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Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1985
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
METAL, PAINT
Catalogue Number
P20160044006
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1985
Materials
METAL, PAINT
No. Pieces
1
Height
3.7
Length
5
Width
0.6
Description
SILVER AND BLACK OVAL BROOCH; 3 RAISED SILVER METAL LINES (LIKE A STAFF ON SHEET MUSIC) HORIZONTALLY ACROSS BROOCH WITH A SILVER SIXTEENTH NOTE SET ON TOP OF THE LINES. BACKGROUND IS COATED IN MATTE BLACK VARNISH. GOOD CONDITION: BLACK PAINT PRESENT ON SILVER METAL IN A COUPLE OF SPOTS. SLIGHT LOSS OF VARNISH IN SOME PLACES ON FRONT OF BROOCH.
Subjects
ADORNMENT
Historical Association
LEISURE
PERSONAL CARE
History
THE LATE ALICE PEARL HUMMEL (13 JUNE 1922 – 7 APRIL 2016) PERFORMED AS PART OF THE “ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA” ALONGSIDE HER SISTERS – FLORENCE JEANNETTE MCINTOSH (MAY 1917 – 18 MARCH 1999), MARIE EVELYN POPSON (C.1921 - 8 MARCH 2008) AND RUTH GINZER (C. 1926 - D. 2016). THE FOUR DAUGHTERS WERE BORN TO PARENTS, MARTIN EDWARD ANDERSON AND IDA JOHANNA ANDERSON (NEE JOHNSON). THE BAND WAS A FAMILY AFFAIR THAT SAW GREAT SUCCESS IN THE SOUTHERN ALBERTA REGION. ALICE’S DAUGHTERS, ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL, HONOURED THEIR MOTHER’S WISHES TO DONATE A NUMBER OF HER EFFECTS FROM HER TIME WITH LETHBRIDGE BAND TO THE MUSEUM. THE ANDERSON SISTERS HAD MATCHING UNIFORMS THEY WOULD OFTEN WEAR FOR PERFORMANCES, WHICH INCLUDED PIECES SUCH AS THIS BROOCH. IN 2016 DECEMBER 16, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE DAUGHTERS ABOUT THE DONATION. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM THAT EXCHANGE. RUTH EXPLAINED, “IF THEY WERE DRESSED ALIKE, THEY USUALLY HAD THE SAME JEWELRY AS WELL.” BOTH RUTH AND ELEANOR RECALLED THE BROOCH BEING WORN BY THEIR MOTHER UP UNTIL THE 1980S. THE JEWELRY THE SISTERS WORE DURING THE PERFORMANCES “SHOWED A LOT OF USE,” RUTH EXPLAINED. “OTHER ONES REPLACED [OLDER PAIRS AS THEY WORE OUT] AND THEY WERE JUST SET ASIDE.” “ALL [THE SISTERS] LOVED TO DRESS UP. THERE WERE SOME OUTFITS THEY HAD THAT ACTUALLY HAVE GONE DOWN THROUGH FAMILY MEMBERS. HER GRANDDAUGHTER HAS A BEAUTIFUL FORMAL THAT [EACH SISTER] HAD. WHEN THEY DRESSED UP, THEY [REALLY] DRESSED UP. IT WAS WITH BRILLIANT, SHINY, BEAUTIFUL JEWELRY,” RUTH REMEMBERED. THE FOLLOWING IS A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AS TOLD BY DONORS ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW: “[THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS] THE LONGEST RUNNING GROUP AT WATERTON LAKES PAVILION … [WHERE THEY PLAYED] FOR FIVE YEARS STRAIGHT,” ELEANOR EXPLAINED, “IN ADDITION TO DOING ALL KINDS OF OTHER THINGS, THEY WERE CONSTANTLY TRAVELLING [AND] WE HAVE THE RECORDINGS OF THAT.” RUTH ADDED, “THEY WERE ORIGINALLY FROM MONITOR (SASK). IN THE DIRTY 30S, WHEN THINGS GOT BAD FOR A LOT OF FARMS, THEY FOUND A WAY TO HAVE MUSIC LESSONS AND…PLAY FOR LOCAL DANCES. [ULTIMATELY, THE FAMILY] DECIDED TO LEAVE THE FARM AND HEADED OUT IN THE DIRECTION OF LETHBRIDGE (VIA DRUMHELLER). IT WAS TOUGH TIMES FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE IN THE 30S IN ALBERTA, BUT THE GIRLS, WITH THE TALENT THEY HAD, … HAD A WAY OUT…THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY. AND THEN THE ORCHESTRA REALLY CAME OUT OF THAT...” THE OBITUARY OF DONORS’ GRANDFATHER, MARTIN ANDERSON, (PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD, 1981) STATES THE FAMILY ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940. “THEY WERE SERIOUS MUSICIANS - VERY HUMBLE AND VERY QUIET,” RUTH CONTINUED, “[AS FAR AS PROMOTING THE BAND,] THAT WAS MORE GRANDPA’S JOB. WHEN IT CAME TO MUSIC, IT WAS A GIFT THEY PASSED ON - IN THE LATE ‘30S, ‘40S AND INTO THE ‘50S A BIT – [AND] IT WAS SOMETHING THEY FELT REALLY PRIVILEGED TO BE ABLE TO CONTRIBUTE IN THEIR OWN COMMUNITIES. [DURING] THE WAR YEARS, [THEY PLAYED FOR] THE ARMY BASES THAT WERE ALL CLOSE HERE AND [THEY WERE] A PART OF THAT HISTORY.” “[THEY WERE] ON THE ROAD 6 DAYS A WEEK [WITH THEIR CAR AND TRAILER]… PLAYING NOT JUST