I ATE MEAT WHEN I WAS CLOSE TO TWENTY. WHEN I TELL MY VEGETARIAN RELATIVES WHAT ABOUT YOUR SHOES AND YOU’VE GOT LEATHER, COWHIDE WHATEVER AND THEY COULDN’T COME UP WITH AN ANSWER SO… THEY REPRESENTED HARD WORK THAT’S, THIS TAKES A LONG TIME WHEN YOU THINK OF EVERY KNOT THAT HAD TO BE TIED AND IT WAS PART OF HER TROUSSEAU. THE SPINNING WHEEL MEANT A LOT BECAUSE YOU HAD TO SPIN THE WOOL SO.” PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, OBITUARIES, PHOTOGRAPHS, AND FAMILY HISTORIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160003006
Acquisition Date
2016-02
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
WINDSHIELD COVER
Date Range From
1955
Date Range To
1965
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
COTTON, POLYESTER, INK
Catalogue Number
P20180021005
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
WINDSHIELD COVER
Date Range From
1955
Date Range To
1965
Materials
COTTON, POLYESTER, INK
No. Pieces
1
Length
174
Width
82
Description
YELLOW COTTON-BLEND COVER WITH MACHINE-STITCHED EDGES; FRONT OF COVER HAS LOGO IN UPPER LEFT CORNER OF WHITE SHIELD WITH RED BORDER, A WHITE ROSE WITH GREEN LEAVES ON YELOW CIRCLE ON SHIELD, AND RED TEXT “WHITE ROSE”. FRONT OF COVER HAS STENCILED GREEN TEXT AT TOP “DRIVE IN-“ AND RED STENCILED TEXT BELOW “LET US CLEAN YOUR WINDSHIELD!” BACK OF COVER IS WHITE COTTON-NYLON FABRIC. FRONT IS STAINED WITH TWO LARGE HOLES ON LEFT AND RIGHT WITH RIPS EXTENDING FROM HOLES; BACK IS STAINED; RIGHT EDGE FRAYED; COVER IS SEVERELY CREASED AND FOLDED. OVERALL GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
LAND TRANSPORTATION-ACCESSORY
Historical Association
INDUSTRY
TRANSPORTATION
History
ON AUGUST 22, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED MARG OBERG REGARDING HER DONATION OF AN AUTOMOBILE WINDSHIELD COVER. THE COVER WAS USED BY HER FATHER IN LETHBRIDGE. ON HER FATHER’S USE OF THE COVER, OBERG ELABORATED, “[I REMEMBER] HOW EMBARRASSING IT WAS THAT ALL THE OTHER DADS IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD WOULD JUST GET OUT IN THE MORNING, AND SCRAPE THEIR WINDSHIELD OFF, BUT OUR DAD [JACK GRANT KEYS] HAD THIS BRIGHT YELLOW THING STRAPPED ONTO HIS WINDSHIELD TO KEEP THE SNOW OFF. AS CHILDREN, THE PEER PRESSURE WAS PRETTY INTENSE, AND WE WERE THE ONLY ONES ON THE STREET THAT HAD THIS GREAT BIG CANVAS THING ON THE FRONT OF OUR DAD’S CAR. WHEN WE MOVED TO EDMONTON, WE DIDN’T HAVE A GARAGE AT THAT POINT. AGAIN, THERE GOES THIS (EVEN THOUGH WHITE ROSE GASOLINE HAD BECOME OBSOLETE). MY DAD DIDN’T THROW TOO MANY THINGS OUT IF THEY STILL HAD A USEFUL PURPOSE, AND SO, THERE IT WAS, FRONT AND CENTER AGAIN–-THE ONLY GUY ON THE BLOCK. I DON’T KNOW WHY SOMEBODY DIDN’T COME UP WITH SOMETHING NOT QUITE SO OBVIOUS. IT WAS JUST AN EMBARRASSMENT THAT MY FATHER ALWAYS HAD TO COVER UP HIS WINDSHIELD.” “HE WAS THE MANAGER OF THE [WHITE ROSE OIL COMPANY] PLANT. WELL, HE CALLED IT ‘THE PLANT’, BUT THEY DIDN’T MANUFACTURE ANY PRODUCTS THERE. THERE WERE BIG TANKS. I BELIEVE THEY WERE UP ON THIRD AVENUE SOUTH–-I WANT TO SAY IN THE AREA OF HARLEY-DAVIDSON. WE LIVED ON 18TH STREET, AND I KNOW THAT IT WAS STRAIGHT NORTH ON 18TH STREET, AND EITHER LEFT OR RIGHT. IT WAS IN THAT GENERAL AREA. IT WAS WITHIN WALKING DISTANCE, [AND] HE WAS THE MANAGER OF THE PLANT. I THINK HE WAS EVEN THE ONLY EMPLOYEE, BUT HE USED TO GO AROUND IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA TO ALL OF THE GAS STATIONS THAT WERE DEALING IN WHITE ROSE OIL, AND GET THEIR ORDERS…THEN, THERE MUST HAVE BEEN A DRIVER THAT WOULD COME AND FILL UP THEIR TANKER TRUCKS FROM WHERE HE WAS–-THE BULK STATION–-AND GO AND DELIVER IT. I KNOW THAT [DAD] WAS ON THE ROAD AN AWFUL LOT, BUT I DON’T RECALL, AS A CHILD, THAT THERE WERE OTHER EMPLOYEES, OTHER THAN THE TRUCK DRIVER.” “I DON’T RECALL THAT HE WAS THAT FOND OF HIS JOB. IN THE WINTER-TIME, IT WAS REALLY TOUGH. HE USED TO FREEZE HIS FINGERS, ON OCCASION, BECAUSE HE WAS THE ONE THAT HAD TO CLIMB UP THE STAIRCASE THAT WENT AROUND THESE BIG TANKS IN THE COLD OF WINTER, AND DO A DIP STICK TO MEASURE HOW MUCH FUEL WAS IN THE TANKS. WE DIDN’T HAVE SNOW BLOWERS…IT WAS TOUGH BECAUSE HE DID SPEND SOME TIME OUTSIDE, WITH HIS JOB, AND THEN [HAD] AN AWFUL LOT OF TIME ON THE ROADS. THERE WERE MANY TIMES THAT HE WOULD…BE STRANDED IN SMALL COMMUNITIES, BECAUSE OF BAD ROADS. OF COURSE HE WOULD HAVE PREFERRED TO BE HOME WITH HIS FAMILY. I DON’T RECALL THAT HE WAS REALLY ‘GUNG-HO’. I KNOW THAT SHELL TRIED TO GET HIM TO MOVE TO EDMONTON ON A FEW OCCASIONS, AND HE FLATLY REFUSED…WE MOVED IN ’63, SO IT WOULD HAVE BEEN MY GRANDMOTHER WAS ILL, AND DEALING WITH CANCER, AND IT WAS JUST A VERY INAPPROPRIATE TIME FOR US TO LEAVE. MY MOTHER WAS AN ONLY CHILD, SO THERE WERE NO OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS TO STAY AND LOOK AFTER HER. THEN, FINALLY SHELL SAID, “THIS IS YOUR FINAL CHOICE, AND THERE IS NO OPTION.” I GUESS IT WASN’T A CHOICE–-IT WAS EITHER MOVE, OR LOSE YOUR JOB. IT WAS A MATTER OF PUTTING IN TIME UNTIL HE RETIRED.” “MY DAD PASSED AWAY, AND WE ACQUIRED IT FROM HIS WIDOW…IT’S A SMALL PART OF MY DAD. I DIDN’T HAVE A LOT OF THINGS [FROM HIM]. THIS WAS MY DAD’S THIRD MARRIAGE, WHEN HE PASSED, AND HIS FAMILY/HIS WIFE DISPOSED OF A LOT OF THINGS THAT WE [THE CHILDREN] POSSIBLY WOULD HAVE KEPT. THEY MEANT NOTHING TO HER, BUT THEY WERE LIVING OUT ON SALT SPRING ISLAND AT THE TIME. I WAS LIVING IN REGINA. MY BROTHER LIVED IN CHICAGO, AND MY SISTER LIVED IN CALIFORNIA. NONE OF US REALLY WANTED ‘THINGS’, LIKE FURNITURE, SO IT WAS JUST A LITTLE TRINKET THAT BROUGHT BACK SO MANY MEMORIES, AND IT WENT BACK AS FAR AS LETHBRIDGE.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20180021001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20180021005
Acquisition Date
2018-08
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
PROTEST SIGN, "TRUMP TURNED ME INTO AN ACTIVIST"
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
PAPER, WOOD, INK
Catalogue Number
P20170012000
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
PROTEST SIGN, "TRUMP TURNED ME INTO AN ACTIVIST"
Date
2017
Materials
PAPER, WOOD, INK
No. Pieces
1
Height
122.3
Width
56.2
Description
