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Date Range From
1950
Date Range To
1951
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
LEATHER, BRONZE
Catalogue Number
P20180026000
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1950
Date Range To
1951
Materials
LEATHER, BRONZE
No. Pieces
1
Length
76
Width
2
Description
DOUBLE-BUCKLED BROWN LEATHER BELT, FLOWER IN CENTER WITH FILIGREE DESIGN. TWO BUCKLES STAMPED “SOLID BRONZE.” 38 CM FROM BUCKLE TO BUCKLE ON ONE SIDE. BELT IS 2 CM IN WIDTH ON BACK AND MOST OF FRONT, FRONT CENTER DESIGN IS 7 CM AT WIDEST POINT. MINOR WEAR ON LEATHER AROUND BUCKLES FROM BENDING. FOUR BUCKLE HOLES ON EACH SIDE.
Subjects
ARMAMENT-ACCESSORY
CLOTHING-ACCESSORY
Historical Association
DOMESTIC
History
ON NOVEMBER 28, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED MIRIAM SMITH REGARDING SMITH’S DONATION OF THE LEATHER BELT. THE BELT WAS GIVEN TO HER BY A RESEARCH STATION CO-WORKER NAMED ALEC JOHNSON, WHO DID LEATHER WORK. DURING THE INTERVIEW, SMITH EXPLAINED THAT SHE DID SECRETARIAL WORK AT THE RESEARCH STATION, IN THE LATE 1940S TO EARLY 1950S, BEFORE SHE GOT MARRIED. SHE REMEMBERS JOHNSON FROM HER TIME THERE: “[AS] A TALL GOOD LOOKING RED HEADED FELLOW AND I USED TO THINK HE WAS PRETTY CUTE BUT ANYWAYS HE MADE ME THIS BELT.” SMITH SPOKE ABOUT THE TIMELINE OF JOHNSON MAKING THE BELT: “IT WOULD HAVE TO BE ’50, ’51 IN THAT AREA THERE BUT HE WAS DOING TOOL LEATHER AND IT WAS REALLY VERY NICE AND HE SHOWED ME AND I ASKED IF HE’D MAKE ME A BELT AND HE DID. HE DIDN’T EVEN CHARGE ME FOR IT.” SMITH SPOKE ABOUT HER WEAR OF THE BELT DURING THE INTERVIEW: “I WORE IT QUITE A LOT A LONG TIME AGO BUT BELTS USED TO BE THE IN THING BUT I DON’T, I DON’T, I GOT A DRAWER FULL OF BELTS AND I DON’T WEAR THEM.” DESPITE HER MORE RECENT INFREQUENT USAGE OF THE BELT, SMITH STATED THAT SHE KEPT IT BECAUSE SHE “JUST ALWAYS TREASURED IT BECAUSE IT WAS MADE FOR ME.”
Catalogue Number
P20180026000
Acquisition Date
2018-11
Collection
Museum
Less detail
Date Range From
1935
Date Range To
1950
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
CARDBOARD, INK
Catalogue Number
P20190002002
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1935
Date Range To
1950
Materials
CARDBOARD, INK
No. Pieces
2
Height
3
Length
6.8
Width
3.3
Description
A.CARDBOARD AMMUNITION BOX TOP, 6.8CM LONG X 3.3CM WIDE X 3CM TALL. BROWN CARDBOARD WITH PRINTED YELLOW AND BLUE LABELS ON TOP, BOTTOM, AND SIDES. TOP OF BOX HAS PRINTED TEXT “22 LONG RIFLE, SMOKELESS GREASED, CIL SUPER-CLEAN, MADE IN CANADA BY, CANADIAN INDUSTRIES LIMITED, “DOMINION” AMMUNITION DIVISION, MONTREAL, CANADA” WITH “CIL” LOGO AND IMAGE OF A BULLET ALONG TOP EDGE. FRONT OF BOX HAS BLUE TEXT ON YELLOW BACKGROUND, “THESE CARTRIDGES ARE PRIMED WITH “SUPER-CLEAN” NON-RUSTING PRIMING. IF THE RIFLE HAS FIRST BEEN THOROUGHLY CLEANED AND “DOMINION” “SUPER-CLEAN” .22’S ARE USED EXCLUSIVELY, THEY WILL NOT RUST OR CORRODE THE BORE.” BACK OF BOX HAS BLUE TEXT ON YELLOW BACKGROUND, “THESE .22” LONG-RIFLE “SUPER-CLEAN” GREASED CARTRIDGES HAVE BEEN SPECIALLY DEVELOPED FOR GAME AS WELL AS TARGET SHOOTING, AND WILL BE FOUND TO BE POWERFUL AND ACCURATE AND ALWAYS DEPENDABLE”. BOTTOM OF BOX HAS BLUE TEXT ON YELLOW BACKGROUND “MADE IN CANADA BY, CANADIAN LIMITED INDUSTRIES, “DOMINION” AMMUNITION DIVISION, MONTREAL, CANADA.” SIDE OPENING FLAP HAS BLUE TEXT AND “CIL” LOGO ON YELLOW BACKGROUND, “”SUPER-CLEAN”, .22 LONG RIFLE, 50 R.F., SMOKELESS, GREASED”. BOX HAS TORN AND MISSING OPENING FLAP ON LEFT SIDE; BOX HAS TEAR ON TOP IN UPPER-RIGHT CORNER; BOX EDGES ARE WORN AND BOX TOP IS CREASED AND DENTED; OVERALL GOOD CONDITION. B.CARDBOARD BASE OF BOX, 6.3CM LONG X 3CM WIDE X 2.8CM TALL. BROWN CARDBOARD BOX WITHOUT TOP; SIDES FOLDED INTO BOX CREATING BASE. BOX IS STAINED DOWN INSIDE FLAPS AND ON INSIDE BASE; TOP EDGES AND CORNERS ARE WORN; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
ARMAMENT-ACCESSORY
Historical Association
SAFETY SERVICES
History
ON JANUARY 10, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED JEAN BUCHANAN REGARDING HER DONATION OF A REVOLVER AND FIREARM ACCESSORIES. THE FIREARM WAS USED BY BUCHANAN’S FATHER, EDWARD ETTERSHANK BUCHANAN, DURING HIS CAREER WITH THE ALBERTA PROVINCIAL POLICE AND ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE. ON HER FATHER’S REVOLVER AND USE OF AMMUNITION, BUCHANAN RECALLED, “[MY DAD] USED [THE SMITH AND WESSON REVOLVER]…STARTING IN 1932, WITH THE RCMP, MAY BE WHEN HE GOT THAT GUN. HE HAD IT REGISTERED IN 1940, AND GETTING ANOTHER 5 YEARS REGISTRATION IT MUST HAVE BEEN 1935. [THE GUN] WAS HIS SIDEARM…HIS SERVICE WEAPON…HE HAD THAT ALL THE TIME…IT WOULD GO RIGHT ON HIS BELT THERE.” “[DAD KEPT THE GUN] IN [MY PARENTS’] BEDROOM. RIGHT ON THE BEDROOM CLOSET DOOR, RIGHT OPEN. I NEVER TOUCHED IT, BECAUSE HE HAD GIVEN ME MY TRAINING AND LET ME USE IT WHEN I WAS YOUNG. I HAD RESPECT FOR IT, AND I HAD NO SPECIAL CURIOSITY, WHICH IS A GOOD THING. [DAD KNEW I WAS] AN ADVENTUROUS PERSON, BUT I NEVER EVER TOUCHED IT, OUT OF COMPLETE RESPECT FOR DAD AND WHAT HE HAD THERE.” “ALL I CAN REMEMBER [IS HE HAD TWO HANDGUNS OR SIDEARMS]…HE DIDN’T GO OUT PRACTICING VERY MUCH; HE DIDN’T HAVE TO. HE COULD PASS HIS MARKSMANSHIP, AND THEN, EVERY TIME THERE WERE THINGS AT REGINA DEPOT TRAINING COURSES (UPGRADING, REFRESHER COURSES) THEY DID THEIR MARKSMANSHIP THERE, TOO. THEY WERE ALWAYS TESTED ON THEIR MARKSMANSHIP, AT REGINA DEPOT.” “I THINK [THE REVOLVER HAD] QUITE A BIT [OF MEANING TO MY DAD], BECAUSE HE HAD IT IN HIS HOUSE. IT WAS REALLY STRANGE BECAUSE I ASKED HIM WHERE IT WAS, WHEN HE SHOWED ME THE PAPERS, AND HE HAD IT IN A SHOE BOX IN HIS BEDROOM CLOSET. YOU DIDN’T HAVE TO HAVE GREAT [HIDING] PLACES FOR IT IN THOSE DAYS, BUT THAT’S WHERE HE KEPT IT. HE MADE SURE IT WAS THERE, AND HE KNEW WHERE IT WAS.” “[I HAVE NO] KNOWLEDGE ABOUT HIM HAVING TO FIRE THIS WEAPON…AT ANYONE. IF HE WOULD HAVE, HE WOULD HAVE FIRED TO MISS SOMEONE, JUST AS A WARNING SHOT. HE DEFINITELY WENT FOR WARNING SHOTS, BUT HE NEVER SHOT ANYBODY WITH IT." “[HE WOULD HAVE STOPPED CARRYING THE GUN] AT THE VERY END OF 1950, WHEN HE RETIRED FROM THE R.C.M.P.” “[I’VE HAD THE REVOLVER] SINCE 1998—THE PASSING OF MY FATHER, BECAUSE I WAS THE SOLE EXECUTRIX. IT WAS AUTOMATICALLY MY RESPONSIBILITY TO TAKE ALL OF HIS FIREARMS, IN MY POSSESSION.” “I WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR [THE CARE OF] IT, AND IT WAS A REAL KEEPSAKE. [THE GUN WAS] WAS VERY PERSONAL, BECAUSE I’M SURE [MY DAD] OWNED THAT EVEN BY BACK IN 1935, [WHEN] HE WAS IN WESTLOCK, IN CHARGE OF THE DETACHMENT THERE FOR 10 YEARS. IT WAS OF SENTIMENTAL VALUE BECAUSE HE TOOK ME OUT (I’M PRETTY SURE I WAS 8 YEARS OLD, WHEN HE HAD ME IN THE BACKYARD)—WE HAD FARMLAND AND FOREST—AND HE HAD A TARGET PRACTICE OUT THERE. HE HAD ME USE THAT FIREARM. HE SHOWED ME HOW TO USE IT, HOW TO AIM, AND HOW TO HANDLE IT SAFELY. I ALWAYS RESPECTED THAT, AND THAT WAS GOOD. THAT’S THE