Salt Spring Island Archives

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Promoting the History and Heritage of the Cowichan Valley

Kathryn Gagnon

Duncan train station building




Unknown Speaker 0:00
speaking today, Catherine Daniel is the curator of the Cowichan Valley Museum. And she has a great long abstract here, but it looks like most of her talk, so I won't read it. I'll just introduce Catherine. Thank you very much. Thank

Unknown Speaker 0:19
you. Yes, thank you very much for having me here today. And to thank for preparing a PowerPoint presentation for me. I thought what I would do today is just tell you a little bit of a bit about bit about what we do about the museum at the museum, the archives and society. But before I begin, I'll just tell you a little bit about myself. I'm in my fourth year, as curator of this museum, it started actually, in 1974, was when the Historical Society was established. And in 1986, the very first curator was part of a training program here on the islands. And she was the curator. Some of you may know her Priscilla Lowe, she was the curator right up until 2004. And she was the first and only curator. So I'm the second one. And I'm very happy that she's still a volunteer at the archives. And I still have access to all that amazing information in her head. So I came by this I was a teacher in Vancouver for years and English as a second language. And I needed a challenge. So I started doing courses through the University of Victoria their cultural resource management program. Some of you may be familiar with that. My whole career started out in archives, I just didn't know how good it was when I had it. When I graduated from Queens, I was really lucky to get a special summer project and I was the project manager. And what had happened is that 10,000 glass plate negatives, from a photographer, quite a prolific photographer in Kingston were donated to the, to the university. And they were donated by a grand niece who discovered them in her attic. So 10,000, glass plate negatives, they all had to be catalogued and conserved. So that's how I started then I worked on another project, and basically was there for nearly two years and then moved on to other things. But the draw was always there. And so I decided that when I was teaching that I needed this challenge, and so I completed my postgraduate diploma at the University of Victoria. And this is the first job I applied for, and they gave it to me. So I was just delighted, and I've been having a wonderful time ever since. So that's a little bit about me. And about the society. As I said it was established in 1974. The, there wasn't a society in the in the 30s and 40s. And it didn't last for very long, unfortunately. But those people were, you know, committed to saving the the history of the pioneers, the real pioneers, as they were then the people who actually settled the place of European settlement. Then it did die out. But in 1974, a new group was put together and they were determined to start a museum. So there were a few starts. There was a rented house in 1978, and then the the basement of City Hall. So they did move around. But finally they got a building. And that's our wonderful train station here at the 1912 Heritage designated train station. And it's been home to the museum since June 1989. Until, until now, and probably for another few years, I as did the former curator hope someday to have a larger facility, there's there's a lot more stories we want to tell. And we constantly collect we have a very generous community. And we have guests, or sorry guests come in on a regular basis. So we will eventually need more, more space. But for now, it's a really charming landmark building to have a museum in. So what I what I've got here, when Frank offered to do this PowerPoint presentation for me, I basically took some pictures that I already had on a CD that we're prepared for our new websites and supplement them with a few other things. So this is by no means a representation of everything that we do at the museum, but I wanted to give you just if you have been to the museum, anybody? Oh, good. Okay, well, I hope you can come back again. Um, what I want to do is the first few slides, the first 30 slides are just a, an introduction to the museum and what it looks like. And then I'll carry on and talk about our programming and our events and all the special projects that we're working on as well. So, okay, oh, I didn't even do anything. To Be careful. Okay. Well, this, this picture that you see up here, this is actually from 1912. And that's When the city of Dunkin was incorporated now North couch and started in 1873 The people in this square mile even though the, the area, the boundaries are constantly being discussed, it is actually a square mile. And so Dunkin was incorporated in 1912, mostly because people were disgusted with the state of the roads and they wanted to have, I guess, make their own decisions about things. So it did become incorporated. So the train station was this building was built in 1912. And so this photo is is actually from that year. Okay, and also it's