IN LETHBRIDGE [BUT] FAR REACHING OVER IN B.C., THE NORTHERN STATES, AND QUITE FAR NORTH IN ALBERTA. SO THEY WERE A REAL PART OF THINGS AND WORKED REAL HARD. I THINK IT’S AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE MUSIC HISTORY IN ALBERTA. THEY WERE, AFTER THE ANDERSON SISTERS [BAND WAS FINISHED], PROUD TO TAKE [MUSIC] INTO THE COMMUNITIES WHERE THEY WERE TEACHERS AND STILL PERFORMERS EVEN PAST THE FOUR OF THEM BEING TOGETHER.” WHEN ASKED ABOUT THEIR PERSONAL MEMORIES OF THE SISTERS PERFORMING TOGETHER, RUTH ANSWERED, “WELL ELEANOR WOULD HAVE BEEN A TODDLER, MYSELF AS WELL, THE LAST FEW TIMES THAT THEY PERFORMED AS THE ANDERSON SISTERS IN THAT ERA. BUT GROWING UP THROUGH THE YEARS, THERE WASN’T A TIME WHEN WE GOT TOGETHER AS A FAMILY WHERE WE DIDN’T HAVE A LOT OF MUSIC. THEY WOULD PLAY FOR US [AND] THEY WERE CALLED BACK SOMETIMES TO PERFORM AT COMMUNITY EVENTS… THE LAST ONE THAT I RECALL WAS SOMETHING IN GRANUM FOR AN ELKS 5OTH ANNIVERSARY IN GRANUM…THAT WAS THE LAST TIME PUBLICLY I REMEMBER.” THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM A HISTORY PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD IN 24 MAY 2003 TITLED, “SISTER ACT: SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S SWINGIN’ ANDERSON SISTERS WERE ALL THE RAGE DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR.” “IT WAS THE ERA OF SWUNG, OF MUSIC WITH MEMORABLE LYRICS, AND OF DANCE. IT WAS ALSO THE TIME OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR AND THE HEYDAY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS, AND LITERALLY EVERY TOWN IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WAS SWINGING AND SWAYING TO THE SOUNDS OF FLORENCE, MARIE, ALICE, AND RUTH." "DUBBED THE FOUR MAIDS OF MELODY BY CJOC RADIO…" THE ARTICLE CONTINUED, "[THE SISTERS] WERE THE TOAST OF SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S DANCE HALLS." INTERVIEWED FOR THE ARTICLE WAS ONE OF THE SISTERS, MARIE POPSON. SHE WAS QUOTED, "WE PLAYED THE TRIANON A LOT, THE OLD BUCKET OF BLOOD. THEY CALLED IT THAT BECAUSE IT WAS DURING THE WAR AND THERE WERE A LOT OF FIGHTS. PRIOR TO AND AFTER THE TRIANON WAS OK, BUT IT WAS REAL LIVELY DURING THE WAR… THE CROWDS [THERE] WERE SO LARGE THEY WERE AFRAID THE FLOOR WOULD WEAKEN… THE DANCE FLOOR WAS ON THE SECOND STORY OF THE BUILDING." THE ARTICLE EXPLAINED, "FLORENCE WAS THE ELDEST OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND AS SUCH WAS THE BAND’S LEADER. [SHE] PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND THE PIANO. MARIE… PLAYED THE PIANO AND ALICE PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND CLARINET. RUTH, 'THE BABY,' … PLAYED THE DRUMS, CLARINET AND TRUMPET." THE ARTICLE READS, "'RUTH STARTED PLAYING THE DRUMS AT AGE 11 AND LATER SHE COULD HANDLE THE DRUMMING WITH HER FEET AND PLAY THE TRUMPET AT THE SAME TIME FOR SOME OF OUR NUMBERS,’ SAYS MARIE WITH A TWIRL OF THE HAND. ‘FLO AND ALICE WERE OUR MAIN SINGERS AND I MADE UP THE TRIO SOMETIMES. RUTH DIDN’T SING. WHEN WE SANG AS A TRIO RUTH WOULD PLAY THE PIANO. ALICE WOULD ALSO SING SOLO. WE PLAYED ALL THE POPULAR MUSIC OF THE DAY AND OLD-TIME MUSIC AS WELL… MY SISTERS COULD ALSO PLAY THAT FAST-PACED SQUARE DANCE MUSIC ON THE SAX, AND THAT WAS SOMETHING. WE PLAYED WALTZES, POLKAS AND EVERYTHING… YOU NAME IT, WE PLAYED IT... OUR THEME SONG WAS BREEZING ALONG WITH THE BREEZE BUT MY FAVOURITE HAD TO BE SIDE BY SIDE, WHICH WE WERE AS A GROUP. WE WERE VERY CLOSE.'" THAT ARTICLE STATES THAT MARTIN AND IDA HAD EIGHT DAUGHTERS, IN FACT, BUT ONLY FOUR LIVED TO BECOME TEENAGERS. THE FOUR SURVIVING SISTERS BEGAN THEIR MUSICAL EDUCATION AT AN EARLY AGE, ALL BEGINNING WITH PIANO. THEY BEGAN PLAYING FOR VARIOUS TYPES OF EVENTS NEAR MONITOR, WHERE THEY WERE BORN. WHILE FLORENCE WAS WITH THE ALL GIRLS BAND IN CALGARY, THE THREE YOUNGER SISTERS FORMED THEIR OWN ORCHESTRA, MAKING THEIR DEBUT IN 1937. THE FOLLOWING YEAR, AFTER FLORENCE’S RETURN, THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS FORMED. UPON ARRIVING IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940, THEY AUDITIONED FOR THE CJOC RADIO STATION. THE ARTICLE STATES, “FOUR DAYS LATER THEY