Saturday, October 31, 2020

A Night Of Ghosts, Goblins, And Witches

Happy Hallowe'en! It's going to be a weird one this year, with less of a chance of trick or treaters.  I like marking the occasion regardless, and I'm starting with the display at this jewelry shop in Westboro featuring a not unfriendly witch and a skull.

A residence in Centretown had this on their lawn as I passed by one day. The cat's head was moving.

This is the front display of a card shop in the Glebe neighbourhood.

An art studio is set up in a nearby shop, one that caters to kids. These pumpkins are in the window.

And in another neighbouring shop that sells flags is this skull and bones flag, appropriate for the occasion.

Finishing off, this is the front yard of a home in the Glebe.

Friday, October 30, 2020

Canada In The Time Of Two World Wars

This is the uniform jacket of  Sergeant Alexander Reid, a decorated Canadian veteran of the First World War. A standard rifle accompanies it in the display case.

The Bluenose was a Canadian racing schooner of the 1920s and 1930s. Today there's a replica of the ship, and the original appears on the Canadian dime.

The Depression era is examined here as well, and among the panels and displays is this. The Co-operative Commonwealth Federation rose out of the Depression, and was the forerunner for what is today the New Democratic Party in Canada.

The Second World War would rise up out of this era, and that too is explored here.

Archive footage is included here.

For today I leave off with propaganda posters of the era. I will be back to the Museum after the first of the month. Tomorrow, after all, is Hallowe'en.

Thursday, October 29, 2020

Informed And Shaped By Nature

Around the church I left off with yesterday, this part of the Museum includes display cases and panels. In this case are standard items for the days of one room schoolhouses. A photograph of one in the Canadian West stands in the background.

Quotations about living in the West are on the wall.

As the 19th century moved into the 20th, a retail company, Eaton's, existed in Canada and ran part of its business through stores, part through catalogue. It no longer exists, thanks in part to the rank incompetence of the current generation of Eatons. A display case includes some items from the early part of the 20th century.

Social movements of this era are also examined. This banner is tied to the labour movement of the late 19th century.

Also examined is the movement for women to vote and for temperance.

The final of the three pods inside the Canada History Hall is on the second level. A long, gentle ramp curls around the central hub, where a large map of Canada is laid out on the floor.

From above, a look into one of the interior spaces below allows a view of a huge painting that nearly spans the height of the Museum.

A flag commemorating the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria is one of the first items seen in this third pod.

And it is the First World War that occupies this introductory area.

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Moving Forward And Sanctuary

 Picking up where we left off yesterday, here we have more of the story of the transcontinental railroads and the mammoth task of their construction.

The item in this display case is a theodolite, a standard tool used by surveyors at the time.

A panel and display case looks at Haida artist and chief Charles Edenshaw. The totem pole and hat in the display case are his works. 

Nearby is one of the treasures of the Museum. St. Onuphrius Catholic Church was given to the Museum in the 1990s and installed here. As part of the wave of immigrants from Ukraine into the West in the late 19th century and first half of the 20th century, this church ministered to the community of Smoky Lake northeast of Edmonton. It remains a consecrated church today. Because of Covid restrictions, the interior was off limits, but the doors were open and the sanctuary could be seen.

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

The Drive Towards The West

This is an elk skin, of the Blackfoot people of the northern plains. As part of what was called a winter count, each year an image would be added onto the skin as a record of events.

This display case features a full canoe, oars, wampum belt, and the characteristic sashes worn by the French speaking traders who went deep into the continent in search of fur and other goods.

Another legacy left by those traders were the Metis, a blend of Indigenous and French Canadian who became a culture in their own right. Some of their clothing is here.

Viewable from the balcony here are four works of art, each named after a season. These are by Dene artist Alex Janvier. The corridor below was closed off due to Covid restrictions.

A set of panels and photographs here are housed under a teepee. The signage is current, asking that only one person at a time be inside this space.

As was the case south of the border, the drive to unite the country east to west with transcontinental railroads was part of the country's story in the latter part of the 19th century.

Artifacts here include a ceremonial last spike and a pocket watch of John A. Macdonald, the prime minister who pushed for the railroads.