Unknown Speaker 5:51
Did I do something wrong? Oh, I did. I did. I did. Okay, so it's this one, right. Okay, so this is the station that we're that we have the museum and now that is from 1912. But the original station was built in 1887. And it's VIQUA, you can see it's quite a bit smaller than than the other one. And the, it was not ever meant to be there. In 1886, there was the last spike ceremony and the what happened with William, William Chalmers Duncan had petitioned to have a station in this place. So there was a station in Cook silence amanotes, just north and south of the station. But the people of Duncan and were becoming determined that they wanted to have their own station. So what happened was the mr. Duncan went around to several into all his neighbors and to everywhere he could talk to anybody about having a station on his land, because actually the station was the the town site was built on on William Chalmers Duncan plan. And so on August 13 1886, when the Prime Minister Sir John A Macdonald, and Robert Dunn's me were coming through with their wives and other officials. The people of Duncan actually stopped the train. They had built a giant cedar arch, and they had the the children and the teachers from St. Albans, and the native people turned out the story is that there were something like 2000 people it's actually closer to hundreds of people rather than 2000. But they did petition Robert Dunn's near forestation and songs were sung and stories were told and one little girl jumped up and handed a bouquet of flowers to two, I believe it was McDonald's wife and it went on for a little while. And after that, Robert DUNS me said, okay, okay, boy, so you'll get your station. Now. There's something called Kitchen, kitchen table history, and the story is, is that it wasn't so much that they were impressed with all of those requests. It's more that McDonald's and Dunsmuir were very keen to get back to Dunn's Mears mines up in Nanaimo, because apparently Dunn's we had a wonderful store of liquors down there. And they were just really keen to get there. So I don't know if that's true or not. That's the story that's told. But in any case, Duncan definitely got it station. Okay. Okay, so this is, this is a photo of the old station still. And you can see the chromogen hotel in the background. And that is Florence Jane's and her uncle Percy Jane's in in the carriage there. And it's interesting. Well, I mean, you I'm sure anybody who is here loves history, but it is wonderful to see these old photographs and how the townsite originally looked, you know, seeing those large trees of course don't exist anymore. So it's a very interesting thing to see.

Unknown Speaker 9:22
This is the station streets, looking east, one of the main streets in Duncan. And the the settlement really started in in well, actually, I guess it'd be the 1850s Excuse me, but in 1862 that Hacket a ship called the Hackett arrived in Cowichan Bay, and brought 78 men to the valley and the Sir James Douglas had created the preemption law. So land was available for $1 an acre. So these original 78 men were brought in, many of them looked around and saw the portunity and others just looked at the land that had to be cleared and turned away and said, No, thank you. But certainly that was where a lot of the original settlers came.

Unknown Speaker 10:16
Okay, so in the museum, we do have a section that addresses early settlement. Now, this is actually a photo from the 1890s that shows, you know, the development of the area. And the slides that you're going to see that represent the tour of the museum, some of them are detailed, and some of them are larger shots of the various exhibits. And the mandate of the museum is to collect collect items and artifacts that represent European settlement in the Cowichan Valley. Okay, so the, this is our railway exhibit. This, this is a very nice thing to have. We have a lot of visitors who come in and they think it's we're a train station Museum, so they're really disappointed to see the things that we have sometimes. So it's nice to have a small display. And so the the gentleman the photograph of the gentleman you see there, that's his name is Roland Fossett. And he was the first station master in the 1912 building and he and his family lived upstairs in the train station. And that box that you see that's for medley Bell and that was a really common thing to see at these at the train station those those were often called the settlers effects of the boxes held the settlers effects.