WERE ON THE AIR, LIVE, ON THE CHRISTMAS SHOPPER PROGRAM HEARD THREE TIMES A WEEK. THEY WERE ALSO ON THE AIR MONDAY NIGHTS FROM 9:15 TO 9:30 PM.” A NOTE THAT CAME WITH THE DONATION SAYS THE WEEKLY SHOW WITH CJOC WAS “BROADCAST LIVE ‘FROM HIGH ATOP THE MARQUIS HOTEL.’” BACK IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW AT THE MUSEUM, ALICE’S DAUGHTER ELEANOR COMMENTS ON THE BAND’S LEGACY. “I VOLUNTEER AT THE HOSPITAL [AND PLAY THE PIANO]. I USUALLY HAVE SENIORS INVOLVED THERE… AND WHEN I MENTION MY MOM’S NAME OR MY AUNT’S NAME, THEY REMEMBER DANCING TO THE ANDERSON SISTERS. SO, YOU KNOW, EVEN IN THIS DAY AND AGE, [PEOPLE] REMEMBER HOW MUCH FUN THEY HAD. [IT SHOWS] HOW RESPECTED THEY WERE AND I FIND THAT [BACKGROUND] JUST THRILLING.” “[MUSIC] WAS THEIR LIVELIHOOD,” RUTH ILLUMINATED, “SO [IT] WAS DRIVING THEM [THROUGH] TOUGH TIMES (SUCH AS THE DEPRESSION IN ALBERTA). THE GIRLS TOGETHER [WITH] THE TALENT THEY HAD, HAD A WAY OUT, WHERE A LOT OF OTHER PEOPLE HAD SOME BIGGER STRUGGLES. AND IT WAS THE TALENT IN THEM BEING TOGETHER. THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY.” PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES AND CLIPPINGS ABOUT THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND THEIR SHOWS, AND FAMILY OBITUARIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160044006
Acquisition Date
2016-12
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
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
Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1985
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
METAL, RHINESTONE
Catalogue Number
P20160044005
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1941
Date Range To
1985
Materials
METAL, RHINESTONE
No. Pieces
2
Height
2.1
Length
2.5
Width
0.9
Description
A-B: PAIR OF GOLD-COLOURED COSTUME JEWELRY EARRINGS. CRESENT-SHAPED, CURVING OUT TO FRONT. WHITE RHINESTONES SET IN GOLD-COLOURED METAL VERTICALLY DOWN CURVE OF EARRING. SCREW-ON CLASP AT BACK. FAIR TO GOOD CONDITION: BOTTOM RHINESTONE MISSING OFF COMPONENT A AND SECOND FROM THE TOP RHINESTONE MISSING OFF B. METAL MODERATELY WORN/SCUFFED.
Subjects
ADORNMENT
Historical Association
LEISURE
PERSONAL CARE
History
THE LATE ALICE PEARL HUMMEL (13 JUNE 1922 – 7 APRIL 2016) PERFORMED AS PART OF THE “ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA” ALONGSIDE HER SISTERS – FLORENCE JEANNETTE MCINTOSH (MAY 1917 – 18 MARCH 1999), MARIE EVELYN POPSON (C.1921 - 8 MARCH 2008) AND RUTH GINZER (C. 1926 - D. 2016). THE FOUR DAUGHTERS WERE BORN TO PARENTS, MARTIN EDWARD ANDERSON AND IDA JOHANNA ANDERSON (NEE JOHNSON). THE BAND WAS A FAMILY AFFAIR THAT SAW GREAT SUCCESS IN THE SOUTHERN ALBERTA REGION. ALICE’S DAUGHTERS, ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL, HONOURED THEIR MOTHER’S WISHES TO DONATE A NUMBER OF HER EFFECTS FROM HER TIME WITH LETHBRIDGE BAND TO THE MUSEUM. IN 2016 DECEMBER 16, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED THE DAUGHTERS ABOUT THE DONATION. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION HAS BEEN EXTRACTED FROM THAT EXCHANGE. OF THESE EARRINGS, RUTH RECALLED, “I KNOW THAT THESE WERE WORN WHEN THEY WERE PERFORMING. IF THEY WERE DRESSED ALIKE, THEY USUALLY HAD THE SAME JEWELRY AS WELL.” BOTH RUTH AND ELEANOR RECALLED THE EARRINGS BEING WORN BY THEIR MOTHER UP UNTIL THE 1980S. THE JEWELRY THE SISTERS WORE DURING THE PERFORMANCES “SHOWED A LOT OF USE,” RUTH EXPLAINED. “OTHER ONES REPLACED [OLDER PAIRS AS THEY WORE OUT] AND THEY WERE JUST SET ASIDE.” “ALL [THE SISTERS] LOVED TO DRESS UP. THERE WERE SOME OUTFITS THEY HAD THAT ACTUALLY HAVE GONE DOWN THROUGH FAMILY MEMBERS. HER GRANDDAUGHTER HAS A BEAUTIFUL FORMAL THAT [EACH SISTER] HAD. WHEN THEY DRESSED UP, THEY [REALLY] DRESSED UP. IT WAS WITH BRILLIANT, SHINY, BEAUTIFUL JEWELRY,” RUTH REMEMBERED. THE FOLLOWING IS A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AS TOLD BY DONORS ELEANOR SMITH AND RUTH HUMMEL IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW: “[THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS] THE LONGEST RUNNING GROUP AT WATERTON LAKES PAVILION … [WHERE THEY PLAYED] FOR FIVE YEARS