HAND-HELD SIGN MADE WITH 2 SHEETS OF WHITE POSTER PAPER, AND UNTREATED WOODEN SUPPORTS INCLUDING A HANDLE. ALL OF THE WRITING DONE ON THE SIGN IS IN FELT MARKERS. THE FIRST SIDE OF THE POSTER READS, “TRUMP TURNED ME INTO AN ACTIVIST”. THE FIRST LINE IS WRITTEN IN RED INK, THE SECOND TWO LINES IN BLACK INK AND THE FOURTH IN GREEN INK. THE SECOND SIDE READS, “KEEP YOUR TINY HANDS TO YOURSELF”. THE FIRST LINE IS WRITTEN IN BLACK INK, THE SECOND IN RED, THE THIRD IN BLACK, AND FOURTH IN GREEN INK. THERE ARE ERASED PENCIL MARKINGS VISIBLE, WHICH INDICATE THE INITIAL PLANNING OF THE SIGN. THE WOODEN SUPPORTS ARE BETWEEN THE TWO PIECES OF POSTER PAPER, ONE ACROSS THE TOP AND ONE ACROSS THE BOTTOM. THE SIGN’S HANDLE IS MADE OF THE SAME WOOD, ALL OF WHICH IS 3 CM WIDE. IT IS PLACED IN THE CENTER BETWEEN THE TWO PAPERS, SO THAT EXTENDS VERTICALLY FROM THE TOP OF THE THE SIGN AND CONTINUES BELOW THE PAPER TO ACT AS A HANDLE. THE PAPER IS SECURED TO THE WOODEN SUPPORTS BY STAPLES. THE TOP AND THE BOTTOM OF THE FIRST SIDE IS HELD IN BY 5 STAPLES. THE SECOND SIDE HAS 7 STAPLES ON THE TOP AND 6 STAPLES ON THE BOTTOM. THE PAPER’S DIMENSIONS ARE 56.2 CM BY 70.9 CM. CONDITION: SLIGHT SCUFF MARKS ON PAPER (BOTH SIDES). WEAR TO CORNERS AND EDGES OF PAPER (SLIGHT BENDING), ESPECIALLY ON THE LOWER RIGHT-HAND SIDE OF THE “TRUMP…” SIDE.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
POLITICS
History
ON MARCH 7, 2017, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN CONDUCTED AN INTERVIEW WITH ELISABETH PFEFFEL AND JANA MACKENZIE REGARDING MACKENZIE’S DONATION OF A SIGN FROM THE LETHBRIDGE WOMEN’S MARCH. THE SIGN WAS USED BY MACKENZIE’S GRANDMOTHER, ELISABETH PFEFFEL, DURING HER PARTICIPATION AT THE WOMEN’S MARCH ON JANUARY 17, 2017. WHEN ASKED ABOUT THEIR PARTICIPATION IN THE GATHERING, PFEFFEL COMMENTED THAT, “JANA, PHONED ME AND SHE SAID ‘OMA, WE ARE GOING TO DEMONSTRATE. WOULD YOU LIKE TO DO IT TOO?’ AND I SAYS ‘YEAH, I HATE THAT SON-OF-A-GUN SO MUCH, I’M DOING IT.’…I’M 94 YEARS OLD AND I STOOD FOR 2 HOURS ON THE STREET. SOMETIMES WE GOT FINGERS OUT. SOME OTHERS WAS TOOTING AND IT WAS A BEAUTIFUL TIME AND I HAD THIS SON-OF-A-GUN [DONALD TRUMP] IN MY BRAIN AND I SAID, ‘I HAVE TO DO SOMETHING.’ FOR WEEKS, SINCE HE’S ON [TV], THIS MAN [TRUMP], HE HASN’T GOT NO SOUL. HE HASN’T GOT NO COMPASSION. HE IS A TEN YEAR OLD WITH A SILVER SPOON IN HIS MOUTH AND HE THINKS HE’S GOD NOW. AND HE CAN BE NASTY TO EVERYBODY. HE CANNOT GET ALONG WITH ANYBODY. YOU CAN SEE THIS, HE HAS HIS GRANDFATHER, I FOUND THIS OUT YESTERDAY, MY NIECE, I PHONED TO AND SHE SAYS ‘YOU KNOW THIS STUPID BUM’S FATHER WAS BORN NOT VERY FAR WHERE I WAS BORN.’” PFEFFEL RECALLED THAT AFTER THE MARCH, “I WAS RELEASED…I SAY [TRUMP’S] A LIAR…I WAS SO PLEASED WHEN JANA SAID ‘OMA, WE ARE GOING THERE. WOULD YOU GO ALONG?’ I [SAID], ‘YES, THIS IS ONE THING I WANT TO DO. I CANNOT STAND THIS MAN ANYMORE.’ HE HAS ROBBED ME OF SO MANY NIGHTS, YOU JUST WON’T BELIEVE IT. THEN I SAYS, ‘OOH, GET AWAY YOU IDIOT. LET ME SLEEP.’ IF YOU WOULD HAVE BEEN HERE ON SUNDAY AND SOMEONE WOULD HAVE SNEAKED IN MY HOUSE, THEY WOULD HAVE SAID ‘SOMEONE BEHIND THIS DOOR, I THINK SHE’S NUTS. SHE’S TALKING FOR HERSELF.’…THIS IS HOW FAR I’M GONE. THIS MAN ROBS ME OF EVERYTHING, REALLY. THIS NEVER HAPPENED TO ME [BEFORE].” “I ALWAYS WAS SURROUNDED WITH PEOPLE [AT THE MARCH]…I JUST STOOD THERE…I REALLY TRULY DID IN MY HEART, WHERE IF YOU GO THROUGH A WAR LIKE I DID AND YOU NEVER KNOW IF YOU’RE STILL ALIVE, YOU HAVE SYMPATHY…YOU HAVE COMPASSION FOR PEOPLE. [TRUMP] HASN’T GOT NOTHING. HE’S DEAD INSIDE. ALL THAT HE KNOWS IS MONEY, MONEY…DO YOU THINK HE GAVE SOMETHING UP? HE NEVER PAID INCOME TAX. AND HE IS SO PROUD OF IT ‘OH NO, I DON’T HAVE TO PAY.’ I’M WONDERING HOW, IN THE SAME TIME, IN MY DAYS, HE’S A CROOK. I DON’T KNOW HOW MANY PEOPLE LOST MONEY WITH HIM. I THINK HE WAS LOST EVERYTHING 6 TIMES…WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT WITH A PERSON LIKE THAT?” JANA SPOKE TO THEIR TIME AT THE GATHERING, MENTIONING TO PFEFFEL THAT, “WE BROUGHT YOU A CHAIR BUT YOU STOOD…FOR THREE HOURS.” PFEFFL REMARKED, ON HER TIME AT THE MARCH, “I WISH I COULD HAVE [STAYED LONGER]. IF MY LEGS WOULD HAVE TAKEN ME A LITTLE BIT LONGER, I WOULD [HAVE STAYED] THE WHOLE DAY THERE.” SPEAKING TO WHO CREATED THE SIGN FOR HER, PFEFFL NOTED, “[JANA] MADE IT. I COULDN’T DO [IT] GOOD SINCE I DON’T SEE VERY GOOD ANYWAY.” JANA ADDED, “I JUST SAID, “WELL YES, WHAT DO YOU WANT ON YOUR SIGN? WHAT DO YOU WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW ABOUT TRUMP?” AND SHE [ELISABETH PFEFFEL] SAID THAT, YOU SAID YOU WERE CONCERNED MOSTLY ABOUT THE WOMEN THAT HAVE TO WORK WITHIN THE WHITE HOUSE UNDERNEATH [HIM]. “ “THIS IS THE THING, YOU’RE ALREADY AWARE OF THE WORKPLACE HAZARDS OF BEING A WOMAN SOMETIMES AND PARTICULARLY UNDER SOMEONE LIKE THAT. AND SO YOU [PFEFFEL] WERE WORRIED BECAUSE OF HIS HISTORY OF ASSAULT… THAT THEY [WOMEN EMPLOYEES] WOULD BE AT RISK AND THAT THEY ALSO THEN WOULDN’T BE ABLE TO SAY ANYTHING BECAUSE THEY ARE UNDER HIM.” JANA REMARKED ON HER GRANDMOTHER’S [PFEFFEL’S] INTEREST IN ACTIVISM, “EVEN THOUGH SHE SAYS SHE HASN’T EXPERIENCE, AS WITH THE WOMEN’S RIGHTS ISSUES, AND THINGS LIKE THAT, SHE IS WHY I AM FEROCIOUS. SHE TAUGHT US ALL TO BE FEROCIOUS AND TO STAND UP FOR OURSELVES, AND FIGHT FOR WHAT WE WANTED. THERE IS NEVER ANY DOUBT THERE. YOU [PFEFFEL] JUST CAME BY IT NATURALLY...” ADDRESSING PFEFFEL ABOUT HER INTEREST IN POLITICS, JANA NOTED, “IT’S NOT THAT [MY GRANDPARENTS] WEREN’T POLITICAL. MY OPA [HANS] WAS POLITICAL AS WELL, IT’S JUST MORE THAT HE WAS THE MORE POLITICAL ONE BETWEEN THE TWO OF YOU…THEN WHEN HE PASSED ON IT’S LIKE HE GAVE YOU [THAT DRIVE].” ELISABETH PFEFFEL ADDED, “THEN I TOOK OVER. MY HUSBAND WAS A READER. HE WAS VERY HIGH READING BOOKS THAT I WOULDN’T EVEN UNDERSTAND. MIND YOU HE WAS VERY CLEVER MAN.” ELISABETH PFEFFEL CONTINUED, “[I GET MY INFORMATION ON WORLD EVENTS FROM] TV. I CANNOT READ THE PAPER ANY MORE SINCE I CAN’T SEE ANYTHING…WHEN YOU’RE ALONE, YOU ARE ALONE. YOU HAVE YOUR CHILDREN, THEY COME ONCE IN A WHILE…THIS IS WHERE [I STARTED GETTING INTERESTED IN WORLD EVENTS], [ESPECIALLY] WHEN, I HAD QUITE A THING WITH HARPER. I DID NOT LIKE HARPER, RIGHT FROM THE DAY I SEEN HIM, I DIDN’T LIKE THIS MAN. I SAY THERE WAS SOMETHING LIKE A DICTATOR [IN HIM]. THIS IS WHAT I THINK…I HAVE TO SAY I STARTED WITH HIM.” “I DON’T GET IN FIGHTS WITH ANYBODY [OVER POLITICS]. I’M A GOOD TALKER. BUT I’M NOT GETTING MAD AT EVERYBODY. WE HAVE FRIENDS. I’M NDP AND MY FRIENDS, THEY ARE CONSERVATIVE AND SO WE WERE SITTING TOGETHER AND MY NEIGHBOR, THE ONE THAT GOES WITH ME IN THE HOSPITAL IS NDP AND SO WE WERE SOMEHOW TOGETHER AND SHE SAYS, ‘OH, I HOPE THE CONSERVATIVES WIN. I HOPE THE CONSERVATIVES DO.’ AND I SAYS, ‘YOU KNOW, I DON’T CARE WHO WINS BUT I’M NDP ANYWAY.’ SO I COME OUT AND TELL [THEM MY POSITION]. I SAYS, ‘YOU CAN THINK OF ME WHAT YOU WANT. YOU ARE LIBERAL, YOU ARE CONSERVATIVE, WHATEVER [IT] IS.’” “[MY EXPERIENCES IN LIFE STOPPED ME FROM GETTING MORE CONSERVATIVE]. MOST PEOPLE CAN’T EVEN TALK ABOUT THEIR EXPERIENCE. THEY DON’T KNOW NOTHING ABOUT IT. I STILL KNOW WHEN I’M BORN. MANY PEOPLE DON’T EVEN KNOW ANYMORE, [WHERE] THEY’RE BORN OR WHEN THEY’RE BORN…I ALWAYS WAS INTERESTED IN PEOPLE. I ALWAYS WANT TO SEE…WHAT THEY ARE DOING, WHAT THEY ARE INTERESTED IN. THIS IS ME; YOU SEE, THIS IS ME…WHEN I GO TOMORROW NIGHT WITH MY FRIENDS FOR CHICKEN WINGS, THERE IS AT LEAST TEN MEN WHO STAND UP AND GIVE ME A HUG. THIS IS HOW I PUT MYSELF TOWARDS OTHER PEOPLE…I [COULDN’T] CARE LESS WHAT THEY VOTE…I DON’T DISAGREE WITH THEM. I JUST SAY ‘YOU DO WHAT YOU WANT, I DO WHAT I WANT.’ I TRY TO BE GOOD…” ELISABETH PFEFFEL SPOKE FURTHER ABOUT HER INTEREST IN POLITICS, STATING, “MY FRIENDS IN COALDALE ARE ALL INTERESTED IN CURRENT EVENTS] EVERY ONE OF THEM…MAYBE I DON’T KNOW MY NEXT DOOR NEIGHBOR BUT SHE’S A VERY RELIGIOUS GIRL AND SHE GOES TO THE [VICTORY] CHURCH WHEN YOU COME TO COALDALE ON THE RIGHT HAND SIDE.” “EVERYBODY [THAT] I KNOW IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD WHEN I GO WITH MY FRIENDS FOR CHICKEN WINGS, PEOPLE ARE TALKING ABOUT [TRUMP]…MY NIECE PHONED ME THE OTHER DAY…SHE SAYS, ‘YOU’D BE SURPRISED. [WE] CAN SEE IT [ON-LINE]…YOU JUST WON’T BELIEVE IT.’ …SHE SAYS, ‘YOU JUST WON’T BELIEVE IT HOW YOU COULD JUST SEE TRUMP EVERYWHERE.’ SO, IT’S NOT JUST HERE, IT’S NOT JUST ME, IT IS THE WORLD. HE DIVIDED EVERYBODY. SO HE SAYS THEY HAD ONE CHAIR AND THERE WAS A LADY SITTING…AND TRUMP CAME BY THIS LADY, THEY MADE THIS UP YOU KNOW, AND HE PUT HIS HAND BETWEEN HER LEGS. SHE SAID, SHE’S SEEN THE DARNDEST THINGS FROM DONALD TRUMP. YOU JUST WON’T BELIEVE IT.” “I PERSONALLY DON’T KNOW ANYBODY WHO LOVES [TRUMP].” “[I GO TO THE FRITZ STICK SOMETIMES]…BUT SO FAR WHAT I KNOW, THE PEOPLE I KNOW, THEY’RE ALL AGAINST [TRUMP]…SOME SAY, ‘DON’T EVEN TALK ABOUT TRUMP. I DON’T EVEN WANT TO HEAR HIS NAME ANY MORE.’…[WHEN THEY SEE HIM ON THE NEWS] THEY SAY, ‘HE’S AN IDIOT.’” “[WHEN THEY SAW MY SIGN ON THE NEWS THEY SAID] HURRAH! I’M SO PROUD OF YOU. I SHOULDN’T BE SURPRISED. EVEN GERMANY, YOU SEE IF THERE’S FRIENDS WITH SOMEONE OR WITH YOUR FAMILY THEY GOT PHONE CALLS FROM GERMANY, ‘I SEEN YOUR MOTHER’ AND THINGS LIKE THIS. EVERYBODY WAS HAPPY.” “I KNOW IN CANADA [PEOPLE LIKE DIFFERENT POLITICIANS], BUT [WITH TRUMP], EVERYBODY SAID I CANNOT BELIEVE IT WHAT THIS MAN IS DOING. HE WAS MARRIED, HAD CHILDREN AND THEN [MELANIA] NO MATTER WHERE HE WENT, WITH HIS WIFE, [MELANIA] ALWAYS WAS THERE, THE SECOND WIFE SO HE HAD TO GET MARRIED TO HER SINCE SHE WAS PREGNANT. HE GOT THIS ONE NOW. BUT YOU KNOW WHAT, I GET THIS ALL FROM TV. I WATCH A LOT OF TV. AND YOU KNOW WHAT, IF I WOULD BE HIS WIFE, DO YOU KNOW WHAT I WOULD SAY? ‘GET RID OF HIM!’ I’D RATHER LIVE IN ONE ROOM WITH MY SON…” “[TRUMP] DOESN’T LIKE WOMEN. HE DOESN’T LIKE THE BLACK PEOPLE. HE DOESN’T LIKE THE ONES [THAT ARE] COMING FROM OUTSIDE [AMERICA]. WHAT IS THE MATTER THE PEOPLE AROUND HIM, THE HIGHER UPS, I CANNOT UNDERSTAND…I DON’T CARE IF THEY LIKE HILLARY [CLINTON] OR THEY LIKE HIM. DO YOU KNOW, [WHEN] HILLARY WAS SPEAKING TO PEOPLE? THE TWO WERE SUPPOSED TO SPEAK AND SHE WAS SPEAKING. HE STOOD BEHIND HER AND MADE [HAND GESTURES]…[HE WAS LINGERING] RIGHT BEHIND HER…THIS GUY WHO IS IN CHARGE, WHO IS SITTING IN THE FRONT SAYS ‘MR. TRUMP, YOU SIT DOWN ON YOUR REAR END AND SHUT UP.’” “[TRUMP’S] FATHER WAS BORN IN GERMANY…[THERE WAS A FILM ABOUT THE TRUMP FAMILY] ON TV. THE FATHER WAS A CREEP. [TRUMP’S] FATHER WAS NOT A VERY GOOD GUY EITHER…HE TOOK THE…TEN YEAR [OLD], HOW OLD HE EVER WAS, WITH A SILVER SPOON IN HIS MOUTH, HE TOOK HIM AND HE TOLD HIM HOW TOUGH HE HAS TO BE IN LIFE. THIS IS JUST WHAT HE’S DOING TO PEOPLE. HE GOT IT FROM THE GRANDPARENTS ALREADY…I HAVE TO COME BACK A LITTLE BIT TO GERMANY…I WAS BORN [IN GERMANY], AND I LIVED WITH AN OLD [DICTATOR].” “WE WERE WITH [THE NAZIS]. THIS CAN BE THE WORST TIME OF YOUR LIFE. IN THE END, WE WAS SITTING IN THE BASEMENT…THERE’S COAL IN THERE; THERE’S APPLES IN THERE; THERE IS EVERYTHING ELSE IN THERE. IT’S VERY COLD. IN THE END, YOU SIT IN THE BASEMENT AND YOU DON’T KNOW IF IT’S ALIVE OR NOT…I HAVE SEEN DEAD BODIES…[IN] MY EXPERIENCE FROM GERMANY.” “I HAVE SAID THIS OVER AND OVER AGAIN, ANYBODY WHO NEVER WENT THROUGH A WAR AND NEVER [KNEW] IF YOU’RE STILL ALIVE TOMORROW YOU WERE LUCKY. MY FATHER HE KNEW EVERYBODY AND THERE [WERE] PEOPLE WHO SELL SAUSAGES [IN A DELI]…[THE OWNER’S] HUSBAND GOT KILLED IN THE WAR. HE HAD TO COOK FOR THE SOLDIERS, HE WAS A COOK AND ONE EVENING SHE SAID—WE WERE IN THE BASEMENT, AND IF YOU ARE IN THE BASEMENT…YOU ARE SAFER THERE THAN IN A FLAT [HOUSE]…SHE [ASKED] MY DAD IF WE [WOULD] COME OVER CAUSE SHE’S ALONE AND THAT EVENING WE WENT…THERE’S A HOUSE [ON THE STREET] AND THERE WERE THREE WOMEN IN THERE. MY AUNT WAS LIVING THERE THAT NIGHT WITH THOSE WOMEN. SOMEONE ELSE SAID TO HER, ‘WHY DON’T YOU COME AND STAY WITH US TONIGHT?’ ANYWAY, WE WERE WITH HER AND OF COURSE YOU COULD HEAR THE PLANES GO [OVER]…THE WHOLE BOMB WENT IN [THE HOUSE]. IN THE HOUSE WHERE WE WERE WAS A FLAT BASEMENT, IT’S NOT A ROUND ONE. OUR WHOLE BASE LIFTED UP…MY DAD, MY MOTHER, WE WERE ALL UNDERGROUND LAYING DOWN. I THOUGHT MAYBE EVERYTHING [WILL FALL] TOGETHER. THE NEXT DAY YOU SEE LEGS, YOU SEE HEADS…THIS IS WHAT I WENT THROUGH AND MANY OTHER PEOPLE WENT THROUGH…WE WENT TO DRESDEN. HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE, THE AMERICANS RUINED [THE TOWN], JUST THE DAY BEFORE THE WAR WAS OVER, FLATTENED A WHOLE TOWN. THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE WERE KILLED. THIS IS WHAT I SAY THOSE [ABOUT] PEOPLE WHO ARE [IMMIGRATING]. EVERY DAY PEOPLE ARE GETTING KILLED FROM SYRIA, AND PUTIN AND ALL THOSE GUYS, THEY DON’T CARE IF THERE ARE KIDS OR FAMILIES THERE. DO YOU THINK TRUMP CARES ABOUT IT? HE JUST LOOKS FOR HIS MONEY…” “THIS IS HOW THE HITLERS [WERE], THE PEOPLE WERE SO BRAINWASHED…THEN WE WERE ALL STANDING OUTSIDE ONE DAY WHEN HITLERS MARCHED. ONE MAN WHO LIVED IN THE SAME HOUSE…WENT OUT AND HIT MY DAD. THEY COULD DO IT; HE COULD DO NOTHING ABOUT IT. I WAS [RIDING] IN THE…TRAIN, AS A YOUNG [CHILD] AND ONE SAID TO ME, ‘YOU’D BETTER KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT IF YOU DON’T WANT TO BE IN THE CONCENTRATION CAMP.’ ONE TIME, THEY CAME [AND] PICKED MY DAD UP AND IN MY HOME TOWN WAS A FACTORY AND THEY PUT ALL THE PEOPLE WHO THEY KNEW WERE NOT FOR HITLER, THEY PUT THEM ALL THERE, MY DAD TOO. IF YOU WOULD HAVE KNOWN MY DAD, HE WAS A VERY HAPPY GUY, THEY DIDN’T KEEP HIM TOO LONG. THEY LET HIM GO AGAIN. I THINK HE RAISED HELL IN THIS THING TOO. BUT HE CAME HOME AGAIN…I WORKED FOR SEVEN YEARS FOR VERY RICH PEOPLE. [THE PERSON I WORKED FOR] WAS A HUGE HITLER. YOU KNOW PRETTY MUCH EVERYBODY IN TOWN ANYWAY…THE WAR, IT THEN WAS OVER, HE WAS LOCKED UP FOR YEARS. AFTER THE WAR WAS OVER, [THE GOVERNMENT] LOCKED ALL OF THE HITLERS UP. SO HE CAME [BACK]. I CAME FROM OUT OF THE HOUSE AND HE CAME FROM THE STREET. I KNEW HE WAS A HUGE HITLER, I WENT OVER AND SHOOK HIS HAND AND I SAYS ‘I’M GLAD YOU’RE HOME AGAIN.’ WHEN MY MOM AND DAD CAME [TO CANADA IN THE 1960S] MY MOM AND DAD [WERE] HERE FOR A YEAR AND [MY MOM BROUGHT] ME A PRESENT FROM THIS MAN AND HE [SAID] ‘IF YOU SEE LISLE, TELL HER I NEVER WILL FORGET HER.’ DO YOU KNOW WHAT IT WAS? [DURING THE WAR] THEY TOOK PEOPLE, THEY WENT AND SHOT RABBITS…THEY GRABBED EVERYBODY, MY DAD HAD TO GET RABBITS TOGETHER…HE HAD LITTLE BANKS…LITTLE BANKS AND LITTLE RABBITS SITTING ON IT AND THIS WAS A GIFT FROM HIM. I COULD HAVE SAID ‘…YOU KNOW WHAT YOU HAVE DONE.’ [HE HAD TOLD MY] DAD, ‘FRITZ, I WANT TO TELL YOU ONE THING, IF WE WIN THE WAR, YOU WILL BE THE FIRST ONE WHO WILL BE HUNG.’ YOU GO THROUGH THINGS LIKE THIS, AND I THINK THIS IS ONE FROM DEEP IN MYSELF WHY I HATE TRUMP. HE DOESN’T WANT TO HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH PEOPLE WHO ARE IN SUCH DIRE [SITUATIONS]—NOT ENOUGH TO EAT, THEY ARE [FREEZING]…HE LOVES HIMSELF SO MUCH WHERE HE JUST CAN’T HELP OTHER PEOPLE.” “THIS REMINDS ME OF THAT. THEN I COME BACK TO THE DICTATOR TRUMP…LIKE I SAY, WE HAD HITLER, WE HAVE TRUMP. WE HAVE [A DICTATOR] IN TURKEY…I JUST FOUND OUT THIS WEEK WHAT HE HAS DONE ALREADY TO HIS PEOPLE. THEN [THERE] IS PUTIN AND SYRIA…YOU SEE IT. ALL [THAT] I WANT TO SAY IS ‘BE CAREFUL PEOPLE OF DICTATORS. THEY ARE THE [WORST] PEOPLE…THEY ARE GROWN ALREADY AS LITTLE CHILDREN.’…THIS JUST IS WHAT GETS ME [ABOUT] TRUMP. HE [COULDN’T] GIVE A ‘HECK.’ THIS [PERSON] CAN COME IN [TO THE COUNTRY]…THEY CANNOT COME IN. THE HELL WITH RELIGION. THERE SHOULD BE NOTHING EVEN SAID ABOUT THINGS. I SAY THE CATHOLICS GO ON THEIR KNEES AND PRAY AND I SEE THE OTHER ONES GO AND LAY ON THE FLOOR. I CAN MAKE A HEAD STAND AND STILL CAN PRAY. THIS IS NONE OF HIS BUSINESS…HE THINKS THEY’RE ALL BAD PEOPLE. THEY ARE NOT…HE [COULDN’T] CARE LESS HOW MANY BABIES DIE, HOW MANY OLD PEOPLE DIE, HOW MANY PEOPLE GET BABIES ON THE WAY IN THAT DIE RIGHT AWAY. HE’S DRUNK. DO YOU KNOW WHERE HE SHOULD BE? THIS GUY IF THEY DON’T DO ANYTHING, THEY SHOULD PUT HIM IN AN ASYLUM. [THAT] IS WHERE THIS GUY BELONGS…I [SAY], YOU KNOW GERMANY WAS DIVIDED [BETWEEN THE SOVIET EAST AND] THE WEST…WE HAVE FRIENDS, HUSBAND AND WIFE THEY GOT A DIVORCE [THEY WERE SEPARATED BY THE BERLIN WALL]. THIS IS JUST WHAT [AMERICA] IS NOW. AMERICA IS DIVIDED WITH A CREEP LIKE THAT.” “I’M JUST AN ORDINARY HOUSEWIFE BUT STILL, WITH [TRUMP], I MEAN WE HAD A LOT OF PEOPLE I DID NOT LIKE IN CANADA EITHER BUT IT’S NOT [AS] BAD. [TRUMP] SHOULD BE LOCKED UP OR IMPEACHED. HE CANNOT KEEP THIS UP…AMERICA IS DIVIDED. WHY WOULD YOU LIKE TO HAVE A MAN LIKE THIS ON TOP…?” “MY HUSBAND [AND] MYSELF, WHEN WE CAME WE DIDN’T HAVE A PENNY. WE DIDN’T HAVE NOTHING. WE STARTED WITH NOTHING. HANS [MY HUSBAND] WAS IN MAGRATH WITH A FARMER, HE PAID OUR TRIP. WE HAD TO PAY OUR TRIP BACK AND ONE EVENING [THE FARMER SAID], ‘I DON’T NEED YOU ANYMORE BUT YOU CAN LIVE ON THE FARM.’ ON THE FARM WE DIDN’T HAVE [A] CAR, WE HARDLY HAD ANYTHING TO EAT. THEY PUT US OUT THERE AND MY HUSBAND WALKED EVERY DAY THROUGH THE FIELD TO THE DEL BONITA HIGHWAY AND LIKE THIS HE WENT TO MAGRATH, HE FOUND A PLACE DOWN IN THE BASEMENT…THEY HAD BAD WEATHER…HE HAD TO [SHOVEL]. I COULDN’T GO [WITH HIM], I HAD A THREE YEAR OLD ONE, MY DAUGHTER WAS THREE YEARS OLD WHEN WE CAME. FROM THE DAY WE CAME, 1953, MY HUSBAND, MYSELF, WE WORKED FOR 28 YEARS DAY AND NIGHT. DO YOU THINK IN ALL THOSE YEARS, IN THOSE 64 YEARS SINCE WE ARE HERE, IF WE WOULDN’T HAVE WORKED DAY AND NIGHT, WE WOULDN’T HAVE THAT. I JUST WANT TO TELL YOU, I KNOW LOT OF PEOPLE HERE IN COALDALE, THEY ARE LIVING IN SHACKS AFTER ALL THOSE YEARS BUT, THE MEN WORKED FOR US, WE HAD THE CLOTHING STORE, YOU KNOW THAT, AND THE WALLS CRUMBLED AND HE BUILT IT UP…IF YOU COME IN THIS COUNTRY, AS OPA [HANS] ALWAYS SAYS, ANYBODY WHO COMES INTO THIS GOOD LAND WHERE WE ARE RIGHT NOW, HE SAYS, IF THEY DON’T MAKE IT, IT’S THEIR OWN FAULT…I THINK [COUNTRIES] SHOULD BE OPEN [FOR IMMIGRATION] AND IF HE [TRUMP] SAYS THAT WE WANT TO GET THE MURDERS OUT AND THE THIEVES, HE’S THE BIGGEST CRACKPOT ANYWAY.” “MY HUSBAND [USED TO] SAY TO ME OVER 30 YEARS AGO, ‘MOTHER, I WANT TO TELL YOU ONE THING. YOU REMEMBER HERE LIVING THE BEST TIMES RIGHT NOW AND WHAT IS COMING AFTER US WON’T BE THAT GOOD ANYMORE.’ HE SAID THIS 30 YEARS AGO TO ME…[AND] WE WERE TALKING POLITICS, TOO…BUT I NEVER THOUGHT I WOULD GET SO INVOLVED WITH A CREEP [TRUMP] LIKE THIS WHERE HE TOOK SLEEP AWAY FROM ME.” “I GET FRUSTRATED WHEN [I SEE TRUMP TELLING] THE PEOPLE, ‘DON’T YOU WORRY, I [WILL] MAKE AMERICA GOOD AGAIN’ AND ALL THE IDIOTS WHO VOTE FOR HIM. THEY ARE PEOPLE, I AM NOT EDUCATED, BUT I KNOW QUITE A BIT, BUT THOSE PEOPLE WHO VOTED FOR HIM, THEY LOOK [TO TRUMP] FOR HELP…DON’T YOU WORRY, HE CARES FOR HIMSELF NOT FOR THE PEOPLE.” WHEN ASKED IF SHE HAD EVER EXPERIENCED SOMETHING SIMILAR IN HER LIFE, REGARDING THE WOMEN’S MARCH, PFEFFEL SAID “NO…THE ONLY THING [THAT] WE HAD IN CALGARY [WAS] WHEN WE WERE INVITED [TO THE SCREENING OF A] FILM, SO THERE WERE A LOT OF PEOPLE THERE…STRANGE PEOPLE. BUT I TRY TO TALK TO EVERYBODY THAT I CAN…THIS IS DIFFERENT.” “I WISH I COULD [LIVE ANOTHER 50 YEARS AND PROTEST MORE].I FELT LIKE A QUEEN. PEOPLE WERE AROUND ME AND…ONE LADY SAID, ‘I HEAR YOU’RE 94 YEARS OLD. I HOPE I GET THAT OLD.’ SO I FELT LIKE A QUEEN AND I SAID ‘AT LEAST I [AM DOING] SOMETHING AGAINST TRUMP.’” “[IF THERE WERE MARCHES EVERY WEEKEND] I WOULD GO. [JANA WOULD] HAVE TO MAKE A NEW SIGN AGAIN. NEXT TIME, LIKE THE LADY SAYS, ‘HE PUSHED ME ON THE WALL. HE KISSED ME. HIS TONGUE PRETTY WELL WENT IN MY THROAT.’ WHAT DOES HE DO? DO YOU KNOW WHAT I WOULD HAVE DONE? I WOULD HAVE BIT THE THING OFF…THEY ARE ALL LIARS.” “[AT THE MARCH] I [SAID], ‘I’M HERE MR. TRUMP AND I WANT TO TELL YOU HOW MUCH I DISLIKE YOU.’ I [SAID], ‘IT MAKES ME [FEEL] VERY, VERY GOOD.’ ALL OF A SUDDEN I WAS FREE. I COULD TELL THE PEOPLE, ‘I’M HERE. THIS IS WHAT I WANT TO DO.’” “[I’VE NEVER PROTESTED] IN MY LIFE. I JUST [DID] IT FOR [HIM].” ELISABETH PFEFFEL SPOKE ABOUT HER VIEWS AND EXPERIENCES ON WOMEN’S RIGHTS, NOTING, “I [SAY], ‘KEEP YOUR HANDS BY YOURSELF.’…I, PERSONALLY [HAVE] NOT [KNOWN ANY WOMEN WHO WERE ASSAULTED], BUT JUST LOOK NOW WITH THE POLICE, LOOK FOR THE POLICE WHAT IS GOING ON. AS A WOMAN YOU CANNOT BE WITH A MAN. IF THEY GET THE URGE, THEY THINK THEY HAVE TO DO SOMETHING. LOOK IN THE ARMY. WHAT IS GOING ON IN THE ARMY? SO I PERSONALLY DON’T KNOW ANYBODY WHO WAS ASSAULTED OR ANYTHING THEN I ALWAYS WAS WITH MY HUSBAND, WHATEVER WE DID, WE DID TOGETHER.” “WHEN I WAS FOURTEEN YEARS OLD, WE WERE FINISHED WITH SCHOOL…I WAS SHIPPED TO FRANKFURT IN A HUGE HOTEL…THEY PUT ME UP IN THE ATTIC. I HAD ONE ROOM AND I HAD A BOWL FOR WATER SO I COULD WASH MYSELF AND I HAD A BELL IN MY ROOM WHERE THE BOSS IN THE MORNING AT 6:00 [AM] I HAD TO BE DOWNSTAIRS…I HAD TO MAKE BREAKFAST FOR PEOPLE WHO CAME DOWN. BEFORE I CAME DOWN, I HAD TO, YOU CANNOT DO THIS ANYMORE TODAY, PEOPLE PUT THEIR SHOES OUTSIDE THE HOTEL, THEY HAD TO BE ALL CLEANED UP…WHAT I HAD TO DO SOMETIMES, IN THE MORNING WHEN MEN DID NOT GET UP AND I HAD TO BRING BREAKFAST IN THE ROOM, IT NEVER DAWNED ON ME. IN LATER YEARS, I [SAID], HOW STUPID, WHERE DO I WORK? [A GUEST] COULD HAVE GRABBED ME, HE COULD HAVE DONE EVERYTHING TO ME. THIS IS HOW IT WAS. I HAD TO WORK EVERY DAY FROM 6:00 [AM] ‘TIL ABOUT 10:00 IN THE NIGHT.” “[THINGS ARE] NOT GETTING BETTER. I SAY THEY’RE NOT GETTING BETTER. PEOPLE ARE MORE SELFISH. YOU CAN SEE THIS YEARS AGO. WE LEFT OUR HOUSES OPEN, YOU KNOW, WHEN WE WENT TO BED THE HOUSE WAS OPEN BUT WE HAD A CAR. ONE MORNING, WE ALWAYS HAD A CAR, IT WAS OPEN, AND I WENT OUTSIDE I FOUND A BIG PAIR OF UNDER PANTS FROM A WOMAN. SOMEONE HAD SEX IN MY CAR. THIS WAS INSIDE [MY CAR]. FROM [THAT] MINUTE ON, WE LOCKED OUR DOOR…TODAY, WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO DO? YOU HAVE TO LOCK EVERYTHING. DON’T HAVE JEWELRY AROUND. DON’T HAVE ANYTHING AROUND, THEY TAKE EVERYTHING THAT THEY CAN GET. IT’S GETTING WORSE.” ON NOTICING PROGRESS TOWARDS IMPROVING WOMEN’S RIGHTS, PFEFFEL NOTED, “THIS IS RIGHT AND IT SHOULD BE TOO…LET’S FACE IT, WE HAVE TOO MANY MEN THAT THINK THEY’RE THE BOSS IN THE FAMILY AND YOU DO WHAT YOU’RE TOLD AND STUFF LIKE THIS. I KNOW QUITE A FEW PEOPLE WHO GOT DIVORCED.” “MY MOM AND DAD, THEY HAD A GOOD RELATIONSHIP…[DAD] WAS VERY RESPECTFUL OF WOMEN. IF THE WAY SHOULD BE THAT I SHOULD GET MARRIED TOMORROW TO YOU AND YOU TELL ME ALL THE TIME WHAT TO DO, I WOULD TELL YOU TO GO TO HELL…YOU DON’T EVEN KNOW HOW TERRIBLE I FELT WHEN MY HUSBAND PASSED AWAY. AND LOOK AT ME, TODAY I’M JUST SKIN AND BONES. I LOST EVERYTHING IN A VERY SHORT [TIME] WHEN MY HUSBAND DIED…THE KIDS ALWAYS SAY TO ME, ‘MOM, YOU KNOW DAD IS NOT COMING BACK ANYMORE.’ [ONE CHILD] SAYS, ‘EACH TIME WE CAME HERE YOU WERE HUGGING AND YOU ALWAYS WAS SO GOOD WITH EACH OTHER.’ HOW OFTEN DID I SAY TO MY HUSBAND ‘DO YOU KNOW HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU?’ AND HE ALWAYS [SAID], ‘I KNOW.’ WE WORKED TOGETHER AND IF A COUPLE DON’T WORK TOGETHER, A MARRIAGE CANNOT LAST.” PFEFFEL COMMENTED ON HER DESIRE TO DONATE THE SIGN TO THE MUSEUM, STATING, “I’M SO GLAD YOU’RE HERE…SINCE I CAN TALK WITH SOMEONE AND GET ALL MY FRUSTRATION OUT AND THIS [SIGN] IS GONE, I WILL BE A HAPPIER PERSON. I WILL BE A REALLY TRULY HAPPIER PERSON.” “TONIGHT I SAID ALREADY, ‘IF I CAN TALK THIS ALL OUT TO SOMEONE WHO IS LISTENING TO ME, I SAYS, I [WILL] QUIT WATCHING, EACH TIME HE COMES ON [TV] I [WILL] TURN HIM OFF.’ I DON’T WANT TO HEAR HIS VOICE. I DON’T WANT TO HEAR NOTHING FROM HIM ANYMORE…IF THEY IMPEACH HIM, THIS WILL BE THE HAPPIEST DAY IN MY LIFE.” ON MARCH 31, 2017, MACLEAN INTERVIEWED ANALIES VAN OERS ABOUT HER INVOLVEMENT IN THE WOMEN’S MARCH IN LETHBRIDGE, AND SPOKE FURTHER ABOUT THE ORIGINS OF THE WOMEN’S MARCH AS A GLOBAL MOVEMENT. VAN OERS COMMENTED THAT, “THE WOMEN’S MARCH CAME OUT OF THE UNITED STATES ALTHOUGH I THINK ITS RELEVANCE IS VERY WIDELY FELT ACROSS THE WORLD…” “WHAT WAS UNIQUE TO LETHBRIDGE IS THE WAY THAT IT WAS ORGANIZED…IT’S SUPER-GRASSROOTS… AND FAIRLY LOW KEY…WE…GENERICALLY COME TOGETHER BECAUSE WE ALL FEEL PASSIONATE ABOUT ONE THING…THERE’S THIS [SENSE OF], ‘OKAY, WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE AND WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP?’” “WHAT ELSE IS UNIQUE IN LETHBRIDGE IN TERMS OF THE WOMEN’S MARCH, I THINK, IS ITS RELEVANCE. WE ARE FACED WITH MISOGYNY RIGHT NOW IN OUR COMMUNITY. EVEN IN OUR POLITICAL SPHERE, BECAUSE THIS [COMES] OUT OF A POLITICAL SPHERE THAT’S IN THE UNITED STATES. IT WAS VERY MUCH AN ANSWER TO DONALD TRUMP. THIS IS HOW THIS MARCH STARTED BUT I THINK, FOR US, IT WAS, ‘YEAH, OKAY, WE REALLY DON’T APPRECIATE IT WHEREVER IT HAPPENS, BUT LOCALLY, WE HAVE SOME REALLY SERIOUS ISSUES.’” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND PHOTOGRAPHS FROM THE 2017 WOMEN’S MARCH IN LETHBRIDGE, PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE P20170012000-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20170012000
Acquisition Date
2017-03