Unknown Speaker 11:48
Okay, and there's that there's that oh, there it is. So you can see it clearly settlers effects. Okay. All right. So the, the first important economy in in Duncan in the Cowichan Valley was agriculture. So this is a fall fit. Oh, okay. This is the couch and fall pair and dog show from 1916. But of course, the very first one took place, it was the couch in Salt Springs, Gimenez, fall fair, in 1868. And that was held on her road and maple Bay. So the this was logging hadn't started yet certainly mining wasn't around. So this is this was how Duncan and the couch and valley made itself and economic center. And so much so that when the farmers the farmers would bring their milk into Duncan, because that's where the couch and Creamery was. Okay, well, you can just see a little bit of this, you can see cream separator there anyway. But the couch and creamy was established in 1895. And it was the first Co Op outside of Ontario. And it was certainly became an extremely successful business. There were, I think there were 300 shareholders and each, I think each put in through those $3,000 Altogether, that they started with, and then eventually when it was operating at its full capacity, it was it was generating $300,000 a year. So it was a very successful well industry really. But with regard to the farmers bringing in their mouth, they would come into the Dunkin Monday, Wednesday and Friday. And that was certainly the time when the merchants you know, would be open and they would of course be you know, the the fairy, the farmers would be coming in and, and purchasing things for their families and supplies and that kind of thing. But on Thursdays, it became known in Duncan as early closing Thursday. And that's simply because the merchants recognized that there was no need to stay open later because the farmers weren't coming in. So that's that's how it came to be known as early closing Thursday and the business was sensitive to the to the rhythms of the land still at that point because of the importance of agriculture. And just this picture here also shows our tool shed and I show you that because I wanted to say just how generous our community has been, you know, long before I got there. People were dedicated to seeing a museum that held all these really important artifacts. And as I said I still have people that bring in things every single week. But initially they started out initially just coming out with an amazing amount of wonderful objects. So this is the one of the places that we're we've got them displayed okay, this is the the kitchen detail of the kitchen this is our wood burning stove and As you can see, just on the, on the bottom right hand corner, a reservoir. And of course, a copper tin up above. This is really the kitchen is where the magic happens in our school programming, the grade three curriculum calls for Pioneer studies. And of course, what we do complements that really nicely. And it's it's a really, really wonderful tool the kitchen is for, for teaching children, we have a number of artifacts here that, of course, their accession to their part of the collection. But we also have a number that are teaching artifacts. And those are the ones that we we pulled out and is the children are actually able to handle. And so it's really fun to watch them pick up these bad irons and quite be quite amazed by the weight of them and just asking them to imagine what it would be like to do that ironing all day long on Tuesday, for example, I think, I think that's when ironing was generally generally done. Okay, and there's a close up of the sad iron. And of course the washboards and these are the ones that we have on display. But we also have other ones just tucked around the corner from when we do our programs so that so that the students can really feel the glass and the difficulty of it. Okay, this is our parlor. And you can see we have a phonograph there. That's one of the another thing that we use in the program and the pump organ on the right hand side. And also to mention to that visit Halem hotel which which was no longer in existence in 1990 was considered as a home for for the museum. But when it did come down, we were really lucky to get the floorboards from there and the floorboards are actually installed all in our representation of the kitchen, the parlor and the bedroom. So it's it's a really lovely way to save some of that heritage. And this is another part of the parlor and the, the pump organ which play a very brief, you know, little song on it, just so they can see how it works. And the other fascinating thing, see if I can use this now thanks

Unknown Speaker 17:26
actually, that's the one I want those with the laser, there, there it is. This right here, I don't know if any of you have seen this before. But fascinating to my grade three students. It's, it's a hair race. When you look up close, I mean, it looks like dried flowers, but it's actually a Victorian activity where they would gather hair from all members of the family also, you'd have all different shades and be wound around wire, and then you know, flowers and leaves and things would be created. So it's it's quite astonishing, not not so hard to believe when you think of lockets of hair and that kind of a piece of hair and a locket. But it's it's quite intriguing to the grade three students.