STRAIGHT,” ELEANOR EXPLAINED, “IN ADDITION TO DOING ALL KINDS OF OTHER THINGS, THEY WERE CONSTANTLY TRAVELLING [AND] WE HAVE THE RECORDINGS OF THAT.” RUTH ADDED, “THEY WERE ORIGINALLY FROM MONITOR (SASK). IN THE DIRTY 30S, WHEN THINGS GOT BAD FOR A LOT OF FARMS, THEY FOUND A WAY TO HAVE MUSIC LESSONS AND…PLAY FOR LOCAL DANCES. [ULTIMATELY, THE FAMILY] DECIDED TO LEAVE THE FARM AND HEADED OUT IN THE DIRECTION OF LETHBRIDGE (VIA DRUMHELLER). IT WAS TOUGH TIMES FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE IN THE 30S IN ALBERTA, BUT THE GIRLS, WITH THE TALENT THEY HAD, … HAD A WAY OUT…THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY. AND THEN THE ORCHESTRA REALLY CAME OUT OF THAT...” THE OBITUARY OF DONORS’ GRANDFATHER, MARTIN ANDERSON, (PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD, 1981) STATES THE FAMILY ARRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940. “THEY WERE SERIOUS MUSICIANS - VERY HUMBLE AND VERY QUIET,” RUTH CONTINUED, “[AS FAR AS PROMOTING THE BAND,] THAT WAS MORE GRANDPA’S JOB. WHEN IT CAME TO MUSIC, IT WAS A GIFT THEY PASSED ON - IN THE LATE ‘30S, ‘40S AND INTO THE ‘50S A BIT – [AND] IT WAS SOMETHING THEY FELT REALLY PRIVILEGED TO BE ABLE TO CONTRIBUTE IN THEIR OWN COMMUNITIES. [DURING] THE WAR YEARS, [THEY PLAYED FOR] THE ARMY BASES THAT WERE ALL CLOSE HERE AND [THEY WERE] A PART OF THAT HISTORY.” “[THEY WERE] ON THE ROAD 6 DAYS A WEEK [WITH THEIR CAR AND TRAILER]… PLAYING NOT JUST IN LETHBRIDGE [BUT] FAR REACHING OVER IN B.C., THE NORTHERN STATES, AND QUITE FAR NORTH IN ALBERTA. SO THEY WERE A REAL PART OF THINGS AND WORKED REAL HARD. I THINK IT’S AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE MUSIC HISTORY IN ALBERTA. THEY WERE, AFTER THE ANDERSON SISTERS [BAND WAS FINISHED], PROUD TO TAKE [MUSIC] INTO THE COMMUNITIES WHERE THEY WERE TEACHERS AND STILL PERFORMERS EVEN PAST THE FOUR OF THEM BEING TOGETHER.” WHEN ASKED ABOUT THEIR PERSONAL MEMORIES OF THE SISTERS PERFORMING TOGETHER, RUTH ANSWERED, “WELL ELEANOR WOULD HAVE BEEN A TODDLER, MYSELF AS WELL, THE LAST FEW TIMES THAT THEY PERFORMED AS THE ANDERSON SISTERS IN THAT ERA. BUT GROWING UP THROUGH THE YEARS, THERE WASN’T A TIME WHEN WE GOT TOGETHER AS A FAMILY WHERE WE DIDN’T HAVE A LOT OF MUSIC. THEY WOULD PLAY FOR US [AND] THEY WERE CALLED BACK SOMETIMES TO PERFORM AT COMMUNITY EVENTS… THE LAST ONE THAT I RECALL WAS SOMETHING IN GRANUM FOR AN ELKS 5OTH ANNIVERSARY IN GRANUM…THAT WAS THE LAST TIME PUBLICLY I REMEMBER.” THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION COMES FROM A HISTORY PUBLISHED IN THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD IN 24 MAY 2003 TITLED, “SISTER ACT: SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S SWINGIN’ ANDERSON SISTERS WERE ALL THE RAGE DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR.” “IT WAS THE ERA OF SWUNG, OF MUSIC WITH MEMORABLE LYRICS, AND OF DANCE. IT WAS ALSO THE TIME OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR AND THE HEYDAY OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS, AND LITERALLY EVERY TOWN IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WAS SWINGING AND SWAYING TO THE SOUNDS OF FLORENCE, MARIE, ALICE, AND RUTH." "DUBBED THE FOUR MAIDS OF MELODY BY CJOC RADIO…" THE ARTICLE CONTINUED, "[THE SISTERS] WERE THE TOAST OF SOUTHERN ALBERTA’S DANCE HALLS." INTERVIEWED FOR THE ARTICLE WAS ONE OF THE SISTERS, MARIE POPSON. SHE WAS QUOTED, "WE PLAYED THE TRIANON A LOT, THE OLD BUCKET OF BLOOD. THEY CALLED IT THAT BECAUSE IT WAS DURING THE WAR AND THERE WERE A LOT OF FIGHTS. PRIOR TO AND AFTER THE TRIANON WAS OK, BUT IT WAS REAL LIVELY DURING THE WAR… THE CROWDS [THERE] WERE SO LARGE THEY WERE AFRAID THE FLOOR WOULD WEAKEN… THE DANCE FLOOR WAS ON THE SECOND STORY OF THE BUILDING." THE ARTICLE EXPLAINED, "FLORENCE WAS THE ELDEST OF THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND AS SUCH WAS THE BAND’S LEADER. [SHE] PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND THE PIANO. MARIE… PLAYED THE PIANO AND ALICE PLAYED THE SAXOPHONE AND CLARINET. RUTH, 'THE BABY,' … PLAYED THE DRUMS, CLARINET AND TRUMPET." THE ARTICLE READS, "'RUTH STARTED