ORIGINAL HOLSTER FOR THAT GUN, WHICH YOU CAN SEE IS LOOPED, TO PUT ON HIS BELT. HE ALSO CARRIED A .32 COLT SEMI-AUTOMATIC.” “I’VE ALWAYS APPRECIATED REVOLVERS, AND RIFLES. IT’S NEVER BEEN ANYTHING THAT I THOUGHT ANY DANGER OF. YOU LEARN THE SAFETY, AND YOU TAKE YOUR COURSE. I HAVE MY COURSE DONE, AND I PASSED IT WITH FLYING COLORS. I HAD MY PERMIT TO HAVE IT. I HAVE TAKEN IT OUT, ON MY OWN ACREAGE, AND FIRED IT A BIT, BUT IT ISN’T SOMETHING I WANT TO DO. IT’S A SENTIMENTAL THING THAT I CAN NOW FEEL I’D LIKE TO HAVE IT IN YOUR MUSEUM. I KNOW IT’S NOW IN A SAFE PLACE, SO I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT EVER FALLING INTO THE WRONG HANDS. AND, IF I WANT TO COME AND VISIT IT, I CAN COME AND SEE IT.” ON JUNE 8, 2018, MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BUCHANAN REGARDING HER FATHER’S CAREER WITH THE ALBERTA PROVINCIAL POLICE AND ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE. BUCHANAN ELABORATED ON HER FATHER’S HISTORY, “[MY DAD WAS EDWARD BUCHANAN, WHO RETIRED AT THE RANK OF] SENIOR STAFF SERGEANT…HE RETIRED IN 1950 FROM THE [R.C.M.P].” “HE JOINED THE A.P.P. WHEN HE WAS TWENTY AND HE WAS STATIONED OUT NEAR ST. PAUL. IN ’21, HE MET MY MOTHER IN EDMONTON…BUT HE STAYED AT ST. PAUL AND THEN AFTER, HE GOT POSTED TO GRANDE PRAIRIE. HE WAS GOING TO GO TO GRANDE PRAIRIE BUT THEN IN ’22, THEY GOT MARRIED. A.P.P. HAD NO RESTRICTIONS ON THEIR MEMBERS GETTING MARRIED, LIKE THE R.C.M.P. HE DIDN’T HAVE TO WAIT TO GET MARRIED…THAT’S WHEN THEY WENT OUT TO BRAINARD.” “EVEN IN THE A.P.P., TO START WITH, HE HAD SOME SERVICE DOWN HERE AT THE LETHBRIDGE PRISON…BRINGING PRISONERS DOWN AND THEN MAYBE, AT THE VERY FIRST WINTER AS A ROOKIE, HE WAS ON JOB TO BE ON GUARD AT THE STATION. IT WASN’T LONG AND HE WAS SENT OUT TO ST. PAUL AND INTO MORE OF THE REAL POLICING.” “WHEN HE WAS IN THE A.P.P. [IN 1932] HE WAS THE TOP CLASS OF [THE] A.P.P. THAT AUTOMATICALLY WERE ACCEPTED INTO THE R.C.M.P. HE WAS PUT IN CHARGE, WHEN HE WAS IN THE A.P.P.—FIRST HE STARTED OUT IN CHARGE OF BRAINARD—HORSE LAKE—A LITTLE PLACE NEAR THE HORSE LAKE INDIAN RESERVATION. THEY CLOSED THAT DOWN AND TRANSFERRED HIM TO WEMBLEY, A LITTLE VILLAGE, AND HE WAS THE ONLY ONE IN CHARGE, THE ONLY OFFICER IN CHARGE OF WEMBLEY. THAT’S WHEN THAT 1932 [CHANGE] CAME ALONG AND HE JUST CHANGED THE SIGN UP THERE FROM A.P.P. TO R.C.M.P. AND WENT FROM THERE.” “IN ’32, IT WAS R.C.M.P. AND THAT STAYED R.C.M.P. UNTIL ’34. THEN HE WAS TRANSFERRED TO TAKE CHARGE OF THE WESTLOCK DETACHMENT WHICH WAS A BIG AREA. [THERE] WAS NO DETACHMENT IN BARRHEAD. HE HAD A HUGE AREA THERE TO COVER.” “[A.P.P. MEMBERS] WERE NOT AUTOMATICALLY TAKEN INTO THE R.C.M.P. THEY HAD THREE CATEGORIES THERE, OF THE A.P.P. MEMBERS…[THERE WERE] ONES THAT WERE NOT ACCEPTABLE, THAT THEY HADN’T DONE A VERY GOOD JOB IN THE A.P.P.; THEY SHOWED UP, GOOFIN’ AROUND, DOING THINGS THEY SHOULDN’T BE DOING. THEY WERE NOT ACCEPTABLE. THEN THERE [WERE THE ONES THAT] COULD BE GIVEN A LITTLE TRIAL RUN. THEY COULD APPLY. THEN THERE [WERE] ONES THAT COULD GET IN FOR A FULL YEAR AND THEN RE-APPLY. THEY’D BE ACCEPTED FOR A YEAR. THEN THERE’S THE TOP GRADE AND [THEY] WERE AUTOMATICALLY ACCEPTABLE. DAD WAS RIGHT UP THERE IN THAT TOP GRADE.” “A.P.P. MEMBERS WERE TRAINED BY THE NORTHWEST MOUNTED POLICE, NOT SOME GOOFBALLS THAT DIDN’T KNOW WHAT THEY WERE DOING. THESE WERE TRAINED BY THE BEST-TRAINED POLICE OFFICERS.” “ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER HANCOCK KNEW DAD REALLY WELL, HE’D EVEN BEEN IN THE A.P.P. HE CALLED DAD INTO THE OFFICE AND HE SAID, “BUCK, [DAD WAS EDWARD ETTERSHANK BUCHANAN BUT THEY CALLED HIM ‘BUCK’, A LOT] I WAS GOING TO SEND YOU DOWN TO TAKE CHARGE OF THE RED DEER DETACHMENT BUT I’VE HAD SO MUCH PROBLEM GETTING SOMEBODY TO GO DOWN TO TAKE THE LETHBRIDGE DETACHMENT…YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE, I THINK, THAT CAN HANDLE THE SITUATION WE’VE GOT DOWN THERE. THERE’S A LOT OF PROBLEMS AND I’M SURE YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE THAT CAN HANDLE IT. WILL YOU GO?” “[WE CAME DOWN HERE IN] ’44…I NEVER HAD ANY PROBLEM [WITH THE MOVE]. I WAS ALWAYS ADVENTUROUS. I HAD LOTS OF FRIENDS BUT I WAS ALWAYS HAPPY TO GO.” “WE RENTED A HOUSE ON 538 – 7TH STREET. IT’S ALL TORN DOWN NOW. DAD HAD TO COME DOWN A MONTH OR SO AHEAD OF US AND THEN HE COULDN’T FIND A HOUSE READY, SO WE CAME DOWN AND STAYED IN A HOTEL FOR ABOUT TWO MONTHS. I HAD TO START GRADE TEN; I WAS ONLY FOURTEEN, HERE. THAT WAS, TO ME, THE ONLY SAD PART OF MY LIFE, LEAVING THE WESTLOCK SCHOOL AND STARTING LCI. THE PERSONALIZATION WAS GONE WITH THE TEACHERS.” “[DAD] HAD TO OVERSEE THE POW CAMPS…HE TALKED ABOUT THE POW’S IN THIS RESPECT, THAT THERE WAS A LOT OF VERY GOOD GERMANS THAT WERE IN THERE. [THEY] WOULDN’T HAVE CHOSEN TO EVEN BE IN THE GERMAN ARMY…THEY WERE CONSCRIPTED OVER IN GERMANY, THEY DIDN’T HAVE ANY CHOICE, AND THEY WERE VERY DECENT, GOOD GUYS. HE RESPECTED THEM FOR THAT AND HELPED THEM, [GAVE] THEM ADVICE, “YOU KNOW, YOU GOTTA GO BACK TO GERMANY AND THEN APPLY TO COME BACK.” THERE WAS A TRUST THERE TO LET SOME OF THEM OUT TO WORK…‘CAUSE THERE [WAS] A LABOUR SHORTAGE FOR THE FARMERS AND THEY NEEDED THAT HELP. SOME OF THOSE FARMERS WERE VERY PLEASED TO GET SOME OF THESE GERMANS, AND SOME OF THE FARMERS’ DAUGHTERS WERE VERY PLEASED TO GET THAT, TOO. THEN THERE’S SOME LATER MARRIAGES AFTER THAT. IT WOULD BE A SHAME TO CONDEMN ALL THOSE POW’S BECAUSE A LOT OF THEM WERE VERY DECENT, GOOD, MORAL FELLOWS THAT DIDN’T WANT TO BE INVOLVED WITH ANY KILLING.” “HE WAS A PLAIN STAFF SERGEANT, NCO, SECOND IN CHARGE OF THE SUBDIVISION.” “[THEN HE] WENT BACK TO EDMONTON [TO RETIRE IN 1950], HIS HOME CITY WHERE HIS PARENTS WERE AND A LOT OF FRIENDS. HE JOINED THE R.C.M. P. VETS BUT WITH HIS RECORD, THE ATTORNEY GENERAL’S DEPARTMENT WERE NOT GOING TO LET HIM LOOSE. THEY MADE IT A FIRST APPOINTMENT OF AN INSPECTOR OF JAILS FOR THE PRISONS OF ALBERTA WHICH, AT THAT TIME, THERE WERE ONLY TWO: LETHBRIDGE AND FORT SASKATCHEWAN. [THE] ONLY PLACE IN FORT SASKATCHEWAN WAS FOR WOMEN, SO [WOMEN] HAD TO GO ALL THE WAY TO FORT SASKATCHEWAN, EVEN IF [THEY] WAS FROM LETHBRIDGE. THAT WASN’T A VERY GOOD DEAL, SO DAD COULD SEE A REAL NEED [FOR WORK]. IT WAS A REAL MESS WHEN HE LOOKED AT THE PRISONS.” “HE REALIZED, BEING AN R.C.M.P., THAT MANY OF THE YOUNG CITY POLICE, TOWN SHERIFFS, SOME OF THESE MAGISTRATES, THEY MESSED THINGS UP. HE STARTED A TRAINING SCHOOL FOR THESE MUNICIPAL POLICE AND THAT JUST WENT TERRIFICALLY. THEY HAD [THE SCHOOLS] IN CALGARY AND IN EDMONTON TWICE A YEAR. THEY HAD A BIG GROUP FROM MEDICINE HAT COME UP AND [TAKE] THE SCHOOLING, LETHBRIDGE CAME UP, AND SOME OF THE PRISON GUARDS TOOK [THE TRAINING], TOO.” “[HE] WORKED ON THAT FOR FIFTEEN/SIXTEEN YEARS. AFTER TWELVE YEARS, HE WAS SO BUSY THAT THEY MADE HIM SUPERINTENDENT OF PRISONS BECAUSE…THE FIRST THING HE HAD TO DO WAS TO DEVELOP THE PRISONS FOR ALBERTA. TWO WAS NOT SUFFICIENT.” “[DAD’S] PERSONALITY