Unknown Speaker 18:17
Alright, let's just do detail from the bedroom to little bears on the bed. And this is our commerce section. And we were really lucky we we had a designer from Victoria, his name's Stuart Stark, and he helped design this, this whole gallery for us, it's really quite outstanding. And you see the mural in the background that's taken from one of our archival photographs. We've got a couple of those in the museum, and they really make a spectacular backdrop. The other thing too, is that this this year, every year, we celebrate Celebrate Heritage Week, and this year, the theme is taking care of business. So it's really it's also for Duncan couch and Chamber of Commerce, commerce, their centennial year as well. So it's gonna be interesting to develop something to help them celebrate that. And what I did last year is I had a walking tour of downtown Duncan which was really quite popular. It was a very cool day and I was really pleased to see so many locals come out and enjoy that. So I hope to be doing that again this year, this time with the emphasis on on business. And just before we go we'll just see on the right hand side there's a few things from Duncan garage, which was a quite a well known business for cars Okay, and one of our archival photographs This is the couch and merchants truck

Unknown Speaker 19:56
and this is Duncan's Emporium one of the The first general stores created in the area. And that was Harry Smith, who turned out to be quite a prolific figure in the area. Okay, and this is a detail from our recreation display. Recreation was a huge draw, especially at the turn of the 20th century and into the 20s. Of course fishing and hunting. So, you know, we absolutely had to have that reference. Even though it's a very small area of the museum, we had to have that represented. And this is fly fishing box. And this is our general store. This actually, I didn't take a picture of the shelves there, they're just chock a block full of everything that you would see in a general store every day, everything from buttons to bear traps. And in here you see the coffee grinder and these wonderful costs that the store owner would use to, to keep his sleep team. And of course, the old telephone dress and a bear trap. You get everything there in general stores you could get you had to get up the only place you could get anything. And apparently could even have dentistry worked on there. So I don't know. I think that would be a bit challenging. That's one of our general stores. Archival photo. And another one. I thought it was interesting to see the bananas there too. Now, this is the interior of the nurses, residents of King's daughters hospital Kickstarters hospital was started was actually completed the building was completed in 1911. But it was started by a group of women actually who who who started they were part of the king's daughters. Actually it was called the king's daughters and sons. But the circle or the branch that was here was called the scattered circle. And that was established by Bessie Maitland Dougal. And she was actually from the south for the American South. But she, she and her husband moved here. And they were determined to do good in God's name. And one of those things was, you know, establishing hospitals. So they worked very, very hard to establish this. And in 1911, they did it else became a training hospital for nurses. And so we have these wonderful photographs of the nurses in their in their residence. And this is Becky Maitland. And, okay. So this is one of the things that we do and those everything that you just saw that those are from our permanent displays or permanent exhibits. But every summer we have a major exhibit. And this year, it was called digging up the past mining on Mount Sychar. And we do have a major summer exhibit every single year. And then throughout the year we have exhibits as well. So we do about three or four in this in in this room alone. It's called the Priscila low gallery in an honor of the former curator. And what you see here is an aura bucket that was found on Mount Sychar. I don't know Has anybody ever been to mount Sychar? Here at all? No. Okay. Yeah, okay. Well, there's nothing there. Now. It's an astonishing story. It's established Duncan Duncan's economy. It was a window. And in fact, the exhibit years were at 97 to 1907. And that's because of this discovery of copper by Harry Smith, who discovered this vein of copper. And it led to London syndicates getting involved because there was so much potential for making money. So there were a number of mines, the best known are Villa Nora and the Thai. And it just put Duncan really on the map economically. So in this in the Priscilla gallery, this is where we get to explore these, you know, historical events. And there's, there's no it never