PLAYING THE DRUMS AT AGE 11 AND LATER SHE COULD HANDLE THE DRUMMING WITH HER FEET AND PLAY THE TRUMPET AT THE SAME TIME FOR SOME OF OUR NUMBERS,’ SAYS MARIE WITH A TWIRL OF THE HAND. ‘FLO AND ALICE WERE OUR MAIN SINGERS AND I MADE UP THE TRIO SOMETIMES. RUTH DIDN’T SING. WHEN WE SANG AS A TRIO RUTH WOULD PLAY THE PIANO. ALICE WOULD ALSO SING SOLO. WE PLAYED ALL THE POPULAR MUSIC OF THE DAY AND OLD-TIME MUSIC AS WELL… MY SISTERS COULD ALSO PLAY THAT FAST-PACED SQUARE DANCE MUSIC ON THE SAX, AND THAT WAS SOMETHING. WE PLAYED WALTZES, POLKAS AND EVERYTHING… YOU NAME IT, WE PLAYED IT... OUR THEME SONG WAS BREEZING ALONG WITH THE BREEZE BUT MY FAVOURITE HAD TO BE SIDE BY SIDE, WHICH WE WERE AS A GROUP. WE WERE VERY CLOSE.'" THAT ARTICLE STATES THAT MARTIN AND IDA HAD EIGHT DAUGHTERS, IN FACT, BUT ONLY FOUR LIVED TO BECOME TEENAGERS. THE FOUR SURVIVING SISTERS BEGAN THEIR MUSICAL EDUCATION AT AN EARLY AGE, ALL BEGINNING WITH PIANO. THEY BEGAN PLAYING FOR VARIOUS TYPES OF EVENTS NEAR MONITOR, WHERE THEY WERE BORN. WHILE FLORENCE WAS WITH THE ALL GIRLS BAND IN CALGARY, THE THREE YOUNGER SISTERS FORMED THEIR OWN ORCHESTRA, MAKING THEIR DEBUT IN 1937. THE FOLLOWING YEAR, AFTER FLORENCE’S RETURN, THE ANDERSON SISTERS ORCHESTRA WAS FORMED. UPON ARRIVING IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1940, THEY AUDITIONED FOR THE CJOC RADIO STATION. THE ARTICLE STATES, “FOUR DAYS LATER THEY WERE ON THE AIR, LIVE, ON THE CHRISTMAS SHOPPER PROGRAM HEARD THREE TIMES A WEEK. THEY WERE ALSO ON THE AIR MONDAY NIGHTS FROM 9:15 TO 9:30 PM.” A NOTE THAT CAME WITH THE DONATION SAYS THE WEEKLY SHOW WITH CJOC WAS “BROADCAST LIVE ‘FROM HIGH ATOP THE MARQUIS HOTEL.’” BACK IN THE 2016 INTERVIEW AT THE MUSEUM, ALICE’S DAUGHTER ELEANOR COMMENTS ON THE BAND’S LEGACY. “I VOLUNTEER AT THE HOSPITAL [AND PLAY THE PIANO]. I USUALLY HAVE SENIORS INVOLVED THERE… AND WHEN I MENTION MY MOM’S NAME OR MY AUNT’S NAME, THEY REMEMBER DANCING TO THE ANDERSON SISTERS. SO, YOU KNOW, EVEN IN THIS DAY AND AGE, [PEOPLE] REMEMBER HOW MUCH FUN THEY HAD. [IT SHOWS] HOW RESPECTED THEY WERE AND I FIND THAT [BACKGROUND] JUST THRILLING.” “[MUSIC] WAS THEIR LIVELIHOOD,” RUTH ILLUMINATED, “SO [IT] WAS DRIVING THEM [THROUGH] TOUGH TIMES (SUCH AS THE DEPRESSION IN ALBERTA). THE GIRLS TOGETHER [WITH] THE TALENT THEY HAD, HAD A WAY OUT, WHERE A LOT OF OTHER PEOPLE HAD SOME BIGGER STRUGGLES. AND IT WAS THE TALENT IN THEM BEING TOGETHER. THEY COULD DO A LOT WHEN THEY STUCK TOGETHER AS A FAMILY.” PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES AND CLIPPINGS ABOUT THE ANDERSON SISTERS AND THEIR SHOWS, AND FAMILY OBITUARIES.
Catalogue Number
P20160044005
Acquisition Date
2016-12
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1916
Date Range To
1920
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
IRON, STEEL
Catalogue Number
P20170034002
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1916
Date Range To
1920
Materials
IRON, STEEL
No. Pieces
1
Height
1.3
Diameter
2
Description
IRON RING WITH WIDE BLANK SQUARE FRONT. RING HAS NO MARKING ON FRONT OR INSIDE. RING BAND WIDENS AT SQUARE FRONT AND NARROWS INTO BAND. RING IS TARNISHED ON INSIDE AND OUTSIDE OF BAND; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
ADORNMENT
Historical Association
MILITARY
PERSONAL CARE
History
ON NOVEMBER 20, 2017, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED RITA BERLANDO REGARDING HER DONATION OF A GIFTED RING AND CRUCIFIX. BERLANDO WAS GIFTED THE OBJECTS FROM A PREVIOUS EMPLOYER, GLADSTONE VIRUTE, OF LETHBRIDGE. ON THE RING, BERLANDO RECALLED, “[THEY WERE FASHIONED FROM A BELL IN FRANCE OR BELGIUM] I HAVE NO IDEA…HOW THEY BECAME IN HIS POSSESSION. BUT TO HIM, HE MUST HAVE TREASURED THEM BECAUSE HE KNEW OF THE CHURCH THAT WAS BOMBED AND THE BELL THAT IT CAME FROM…WHEN HE GAVE THEM TO ME, I WAS INTRIGUED TO KNOW MORE ABOUT IT BUT HE DIDN’T HAVE TOO MUCH HISTORY ON THEM. NOT TO ME, ANYWAY.” ON GLADSTONE VIRTUE’S MILITARY SERVICE, BERLANDO NOTED, ““I DON’T THINK HE WANTED TO TALK ABOUT IT. I THINK HE HAD A PAST THAT HE WOULD RATHER NOT DISCUSS. IT WAS ALWAYS STRICTLY BUSINESS. IT WAS NEVER SITTING THERE AND DISCUSSING WHAT