Friday, September 19, 2014

Alberta Culture Days -- showcasing Peace River's arts, culture and heritage!

Alberta Culture Days is an annual celebration of the arts, culture and heritage found through out our province. The Peace Country has its own eclectic array of creative events and opportunites to view, participate or contribute to! From a concert at McKinney Hall on September 26th in Northern Sunrise County to two full days of the Dixonville Harvest Days September 26th & 27th to September 27th in Peace River, there is much to see and do.
PRMA 2009.014.361 Clara O'Neill, Betty Moore and Allie Holt dressed for Mackenzie Days, circa 1960s.  

Peace River's activities begin on International Peace Day September 21st at Riverfront Park. The unveiling ceremony of a recently installed Peace Pole will be held at 2pm Sunday with a message of peace for the world and in acknowledgement of the historical and contemporary cultures of the people in our region. Local visual artists and quilters will be featured the week of September 22-29th in many participating downtown businesses. Next, the Town of Peace River will offer a FREE concert September 27th with Fairview musician Sarah Richards opening for country singer Duane Steele at the historic Athabasca Hall from 4pm to 6pm. Free tickets can picked up at the Museum and at Community Services. At the Museum our heritage and landscapes are currently expressed in the works of photographer Amanda Monette and in the Aboriginal women's artistry in the exhibit "A Sense of the Land and Its People: A Private Collection".

The Library and Art Gallery is featuring an exhibit of children's art from the summer workshops as well as hosting a book talk at 1pm on the 27th. The day concludes with the first of the season's 'underground Music Society' dances at the Senior's Drop-In Centre from 8:30pm-1am ($25 advanced tickets/ $30 at the door) presenting the blues band "NightKeepers".

The Peace Country has a history of creative expression and innovation and the contemporary scene expressed this week continues the tradition! Carve out the time to celebrate living in the Peace!

PRMA 83.1308.008 Street Bingo was a mainstay of Peace River's Community Culture. circa 1960s.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Artifact of the Week - hog rings and pliers

This week’s featured artifact is a nice box of 100 copper hog rings and hog ring pliers donated by St. Isidore’s Madeleine Martel. For those who did not grow up on a farm, or who are unfamiliar with pigs, these animals have a very strong sense of smell which they use to find food underneath the ground. They then use their snout to dig up their find; this is called rooting. The rings are used to prevent this behaviour in the pigs as rooting can be quite destructive. A ring or sometimes two or three are clipped to the rim of the nose of the pig which makes rooting uncomfortable yet allows the pig to rummage freely for food that is located above the soil.

The set of adjustable pliers would be used to clip the rings onto the nose of the pig. Although this may seem like somewhat of a cruel way of dealing with the natural behaviour of the pig, this does very minimal damage to the pig in a very cheap manner. A drift of pigs would do a lot of damage to a field or pastor if they were not rung which is why in some cases the rings were a necessity. 
PRMA 97.23.11 and 97.23.12

Friday, September 5, 2014

Artist of the Month - Amanda Monette

For the month of September, the Museum's art wall features the work of Amanda Monette. Amanda has only been publicly displaying her work for about a year.

Born and raised in the Peace River valley, Amanda has a deep appreciation and love for the Peace country and nature in general. She and her husband are raising their two children in this area.

While her artistic interests range from piano and dance to acrylic painting and photography, Amanda's true passion is photography. She turns her lens towards family members, events, landscapes and nature, but people are by far her favourite subject. In her own words ... "I absolutely love to photograph people, to try and get as much story, emotion and life to show through as possible, as well as nature, there is so much beauty people tend to just pass by."

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Dance Through the Decades in photographs!

Well, it's been just over three weeks since we danced through the decades and we, at the Museum, are still talking about it!

It was a wonderfully successful and fun for all event, and we were so happy that so many of you came out to celebrate the centennial year of the Village of Peace River Crossing with us.

We must extend a massive thank-you to everyone who helped out, including

Ivan Schell Ronda Cann Beverly and Dale Shewchuk Family
Judi McMartin Emmilee Miller Peace Players
Jill Cairns Jeremiah Gloor Audrey Dewit
Anna Aleksov Freson Bros. Randy Hodgkinson
Marty O'Byrne Bill Ruston Dave Allan
Walter Mycek No Limitz Jeff McCann
GN Carriers Pond Hockey Peacefest
Rentco Peace River Broadcasting Record-Gazette
Peace Valley Inns Peace country Coop Holy Family Catholic Conference Centre
Mighty Peace Tourism Alberta Culture, Community Initiative Program Travel Alberta

Here are some photographs of the dance.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Artifact of the week - Studio Portrait of Cpl. George Clarke