I've got our exhibits planned up to 2012 at the moment, and really, I could plan for just decades ahead. There's so many interesting things to explore. And this is a detail from the exhibit. Oh, and a mount sticker. Even though there were almost 2000 People living up there and it's 1400 feet, sea level, from sea level. There were almost 2000 people living there were two townships. There were churches, schools, there was a livery that apparently was even an opera. So these were two thriving townships. And it was interesting that when I went up in April of 2007, when you go up there, there's absolutely nothing now you can see part of the original tramway there was an aerial tramway. That property or straight down, I think it was 1900 feet itself. You can see some plumbing. And I even saw a beam from the old mount Sukra hotel. But there is absolutely nothing there now unless you dig, and I did, because I was with people who were who were doing that. And so I was really lucky to find that that bucket and find the the picture there. There's not a lot up there. Now, the museum has a collection of things for sure. But it's hard to believe that it was it was such a thriving time. And yet there's absolutely nothing there now. This is another detail of the exhibits. We've got some of our archival documents there. And the the archives i i use all the time, of course for my exhibits. Because we have such a wonderful array of photographs and documents. With this exhibit, I had to two documents that I had to put on display for it. One was the hotel register for promote sicker for the mount sicker hotel. And I simply had to have it out because on one page, there are names that anybody would recognize, for example, Rockefeller and Vanderbilt, Heinz, Carnegie, all these people had signed into the hotel. And they did they did visit their mining and concerns while they went all over the world. But it was very interesting to see them here, here in the Cowichan Valley. So that's one thing that I had on display. And the other thing was a ledger of the Tai Chi Tramway. So the menorah mine, they shipped there or out on the a narrow gauge railway. And then the Thai had this aerial tramway. So the it was astonishing that in those that the Orb was taken down, and it dropped 1900 feet down this aerial tramway and the manager there with Clara, Claremont, living Livingston, and working with him with somebody called William mordant Dwyer. Well, this, this would have been, you know, 1907, I believe, is when the last entry is in this in this ledger that I have. And it was very interesting one day when this wonderful old gentleman came into my museum and said, Well, 10 years ago, I donated something, and you probably have it in a dusty old drawer, but I just wanted to have a look at it. So you can imagine my delight when I said no, come with me. And I got to show him the ledger in this display case. And he was absolutely delighted to see that people were enjoying it, and that it was definitely used. So often I know people think it goes to the museum never to be seen again. But these things do come out and see the light of day. So it was a really lovely thing to have on display. And that ledger simply showed the amount of ore that was shipped out on the tramway over the years that the company was what they're alright. This is a detail from our tele drippers display because the train station is still working train station, and that we still have a waiting room that we're responsible for opening we have actually somebody who who does that for us who comes in every day when the train comes by twice a day. So it still is a working train station. But in the summertime, I put up this display in the two legs of his window. And of course, that's an A bay window where the two legged fur could look up and down the track to determine who was coming. And that kind of thing. Of course, at one time, there's only one track now behind the museum, but there used to be five plus spurs that went into the Creamery and other places. And it was it had a lot, a lot of rail traffic before. But certainly the people who love railway history just do like seeing this kind of exhibit. Okay, and this is our British Empire poster. There was a British Empire exposition in 1926. And our wonderful editor of her couch and leader newspaper, which has been around for just over 100 years now. He's Savage, he was there. And he brought this back and presented it to the school board at that time. And they didn't know quite what to do with it. We're thrilled to have it but didn't know what to do with it. So they installed it in a wonderful building a school that we have called Duncan Elementary. And it sat in the hallway under a giant window for 75 years. And it was ready to be taken down. It had deteriorated a lot. And of course, they wanted to