HIS LIFE WAS OR ANYTHING OF THAT NATURE.” “I DIDN’T KNOW TOO MUCH ABOUT HIM BUT I KNOW THAT HE WAS A MAN THAT PEOPLE RESPECTED, AND FOR HIM TO RESPECT ME, I THINK THAT WAS AN HONOUR.” “I WOULD LOVE TO KNOW HOW THESE TWO LITTLE ITEMS BECAME IN HIS POSSESSION AND WHERE WAS HE WHEN THEY WERE GIVEN TO HIM AND WAS HE PRESENT AT SOME TIME…I JUST FIND THAT HE MUST HAVE HAD THEM IN HIS POSSESSION FOR SOME TIME.” BERLANDO ELABORATED ON HOW THE RING CAME INTO HER POSSESSION, “[THIS ITEM] MEANS AN AWFUL LOT TO ME BECAUSE IT WAS GIVEN AT THE TIME THAT I WAS EMPLOYED WITH THE LAW FIRM OF VIRTUE AND COMPANY. IT WAS MR. GLADSTONE VIRTUE, SEMI-RETIRED WHEN I WAS EMPLOYED THERE, THAT HAD ASKED THAT I GO INTO HIS ROOM AND TAKE LETTERS [AND] NOTES FOR LETTERS THAT HE WISHED TO HAVE TYPED. I WAS HIRED AS A RECEPTIONIST, NOT FEELING THAT I WOULD HAVE THE RESPONSIBILITY AS A SECRETARY, SO I INFORMED HIM THAT I COULD NOT DO THIS DUTY. HE ASKED THAT I GET HIS SECRETARY TO TAKE HIS NOTES. AS THE MONTHS WENT BY, HE BECAME VERY – AND I USE THE WORD ‘ATTACHED’ – BECAUSE HE WOULD ALSO ASK ME TO DO SERVICES FOR HIM, WHICH I WOULD HAVE TO GO TO THE ROYAL BANK TO DO HIS BANKING [AND] HIS INVESTMENTS. WHEN HE WAS NO LONGER TO BE WITH THE FIRM, HE HANDED ME A LITTLE GIFT. THAT GIFT CONSIST[ED] OF A RING AND A CROSS THAT WAS MADE FROM A BELL OF A CHURCH THAT WAS BOMBED IN THE FIRST WAR. THAT MEANT AN AWFUL LOT TO ME SO I HAVE TREASURED IT CONTINUALLY AND [THE GIFTING] HAS TO DATE BACK TO [1965].” “[MR GLADSTONE VIRTURE] MUST HAVE KEPT IT AS A REMEMBRANCE FROM SOMEWHERE IN THE PAST THAT HE HAD THAT HE DID NOT [WANT TO] LEAVE IT TO HIS FAMILY, BUT [WITH] ME. THEREFORE, I DEFINITELY FELT THAT [IT] WAS A GIFT THAT I SHOULD TREASURE AND I HAVE TREASURED, AND I HAVE KEPT IT UNDER LOCK AND KEY. EVEN IN THE TRANSITION OF DOWNSIZING, I LIVED IN FEAR THAT FOR SOME REASON, THERE WERE ITEMS THAT I NO LONGER HAVE. I KEPT THINKING, ‘OH, DEAR LORD, I BETTER MAKE SURE I STILL HAVE THAT GIFT FROM MR. VIRTUE.’ WHEN I FOUND IT, THAT’S WHEN I REALLY SERIOUSLY THOUGHT I HAD TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT THEM.” “AT [THE TIME I WAS HIRED], FINANCES WERE DIFFICULT IN THE FAMILY HOME SO I APPLIED FOR THE POSITION OF RECEPTIONIST. THE POSITION REQUIRED NOT ONLY [WORKING] AS A RECEPTIONIST BUT AS A BOOKKEEPER AND AN OFFICE MANAGER. I HESITATED ONCE I WAS INFORMED OF THIS RESPONSIBILITY, BUT I UNDERTOOK THE POSITION AND DID ALL OF THE REQUIREMENTS THAT WAS EXPECTED OF ME. THE LAW FIRM AT THAT TIME CONSISTED OF CHARLES VIRTUE, WILLIAM RUSSELL, MR. GORDON AND THEN LATER ON, THERE WAS VAUGHN HEMBROFF THAT BECAME PARTNER AND GLENN MORRISON. IT’S ALWAYS MEANT A LOT OF THE PAST HISTORY OF MY LIFE. THINKING HOW I WAS HONOURED TO BE WITH THAT FIRM, THESE LITTLE ITEMS THAT WERE GIVEN TO ME JUST EVEN MEANT ALL THE MORE.” “BUT I REMEMBER DISTINCTLY THAT THEY SAID I COULDN’T LEAVE [IN 1964] UNTIL I HIRED SOMEONE THAT COULD REPLACE ME. THEY GAVE ME THE RESPONSIBILITY OF FINDING SOMEONE. MY INTENTION AT THAT TIME WAS TO LEAVE AND MOVE TO MONTREAL. I WAS LIMITED IN THE TIME THAT THIS RESPONSIBILITY WAS GIVEN, AND I DID SUGGEST A PARTICULAR PERSON BUT SHE ONLY WORKED THERE FOR A SHORT TIME AND THEY DIDN’T FEEL THAT SHE QUALIFIED AND COULD HANDLE THE WORK THAT I HAD TAKEN ON. THEN I HAD TO CONTINUE TO STAY UNTIL THEY FELT COMFORTABLE THAT THERE WAS SOMEONE THAT COULD REPLACE ME AND IT MUST HAVE BEEN 1965 [THAT I LEFT].” “EACH ONE OF THE LAWYERS HAD THEIR OWN PRIVATE SECRETARIES. ONE WOMAN IN PARTICULAR…MARY, WAS EXCELLENT IN TAKING LETTERS AND WAS AN EXCELLENT LAW SECRETARY, BUT COULD NOT DO THE BOOKKEEPING. I UNDERTOOK TO DO THE BOOKKEEPING FOR THE SECRETARIES AND THEREFORE, THERE HAD TO BE, AT LEAST FOUR EXTRA GIRLS AS SECRETARIES THERE. AS THEY INCREASED WITH STAFF, THEY WOULD ALSO HIRE MORE SECRETARIES.” ON MR. GLADSTONE VIRTUE, BERLANDO STATED, “I ADMIRED HIM BECAUSE HE DEMANDED RESPECT, HE DEMANDED PROFESSIONALISM. HE WAS VERY SERIOUS ABOUT HIS CLIENTS AND THEY HAD TO BE TREATED LIKE IT WAS AN HONOUR TO HAVE HIM AS THEIR LAWYER. HE WAS NOT A TALL MAN IN STATURE BUT HE STOOD OUT AS A SPECIAL PERSON…BUT HIS CLIENTS CAME