WAS ALWAYS QUIET, FIRM, NO-NONSENSE, HUMOROUS, BUT HE WAS NEVER ARROGANT. I NEVER HEARD HIM SWEAR OR GET MAD AT ANYBODY, NOT EVEN PRISONERS. HE HANDLED THEM VERY QUIETLY, AND VERY FIRMLY. THE STAFF…ALL LOVED HIM. I [HAVE] LETTERS AND THEY CAME ALL THE WAY UP TO THEIR ANNIVERSARIES LATER IN EDMONTON…“YOU’RE THE BEST BOSS WE EVER HAD.” ALL HE HAD WAS A VISION OF WHAT NEEDED TO BE DONE…HE COULD GO AND EXPLAIN THE NEED FOR THE JAILS, WHAT IT WOULD COST AND WHAT IT NEEDED TO FIX THE PROBLEM. HE NEVER HAD PROBLEM GETTING EXACTLY WHAT HE NEEDED FROM THEM.” ON THE DONATION OF THE REVOLVER AND AMMUNITION, BUCHANAN NOTED, “MY DAD KNEW I WOULD LOOK AFTER [HIS BELONGINGS] AND WANTED TO GET IT TO A MUSEUM. [DAD KNEW] THAT I WASN’T ONE TO PUT IT IN MY BASEMENT TO HAVE GOODNESS-KNOWS-WHAT-HAPPEN TO IT. HE HAD LEFT ALL OF THAT IN CHARGE OF ME. I WAS THE SOLE EXECUTOR OF THE ESTATE.” “I AM NOW AT THE YOUNG AGE OF 88; I’M NOT WORRIED ABOUT LIVING ANOTHER 10 YEARS. I DIDN’T WANT THE CHANCE OF ANYBODY STEALING IT, OR GETTING THEIR HANDS ON IT, SO I WANTED TO MAKE SURE YOU GOT IT. AND, I DON’T NEED IT, SO WHY KEEP IT? IF I GET LONESOME, AND WANT TO SEE IT, I’LL COME TO THE MUSEUM AND LOOK AT IT.” “I’LL FEEL HAPPY, TO KNOW IT’S GOT A GOOD HOME. I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL TRANSCRIPTIONS FROM INTERVIEWS AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190002001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20190002002
Acquisition Date
2019-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1935
Date Range To
1950
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
COTTON
Catalogue Number
P20190002004
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1935
Date Range To
1950
Materials
COTTON
No. Pieces
1
Length
45.8
Width
27.7
Description
COTTON CLEANING CLOTH, WHITE WITH RED STRIPES DOWN AND ACROSS. BOTTOM OF CLOTH HAS SECTION CUT OUT OF FRONT LEFT SIDE. FRONT IS HEAVILY STAINED WITH BLACK AND BROWN RESIDUE; RESIDUE HAS WORN THROUGH CLOTH TO BACK. RED EDGING IS FRAYED. CLOTH IS HEAVILY CREASED DOWN AND ACROSS MIDDLE. OVERALL GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
ARMAMENT-ACCESSORY
Historical Association
SAFETY SERVICES
History
ON JANUARY 10, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED JEAN BUCHANAN REGARDING HER DONATION OF A REVOLVER AND FIREARM ACCESSORIES. THE FIREARM WAS USED BY BUCHANAN’S FATHER, EDWARD ETTERSHANK BUCHANAN, DURING HIS CAREER WITH THE ALBERTA PROVINCIAL POLICE AND ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE. BUCHANAN ELABORATED ON THE USE OF THE CLEANING CLOTH, NOTING, “[DAD HAD A BAG] BECAUSE, IN HIS YOUNGER DAYS, HE OFTEN HAD TO GO OUT ON HORSEBACK. HE’D BE GONE, HUNTING DOWN A MURDERER, AND HE MIGHT HAVE HAD A GUIDE WITH HIM. HE TOOK SOME OF HIS CLEANING EQUIPMENT FOR THE REVOLVER, AND HIS RIFLE, TOO…HE COULD PACK HIS LUNCH…KNIVES, SURVIVAL, AND HIS DIRTY OLD CLEANING CLOTH THAT HE USED, AND AN OLD BOTTLE OF GUN OIL, SO HE COULD CLEAN THE GUN IN CASE HE HAPPENED TO DROP IT IN SOME MUD. YOU NEVER KNOW [WHAT MIGHT HAPPEN] WHEN YOU’RE OUT…YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR GUN VERY CLEAN. HE KEPT EVERYTHING VERY CLEAN…YOU HAVE TO KEEP THE GUN CLEAN IF YOU’RE GOING TO USE IT, BECAUSE YOU COULD DAMAGE IT IF YOU HAVE ANY DIRT IN THE BARREL.” “[THE GUNS] WERE A TOOL OF HIS JOB, BUT HE CERTAINLY WASN’T ONE THAT WANTED TO EVER USE IT, BUT IF HE HAD IT, HE HAD TO, OR TO JUST MAINTAIN THE PEACE.” ON HER FATHER’S REVOLVER, BUCHANAN RECALLED, “[MY DAD] USED [THE SMITH AND WESSON REVOLVER]…STARTING IN 1932, WITH THE RCMP, MAY BE WHEN HE GOT THAT GUN. HE HAD IT REGISTERED IN 1940, AND GETTING ANOTHER 5 YEARS REGISTRATION IT MUST HAVE BEEN 1935. [THE GUN] WAS HIS SIDEARM…HIS SERVICE WEAPON…HE HAD THAT ALL THE TIME…IT WOULD GO RIGHT ON HIS BELT THERE.” “[DAD KEPT THE GUN] IN [MY PARENTS’] BEDROOM. RIGHT ON THE BEDROOM CLOSET DOOR, RIGHT OPEN. I NEVER TOUCHED IT, BECAUSE HE HAD GIVEN ME MY TRAINING AND LET ME USE IT WHEN I WAS YOUNG. I HAD RESPECT FOR IT, AND I HAD NO SPECIAL CURIOSITY, WHICH IS A GOOD THING. [DAD KNEW I WAS] AN ADVENTUROUS PERSON, BUT I NEVER EVER TOUCHED IT, OUT OF COMPLETE RESPECT FOR DAD AND WHAT HE HAD THERE.” “ALL I CAN REMEMBER [IS HE HAD TWO HANDGUNS OR SIDEARMS]…HE DIDN’T GO OUT PRACTICING VERY MUCH; HE DIDN’T HAVE TO. HE COULD PASS HIS MARKSMANSHIP, AND THEN, EVERY TIME THERE WERE THINGS AT REGINA DEPOT TRAINING COURSES (UPGRADING, REFRESHER COURSES) THEY DID THEIR MARKSMANSHIP THERE, TOO. THEY WERE ALWAYS TESTED ON THEIR MARKSMANSHIP, AT REGINA DEPOT.” “I THINK [THE REVOLVER HAD] QUITE A BIT [OF MEANING TO MY DAD], BECAUSE HE HAD IT IN HIS HOUSE. IT WAS REALLY STRANGE BECAUSE I ASKED HIM WHERE IT WAS, WHEN HE SHOWED ME THE PAPERS, AND HE HAD IT IN A SHOE BOX IN HIS BEDROOM CLOSET. YOU DIDN’T HAVE TO HAVE GREAT [HIDING] PLACES FOR IT IN THOSE DAYS, BUT THAT’S WHERE HE KEPT IT. HE MADE SURE IT WAS THERE, AND HE KNEW WHERE IT WAS.” “[I HAVE NO] KNOWLEDGE ABOUT HIM HAVING TO FIRE THIS WEAPON…AT ANYONE. IF HE WOULD HAVE, HE WOULD HAVE FIRED TO MISS SOMEONE, JUST AS A WARNING SHOT. HE DEFINITELY WENT FOR WARNING SHOTS, BUT HE NEVER SHOT ANYBODY WITH IT." “[HE WOULD HAVE STOPPED CARRYING THE GUN] AT THE VERY END OF 1950, WHEN HE RETIRED FROM THE R.C.M.P.” “[I’VE HAD THE REVOLVER] SINCE 1998—THE PASSING OF MY FATHER, BECAUSE I WAS THE SOLE EXECUTRIX. IT WAS AUTOMATICALLY MY RESPONSIBILITY TO TAKE ALL OF HIS FIREARMS, IN MY POSSESSION.” “I WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR [THE CARE OF] IT, AND IT WAS A REAL KEEPSAKE. [THE GUN WAS] WAS VERY PERSONAL, BECAUSE I’M SURE [MY DAD] OWNED THAT EVEN BY BACK IN 1935, [WHEN] HE WAS IN WESTLOCK, IN CHARGE OF THE DETACHMENT THERE FOR 10 YEARS. IT WAS OF SENTIMENTAL VALUE BECAUSE HE TOOK ME OUT (I’M PRETTY SURE I WAS 8 YEARS OLD, WHEN HE HAD ME IN THE BACKYARD)—WE HAD FARMLAND AND FOREST—AND HE HAD A TARGET PRACTICE OUT THERE. HE HAD ME USE THAT FIREARM. HE SHOWED ME HOW TO USE IT, HOW TO AIM, AND HOW TO HANDLE IT SAFELY. I ALWAYS RESPECTED THAT, AND THAT WAS GOOD. THAT’S THE ORIGINAL HOLSTER FOR THAT GUN, WHICH YOU CAN SEE IS LOOPED, TO PUT ON HIS BELT. HE ALSO CARRIED A .32 COLT SEMI-AUTOMATIC.” “I’VE ALWAYS APPRECIATED REVOLVERS, AND RIFLES. IT’S NEVER BEEN ANYTHING THAT I THOUGHT ANY DANGER OF. YOU LEARN THE SAFETY, AND YOU TAKE YOUR COURSE. I HAVE MY COURSE DONE, AND I PASSED IT WITH FLYING COLORS. I HAD MY PERMIT TO HAVE IT. I HAVE TAKEN IT OUT, ON MY OWN ACREAGE, AND FIRED IT A BIT, BUT IT ISN’T SOMETHING I WANT TO DO. IT’S A SENTIMENTAL THING THAT I CAN NOW FEEL I’D LIKE TO HAVE IT IN YOUR MUSEUM. I KNOW IT’S NOW IN A SAFE PLACE, SO I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT EVER FALLING INTO THE WRONG HANDS. AND, IF I WANT TO COME AND VISIT IT, I CAN COME AND SEE IT.” ON JUNE 8, 2018, MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BUCHANAN REGARDING HER FATHER’S CAREER WITH THE ALBERTA PROVINCIAL POLICE AND ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE. BUCHANAN ELABORATED ON HER FATHER’S HISTORY, “[MY DAD WAS EDWARD BUCHANAN, WHO RETIRED AT THE RANK OF] SENIOR STAFF SERGEANT…HE RETIRED IN 1950 FROM THE [R.C.M.P].” “HE JOINED THE A.P.P. WHEN HE WAS TWENTY AND HE WAS STATIONED OUT NEAR ST. PAUL. IN ’21, HE MET MY MOTHER IN EDMONTON…BUT HE STAYED AT ST. PAUL AND THEN AFTER, HE GOT POSTED TO GRANDE PRAIRIE. HE WAS GOING TO GO TO GRANDE PRAIRIE BUT THEN IN ’22, THEY GOT MARRIED. A.P.P. HAD NO RESTRICTIONS ON THEIR MEMBERS GETTING MARRIED, LIKE THE R.C.M.P. HE DIDN’T HAVE TO WAIT TO GET MARRIED…THAT’S WHEN THEY WENT OUT TO BRAINARD.” “EVEN IN THE A.P.P., TO START WITH, HE HAD SOME SERVICE DOWN HERE AT THE LETHBRIDGE PRISON…BRINGING PRISONERS DOWN AND THEN MAYBE, AT THE VERY FIRST WINTER AS A ROOKIE, HE WAS ON JOB TO BE ON GUARD AT THE STATION. IT WASN’T LONG AND HE WAS SENT OUT TO ST. PAUL AND INTO MORE OF THE REAL POLICING.” “WHEN HE WAS IN THE A.P.P. [IN 1932] HE WAS THE TOP CLASS OF [THE] A.P.P. THAT AUTOMATICALLY WERE ACCEPTED INTO THE R.C.M.P. HE WAS PUT IN CHARGE, WHEN HE WAS IN THE A.P.P.—FIRST HE STARTED OUT IN CHARGE OF BRAINARD—HORSE LAKE—A LITTLE PLACE NEAR THE HORSE LAKE INDIAN RESERVATION. THEY CLOSED THAT DOWN AND TRANSFERRED HIM TO WEMBLEY, A LITTLE VILLAGE, AND HE WAS THE ONLY ONE IN CHARGE, THE ONLY OFFICER IN CHARGE OF WEMBLEY. THAT’S WHEN THAT 1932 [CHANGE] CAME ALONG AND HE JUST CHANGED THE SIGN UP THERE FROM A.P.P. TO R.C.M.P. AND WENT FROM THERE.” “IN ’32, IT WAS R.C.M.P. AND THAT STAYED R.C.M.P. UNTIL ’34. THEN HE WAS TRANSFERRED TO TAKE CHARGE OF THE WESTLOCK DETACHMENT WHICH WAS A BIG AREA. [THERE] WAS NO DETACHMENT IN BARRHEAD. HE HAD A HUGE AREA THERE TO COVER.” “[A.P.P. MEMBERS] WERE NOT AUTOMATICALLY TAKEN INTO THE R.C.M.P. THEY HAD THREE CATEGORIES THERE, OF THE A.P.P. MEMBERS…[THERE WERE] ONES THAT WERE NOT ACCEPTABLE, THAT THEY HADN’T DONE A VERY GOOD JOB IN THE A.P.P.; THEY SHOWED UP, GOOFIN’ AROUND, DOING THINGS THEY SHOULDN’T BE DOING. THEY WERE NOT ACCEPTABLE. THEN THERE [WERE THE ONES THAT] COULD BE GIVEN A LITTLE TRIAL RUN. THEY COULD APPLY. THEN THERE [WERE] ONES THAT COULD GET IN FOR A FULL YEAR AND THEN RE-APPLY. THEY’D BE ACCEPTED FOR A YEAR. THEN THERE’S THE TOP GRADE AND [THEY] WERE AUTOMATICALLY ACCEPTABLE. DAD WAS RIGHT UP THERE IN THAT TOP GRADE.” “A.P.P. MEMBERS WERE TRAINED BY THE NORTHWEST MOUNTED POLICE, NOT SOME GOOFBALLS THAT DIDN’T KNOW WHAT THEY WERE DOING. THESE WERE TRAINED BY THE BEST-TRAINED POLICE OFFICERS.” “ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER HANCOCK KNEW DAD REALLY WELL, HE’D EVEN BEEN IN THE A.P.P. HE CALLED DAD INTO THE OFFICE AND HE SAID, “BUCK, [DAD WAS EDWARD ETTERSHANK BUCHANAN BUT THEY CALLED HIM ‘BUCK’, A LOT] I WAS GOING TO SEND YOU DOWN TO TAKE CHARGE OF THE RED DEER DETACHMENT BUT I’VE HAD SO MUCH PROBLEM GETTING SOMEBODY TO GO DOWN TO TAKE THE LETHBRIDGE DETACHMENT…YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE, I THINK, THAT CAN HANDLE THE SITUATION WE’VE GOT DOWN THERE. THERE’S A LOT OF PROBLEMS AND I’M SURE YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE THAT CAN HANDLE IT. WILL YOU GO?” “[WE CAME DOWN HERE IN] ’44…I NEVER HAD ANY PROBLEM [WITH THE MOVE]. I WAS ALWAYS ADVENTUROUS. I HAD LOTS OF FRIENDS BUT I WAS ALWAYS HAPPY TO GO.” “WE RENTED A HOUSE ON 538 – 7TH STREET. IT’S ALL TORN DOWN NOW. DAD HAD TO COME DOWN A MONTH OR SO AHEAD OF US AND THEN HE COULDN’T FIND A HOUSE READY, SO WE CAME DOWN AND STAYED IN A HOTEL FOR ABOUT TWO MONTHS. I HAD TO START GRADE TEN; I WAS ONLY FOURTEEN, HERE. THAT WAS, TO ME, THE ONLY SAD PART OF MY LIFE, LEAVING THE WESTLOCK SCHOOL AND STARTING LCI. THE PERSONALIZATION WAS GONE WITH THE TEACHERS.” “[DAD] HAD TO OVERSEE THE POW CAMPS…HE TALKED ABOUT THE POW’S IN THIS RESPECT, THAT THERE WAS A LOT OF VERY GOOD GERMANS THAT WERE IN THERE. [THEY] WOULDN’T HAVE CHOSEN TO EVEN BE IN THE GERMAN ARMY…THEY WERE CONSCRIPTED OVER IN GERMANY, THEY DIDN’T HAVE ANY CHOICE, AND THEY WERE VERY DECENT, GOOD GUYS. HE RESPECTED THEM FOR THAT AND HELPED THEM, [GAVE] THEM ADVICE, “YOU KNOW, YOU GOTTA GO BACK TO GERMANY AND THEN APPLY TO COME BACK.” THERE WAS A TRUST THERE TO LET SOME OF THEM OUT TO WORK…‘CAUSE THERE [WAS] A LABOUR SHORTAGE FOR THE FARMERS AND THEY NEEDED THAT HELP. SOME OF THOSE FARMERS WERE VERY PLEASED TO GET SOME OF THESE GERMANS, AND SOME OF THE FARMERS’ DAUGHTERS WERE VERY PLEASED TO GET THAT, TOO. THEN THERE’S SOME LATER MARRIAGES AFTER THAT. IT WOULD BE A SHAME TO CONDEMN ALL THOSE POW’S BECAUSE A LOT OF THEM WERE VERY DECENT, GOOD, MORAL FELLOWS THAT DIDN’T WANT TO BE INVOLVED WITH ANY KILLING.” “HE WAS A PLAIN STAFF SERGEANT, NCO, SECOND IN CHARGE OF THE SUBDIVISION.” “[THEN HE] WENT BACK TO EDMONTON [TO RETIRE IN 1950], HIS HOME CITY WHERE HIS PARENTS WERE AND A LOT OF FRIENDS. HE JOINED THE R.C.M. P. VETS BUT WITH HIS RECORD, THE ATTORNEY GENERAL’S DEPARTMENT WERE NOT GOING TO LET HIM LOOSE. THEY MADE IT A FIRST APPOINTMENT OF AN INSPECTOR OF JAILS FOR THE PRISONS OF ALBERTA WHICH, AT THAT TIME, THERE WERE ONLY TWO: LETHBRIDGE AND FORT SASKATCHEWAN. [THE] ONLY PLACE IN FORT SASKATCHEWAN WAS FOR WOMEN, SO [WOMEN] HAD TO GO ALL THE WAY TO FORT SASKATCHEWAN, EVEN IF [THEY] WAS FROM LETHBRIDGE. THAT WASN’T A VERY GOOD DEAL, SO DAD COULD SEE A REAL NEED [FOR WORK]. IT WAS A REAL MESS WHEN HE LOOKED AT THE PRISONS.” “HE REALIZED, BEING AN R.C.M.P., THAT MANY OF THE YOUNG CITY POLICE, TOWN SHERIFFS, SOME OF THESE MAGISTRATES, THEY MESSED THINGS UP. HE STARTED A TRAINING SCHOOL FOR THESE MUNICIPAL POLICE AND THAT JUST WENT TERRIFICALLY. THEY HAD [THE SCHOOLS] IN CALGARY AND IN EDMONTON TWICE A YEAR. THEY HAD A BIG GROUP FROM MEDICINE HAT COME UP AND [TAKE] THE SCHOOLING, LETHBRIDGE CAME UP, AND SOME OF THE PRISON GUARDS TOOK [THE TRAINING], TOO.” “[HE] WORKED ON THAT FOR FIFTEEN/SIXTEEN YEARS. AFTER TWELVE YEARS, HE WAS SO BUSY THAT THEY MADE HIM SUPERINTENDENT OF PRISONS BECAUSE…THE FIRST THING HE HAD TO DO WAS TO DEVELOP THE PRISONS FOR ALBERTA. TWO WAS NOT SUFFICIENT.” “[DAD’S] PERSONALITY WAS ALWAYS QUIET, FIRM, NO-NONSENSE, HUMOROUS, BUT HE WAS NEVER ARROGANT. I NEVER HEARD HIM SWEAR OR GET MAD AT ANYBODY, NOT EVEN PRISONERS. HE HANDLED THEM VERY QUIETLY, AND VERY FIRMLY. THE STAFF…ALL LOVED HIM. I [HAVE] LETTERS AND THEY CAME ALL THE WAY UP TO THEIR ANNIVERSARIES LATER IN EDMONTON…“YOU’RE THE BEST BOSS WE EVER HAD.” ALL HE HAD WAS A VISION OF WHAT NEEDED TO BE DONE…HE COULD GO AND EXPLAIN THE NEED FOR THE JAILS, WHAT IT WOULD COST AND WHAT IT NEEDED TO FIX THE PROBLEM. HE NEVER HAD PROBLEM GETTING EXACTLY WHAT HE NEEDED FROM THEM.” ON THE DONATION OF THE REVOLVER AND AMMUNITION, BUCHANAN NOTED, “MY DAD KNEW I WOULD LOOK AFTER [HIS BELONGINGS] AND WANTED TO GET IT TO A MUSEUM. [DAD KNEW] THAT I WASN’T ONE TO PUT IT IN MY BASEMENT TO HAVE GOODNESS-KNOWS-WHAT-HAPPEN TO IT. HE HAD LEFT ALL OF THAT IN CHARGE OF ME. I WAS THE SOLE EXECUTOR OF THE ESTATE.” “I AM NOW AT THE YOUNG AGE OF 88; I’M NOT WORRIED ABOUT LIVING ANOTHER 10 YEARS. I DIDN’T WANT THE CHANCE OF ANYBODY STEALING IT, OR GETTING THEIR HANDS ON IT, SO I WANTED TO MAKE SURE YOU GOT IT. AND, I DON’T NEED IT, SO WHY KEEP IT? IF I GET LONESOME, AND WANT TO SEE IT, I’LL COME TO THE MUSEUM AND LOOK AT IT.” “I’LL FEEL HAPPY, TO KNOW IT’S GOT A GOOD HOME. I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL TRANSCRIPTIONS FROM INTERVIEWS AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190002001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20190002004