Unknown Speaker 29:48
pass it on to a place that was going to take care of it. And so the society did accept it. But what it required was a lot of conservation work. So we did engage somebody and after Several months. It was repaired and, and several of the areas were repainted. And the whole the whole thing at that time that was 10 years ago, cost about $7,000. So but it's a wonderful thing to have in the museum. And actually the artists who did it is Archie Cooper. Sorry. I think it seems he's the he's the person who did many of the London Underground posters, really quite arty Cooper. He was the person who did the London Underground posters for many, many years. So it's a lovely thing to have. Okay. All right, well, this is the moving into our school programming. Now, I told you a little bit about the grade three program. We have about 20 to 30 classes in the year that come in. So we do that's just grade three. And then we also do grade for First Nations program. This one sometimes when we have an exhibit, we create special a special program that complements the the exhibit, and in this one that we had an exhibit called Once upon a time all about children's toys and belongings. So this component of the program was was a walk with a curator. And so basically, they got a little tour with the curator. And, and then later on, they also got to do part, the part of the component was using, I mentioned these teaching artifacts that we have, we also have clothing as well. So there we go. So this lady in the pink tub, that's Ellen Luke haitus. She created this corset for this and they absolutely enjoy. Enjoy trying that on so much. Instead of the boys. Everybody enjoyed trying this on, it was really a lot of fun. Oh, in here, I believe to trying on. I think that's, that's what they're trying on. So for them for these students. I mean, it's just a, it's, it's really, really fun to watch them because of these things. They're just not used to having at all. Okay, all right. So that's the the other. I'll just mentioned before I mentioned this in the school program do or for old, older grades as well, for older children. We do a grade six Remembrance Day program. But this year, I did it for grade 10. I had an exhibit in in November for Remembrance Day called trench art. It's called an art to remember selected trench art treasures. And I had a wonderful collector from Victoria named steven lamb, come up and be the guest curator. And we had grade 10 students in for that. So it was it was a really, really lovely, lovely thing to have him and also just to learn about what you know, trench art is a lot of them, had never heard of it at all. This is a picture of our Christmas pass comes alive program. This is my favorite one of the whole year. And it's because what happens is our wonderful historical members, they come society members, they come in, they get dressed up in Pioneer costumes, they assume the identities of local pioneers of pioneers from the past. And then they're ensconced in the museum. And it's a totally interactive kind of evening, not only for children, but for adults as well. So in this one here, we have Mrs. Castlereagh. And she's making a Christmas pudding. And so what she's doing is she's inviting anybody to come by and give the Christmas pudding a stir, but it has to be in the right direction for good luck. And it's just a really fun way for children and adults to learn about traditions from from the past. Okay, so this one is one of the events that that we had. And this, this is actually is actually because you can see it that at the cancel trestle. I don't know if any of you have been out there. But it became the focus of our 2006 Summer exhibit. And and I'm going to tell you about that in a few minutes. But before I do, this is one of the events we were just doing everything. Oh, well, I should just tell you about the Kinsel trestle, that it seemed that it was going to come down, it seemed like was on the verge of being dismantled. And that was because the Ministry of Transportation in 2006 and April announced that they were getting 1.5 million to the cvrd the couch and Valley Regional District to take it down and you know, build a new one. And this is such an amazing piece of architecture, that there are a number of people who said You know, it simply has to be saved. So one of the things I did throughout that summer I had I had about five or six events just to raise awareness. So this event with this was really fun. This is Molly rocker Newman. She's in the bottom left hand corner. And she interprets Emily Carr. She does it for a car house in Victoria and also the Royal BC Museum. And she does all kinds of events as well. And so this event was called Emily Carr paints the cancelled trestle. Molly is actually a classically trained painter. So what I did is I asked her to do this. And she did. And we set her up out there, and she had her canvas, and she was painting. And the best part is the media did come because it was meant to be an immediate event. And so I was really thrilled when it was on the news that night. And all it did. Of course, the whole point of it was to raise awareness about the Kinsel trestle and the importance of saving it. So that's one of our events. We also every year have a Heritage House Tour, which is our main fundraising event. We have book signings, and I think the one that I probably had the most fun at was Sir Conrad Swan book. He was born in Duncan, but he now lives in England, and he wrote a book called The King from Canada. And that was probably the most popular one we had, because everybody couldn't fit in. It was really a lot of fun. And so these are just some of the things that we do. I mentioned the walking tour, anything that promotes history and heritage is on our agenda. Okay. Now, the other thing that we do, or, or sometimes we have, we have heritage initiatives, things that we started ourselves and other times we just become involved with them. One of the one of the ones that were the first ones that I got involved with was the Keating farm estate. I don't know if you're familiar with that. The Land Conservancy purchased that in 2005. It's, it's just a, it's a fantastic home. It is in Duncan, and I mentioned the hare Chester we had well, in 1997, it was on the Heritage House tour. And Stuart Stark, who I mentioned before, and whose heritage consultant from Victoria, was on the tour and he walked into this house, and he was absolutely amazed. And that's because there was a very unusual addition to the house. And it was called a great room designed by an architect called TRX. from Victoria, and it is an exquisite gem. So just on that basis alone, apart from is the heritage farm that's there. It's just an absolute wonderful thing to be involved with. And the reason why we are involved is because of the archives. We had a really wonderful photographs, we knew who to go to for more photographs, because what they're doing now is they want to restore the house. So that's how we got involved. And also I went out there with my summer students and and did many pictures as it as it is state. And it was a really fun thing to be involved with. Another thing, another important heritage home that's being saved this year is the Elkington property. I don't know if any of you are familiar with the Gary oak preserve we have in Maple Bay. But the preserve that the preserve was completed in 2000, or the work for for establishing it was completed in 2000. And now they decided they want to go ahead with this wonderful house that's on the property. So we're also involved with that, again, because of the archives. We have these Elkington diaries, we have photo albums and just so much so much to give. And it's always a delight to send these photos out and to and to see the emails that come back. Because when they're when people are writing these reports, and when they are trying to, to rehabilitate a home, it's wonderful to see these archival photographs that that, especially when there have been changes to the home, you can see what the original details were like. Now, the other important one is this one. This is this is the train station when I first came for my interview in the fall of 2004. The building wasn't looking that great. It hadn't been painted for many years. And there were broken windows and it looked quite neglected really. So for years that they've been wanting to paint it, but it takes it in the end, I think it took about, I don't know $14,000 In the end to do all the work that was required. So it kept being put off as these things are. But last year, I applied to the heritage Legacy Fund of BC and they're an amazing program. They provide an amazing program to communities like ours, you know, who want to save the buildings like this and that this is a heritage designated building.

