Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Artifact of the Week - Umbrella Hat

This week's featured artifact is an umbrella hat donated by Joan Wahl. In the 1950s, this hat belonged to Joan's mother, Florentine Bochenko. Joan remembers her mother, a hairdresser, always having a rain hat with her. She had very fine hair and as soon as it would get wet, it would go flat. To guard against such fashion horror, Florentine always carried her rain hat with her, just in case.

The umbrella hat was first patented by William H. Patten in 1880. He developed the umbrella hat while he was a prospector in Mexico. His original design also featured netting which protected wearers from mosquitoes.

In the 1890s, William moved to Seattle, where he became known as the "Umbrella Man". He was quite the handyman when it came to umbrellas of all sorts. His eccentric demeanor, bushy white beard, cane, suit and of course, the umbrella hat, would soon make him famous: when John Ross "Dok" Hager created a new cartoon feature in the Seattle Times, William was featured in all his umbrella hat glory.

PRMA 2012.006.001 A-B

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Artifact of the Week - Nazi ceremonial dagger

This week's artifact of the week is a Kriegsmarine officer's dagger from World War II. It was donated by Marsha Tanasichuk and is from her father Stanley Lawrence's estate.

This ceremonial officer's dagger, circa 1940-44 is a war trophy, brought back to Canada after the war. It features an eagle and a swastika on the pommel and is accompanied by its original scabbard.

War trophies have been claimed by soldiers for thousands of years, either to ensure weapons remain out of enemy hands or to commemorate battles fought. Small objects like daggers, guns, flags or helmets as well as large items like machine guns and canons have all been taken by soldiers as war trophies in the past. More extreme examples of war trophies include cultural memorabilia and body parts of defeated enemies.

Stanley Lawrence served in the Canadian Forestry Corps of the Canadian Army during the Second World War. This corps cut and prepared lumber in Canada's abundant forests, until space needed on cargo ships to transport the lumber overseas for the Allied war effort became sparse. From then on, the Canadian Forestry Corps cut and prepared the necessary lumber for barracks, roads surfaces, ammunition crates and trench construction while stationed overseas in the United Kingdom and Europe.

This dagger is currently on exhibit in the Peace River Gallery but it will be coming down soon to make way for an exhibit about the beginning of World War I. The Museum will be featuring a number of small exhibits this year, detailing the centenaries of four big events that all happened in 1914. These events include the beginning of World War I, Peace River Crossing becoming a village, the beginning of the Peace River Fire Department and the beginning of the Record-Gazette newspaper.

Come by the Museum to see all of these great exhibits.
PRMA 2008.050.032 A-B

Monday, February 17, 2014

Artist of the Month for February 2014 - Timothy David Martin

Timothy David Martin began drawing at the age of 7 years in his home province of Ontario. He studied art seriously at the Ontario College of Art in Toronto in the 1970s and later worked as a cartoonist with the newspaper at the University of Toronto. Tim, currently living in Peace River, has selected 24 works of original graphite on bristle board to exhibit this month. The strong influences of Escher and Dali are immediately apparent. The dimension he creates and the eclectic imagery will surely surprise viewers. Tim’s work  may be described as abstract expressionism as it seems to exhibit the improvisational elements renown for this ‘audacious’ 1940s art style.

Be sure to take in this remarkable exhibit by Timothy David Martin during February.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Take an Interpretive Walk with the Museum

This upcoming Monday, February 17, 2014, join the Heritage Places Committee (HPC) and the Museum on a winter stroll along 86th Avenue in Peace River.

The third Monday in February, since 1990, has been known to Albertans as Family Day. It is an opportunity to spend time with family and sharing personal histories has a great way of bringing people together. It also happens to be History Day across Canada.  Families and history are a natural pairing. We invite you and your family to walk with us and learn why the Parkview Subdivision (86th Avenue), a post-war subdivision in Peace River's north end has historic significance to our community.  This neighbourhood, conceived, financed and built by local businessman Oscar Moro, was built between 1958 and 1962.

In post-war times, the idea of suburban development was relatively new, and, as yet, unheard of in Peace River. Mr. Moro, though, realized that this subdivision would use previously underutilized land, provide affordable housing to returning veterans and alleviate the housing crisis that was occurring in Peace River.  It was a time of prosperity influenced by much oil and gas exploration in the Peace Country and it was those families that in large part become the first homeowners.

We will meet at the parking area across from the Kinsmen Funland park at 1:30 pm. Please dress for the weather and bring your family and your friends.

For more information, please call the Museum at 780-624-4261 or email us at museum@peaceriver.net.
A transition on 86th Avenue from the 1950s to the 2010s. 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Book Launch with Larry Loyie this Saturday at the Museum

This Saturday, February 8, 2014, from 2 to 4 pm, the Museum is pleased to host Larry Loyie and his partner Constance Brissenden. Larry will be launching his newest book, "The Moon Speaks Cree" which tells the story of a young boy named Lawrence. Throughout the book and throughout the seasons, Lawrence learns many traditional Aboriginal lessons. Our first blog entry about this launch gives a greater view of the book and the author, and can be located here.

Larry and Constance will be bringing copies of all of Larry's books for sale. They are happy to sign copies and answer questions.

The Museum is located at 10302, 99 Street in Peace River. For more information please call the Museum at 780-624-4261.

This event is free. We hope to see everyone there.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Artifact of the Week - Glitzy necklace

This week’s featured artifact is a necklace with rhinestones or red glass pieces. This lovely, sparkly necklace was donated to the Museum by Diane Gayton.

Diane worked at the Museum as the curator from 1998 to 2004. Diane was a hobby seamstress who maintained a craft business while also working at the Museum. Diane and her husband Gerald had a farm adjoining the homestead that Gerald’s parents worked.

This glitzy and glamourous necklace showcases the style of the 1960s. It also brings to mind the gift giving associated with the most romantic holiday of the year: Valentine's Day. Giving jewelry to your sweetheart for Valentine’s Day became popular in the 1980s, when the diamond industry got involved in gift giving traditions.

This necklace is on display for the month of February, as part of our Valentine’s exhibit. 

PRMA 03.04.19