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
CAMPAIGN SIGN
Date Range From
2012
Date Range To
2015
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, COROPLAST, PAPER
Catalogue Number
P20150036000
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
CAMPAIGN SIGN
Date Range From
2012
Date Range To
2015
Materials
WOOD, COROPLAST, PAPER
No. Pieces
1
Height
151.7
Length
122.5
Width
6.5
Description
SIGN. WOODEN FRAME, COROPLAST SIGN, COVERED IN CRAFT PAPER. STENCILED ONTO PAPER, HORIZONTALLY ACROSS SIGN: “GREAT JOB SHANNON + SUPPORTERS!” HANDWRITTEN, VERTICALLY, TO THE RIGHT OF THE EXCLAMATION POINT: “GO SHANNON”. SEVERAL DOODLES ALL OVER SIGN, ESPECIALLY ABOVE AND BELOW “GREAT”. COLOURS INCLUDE YELLOW, GREEN, BLACK, FLORESCENT ORANGE, AND FLORESCENT PINK. FACE WITH PINK HAIR AND BLACK EARRINGS ON LEFT SIDE OF SIGN. GREEN PAINTERS TAPE AND FOUR CLEAR HEADED PUSH PINS HOLD CRAFT PAPER ON COROPLAST SIGN AND WOODEN FRAME. SCREW WITH A PIECE OF WIRE WRAPPED AROUND IT ON TOP CENTRE OF SIGN. WOODEN LEGS COME TO A POINT AND BOTH LEGS ARE DIRTY: THE LEFT LEG HAS DIRT APPROXIMATELY 17CM UP THE LEG, WHILE THE RIGHT HAS APPROXIMATELY 28CM OF DIRT UP THE LEG. COROPLAST CAMPAIGN SIGN VISIBLE ON REVERSE IS PRIMARILY ORANGE, WITH DARK GREEN. “ELECT SHANNON PHILLIPS ALBERTANDP.CA” AND “ALBERTA’S NDP” IN WHITE LETTERING, WITH BLACK SHADOW EFFECT. GOOD CONDITION. HANDWRITING AND DOODLES ARE VERY FADED, ESPECIALLY THE FLORESCENT ORANGE AND PINK. PAPER IS RIPPED ALONG THE BOTTOM OF THE SIGN, WHERE IT MEETS THE WOODEN FRAME.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
POLITICS
History
THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM AN INTERVIEW CONDUCTED BY JANE EDMUNDSON WITH JAMES MCDOWELL IN DECEMBER 2015, THE SELF-DESCRIBED SIGN PERSON FOR SHANNON PHILLIP’S 2015 PROVINCIAL ELECTION CAMPAIGN. JAMES DESCRIBED HIS ROLE WITH THE CAMPAIGN: “I WAS IN CHARGE OF KINDA THE SIGN CREW AND MAKING SURE THAT WE GOT UP ALL THE SIGN REQUESTS THAT PEOPLE BROUGHT IN AND THEN ON THE PUBLIC PROPERTIES TOWARDS THE END OF THE CAMPAIGN.” JAMES ALSO ASSISTED WITH SHANNON’S 2012 ELECTION CAMPAIGN, WHICH IS WHERE THIS SIGN ORIGINATES FROM. IN DESCRIBING THE SIGN AND THE DETAILS BEHIND ITS CREATION, JAMES HAD THE FOLLOWING TO SAY: “SO THE SIGN IS ACTUALLY COVERED WITH PAPER AND BRAD[‘S] …CHILDREN…IN 2012 TOWARDS THE END OF THE CAMPAIGN WROTE ON IT AND JUST SAID, YOU KNOW, ‘CONGRATULATIONS SHANNON AND TEAM.’” HE CONTINUED: “SO, IT WAS DONE BY KIDS; AND WHEN I WAS CLEANING UP [SIGNS] IN 2012, IT WAS ACTUALLY ON THEIR LAWN…THEY ARE ON 6TH AVENUE BY LONDON [ROAD] MARKET SO THEY HAVE A GOOD LITTLE LOCATION THERE THAT A LOT OF PEOPLE SEE. SO THEY WERE JUST THANKING EVERYONE FOR THEIR HARD WORK BACK IN 2012. AND EVEN THOUGH WE DIDN’T WIN THERE HAD BEEN A LOT OF GOOD LEGWORK DONE. SHANNON BUILT A REALLY GOOD BASE AND THE COMMUNITY WAS EXCITED FOR HER SO IT WAS REALLY NEAT THAT BRAD’S CHILDREN DID THIS TO THANK SHANNON AND EVERYONE THAT HELPED OUT. SO I GRABBED THAT SIGN, THREW IT IN MY TRUCK WITH THE REST, AND AS WE WERE CLEANING UP I WENT, “WELL, WE’RE NOT GONNA TAKE IT APART”. LIKE IT WAS JUST ONE OF THOSE SIGNS THAT – LET’S JUST KEEP THIS WHOLE. I COULD HAVE JUST RIPPED THE PAPER OFF AND THROWN IT OUT BUT IT SEEMED…IMPORTANT TO KEEP ‘CAUSE I KNEW SHE’D RUN AGAIN.” JAMES EXPLAINED HIS MOTIVATION TO KEEP THE SIGN: “I THINK ONE OF THE REASONS I KEPT IT WAS ‘CAUSE IT WAS DONE BY CHILDREN, IT WAS UNIQUE AND IT WAS A ‘THANK YOU’, BECAUSE PART OF DOING SIGNS, WE ACTUALLY DEAL WITH A LOT OF VANDALISM, A LOT OF WRECKED SIGNS DAILY. SO THIS WAS A NICE CHANGE OF PEOPLE NOT DESTROYING A SIGN BUT ENHANCING A SIGN AND THE BOWER CHILDREN DID IT, SO IT WAS REALLY GREAT.” JAMES EXPLAINED WHERE THIS SIGN, AND OTHERS, WERE STORED BETWEEN THE 2012 AND 2015 CAMPAIGNS: THEY WERE STORED BY “JACQUELINE PREYDE AND HER PARTNER, MICHAEL STINGL. THEY HAVE A GARAGE AND THEY WERE STORED THERE … WE HAD SMALL, LAWN-SIZED SIGNS AND THEN WE HAD MEDIUM SIZE AND THEN WE HAD THE LARGE, YOU KNOW, KINDA 3 X 5 FOOT SIGNS – SO DIFFERENT SIZES. IT’S INTERESTING TO STORE THEM ALL BUT WE ARE NO LONGER USING JACQUELINE’S GARAGE. LISA LAMBERT HAS FOUND US A SHED WHERE WE’RE STORING THE LAST ROUND ‘CAUSE JACQUELINE’S GARAGE WAS GREAT BUT IT WAS ACTUALLY UP A SET OF STAIRS INTO AN ATTIC AND JUST REALLY ‘NOT FUN’. THE BIG SIGNS – THE STRUCTURE FOR THEM IS STORED UP THERE RIGHT NOW BUT I DON’T THINK THERE’S ANY, MARIA’S OR SHANNON’S SIGNS, IN JACQUELINE’S GARAGE AT THE MOMENT.” JAMES INDICATED THAT THE CAMPAIGN SIGNS COME FROM A CENTRAL LOCATION: “I THINK THEY ALL GO/ORDER OUT OF THE SAME COMPANY. I THINK IT’S ACTUALLY A SPECIFIC COMPANY THAT THE NDP USE ‘CAUSE IT’S A UNIONIZED PRINTING COMPANY – STICKING WITH THEIR ROOTS THAT WAY.” HE EXPLAINED THAT SOME SIGNS WERE RE-USED FROM THE 2012 CAMPAIGN BUT “THEY DIDN’T HAVE THE RACHEL NOTLEY LOGO ON THE OLD ONES, SO THEY WERE LACKING. SO WE TRIED TO USE THOSE EARLY IN THE CAMPAIGN BUT THEN WE DEFINITELY GOT INTO THE NEW LOOK. AND WE DID HAVE TO ORDER MORE.” WORKING WITH THE SIGNS WAS A PHYSICAL JOB, AS JAMES EXPLAINED: “PUTTING THE SIGNS TOGETHER IS A LOT OF REPETITIVE ACTION WITH THE DRILL GUN AND SCREWS. AND THEN, YEAH, HOPPING IN AND OUT OF A TRUCK AND POUNDING THEM IN. ASSEMBLING THE BIG SIGNS, YOU KNOW, TOOK A BIT TO POUND THE STAKES IN. IT’S VERY WINDY HERE IN LETHBRIDGE, AS ANYONE WHO WILL BE LISTENING TO THIS PROBABLY KNOWS, SO WE REALLY HAD TO ANCHOR THEM DOWN; SO THERE WAS SOME PHYSICAL WORK TO POUND REBAR STAKES INTO THE GROUND. IT WAS ACTUALLY HARDER PROBABLY REMOVING THEM AFTER THEY’D BEEN IN FOR 3-4 WEEKS MAYBE.” HE CONTINUED: “IT TOOK US A WEEK TO GATHER THEM UP AND THEN, EVEN THEN, A COUPLE OF WEEKS AFTER THAT PEOPLE WOULD, ‘HEY, I’VE GOT A SIGN STILL.’” JAMES ALSO INDICATED THAT SOME PEOPLE CHOSE TO KEEP THE SIGNS AS A SOUVENIR: “I WAS ACTUALLY TAKING SOME OFF LAWNS AND PEOPLE WOULD RUN OUT AND GO, ‘NO, I WANT TO KEEP THAT.’ IT’S LIKE, ‘OK, HERE YOU GO.’ RIGHT? A LOT OF PEOPLE WERE REALLY WANTED TO KEEP THE, YOU KNOW, ‘CAUSE WELL, NDP VICTORY IN LETHBRIDGE – FIRST TIME - HUGE.” JANE ASKED JAMES HOW THE 2015 CAMPAIGN DIFFERED FROM 2012: “CERTAINLY THE MOMENTUM. I MEAN SHANNON HAD BUILT A REALLY GOOD BASE IN 2012; HAD DONE A LOT OF GREAT WORK AND THAT MOMENTUM JUST SEEMED TO CARRY. THE CAMPAIGN TEAM THEMSELVES, SHANNON AND ALL THE DOOR KNOCKERS, NEVER QUIT. I THINK FROM 2012 THEY KEPT OUT THERE - SO WE JUST HAD LOTS OF SUPPORT. IT WAS HARD TO KEEP UP WITH SIGNS. I’VE NEVER SEEN SO MANY NDP SIGNS GO UP IN LETHBRIDGE. IT WAS LIKE WOW! I’VE LIVED HERE FOR 30 YEARS NOW AND, YOU KNOW, IT’S ALWAYS BEEN A ‘BLUE’ CONSERVATIVE AREA SO IT WAS SO NICE TO SEE THAT PEOPLE WERE, YOU KNOW, WANTING TO EMBRACE A DIFFERENT PHILOSOPHY, I GUESS, AND ROAD. SO, YEAH, MOMENTUM WAS HUGE. JUST THE NUMBER OF REQUESTS DAILY WAS INCREDIBLE. SO WE PROBABLY PUT UP CLOSE TO 2,500 SIGNS IN THE SECOND CAMPAIGN COMPARED TO WELL, YOU KNOW, DOUBLED WHAT WE DID IN 2012.” JAMES NOT ONLY ASSISTED WITH SHANNON’S CAMPAIGN, HE ALSO HELPED OUT IN THE EAST LETHBRIDGE RIDING: “I HELPED OUT A BIT. I ACTUALLY VOTE EAST, I LIVE IN EAST, SO NO, I DID HELP OUT MARIA [FITZPATRICK] WHEN I COULD. YOU KNOW, NOT NEAR AS MUCH ‘CAUSE SHANNON – SHE CAME TO ME AND ASKED ME IF I WOULD DO THIS IN 2015 AND I SAID, “YES, I’D TAKE THAT PART ON.” BUT I TRIED TO LEND A HAND TO EAST [CAMPAIGN TOO] WHEN I COULD. YOU KNOW, JUST EVEN DRIVING AROUND IF I SAW A BROKEN SIGN I’D GO FIX IT ... WE SORT OF GOT CAUGHT UP WITH SHANNON’S AND I KNOW MARIA WAS NEEDING HELP SO I SPENT A COUPLE DAYS JUST TRYING TO GET THEM CAUGHT UP.” SHANNON’S VICTORY PARTY WAS HELD AT THE GALT MUSEUM. JAMES DESCRIBED THE EVENING: “WELL, IT WAS JUST FUN. IT WAS EXCITING BECAUSE THE PLACE WAS PACKED. I’VE NEVER SEEN THAT MANY PEOPLE AT AN ELECTION PARTY FOR THE NDP IN LETHBRIDGE. SO, JUST THE EXCITEMENT. I THINK, YOU KNOW, GOING INTO IT, WE WERE REALLY CONFIDENT WE WERE GONNA WIN BUT THEN THE FACT THAT MARIA WON TOO - THAT LETHBRIDGE WENT COMPLETELY NDP WAS INCREDIBLE. SO YEAH, IT WAS JUST UNPRECEDENTED. I THINK WE WERE ALL A LITTLE STUNNED BECAUSE EVEN AS WE SAW WHAT WAS HAPPENING PROVINCIALLY, NOBODY PREDICTED THAT ... THERE WAS A LITTLE BIT OF SHOCK AND AWE.” JAMES TRANSPORTED THE 2012-DECORATED SIGN TO THE GALT MUSEUM FOR SHANNON’S PARTY ON THE 2015 ELECTION NIGHT. ADDED JAMES: “I CAME OVER, I DON’T KNOW, 2 O’CLOCK IN THE AFTERNOON AND MADE 3 LITTLE TOWERS WITH HER SMALLER SIGNS – HER LAWN SIGNS – AND MADE THESE TOWERS THAT WE PUT IN THE ROOM AND THEN I HAD HUNG ON TO THIS SIGN FROM THE 2012 CAMPAIGN. IT WAS STORED, I THINK I STORED IT AT JACQUELINE’S, BUT I KNEW I HAD THAT AND I JUST FELT THAT IT NEEDED TO COME OVER AGAIN SO I THREW IT IN MY TRUCK AND I BROUGHT IT HERE.” JAMES CONTINUED, DESCRIBING THE MOOD OF THE ELECTION NIGHT PARTY: “OH WELL, JUST ELATION. I MEAN, JUST EVERYONE WAS SO HAPPY AND ... LIKE I SAID, [IT] SHOCKED EVERYBODY. IT TOOK ME A DAY OR TWO TO REALIZE WE’D WON. IN FACT, WE WERE IN THE [CAMPAIGN] OFFICE, I THINK THE NEXT DAY OR A COUPLE OF DAYS LATER KINDA PACKING UP THE OFFICE…, AND KEITH MCLAUGHLIN, SHANNON’S OFFICIAL CAMPAIGN MANAGER, WAS SAYING, ‘OH, WHERE ARE WE GOING TO PUT THIS? SHANNON REALLY DOESN’T WANT TO TAKE IT TO HER HOUSE.’ AND I SAID, ‘WELL, WE COULD PUT IT OVER IN THE STORAGE SHED AND YOU CAN PICK IT UP, YOU KNOW, NEXT TIME WE RUN.’ AND KEITH GOES, ‘JAMES, REMEMBER WE WON. WE’RE GONNA HAVE AN OFFICE.’ AND I WENT, ‘OH, YEAH.’ SO REALLY, I THINK THE ELECTION PARTY WAS PARTLY THAT – IT WAS JUST KINDA LIKE, 'PINCH ME. DID THIS REALLY HAPPEN?'” ON DECEMBER 16TH, 2016, MUSEUM TECH KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE HONOURABLE SHANNON PHILLIPS, MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT AND PARKS AND MLA WEST FOR THE GOVERNMENT OF ALBERTA. ON THE SIGN SPECIFICALLY, MINISTER PHILLIPS STATED: “THIS SIGN WAS MADE BY TWO KIDS WHO WOULD HAVE BEEN, I DON’T KNOW ABOUT 8 AND 10, 7 AND 9...THEY MADE [IT] IN 2012. SO 2012’S CAMPAIGN, WE WORKED VERY, VERY HARD. WE BEGAN KNOCKING ON DOORS IN THE FALL OF 2011. AND ONE OF THE THINGS THAT YOU DO WHEN YOU ARE A GROWING NDP CAMPAIGN IS THAT YOU MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A REALLY ROBUST SIGN PRESENCE. IT’S A FOUNDATIONAL ELEMENT OF THE STRATEGY … YOU GO ABOUT IN ORDER TO SORT OF “SURGICALLY”… THE PLAY BOOK THAT WE FOLLOW IS THE “TRIED AND TRUE NEW DEMOCRAT” THE WAY TO DO THINGS ACROSS THE COUNTRY. AND SO WE DID THAT AND OF COURSE YOU ARE CANVASSING IN YOUR GOOD AREAS AND YOUR MAIN DRAG FIRST AND YOU REALLY FOCUS ON GETTING YOUR SIGNS OUT...AND SO I WAS VERY PLEASED WHEN I FOUND [THE FAMILY THAT DECORATED THIS SIGN] ON THE CORNER OF 6TH AVENUE RIGHT BESIDE LONDON ROAD [MARKET] NEAR A BIG YELLOW HOUSE. AND THEY, OF COURSE, GAVE ME A LARGE SIGN LOCATION, WHICH, AS A CANDIDATE YOU REALLY WANT AND THAT WAS GOOD--CORNER OR HIGH VISIBILITY LARGE SIGN LOCATION SO THIS WAS ONE OF THEM…AND THEN WE GREW THE PARTY’S PRESENCE IN THIS AREA [IN 2012] AND ESTABLISHED LETHBRIDGE WEST TO THE NEXT LEVEL - AND I WAS DRIVING DOWN 6TH AVENUE THE DAY AFTER [THE CAMPAIGN] AND MOST OF THE SIGN PULLING HAD BEEN DONE BY THE NEXT DAY BUT THEY HAD LEFT THIS ONE UP FOR A COUPLE OF DAYS BECAUSE THE KIDS HAD GONE OUT AND HAD MADE A KIND OF CONGRATULATORY SIGN AND WE WERE ABLE TO SEE THAT. S0 APPARENTLY THEN, IT WAS KEPT. SO THEN IT TRAVELLED TO THE 2015 ELECTION NIGHT PARTY.” SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FULL TRANSCRIPTS OF INTERVIEWS CONDUCTED WITH JAMES MCDOWELL AND THE HONOURABLE SHANNON PHILLIPS.
Catalogue Number
P20150036000
Acquisition Date
2015-12
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
APPLE COSTUME HEADPIECE
Date Range From
1975
Date Range To
1976
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
FABRIC, BATTING
Catalogue Number
P20160005000
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
APPLE COSTUME HEADPIECE
Date Range From
1975
Date Range To
1976
Materials
FABRIC, BATTING
No. Pieces
1
Height
37
Width
16.5
Description
COSTUME HEAD COVER MIMICKING AN APPLE STEM. HEAD COVER MADE OUT OF YELLOW, RIBBED FABRIC IN A BALACLAVA-STYLE WITH CIRCULAR FACE HOLE WITH STRETCH ELASTIC AROUND DIAMETER. BOTTOM EDGE IS UNHEMMED, EXCEPT FOR BACK CENTER PANEL. GREEN FELT ATTACHMENTS AS LEAVES AND BROWN STRETCHY MATERIAL COVERING STEM SHAPED OBJECT ATOP HEAD PIECE. "ANINE' STITCHED IN RED THREAD ON THE INSIDE BACK HEM. CONDITION: YELLOW FABRIC DULLED IN COLOUR. SLIGHT FRAYING NEAR HEAD PIECE'S EDGES. HOLE IN BACK SEAM.