Acquisition Date
2019-01
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
SMITH AND WESSON
Date Range From
1935
Date Range To
1950
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
STEEL, WOOD, NICKEL
Catalogue Number
P20190002001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
SMITH AND WESSON
Date Range From
1935
Date Range To
1950
Materials
STEEL, WOOD, NICKEL
No. Pieces
2
Length
29
Width
3
Description
A. HOLSTER, 28.5CM L X 12CM W. DARK BROWN LEATHER HOLSTER WITH FLAP COVERING TOP OPENING; FLAP SECURES TO THE FRONT OF HOLSTER WITH BRASS STUD AND HOLE PUNCHED THROUGH THE FLAP. HOLSTER HAS LIGHTER BROWN LEATHER CASING AT BARREL END STITCHED WITH LIGHT THREAD. BACK HAS LOOP FASTENED WITH SILVER STUDS FOR CARRYING ON A BELT. LEATHER IS CRACKED AND WORN; FRONT FLAP HAS GREEN CORROSION STAINS AROUND FASTENING HOLE; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. B. REVOLVER, SMITH AND WESSON, 29CM LONG X 3CM WIDE X 0.6 BARREL DIAMETER. REVOLVER HAS DARK WOOD HANDLE AND LONG BLACK STEEL BARREL, CYLINDER AND FRAME. BARREL HAS SIGHT PIN AT END OF BARREL. HANDLE HAS CROSS-HATCHED PATTERN ENGRAVED IN WOOD WITH SILVER TRIM ALONG INSIDE AND OUTSIDE OF HANDLE; HANDLE HAS ROUND SILVER PLATE WITH EMBOSSED “S&W” LOGO AT TOP OF HANDLE WOOD. REVOLVER HAS INSCRIPTION ON RIGHT SIDE BELOW CHAMBER “MADE IN U.S.A.”; REVOLVER TRIGGER HAS INSCRIPTION ON BOTTOM “REG. U.S. PAT. OFF.” LEFT SIDE BESIDE CHAMBER HAS “S&W”; BARREL HAS INSCRIPTION ON RIGHT SIDE “22 LONG RIFLE CTG” AND INSCRIPTION ON LEFT SIDE “SMITH & WESSON”. REVOLVER HAS STEEL CYLINDER RELEASE ON LEFT SIDE TO OPEN CHAMBER; REVOLVER HAS SIX CYLINDERS FOR CARTRIDGES. BASE OF HANDLE HAS METAL TRIM RUNNING ACROSS WITH INSCRIBED TEXT “638375” ON METAL. STEEL BARREL AND CYLINDER HAVE MINOR WEAR IN THE FINISH; HANDLE HAS MINOR WEAR AROUND BASE EDGES; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
ARMAMENT-FIREARM
ARMAMENT-ACCESSORY
Historical Association
SAFETY SERVICES
History
ON JANUARY 10, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED JEAN BUCHANAN REGARDING HER DONATION OF A REVOLVER AND FIREARM ACCESSORIES. THE FIREARM WAS USED BY BUCHANAN’S FATHER, EDWARD ETTERSHANK BUCHANAN, DURING HIS CAREER WITH THE ALBERTA PROVINCIAL POLICE AND ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE. ON THE REVOLVER, BUCHANAN RECALLED, “[MY DAD] USED [THE SMITH AND WESSON REVOLVER]…STARTING IN 1932, WITH THE RCMP, MAY BE WHEN HE GOT THAT GUN. HE HAD IT REGISTERED IN 1940, AND GETTING ANOTHER 5 YEARS REGISTRATION IT MUST HAVE BEEN 1935.” “THIS WAS HIS SIDEARM…HIS SERVICE WEAPON…HE HAD THAT ALL THE TIME…IT WOULD GO RIGHT ON HIS BELT THERE.” “[DAD KEPT THE GUN] IN [MY PARENTS’] BEDROOM. RIGHT ON THE BEDROOM CLOSET DOOR, RIGHT OPEN. I NEVER TOUCHED IT, BECAUSE HE HAD GIVEN ME MY TRAINING AND LET ME USE IT WHEN I WAS YOUNG. I HAD RESPECT FOR IT, AND I HAD NO SPECIAL CURIOSITY, WHICH IS A GOOD THING. [DAD KNEW I WAS] AN ADVENTUROUS PERSON, BUT I NEVER EVER TOUCHED IT, OUT OF COMPLETE RESPECT FOR DAD AND WHAT HE HAD THERE.” “ALL I CAN REMEMBER [IS HE HAD TWO HANDGUNS OR SIDEARMS]…HE DIDN’T GO OUT PRACTICING VERY MUCH; HE DIDN’T HAVE TO. HE COULD PASS HIS MARKSMANSHIP, AND THEN, EVERY TIME THERE WERE THINGS AT REGINA DEPOT TRAINING COURSES (UPGRADING, REFRESHER COURSES) THEY DID THEIR MARKSMANSHIP THERE, TOO. THEY WERE ALWAYS TESTED ON THEIR MARKSMANSHIP, AT REGINA DEPOT.” “I THINK [THE REVOLVER HAD] QUITE A BIT [OF MEANING TO MY DAD], BECAUSE HE HAD IT IN HIS HOUSE. IT WAS REALLY STRANGE BECAUSE I ASKED HIM WHERE IT WAS, WHEN HE SHOWED ME THE PAPERS, AND HE HAD IT IN A SHOE BOX IN HIS BEDROOM CLOSET. YOU DIDN’T HAVE TO HAVE GREAT [HIDING] PLACES FOR IT IN THOSE DAYS, BUT THAT’S WHERE HE KEPT IT. HE MADE SURE IT WAS THERE, AND HE KNEW WHERE IT WAS.” “[I HAVE NO] KNOWLEDGE ABOUT HIM HAVING TO FIRE THIS WEAPON…AT ANYONE. IF HE WOULD HAVE, HE WOULD HAVE FIRED TO MISS SOMEONE, JUST AS A WARNING SHOT. HE DEFINITELY WENT FOR WARNING SHOTS, BUT HE NEVER SHOT ANYBODY WITH IT." “[HE WOULD HAVE STOPPED CARRYING THE GUN] AT THE VERY END OF 1950, WHEN HE RETIRED FROM THE R.C.M.P.” “[I’VE HAD THE REVOLVER] SINCE 1998—THE PASSING OF MY FATHER, BECAUSE I WAS THE SOLE EXECUTRIX. IT WAS AUTOMATICALLY MY RESPONSIBILITY TO TAKE ALL OF HIS FIREARMS, IN MY POSSESSION.” “I WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR [THE CARE OF] IT, AND IT WAS A REAL KEEPSAKE. [THE GUN] WAS VERY PERSONAL, BECAUSE I’M SURE [MY DAD] OWNED THAT EVEN BACK IN 1935, [WHEN] HE WAS IN WESTLOCK, IN CHARGE OF THE DETACHMENT THERE FOR 10 YEARS. IT WAS OF SENTIMENTAL VALUE BECAUSE HE TOOK ME OUT (I’M PRETTY SURE I WAS 8 YEARS OLD, WHEN HE HAD ME IN THE BACKYARD)—WE HAD FARMLAND AND FOREST—AND HE HAD A TARGET PRACTICE OUT THERE. HE HAD ME USE THAT FIREARM. HE SHOWED ME HOW TO USE IT, HOW TO AIM, AND HOW TO HANDLE IT SAFELY. I ALWAYS RESPECTED THAT, AND THAT WAS GOOD. THAT’S THE ORIGINAL HOLSTER FOR THAT GUN, WHICH YOU CAN SEE IS LOOPED, TO PUT ON HIS BELT. HE ALSO CARRIED A .32 COLT SEMI-AUTOMATIC.” “I’VE ALWAYS APPRECIATED REVOLVERS, AND RIFLES. IT’S NEVER BEEN ANYTHING THAT I THOUGHT ANY DANGER OF. YOU LEARN THE SAFETY, AND YOU TAKE YOUR COURSE. I HAVE MY COURSE DONE, AND I PASSED IT WITH FLYING COLORS. I HAD MY PERMIT TO HAVE IT. I HAVE TAKEN IT OUT, ON MY OWN ACREAGE, AND FIRED IT A BIT, BUT IT ISN’T SOMETHING I WANT TO DO. IT’S A SENTIMENTAL THING THAT I CAN NOW FEEL I’D LIKE TO HAVE IT IN YOUR MUSEUM. I KNOW IT’S NOW IN A SAFE PLACE, SO I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT EVER FALLING INTO THE WRONG HANDS. AND, IF I WANT TO COME AND VISIT IT, I CAN COME AND SEE IT.” ON JUNE 8, 2018, MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BUCHANAN REGARDING HER FATHER’S CAREER WITH THE ALBERTA PROVINCIAL POLICE AND ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE. BUCHANAN ELABORATED ON HER FATHER’S HISTORY, “[MY DAD WAS EDWARD BUCHANAN, WHO RETIRED AT THE RANK OF] SENIOR STAFF SERGEANT…HE RETIRED IN 1950 FROM THE [R.C.M.P].” “HE JOINED THE A.P.P. WHEN HE WAS TWENTY AND HE WAS STATIONED OUT NEAR ST. PAUL. IN ’21, HE MET MY MOTHER IN EDMONTON…BUT HE STAYED AT ST. PAUL AND THEN AFTER, HE GOT POSTED TO GRANDE PRAIRIE. HE WAS GOING TO GO TO GRANDE PRAIRIE BUT THEN IN ’22, THEY GOT MARRIED. A.P.P. HAD NO RESTRICTIONS ON THEIR MEMBERS GETTING MARRIED, LIKE THE R.C.M.P. HE DIDN’T HAVE TO WAIT TO GET MARRIED…THAT’S WHEN THEY WENT OUT TO BRAINARD.” “EVEN IN THE A.P.P., TO START WITH, HE HAD SOME SERVICE DOWN HERE AT THE LETHBRIDGE PRISON…BRINGING PRISONERS DOWN AND THEN MAYBE, AT THE VERY FIRST WINTER AS A ROOKIE, HE WAS ON JOB TO BE ON GUARD AT THE STATION. IT WASN’T LONG AND HE WAS SENT OUT TO ST. PAUL AND INTO MORE OF THE REAL POLICING.” “WHEN HE WAS IN THE A.P.P. [IN 1932] HE WAS THE TOP CLASS OF [THE] A.P.P. THAT AUTOMATICALLY WERE ACCEPTED INTO THE R.C.M.P. HE WAS PUT IN CHARGE, WHEN HE WAS IN THE A.P.P.