FIRST. HE WOULD NEVER HESITATE TO MAKE SURE THAT IF HE HAD A CLIENT OR HAD AN APPOINTMENT THAT I HAD TO MAKE SURE THEY WERE TAKEN CARE OF. HE USED TO INVEST THROUGH THE ROYAL BANK AND HE WOULD HAVE ME GO DOWN AND MEET WITH THE MANAGER. [I WOULD] LET THEM KNOW THAT I WAS THERE ON BEHALF OF MR. VIRTUE AND PRESENT THEM WITH WHATEVER INFORMATION HE GAVE ME…THEY WERE TO TAKE CARE OF THAT. SO HE REALLY MADE ME HIS PERSONAL PERSON TO LOOK AFTER ALL OF HIS PRIVATE AFFAIRS, WHICH TO ME WAS AN HONOUR…EVEN THE LAWYERS HAD SO MUCH RESPECT FOR HIM. WHEN HE MADE A STATEMENT OR A COMMAND OR MADE INSTRUCTIONS FOR CHANGES, THEY WERE MADE AND THEY HAD TO BE ABIDED.” BERLANDO SPOKE ABOUT HER SENTIMENTS ON DONATING THE RING TO THE MUSEUM, NOTING, “AT THE AGE OF NINETY-ONE, WHICH I HAVE BEEN VERY FORTUNATE TO LIVE THIS LENGTH OF TIME, I HAVE TO TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION MANY ITEMS THAT I FEEL SHOULD BE INHERITED BY MY FAMILY…BUT NOT KNOWING THE IMPORTANCE OF THIS GIFT…[I WISH TO] LEAVE IT TO NO ONE OTHER THAN I FEEL THAT DESERVES TO HAVE IT, [WHICH] WOULD BE THE GALT MUSEUM. I DO WISH TO LEAVE IT TO SOMEONE THAT I THINK MAYBE COULD CARRY ON A LITTLE IMPORTANCE OF THE GIFT THAT WAS HANDED TO ME.” “I THINK THAT IT PUTS SUCH A TRUST IN ME, THAT I FEEL NOW, EVEN IN THE YEARS GONE BY, HOW I’VE ALWAYS WANTED SOMEONE, OR ANYONE THAT HAD ANY CONNECTIONS WITH ME, THAT THEY COULD TRUST ME. THAT I WOULD NEVER WANT TO HURT ANYONE AND I WOULD WANT TO CONTINUE TO HELP PEOPLE. WHEN I HEAR PEOPLE IN DISCUSSION OR IN COMMENTS THAT THEY CAN RECALL THINGS THAT I HAVE DONE FOR THEM THAT I CAN’T REMEMBER…I GUESS IT’S JUST MY NATURE TO BE THAT TYPE OF PERSON. [BUT] IF SOMEONE LIKE MR. VIRTUE COULD TRUST ME, AND THEN CLIENTS CAN TRUST ME, I THINK IT INSTILLED [A] TRUST THAT I’LL CARRY TO MY GRAVE.” ABNER GLADSTONE VIRTUE GRADUATED FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA IN 1913 AND BEGAN HIS CAREER IN LAW SHORTLY BEFORE THE START OF THE FIRST WORLD WAR. IN 1915, VIRTUE ENLISTED IN THE LETHBRIDGE MILITIA UNIT, THE 25TH FIELD ARTILLERY. UPON ITS FORMATION, VIRTUE ENLISTED AS A LIEUTENANT WITH THE LETHBRIDGE 61ST BATTERY THAT JOINED FRONT LINES IN FRANCE IN 1917. IN 1916, THE CARENCY CHURCH’S STEEPLE FELL FROM GERMAN GUN-FIRE. THE BELL FROM THE STEEPLE WAS RELATIVELY UNDAMAGED, AND MOVED TO BE BURIED IN VILLERS A ROIS FOR SAFETY. THE ARTILLERY BRIGADE OF THE 61ST BATTERY ARRIVED IN CARENCY, WHERE AMONGST THE CHURCH DEBRIS FRAGMENTS OF THE BELL WERE RETRIVED BY LETHBRIDGE FORCES. THE BATTERY FARRIER FASHIONED THE FRAGMENTS INTO SOUVENIRS THAT SOLDIERS RETURNED TO LETHBRIDGE WITH, INCLUDING GLADSTONE VIRTUE, WHO RETURNED TO LETHBRIDGE WITH A RING. AN ARTICLE FROM THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD PUBLISHED MARCH 24, 1931 ON THE FRONT PAGE REFERENCED "LIEUT. A.G. VIRTUE, WHO WAS IN CHARGE OF THE 61ST [ALBERTA BATTALION] WHEN IT WAS DEMOBILIZED, HAS ONE OF THE RINGS MADE FROM FRAGMENTS OF THE FAMOUS [CARENCY] BELL, SHOT FROM THE STEEPLE OF THE CHURCH BY GERMAN SHELL FIRE AND SHATTERED." VIRTUE RESUMED HIS LAW PRACTICE IN LETHBRIDGE FOLLOWING HIS RETUN FROM WAR, AND BECAME A SENIOR PARTNER IN THE FIRM OF VIRTUE, RUSSELL, MORGAN AND VIRTUE. THE BELL OF CARENCY CHURCH WAS RETRIEVED BY THE PARIS MUNICIPAL COUNCIL IN 1931, AND RETURNED TO THE CARENCY CHURCH. FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING ARTICLES ON THE BELL AND VIRTUE’S INVOLVEMENT FROM THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD, AND THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20170034001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20170034002
Acquisition Date
2017-11
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
OBSIDIAN CORE
Date Range From
4000BP
Date Range To
1700
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
OBSIDIAN
Catalogue Number
P20150027000
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
OBSIDIAN CORE
Date Range From
4000BP
Date Range To
1700
Materials
OBSIDIAN
No. Pieces
1
Height
8.5
Length
32.7
Width
24.7
Description
SHINY, BLACK OBSIDIAN ROCK. VARIOUS GROOVES AND FLAKE SCARS ON THE OVERALL SURFACE OF THE ROCK.