Subjects
CLOTHING-HEADWEAR
Historical Association
LEISURE
POLITICS
History
THIS ARTIFACT IS AN APPLE COSTUME HEAR COVER. ACCORDING TO INFORMATION PROVIDED BY THE DONOR, ANINE VONKEMAN, UPON DONATION IT WAS “WORN BY THE DONOR ON A PARADE FLOAT IN BENTHUIZEN, THE NETHERLANDS, WHERE SHE LIVED AT THE TIME. [IT WAS] MADE BY THE DONOR’S MOTHER, TRUDY VONKEMAN, AND PART OF A COSTUME DEPICTING THE DONOR AS AN APPLE. THE DONOR’S CHEEKS PAINTED RED. THE PARADE TOOK PLACE AROUND 1975-1976. THE DONOR MOVED WITH HER FAMILY TO CANADA ON 6 NOVEMBER 1981. MANY OF THE FAMILY’S POSSESSIONS WERE PACKED IN A HURRY FOR THE MOVE, INCLUDING THE COSTUME HEAD COVER.” THIS ARTIFACT WAS DONATED TO THE GALT MUSEUM & ARCHIVES AFTER BEING FEATURED IN THE GALT’S EXHIBITION CURATED BY WENDY AITKENS TITLED, "CHANGING PLACES: IMMIGRATION & DIVERSITY," WHICH RAN FROM 31 OCTOBER 2015 TO 17 JANUARY 2016. INFORMATION ON THE TEXT PANEL IN THAT EXHIBIT STATED THAT THE PARADE THAT IT WAS WORN FOR WAS CELEBRATING THE DUTCH QUEEN’S BIRTHDAY. IT ALSO STATES, “THE HAT MADE IT INTO THE SHIPPING CONTAINER, WHICH BROUGHT THE VONKEMAN FAMILY’S BELONGINGS FROM HOLLAND TO CANADA… THE REST OF THE COSTUME DIDN’T MAKE IT INTO THE CONTAINER.” A TEXT PANEL IN THE “CHANGING PLACES” EXHIBIT EXPLAINED: “AVAILABLE FARMLAND WAS LIMITED IN HOLLAND AFTER THE END OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR, SO [THE PARENTS OF] WIM VONKEMAN (THE DONOR’S FATHER) AND THEIR LARGE FAMILY IMMIGRATED TO SOUTHWESTERN ALBERTA IN THE EARLY 1950S, WHERE THE FAMILY WORKED IN THE SUGAR BEET FIELDS BEFORE BRANCHING OUT. EVENTUALLY WIM’S PARENTS STARTED MORNINGSTAR DAIRY. WIM REMAINED IN THE NETHERLANDS WHERE HE WORKED WITH THE NAVY [AND] MARRIED TRUDY… THEY HAD THREE CHILDREN: ANINE, ALWIN AND HERWIN. IN 1979, WIM AND TRUDY BROUGHT THEIR CHILDREN TO VISIT FAMILY HERE AND WHEN THEY RETURNED HOME THE TWO BOYS TALKED OF MOVING TO CANADA WHEN THEY FINISHED SCHOOL… DETERMINED THAT HER FAMILY WOULDN’T BE SEPARATED, TRUDY SUGGESTED THEY ALL GO TOGETHER. WIM’S BROTHER JOHN AGREED TO SPONSOR THE FAMILY AND WHEN THE LETTER OF ACCEPTANCE ARRIVED THEY QUICKLY PACKED UP THEIR BELONGINGS IN A SHIPPING CONTAINER… IN NOVEMBER 1981, WIM’S FAMILY – ALONG WITH AN AIREDALE TERRIER, A CAT, AND A GUINEA PIG – MOVED INTO THE VONKEMAN DAIRY FARM HOUSE IN IRON SPRINGS. UNFORTUNATELY, BOTH CANADA AND THE NETHERLANDS WERE EXPERIENCING A RECESSION SO SELLING THE HOUSE IN HOLLAND TOOK TIME AND JOBS HERE WERE DIFFICULT TO FIND. WIM WORKED ON THE MORNINGSTAR DAIRY FARM WITH HIS BROTHER JOHN… THE CHILDREN STARTED SCHOOL RIGHT AWAY AND THE TWO OLDER KIDS EXPANDED THE ENGLISH THEY HAD LEARNED IN THEIR DUTCH SCHOOLS. HERWIN HAD NOT LEARNED ANY ENGLISH AS HE HAD NOT STARTED HIS SCHOOLING BUT HE VERY QUICKLY CAUGHT UP. WIM AND TRUDY KNEW DUTCH, GERMAN, AND ENGLISH, BUT TRUDY CARRIED A DICTIONARY WITH HER AND READ THE KIDS’ SCHOOL BOOKS TO IMPROVE HER ENGLISH. WIM STARTED A HOUSE-PAINTING BUSINESS [AND WORKED AS A] MANAGER FOR A COMPANY… THE FAMILY MOVED INTO PICTURE BUTTE. HE AND OTHER DUTCH NEWCOMERS STARTED THE DUTCH CANADIAN CLUB AND THE KIDS JOINED THE 4H CLUB.” ACCORDING TO INFORMATION PROVIDED ABOUT THE FAMILY IN THE RECORD P20150005000, THE DONOR’S FATHER – WIM VONKEMAN – WAS BORN IN THE NETHERLANDS IN 1929. AFTER IMMIGRATING TO CANADA WITH HIS FAMILY IN 1981, THEY SETTLED IN THE PICTURE BUTTE AREA. VONKEMAN WAS INSTRUMENTAL IN THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE DUTCH CANADIAN CLUB, AND WAS ACTIVE WITH THE GROUP UNTIL HIS DEATH IN 2004. ON JANUARY 21, 2015 COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE DONOR’S MOTHER, TRUDY VONKEMAN, ABOUT A COSTUME SHE DONATED IN 2015 (P20150005000). SHE EXPLAINED: “MY HUSBAND’S FAMILY WENT [TO CANADA] IN 1952 – HE WAS THE ELDEST SON AND HAD A NICE JOB IN HOLLAND, SO HE STAYED BEHIND. THEN WE MET AND MARRIED AND HAD KIDS, AND IN 1979 WE WENT ON HOLIDAYS [IN CANADA] WITH THE KIDS FOR FOUR WEEKS… THEY ENJOYED IT VERY MUCH AND WHEN WE WERE BACK IN HOLLAND I HEARD MY TWO SONS [SAYING] ‘AFTER SCHOOL WE GO TO CANADA’… I SAID TO MY HUSBAND, ‘LET’S GO THEN AS A FAMILY, I DON’T WANT TO SPLIT THE FAMILY LATER’… THERE WAS A BIG FAMILY WAITING [IN CANADA] AND MY PARENTS DIED [IN 1979 AND 1980] SO THERE WAS NO REASON NOT TO DO IT [WHILE] WE WERE STILL YOUNG ENOUGH. I WAS 47 AND MY HUSBAND WAS 51, BUT STILL WE MADE IT. THE WHOLE FAMILY LOOKED AFTER US [AND] THERE WAS A JOB ON THE FARM [OUTSIDE PICTURE BUTTE]... WE DIDN’T NEED TO IMMIGRATE BECAUSE IT WAS EVEN BETTER IN HOLLAND THAN WHEN WE CAME HERE. STILL, ONE OF THE LAST THINGS MY HUSBAND SAID TO ME [WAS] ‘WE HAD LESS MONEY HERE IN CANADA, BUT I’M GLAD WE WENT.’” ACCORDING TO INFORMATION PROVIDED FOR THE ARTIFACT P20150022003, THE DONOR ANINE VONKEMAN WAS BORN IN HOLLAND IN 1967. ABOUT HER IMMIGRATION TO CANADA SHE STATED, “IN 1979 WE CAME HERE AND WE HAD A FANTASTIC TIME AND WE TRAVELLED AROUND IN CAMPERS AND WENT INTO B.C. AND SAW THE MOUNTAINS. IT WAS AWESOME… WE KNEW THAT WE LIKED CANADA AND WE LIKED OUR COUSINS AND IT WAS A NEW ADVENTURE, BUT IT’S PRETTY PERMANENT YOU KNOW.” COMING TO CANADA WAS, ACCORDING TO VONKEMAN, A “HUGE CULTURE SHOCK” AS SHE WAS USED TO BEING ABLE TO BIKE EVERYWHERE IN HOLLAND. SHE EXPLAINS THAT LIVING ON AN ISOLATED FARM WAS CHALLENGING AND “WITH GRAVEL ROADS … [I] COULD NOT REALLY CYCLE ANYWHERE. I TRIED … I HAD GROWN UP ON MY BIKE REALLY, AND LIVED IN A SMALL COMMUNITY … AND THEN HAVING TO TAKE THE SCHOOL BUS AND LEARN THE LANGUAGE [WAS ALSO A CULTURE SHOCK].” VONKEMAN MAINTAINS A STRONG CONNECTION TO HER DUTCH HERITAGE AND EXPLAINS THAT WHEN SHE WAS YOUNGER SHE “REMEMBER[S] … CONSCIOUSLY NOT GETTING MY CANADIAN CITIZENSHIP BECAUSE I WANTED TO GO BACK TO HOLLAND AND LIVE THERE FOR A WHILE AND WORK THERE AND THAT STAYED WITH ME THROUGH THE U OF L.” SHE CONTINUED: “I HAVE NOT GOTTEN MY CANADIAN CITIZENSHIP YET BECAUSE IT’S VERY EXPENSIVE AT THIS POINT … AND THAT WAS THE OTHER THING THAT THE RULES CHANGED, I CAN’T REMEMBER WHEN, BUT NOW THAT I MARRIED A CANADIAN, I CAN HAVE DUAL CITIZENSHIP … THE RULES WERE CHANGED SO THAT IF YOU WERE 18 WITHIN FIVE YEARS OF IMMIGRATING YOU ARE ALLOWED TO MAINTAIN YOUR DUTCH CITIZENSHIP IF YOU APPLY FOR CANADIAN CITIZENSHIP.” VONKEMAN CAME TO LETHBRIDGE IN 1986 TO ATTEND THE UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE (U OF L) AND STARTED WORKING AT THE SOUTHERN ALBERTA ART GALLERY (SAAG) IN 1992, TWO WEEKS AFTER GRADUATING FROM THE U OF L. SHE BEGAN AS THE PUBLIC PROGRAMS COORDINATOR AND “WAS DOING MEDIA STUFF, VOLUNTEER COORDINATION, SPECIAL EVENTS COORDINATION AND STARTED THE ART AUCTION.” BY 2004, VONKEMAN WAS WORKING AT THE GALT AS MARKETING/COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER. PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING EXHIBIT TEXT PANEL INFORMATION. SEE PERMANENT FILES FOR P20150005000 AND P20150022000 FOR FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTS AND ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ON THE VONKEMAN FAMILY.
Catalogue Number
P20160005000
Acquisition Date
2015-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail

7 records – page 1 of 1.