—FIRST HE STARTED OUT IN CHARGE OF BRAINARD—HORSE LAKE—A LITTLE PLACE NEAR THE HORSE LAKE INDIAN RESERVATION. THEY CLOSED THAT DOWN AND TRANSFERRED HIM TO WEMBLEY, A LITTLE VILLAGE, AND HE WAS THE ONLY ONE IN CHARGE, THE ONLY OFFICER IN CHARGE OF WEMBLEY. THAT’S WHEN THAT 1932 [CHANGE] CAME ALONG AND HE JUST CHANGED THE SIGN UP THERE FROM A.P.P. TO R.C.M.P. AND WENT FROM THERE.” “IN ’32, IT WAS R.C.M.P. AND THAT STAYED R.C.M.P. UNTIL ’34. THEN HE WAS TRANSFERRED TO TAKE CHARGE OF THE WESTLOCK DETACHMENT WHICH WAS A BIG AREA. [THERE] WAS NO DETACHMENT IN BARRHEAD. HE HAD A HUGE AREA THERE TO COVER.” “[A.P.P. MEMBERS] WERE NOT AUTOMATICALLY TAKEN INTO THE R.C.M.P. THEY HAD THREE CATEGORIES THERE, OF THE A.P.P. MEMBERS…[THERE WERE] ONES THAT WERE NOT ACCEPTABLE, THAT THEY HADN’T DONE A VERY GOOD JOB IN THE A.P.P.; THEY SHOWED UP, GOOFIN’ AROUND, DOING THINGS THEY SHOULDN’T BE DOING. THEY WERE NOT ACCEPTABLE. THEN THERE [WERE THE ONES THAT] COULD BE GIVEN A LITTLE TRIAL RUN. THEY COULD APPLY. THEN THERE [WERE] ONES THAT COULD GET IN FOR A FULL YEAR AND THEN RE-APPLY. THEY’D BE ACCEPTED FOR A YEAR. THEN THERE’S THE TOP GRADE AND [THEY] WERE AUTOMATICALLY ACCEPTABLE. DAD WAS RIGHT UP THERE IN THAT TOP GRADE.” “A.P.P. MEMBERS WERE TRAINED BY THE NORTHWEST MOUNTED POLICE, NOT SOME GOOFBALLS THAT DIDN’T KNOW WHAT THEY WERE DOING. THESE WERE TRAINED BY THE BEST-TRAINED POLICE OFFICERS.” “ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER HANCOCK KNEW DAD REALLY WELL...HE CALLED DAD INTO THE OFFICE AND HE SAID, “BUCK, [DAD WAS EDWARD ETTERSHANK BUCHANAN BUT THEY CALLED HIM ‘BUCK’, A LOT] I WAS GOING TO SEND YOU DOWN TO TAKE CHARGE OF THE RED DEER DETACHMENT BUT I’VE HAD SO MUCH PROBLEM GETTING SOMEBODY TO GO DOWN TO TAKE THE LETHBRIDGE DETACHMENT…YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE, I THINK, THAT CAN HANDLE THE SITUATION WE’VE GOT DOWN THERE. THERE’S A LOT OF PROBLEMS AND I’M SURE YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE THAT CAN HANDLE IT. WILL YOU GO?” “[WE CAME DOWN HERE IN] ’44…I NEVER HAD ANY PROBLEM [WITH THE MOVE]. I WAS ALWAYS ADVENTUROUS. I HAD LOTS OF FRIENDS BUT I WAS ALWAYS HAPPY TO GO.” “WE RENTED A HOUSE ON 538 – 7TH STREET. IT’S ALL TORN DOWN NOW. DAD HAD TO COME DOWN A MONTH OR SO AHEAD OF US AND THEN HE COULDN’T FIND A HOUSE READY, SO WE CAME DOWN AND STAYED IN A HOTEL FOR ABOUT TWO MONTHS. I HAD TO START GRADE TEN; I WAS ONLY FOURTEEN, HERE. THAT WAS, TO ME, THE ONLY SAD PART OF MY LIFE, LEAVING THE WESTLOCK SCHOOL AND STARTING LCI. THE PERSONALIZATION WAS GONE WITH THE TEACHERS.” “[DAD] HAD TO OVERSEE THE POW CAMPS…HE TALKED ABOUT THE POW’S IN THIS RESPECT, THAT THERE WAS A LOT OF VERY GOOD GERMANS THAT WERE IN THERE. [THEY] WOULDN’T HAVE CHOSEN TO EVEN BE IN THE GERMAN ARMY…THEY WERE CONSCRIPTED OVER IN GERMANY, THEY DIDN’T HAVE ANY CHOICE, AND THEY WERE VERY DECENT, GOOD GUYS. HE RESPECTED THEM FOR THAT AND HELPED THEM, [GAVE] THEM ADVICE, “YOU KNOW, YOU GOTTA GO BACK TO GERMANY AND THEN APPLY TO COME BACK.” THERE WAS A TRUST THERE TO LET SOME OF THEM OUT TO WORK…‘CAUSE THERE [WAS] A LABOUR SHORTAGE FOR THE FARMERS AND THEY NEEDED THAT HELP. SOME OF THOSE FARMERS WERE VERY PLEASED TO GET SOME OF THESE GERMANS, AND SOME OF THE FARMERS’ DAUGHTERS WERE VERY PLEASED TO GET THAT, TOO. THEN THERE’S SOME LATER MARRIAGES AFTER THAT. IT WOULD BE A SHAME TO CONDEMN ALL THOSE POW’S BECAUSE A LOT OF THEM WERE VERY DECENT, GOOD, MORAL FELLOWS THAT DIDN’T WANT TO BE INVOLVED WITH ANY KILLING.” “HE WAS A PLAIN STAFF SERGEANT, NCO, SECOND IN CHARGE OF THE SUBDIVISION.” “[THEN HE] WENT BACK TO EDMONTON [TO RETIRE IN 1950], HIS HOME CITY WHERE HIS PARENTS WERE AND A LOT OF FRIENDS. HE JOINED THE R.C.M. P. VETS BUT WITH HIS RECORD, THE ATTORNEY GENERAL’S DEPARTMENT WERE NOT GOING TO LET HIM LOOSE. THEY MADE IT A FIRST APPOINTMENT OF AN INSPECTOR OF JAILS FOR THE PRISONS OF ALBERTA WHICH, AT THAT TIME, THERE WERE ONLY TWO: LETHBRIDGE AND FORT SASKATCHEWAN. [THE] ONLY PLACE IN FORT SASKATCHEWAN WAS FOR WOMEN, SO [WOMEN] HAD TO GO ALL THE WAY TO FORT SASKATCHEWAN, EVEN IF [THEY] WAS FROM LETHBRIDGE. THAT WASN’T A VERY GOOD DEAL, SO DAD COULD SEE A REAL NEED [FOR WORK]. IT WAS A REAL MESS WHEN HE LOOKED AT THE PRISONS.” “HE REALIZED, BEING AN R.C.M.P., THAT MANY OF THE YOUNG CITY POLICE, TOWN SHERIFFS, SOME OF THESE MAGISTRATES, THEY MESSED THINGS UP. HE STARTED A TRAINING SCHOOL FOR THESE MUNICIPAL POLICE AND THAT JUST WENT TERRIFICALLY. THEY HAD [THE SCHOOLS] IN CALGARY AND IN EDMONTON TWICE A YEAR. THEY HAD A BIG GROUP FROM MEDICINE HAT COME UP AND [TAKE] THE SCHOOLING, LETHBRIDGE CAME UP, AND SOME OF THE PRISON GUARDS TOOK [THE TRAINING], TOO.” “[HE] WORKED ON THAT FOR FIFTEEN/SIXTEEN YEARS. AFTER TWELVE YEARS, HE WAS SO BUSY THAT THEY MADE HIM SUPERINTENDENT OF PRISONS BECAUSE…THE FIRST THING HE HAD TO DO WAS TO DEVELOP THE PRISONS FOR ALBERTA. TWO WAS NOT SUFFICIENT.” “[DAD’S] PERSONALITY WAS ALWAYS QUIET, FIRM, NO-NONSENSE, HUMOROUS, BUT HE WAS NEVER ARROGANT. I NEVER HEARD HIM SWEAR OR GET MAD AT ANYBODY, NOT EVEN PRISONERS. HE HANDLED THEM VERY QUIETLY, AND VERY FIRMLY. THE STAFF…ALL LOVED HIM. I [HAVE] LETTERS AND THEY CAME ALL THE WAY UP TO THEIR ANNIVERSARIES LATER IN EDMONTON…“YOU’RE THE BEST BOSS WE EVER HAD.” ALL HE HAD WAS A VISION OF WHAT NEEDED TO BE DONE…HE COULD GO AND EXPLAIN THE NEED FOR THE JAILS, WHAT IT WOULD COST AND WHAT IT NEEDED TO FIX THE PROBLEM. HE NEVER HAD PROBLEM GETTING EXACTLY WHAT HE NEEDED FROM THEM.” ON THE DONATION OF THE REVOLVER, BUCHANAN NOTED, “MY DAD KNEW I WOULD LOOK AFTER [HIS BELONGINGS] AND WANTED TO GET IT TO A MUSEUM. [DAD KNEW] THAT I WASN’T ONE TO PUT IT IN MY BASEMENT TO HAVE GOODNESS-KNOWS-WHAT-HAPPEN TO IT. HE HAD LEFT ALL OF THAT IN CHARGE OF ME. I WAS THE SOLE EXECUTOR OF THE ESTATE.” “I AM NOW AT THE YOUNG AGE OF 88; I’M NOT WORRIED ABOUT LIVING ANOTHER 10 YEARS. I DIDN’T WANT THE CHANCE OF ANYBODY STEALING IT, OR GETTING THEIR HANDS ON IT, SO I WANTED TO MAKE SURE YOU GOT IT. AND, I DON’T NEED IT, SO WHY KEEP IT? IF I GET LONESOME, AND WANT TO SEE IT, I’LL COME TO THE MUSEUM AND LOOK AT IT.” “I’LL FEEL HAPPY, TO KNOW IT’S GOT A GOOD HOME. I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL TRANSCRIPTIONS FROM INTERVIEWS AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190002001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20190002001
Acquisition Date