Subjects
MASONRY & STONEWORKING T&E
INDIGENOUS
Historical Association
ETHNOGRAPHIC
ARCHAEOLOGY
History
THIS OBSIDIAN ROCK WAS DONATED ON SEPTEMBER 16, 2015 BY NANCY BIGGERS IN MEMORY OF HER LATE PARENTS, BOYD AND MARY BIGGERS. IT WAS LOCATED ON THE FAMILY FARM BY BOYD BIGGERS. ACCORDING TO A STATEMENT GIVEN BY NANCY AT THE TIME OF DONATION, "... FARMERS NEED TO CLEAR THEIR LAND OF ... ROCKS IN ORDER TO PLANT AND HARVEST THEIR FIELDS. BOYD WAS DOING THIS ONE DAY (IN THE EARLY 1980S) AND CAME ACROSS A BEAUTIFUL SHINY BLACK ROCK. HE WAS IMPRESSED BY [ITS] COLOURING AND THE VARIOUS GROOVES, SO RATHER THAN THROWING IT ON TO THE PILE WITH THE OTHER ROCKS, HE DECIDED TO TAKE IT HOME. ... MARY, BEING A SCHOOL TEACHER, TOLD HIM THAT IT APPEARED TO BE OBSIDIAN, WHICH THE ABORIGINALS USED TO MAKE ARROWHEADS AND TOOLS. MARY RETIRED FROM TEACHING IN 1986 AND THUS BOYD DECIDED TO SELL THE FARM. THEY MOVED TO LETHBRIDGE ... [AND] THE OBSIDIAN CAME WITH THEM ... AS IT WAS A REMINDER OF THEIR FARM LIFE. IT WAS USED AS A DECORATIVE PIECE IN BOTH OF THE HOMES IN WHICH THEY LIVED IN LETHBRIDGE." ON SEPTEMBER 8, 2015, ARCHEOLOGIST, NEIL MIRAU, OF ARROW ARCHAEOLOGY LIMITED STATED VIA EMAIL THAT THE ROCK HAD BEEN BROUGHT TO THE AREA BY HUMANS AND THAT IT WAS RELATIVELY EASY TO DETERMINE THE SOURCE OF THE OBSIDIAN FROM ITS GENERAL APPEARANCE. HE WAS ALMOST CERTAIN THAT THIS PIECE OF OBSIDIAN CAME FROM THE OBSIDIAN CLIFFS IN WHAT IS NOW YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, WYOMING. HE WROTE, “OBSIDIAN DOES NOT OCCUR NATURALLY IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA AND REALLY THE ONLY WAY FOR IT TO GET HERE, ESPECIALLY THIS TYPE OF ROCK IS TO BE CARRIED BY HUMANS. OBSIDIAN ... WAS PRIZED BY PAST CULTURES AND IT MAKES VERY ATTRACTIVE AND VERY SHARP TOOLS AND PROJECTILE POINTS. THIS PARTICULAR PIECE HAS FLAKE SCARS SHOWING THAT IT WAS WORKED BY HUMANS. IT WAS LIKELY, GIVEN ITS ‘VALUE,’ CARRIED BY ITS OWNER TO FLAKE PIECES OFF EVERY ONCE IN AWHILE TO MAKE A NEW TOOL. OBSIDIAN IS ONE OF THE RARE TYPES OF STONE THAT IS CURATED BY PAST HUMANS, THAT IS, ALTHOUGH HEAVY, THEY WOULD HAVE CARRIED IT WITH THEM TO MAKE TOOLS WITH.” HE ALSO WROTE THAT OBSIDIAN FROM WYOMING THAT HAS BEEN FOUND IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA HAS ARRIVED “EITHER THROUGH TRADE OR BY LONG DISTANCE TRAVEL OF PEOPLE FROM HERE TO THERE AND RETURN," AND THAT THERE IS EVIDENCE OF BOTH METHODS. MIRAU INFERS THAT IT COULD HAVE BEEN DROPPED THERE THREE OR FOUR CENTURIES AGO, OR MANY THOUSANDS OF YEARS AGO. SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR COPY OF THE NANCY BIGGER’S INFORMATION, EMAIL TRANSCRIPTS, MAPS OF THE LOCATION OF THE BIGGERS’ FARM WHERE ARTIFACT WAS FOUND, AND A PHOTOGRAPH OF BOYD AND MARY BIGGERS.
Catalogue Number
P20150027000
Acquisition Date
2015-09
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail

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