79.1029.2, gift of Mrs. G. Umbach
This photograph, donated by Mrs. G. Umbach, is one of several that will be featured on the blog in the upcoming months to commemorate the First World War. Also known as The Great War, this massive conflict erupted on July 28th, 1914. Britain, and by default, Canada, declared war on August 4th, 1914.
Peace River resident Corporal George Clarke enlisted in Edmonton mere days after marrying Annie Southcott, who had come over from England to be his wife. Originally assigned to the 202nd Infantry Battalion, Clarke was transferred to the 31st Battalion and saw action in France and Belgium. His unit was part of the Occupation Forces in Germany towards the end of the war. He returned to Peace River and was integral to the construction of several key buildings in town. A copy of this photograph, accompanied by George Clarke’s military tunic (jacket) are currently on display in the Peace River Gallery at the Peace River Museum, Archives and Mackenzie Centre.
Although this portrait of Cpl. Clarke appears to depict him posing in a military camp, it was actually taken in a studio. The backdrop, complete with tents and a flag, is painted on canvas and Cpl. Clarke is standing on a drop-cloth.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Artifact of the Week - School Strap

If you recognize this artifact it is possible that you were a naughty student during your school days! This is a school strap that was donated to the museum by Pete Gardner who found the strap at Springfield Elementary during some summer cleaning. This would have been used to give bad students a slap on the back of the hand to smarten them up!

Although the strap has generally been out of use in Canada since around the 1970s, corporal punishment in schools was allowed until January 30th, 2004 when it became outlawed under section 43 of the Criminal Code. Every province in the country had banned corporal punishment in their schools prior to the 2004 law except for one, Alberta. The Peace Wapiti School Division in Grande Prairie was the last division to allow the strap and other corporal punishment in Canada leading up to the 2004 law.

Although it is likely that this strap has been out of commission for well over 40 years, it remains a frightening artifact that may bring back some less than positive memories for a few of us. Come to the Peace River Museum, Archives and Mackenzie Centre to see this artifact in our new school display and be sure to stroll by the mall on your way over to see our second school display. We’re showing some artifacts that are sure to bring back some more positive memories of your school days and are helping our younger visitors get excited about their return to school at the end of the month!   

M91.21.1 School Strap 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Historic Tours Available in August

Have you ever been curious about the St. Augustine Mission, the Mackenzie Cairn or Twelve Foot Davis? We have a number of Historic Tours coming up in August that will satisfy your curiousity.

Tours are offered free of charge on the following dates - just show up anytime during the allotted hours:

St. Augustine Mission
Provincial Historic Site, Shaftesbury Trail, River Lot 22, Highway 685

Sunday August 10th: 2:30-4:30 pm
Sunday August 24th: 1:00-4:00 pm

Mackenzie Cairn
National Historic Site, Shaftesbury Trail, River Lot 19, Highway 684

Sunday August 10th: 11:00-1:30 pm

Twelve Foot Davis
Fairgrounds Road off Highway #2 South

Sunday August 17th: 2:00-4:00 pm
Friday August 22nd: 6:30-8:00 pm

75.624.5, St. Augustine Mission Church, c. 1930 

Our partners for this project include the Municipal District of Peace, Mighty Peace Tourism, Northern Sunrise County, Town of Peace River, Alberta Infrastructure, Peace River Correctional Centre and Young Canada Works. For more information, please feel free to contact the Museum.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Artist of the Month - Judy Woods

This month, the Art Wall at the Peace River Museum, Archives and Mackenzie Centre displays the vibrant work of local artist Judy Woods.

Born and raised near Rocky Mountain House, Alberta, Judy moved to Peace River Country when she was sixteen. Judy's work reflects her love of horses and wildlife, although more recently she has been inspired to depict people in her art. While charcoal is her medium of choice, Judy also creates pieces using chalk pastels, coloured pencils, acrylic paints and photography.

As an E.A. with the Dixonville School, Judy has had the chance to share her love and talent for art with students. She inspires them to explore their own talents and organizes a local art show on their behalf entitled The Community of Artists.

We invite you to come and enjoy Judy's highly detailed and life-like work throughout the month of August.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Artifact of the Week- Clovis Point

This projectile point was found, along with several others, in the Nampa area by early homesteader, Logan Sherris. The point was likely hafted or attached to a short spear called a dart, which was mid-sized: between the length of an arrow and a spear. It is crafted from Peace River Chert which is a high quality stone material with outcrops along the Peace River. The craftsman made the piece by removing small flakes of stone from a core or nucleus using another rock or a softer material such as antler or bone until the desired shape was attained. What is of particular interest is the age of the piece. Considering the shape of the dart point, we can tell that it comes from the Clovis Culture meaning that it is likely around 11,000 years old. Near the base of the point, the craftsman removed a few extra flakes to thin it out towards the middle of the piece. This is known as fluting which may have aided in hafting the point and is the most telling characteristic of a Clovis Point.

Although some argue that the Clovis Culture may be older than 11,000 years, at around 13,200 years, it is the earliest known stone tool culture to have appeared in the Americas. The fact that this early Paleo-Indian artifact was found in the Peace Region suggests that the area may have been inhabited for many thousands of years! Be sure to stop by the Peace River Museum, Archives and Mackenzie Centre to see this ancient piece of history and the oldest man-made artifact in our collection!
Clovis Point- 89.35.4