2019-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1935
Date Range To
1950
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
COTTON, STEEL, BRASS
Catalogue Number
P20190002005
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1935
Date Range To
1950
Materials
COTTON, STEEL, BRASS
No. Pieces
2
Length
126.5
Description
A. CLEANING ROD ATTACHED TO STRING AND WEIGHT, 126.5CM LONG. STAINED WHITE CORD WITH BRASS CYLINDRICAL WEIGHT AT ONE END; CORD HAS WIRE BRUSH TIED 13CM DOWN; BRUSH HAS METAL BODY WITH WIRE BRISTLES WRAPPED AROUND IN SPIRAL; BRUSH IS ATTACHED TO CORD WITH METAL LOOPS AT ENDS OF BODY. CORD IS STAINED AND SEVERELY CURLED FROM LOOPING; CORD IS FRAYING; OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. B. CLEANING ROD, 7.8CM LONG. BLACK WIRE BRISTLES WRAPPED IN SPIRAL AROUND BRASS BODY; BODY HAS THREADED SCREW FITTING AT ONE END AND HAS WIRES TWISTED TOGETHER ON OTHER END. WIRES OF THE BRUSH ARE FRAYING AND HAVE DEBRIS CAUGHTL OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
ARMAMENT-ACCESSORY
Historical Association
SAFETY SERVICES
History
ON JANUARY 10, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED JEAN BUCHANAN REGARDING HER DONATION OF A REVOLVER AND FIREARM ACCESSORIES. THE FIREARM WAS USED BY BUCHANAN’S FATHER, EDWARD ETTERSHANK BUCHANAN, DURING HIS CAREER WITH THE ALBERTA PROVINCIAL POLICE AND ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE. BUCHANAN ELABORATED ON THE USE OF THE CLEANING ROD, NOTING, “[DAD HAD A BAG] BECAUSE, IN HIS YOUNGER DAYS, HE OFTEN HAD TO GO OUT ON HORSEBACK. HE’D BE GONE, HUNTING DOWN A MURDERER, AND HE MIGHT HAVE HAD A GUIDE WITH HIM. HE TOOK SOME OF HIS CLEANING EQUIPMENT FOR THE REVOLVER, AND HIS RIFLE, TOO…HE COULD PACK HIS LUNCH…KNIVES, SURVIVAL, AND HIS DIRTY OLD CLEANING CLOTH THAT HE USED, AND AN OLD BOTTLE OF GUN OIL, SO HE COULD CLEAN THE GUN IN CASE HE HAPPENED TO DROP IT IN SOME MUD. YOU NEVER KNOW [WHAT MIGHT HAPPEN] WHEN YOU’RE OUT…YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR GUN VERY CLEAN. HE KEPT EVERYTHING VERY CLEAN…YOU HAVE TO KEEP THE GUN CLEAN IF YOU’RE GOING TO USE IT, BECAUSE YOU COULD DAMAGE IT IF YOU HAVE ANY DIRT IN THE BARREL.” “THIS [CLEANING ROD] WAS AN INTERESTING OLD ONE FOR A RIFLE—A PIECE OF STRING THAT HAD A HEAVY WEIGHT AT THE END, SO YOU COULD DROP THE WEIGHT DOWN THE BARREL, AND THEN PULL THIS CLEANING BRASS WIRE THING OUT TO CLEAN THE BARREL. HE MADE IT HIMSELF, I THINK.” “HE HAD A BEAUTIFUL BRASS ONE [FOR HIS REVOLVERS] THAT YOU JUST HAVE THE LITTLE LENGTHS—ABOUT 4 LENGTHS—AND THEN YOU TAKE THE 2, AND UNSCREW IT – AND YOU CAN USE THAT FOR DIFFERENT LENGTHS OF FIREARMS.” “[THE GUNS] WERE A TOOL OF HIS JOB, BUT HE CERTAINLY WASN’T ONE THAT WANTED TO EVER USE IT, BUT IF HE HAD IT, HE HAD TO, OR TO JUST MAINTAIN THE PEACE.” ON HER FATHER’S REVOLVER, BUCHANAN RECALLED, “[MY DAD] USED [THE SMITH AND WESSON REVOLVER]…STARTING IN 1932, WITH THE RCMP, MAY BE WHEN HE GOT THAT GUN. HE HAD IT REGISTERED IN 1940, AND GETTING ANOTHER 5 YEARS REGISTRATION IT MUST HAVE BEEN 1935. [THE GUN] WAS HIS SIDEARM…HIS SERVICE WEAPON…HE HAD THAT ALL THE TIME…IT WOULD GO RIGHT ON HIS BELT THERE.” “[DAD KEPT THE GUN] IN [MY PARENTS’] BEDROOM. RIGHT ON THE BEDROOM CLOSET DOOR, RIGHT OPEN. I NEVER TOUCHED IT, BECAUSE HE HAD GIVEN ME MY TRAINING AND LET ME USE IT WHEN I WAS YOUNG. I HAD RESPECT FOR IT, AND I HAD NO SPECIAL CURIOSITY, WHICH IS A GOOD THING. [DAD KNEW I WAS] AN ADVENTUROUS PERSON, BUT I NEVER EVER TOUCHED IT, OUT OF COMPLETE RESPECT FOR DAD AND WHAT HE HAD THERE.” “ALL I CAN REMEMBER [IS HE HAD TWO HANDGUNS OR SIDEARMS]…HE DIDN’T GO OUT PRACTICING VERY MUCH; HE DIDN’T HAVE TO. HE COULD PASS HIS MARKSMANSHIP, AND THEN, EVERY TIME THERE WERE THINGS AT REGINA DEPOT TRAINING COURSES (UPGRADING, REFRESHER COURSES) THEY DID THEIR MARKSMANSHIP THERE, TOO. THEY WERE ALWAYS TESTED ON THEIR MARKSMANSHIP, AT REGINA DEPOT.” “I THINK [THE REVOLVER HAD] QUITE A BIT [OF MEANING TO MY DAD], BECAUSE HE HAD IT IN HIS HOUSE. IT WAS REALLY STRANGE BECAUSE I ASKED HIM WHERE IT WAS, WHEN HE SHOWED ME THE PAPERS, AND HE HAD IT IN A SHOE BOX IN HIS BEDROOM CLOSET. YOU DIDN’T HAVE TO HAVE GREAT [HIDING] PLACES FOR IT IN THOSE DAYS, BUT THAT’S WHERE HE KEPT IT. HE MADE SURE IT WAS THERE, AND HE KNEW WHERE IT WAS.” “[I HAVE NO] KNOWLEDGE ABOUT HIM HAVING TO FIRE THIS WEAPON…AT ANYONE. IF HE WOULD HAVE, HE WOULD HAVE FIRED TO MISS SOMEONE, JUST AS A WARNING SHOT. HE DEFINITELY WENT FOR WARNING SHOTS, BUT HE NEVER SHOT ANYBODY WITH IT.” “[HE WOULD HAVE STOPPED CARRYING THE GUN] AT THE VERY END OF 1950, WHEN HE RETIRED FROM THE R.C.M.P.” “[I’VE HAD THE REVOLVER] SINCE 1998—THE PASSING OF MY FATHER, BECAUSE I WAS THE SOLE EXECUTRIX. IT WAS AUTOMATICALLY MY RESPONSIBILITY TO TAKE ALL OF HIS FIREARMS, IN MY POSSESSION.” “I WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR [THE CARE OF] IT, AND IT WAS A REAL KEEPSAKE. [THE GUN WAS] WAS VERY PERSONAL, BECAUSE I’M SURE [MY DAD] OWNED THAT EVEN BY BACK IN 1935, [WHEN] HE WAS IN WESTLOCK, IN CHARGE OF THE DETACHMENT THERE FOR 10 YEARS. IT WAS OF SENTIMENTAL VALUE BECAUSE HE TOOK ME OUT (I’M PRETTY SURE I WAS 8 YEARS OLD, WHEN HE HAD ME IN THE BACKYARD)—WE HAD FARMLAND AND FOREST—AND HE HAD A TARGET PRACTICE OUT THERE. HE HAD ME USE THAT FIREARM. HE SHOWED ME HOW TO USE IT, HOW TO AIM, AND HOW TO HANDLE IT SAFELY. I ALWAYS RESPECTED THAT, AND THAT WAS GOOD. THAT’S THE ORIGINAL HOLSTER FOR THAT GUN, WHICH YOU CAN SEE IS LOOPED, TO PUT ON HIS BELT. HE ALSO CARRIED A .32 COLT SEMI-AUTOMATIC.” “I’VE ALWAYS APPRECIATED REVOLVERS, AND RIFLES. IT’S NEVER BEEN ANYTHING THAT I THOUGHT ANY DANGER OF. YOU LEARN THE SAFETY, AND YOU TAKE YOUR COURSE. I HAVE MY COURSE DONE, AND I PASSED IT WITH FLYING COLORS. I HAD MY PERMIT TO HAVE IT. I HAVE TAKEN IT OUT, ON MY OWN ACREAGE, AND FIRED IT A BIT, BUT IT ISN’T SOMETHING I WANT TO DO. IT’S A SENTIMENTAL THING THAT I CAN NOW FEEL I’D LIKE TO HAVE IT IN YOUR MUSEUM. I KNOW IT’S NOW IN A SAFE PLACE, SO I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT EVER FALLING INTO THE WRONG HANDS. AND, IF I WANT TO COME AND VISIT IT, I CAN COME AND SEE IT.” ON JUNE 8, 2018, MACLEAN INTERVIEWED BUCHANAN REGARDING HER FATHER’S CAREER WITH THE ALBERTA PROVINCIAL POLICE AND ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE. BUCHANAN ELABORATED ON HER FATHER’S HISTORY, “[MY DAD WAS EDWARD BUCHANAN, WHO RETIRED AT THE RANK OF] SENIOR STAFF SERGEANT…HE RETIRED IN 1950 FROM THE [R.C.M.P].” “HE JOINED THE A.P.P. WHEN HE WAS TWENTY AND HE WAS STATIONED OUT NEAR ST. PAUL. IN ’21, HE MET MY MOTHER IN EDMONTON…BUT HE STAYED AT ST. PAUL AND THEN AFTER, HE GOT POSTED TO GRANDE PRAIRIE. HE WAS GOING TO GO TO GRANDE PRAIRIE BUT THEN IN ’22, THEY GOT MARRIED. A.P.P. HAD NO RESTRICTIONS ON THEIR MEMBERS GETTING MARRIED, LIKE THE R.C.M.P. HE DIDN’T HAVE TO WAIT TO GET MARRIED…THAT’S WHEN THEY WENT OUT TO BRAINARD.” “EVEN IN THE A.P.P., TO START WITH, HE HAD SOME SERVICE DOWN HERE AT THE LETHBRIDGE PRISON…BRINGING PRISONERS DOWN AND THEN MAYBE, AT THE VERY FIRST WINTER AS A ROOKIE, HE WAS ON JOB TO BE ON GUARD AT THE STATION. IT WASN’T LONG AND HE WAS SENT OUT TO ST. PAUL AND INTO MORE OF THE REAL POLICING.” “WHEN HE WAS IN THE A.P.P. [IN 1932] HE WAS THE TOP CLASS OF [THE] A.P.P. THAT AUTOMATICALLY WERE ACCEPTED INTO THE R.C.M.P. HE WAS PUT IN CHARGE, WHEN HE WAS IN THE A.P.P.—FIRST HE STARTED OUT IN CHARGE OF BRAINARD—HORSE LAKE—A LITTLE PLACE NEAR THE HORSE LAKE INDIAN RESERVATION. THEY CLOSED THAT DOWN AND TRANSFERRED HIM TO WEMBLEY, A LITTLE VILLAGE, AND HE WAS THE ONLY ONE IN CHARGE, THE ONLY OFFICER IN CHARGE OF WEMBLEY. THAT’S WHEN THAT 1932 [CHANGE] CAME ALONG AND HE JUST CHANGED THE SIGN UP THERE FROM A.P.P. TO R.C.M.P. AND WENT FROM THERE.” “IN ’32, IT WAS R.C.M.P. AND THAT STAYED R.C.M.P. UNTIL ’34. THEN HE WAS TRANSFERRED TO TAKE CHARGE OF THE WESTLOCK DETACHMENT WHICH WAS A BIG AREA. [THERE] WAS NO DETACHMENT IN BARRHEAD. HE HAD A HUGE AREA THERE TO COVER.” “[A.P.P. MEMBERS] WERE NOT AUTOMATICALLY TAKEN INTO THE R.C.M.P. THEY HAD THREE CATEGORIES THERE, OF THE A.P.P. MEMBERS…[THERE WERE] ONES THAT WERE NOT ACCEPTABLE, THAT THEY HADN’T DONE A VERY GOOD JOB IN THE A.P.P.; THEY SHOWED UP, GOOFIN’ AROUND, DOING THINGS THEY SHOULDN’T BE DOING. THEY WERE NOT ACCEPTABLE. THEN THERE [WERE THE ONES THAT] COULD BE GIVEN A LITTLE TRIAL RUN. THEY COULD APPLY. THEN THERE [WERE] ONES THAT COULD GET IN FOR A FULL YEAR AND THEN RE-APPLY. THEY’D BE ACCEPTED FOR A YEAR. THEN THERE’S THE TOP GRADE AND [THEY] WERE AUTOMATICALLY ACCEPTABLE. DAD WAS RIGHT UP THERE IN THAT TOP GRADE.” “A.P.P. MEMBERS WERE TRAINED BY THE NORTHWEST MOUNTED POLICE, NOT SOME GOOFBALLS THAT DIDN’T KNOW WHAT THEY WERE DOING. THESE WERE TRAINED BY THE BEST-TRAINED POLICE OFFICERS.” “ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER HANCOCK KNEW DAD REALLY WELL, HE’D EVEN BEEN IN THE A.P.P. HE CALLED DAD INTO THE OFFICE AND HE SAID, “BUCK, [DAD WAS EDWARD ETTERSHANK BUCHANAN BUT THEY CALLED HIM ‘BUCK’, A LOT] I WAS GOING TO SEND YOU DOWN TO TAKE CHARGE OF THE RED DEER DETACHMENT BUT I’VE HAD SO MUCH PROBLEM GETTING SOMEBODY TO GO DOWN TO TAKE THE LETHBRIDGE DETACHMENT…YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE, I THINK, THAT CAN HANDLE THE SITUATION WE’VE GOT DOWN THERE. THERE’S A LOT OF PROBLEMS AND I’M SURE YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE THAT CAN HANDLE IT. WILL YOU GO?” “[WE CAME DOWN HERE IN] ’44…I NEVER HAD ANY PROBLEM [WITH THE MOVE]. I WAS ALWAYS ADVENTUROUS. I HAD LOTS OF FRIENDS BUT I WAS ALWAYS HAPPY TO GO.” “WE RENTED A HOUSE ON 538 – 7TH STREET. IT’S ALL TORN DOWN NOW. DAD HAD TO COME DOWN A MONTH OR SO AHEAD OF US AND THEN HE COULDN’T FIND A HOUSE READY, SO WE CAME DOWN AND STAYED IN A HOTEL FOR ABOUT TWO MONTHS. I HAD TO START GRADE TEN; I WAS ONLY FOURTEEN, HERE. THAT WAS, TO ME, THE ONLY SAD PART OF MY LIFE, LEAVING THE WESTLOCK SCHOOL AND STARTING LCI. THE PERSONALIZATION WAS GONE WITH THE TEACHERS.” “[DAD] HAD TO OVERSEE THE POW CAMPS…HE TALKED ABOUT THE POW’S IN THIS RESPECT, THAT THERE WAS A LOT OF VERY GOOD GERMANS THAT WERE IN THERE. [THEY] WOULDN’T HAVE CHOSEN TO EVEN BE IN THE GERMAN ARMY…THEY WERE CONSCRIPTED OVER IN GERMANY, THEY DIDN’T HAVE ANY CHOICE, AND THEY WERE VERY DECENT, GOOD GUYS. HE RESPECTED THEM FOR THAT AND HELPED THEM, [GAVE] THEM ADVICE, “YOU KNOW, YOU GOTTA GO BACK TO GERMANY AND THEN APPLY TO COME BACK.” THERE WAS A TRUST THERE TO LET SOME OF THEM OUT TO WORK…‘CAUSE THERE [WAS] A LABOUR SHORTAGE FOR THE FARMERS AND THEY NEEDED THAT HELP. SOME OF THOSE FARMERS WERE VERY PLEASED TO GET SOME OF THESE GERMANS, AND SOME OF THE FARMERS’ DAUGHTERS WERE VERY PLEASED TO GET THAT, TOO. THEN THERE’S SOME LATER MARRIAGES AFTER THAT. IT WOULD BE A SHAME TO CONDEMN ALL THOSE POW’S BECAUSE A LOT OF THEM WERE VERY DECENT, GOOD, MORAL FELLOWS THAT DIDN’T WANT TO BE INVOLVED WITH ANY KILLING.” “HE WAS A PLAIN STAFF SERGEANT, NCO, SECOND IN CHARGE OF THE SUBDIVISION.” “[THEN HE] WENT BACK TO EDMONTON [TO RETIRE IN 1950], HIS HOME CITY WHERE HIS PARENTS WERE AND A LOT OF FRIENDS. HE JOINED THE R.C.M. P. VETS BUT WITH HIS RECORD, THE ATTORNEY GENERAL’S DEPARTMENT WERE NOT GOING TO LET HIM LOOSE. THEY MADE IT A FIRST APPOINTMENT OF AN INSPECTOR OF JAILS FOR THE PRISONS OF ALBERTA WHICH, AT THAT TIME, THERE WERE ONLY TWO: LETHBRIDGE AND FORT SASKATCHEWAN. [THE] ONLY PLACE IN FORT SASKATCHEWAN WAS FOR WOMEN, SO [WOMEN] HAD TO GO ALL THE WAY TO FORT SASKATCHEWAN, EVEN IF [THEY] WAS FROM LETHBRIDGE. THAT WASN’T A VERY GOOD DEAL, SO DAD COULD SEE A REAL NEED [FOR WORK]. IT WAS A REAL MESS WHEN HE LOOKED AT THE PRISONS.” “HE REALIZED, BEING AN R.C.M.P., THAT MANY OF THE YOUNG CITY POLICE, TOWN SHERIFFS, SOME OF THESE MAGISTRATES, THEY MESSED THINGS UP. HE STARTED A TRAINING SCHOOL FOR THESE MUNICIPAL POLICE AND THAT JUST WENT TERRIFICALLY. THEY HAD [THE SCHOOLS] IN CALGARY AND IN EDMONTON TWICE A YEAR. THEY HAD A BIG GROUP FROM MEDICINE HAT COME UP AND [TAKE] THE SCHOOLING, LETHBRIDGE CAME UP, AND SOME OF THE PRISON GUARDS TOOK [THE TRAINING], TOO.” “[HE] WORKED ON THAT FOR FIFTEEN/SIXTEEN YEARS. AFTER TWELVE YEARS, HE WAS SO BUSY THAT THEY MADE HIM SUPERINTENDENT OF PRISONS BECAUSE…THE FIRST THING HE HAD TO DO WAS TO DEVELOP THE PRISONS FOR ALBERTA. TWO WAS NOT SUFFICIENT.” “[DAD’S] PERSONALITY WAS ALWAYS QUIET, FIRM, NO-NONSENSE, HUMOROUS, BUT HE WAS NEVER ARROGANT. I NEVER HEARD HIM SWEAR OR GET MAD AT ANYBODY, NOT EVEN PRISONERS. HE HANDLED THEM VERY QUIETLY, AND VERY FIRMLY. THE STAFF…ALL LOVED HIM. I [HAVE] LETTERS AND THEY CAME ALL THE WAY UP TO THEIR ANNIVERSARIES LATER IN EDMONTON…“YOU’RE THE BEST BOSS WE EVER HAD.” ALL HE HAD WAS A VISION OF WHAT NEEDED TO BE DONE…HE COULD GO AND EXPLAIN THE NEED FOR THE JAILS, WHAT IT WOULD COST AND WHAT IT NEEDED TO FIX THE PROBLEM. HE NEVER HAD PROBLEM GETTING EXACTLY WHAT HE NEEDED FROM THEM.” ON THE DONATION OF THE REVOLVER AND AMMUNITION, BUCHANAN NOTED, “MY DAD KNEW I WOULD LOOK AFTER [HIS BELONGINGS] AND WANTED TO GET IT TO A MUSEUM. [DAD KNEW] THAT I WASN’T ONE TO PUT IT IN MY BASEMENT TO HAVE GOODNESS-KNOWS-WHAT-HAPPEN TO IT. HE HAD LEFT ALL OF THAT IN CHARGE OF ME. I WAS THE SOLE EXECUTOR OF THE ESTATE.” “I AM NOW AT THE YOUNG AGE OF 88; I’M NOT WORRIED ABOUT LIVING ANOTHER 10 YEARS. I DIDN’T WANT THE CHANCE OF ANYBODY STEALING IT, OR GETTING THEIR HANDS ON IT, SO I WANTED TO MAKE SURE YOU GOT IT. AND, I DON’T NEED IT, SO WHY KEEP IT? IF I GET LONESOME, AND WANT TO SEE IT, I’LL COME TO THE MUSEUM AND LOOK AT IT.” “I’LL FEEL HAPPY, TO KNOW IT’S GOT A GOOD HOME. I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL TRANSCRIPTIONS FROM INTERVIEWS AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190002001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20190002005
Acquisition Date
2019-01
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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