Unknown Speaker 39:26
So, so with the help of the Heritage Legacy Fund in the city of Duncan in our community, because there was fundraising as well. We were able to undertake this, this project. And this is the painting stage. We also had amazing volunteers. The painting was done by professionals. But we had three volunteer weekends where people came out and this is Jim Stevan a vintage wood works in Victoria, and basically replaced loads of window panes and anything that had to do with the Windows was done by volume tear. So I'm just really I have I think I have somewhere around 55 volunteers, and they all do an amazing job. Okay, well, after all that work was done last summer. We wanted to celebrate it, of course. So there was a ribbon cutting ceremony in October. And so this is the people who were there. And I think we had about 80 people come out, including Jonathan Yardley. He's the president of heritage BC, and he very kindly came out to help us celebrate. And this is the mayor of light couch and Jack Peake. And he was there as well in the capacity. He's no longer the co chair of the island corridor foundation. He's stepped away from that the island corridor Foundation are the people who took over the rail, the railway and the stations. And so they're they're actually the owners of the station. So of course, they were pleased to have this work done. And this is good a pair and he's the he's actually from Duncan, and he's the executive director of the Heritage Legacy Fund. So we were thrilled to have him there as well recognizing the work. And this is a really fun thing. This is. Her name is Judith gurney. And do you remember when I first started the tour? I mentioned Roland Fossett. He was the first station master. Well, this is his granddaughter. And it occurred to me one day, wouldn't it be lovely to have her come along and cut the ribbon. And so when she's from the mainland, she's from Kamloops, I believe. So when I wrote her, she was really, really happy to come and do that for us. And not only that, she came with a clock that was that was actually had been in the parlor of the original station. The original apartment, which was upstairs. And the clock was dedicated to Roland Fossett on the David's wedding from 1914. So she brought that to us and donated it to us. And it's a wonderful thing to have. Okay, and now the Kinsel trestle. Well, this is probably in my time here has been the biggest thing I've been involved with. It's this wonderful, it's the last bridge of its type in the British Commonwealth in that it's a timber structure, historic timber structure. And it's 1212 storeys high, it's still standing and what what has What's really amazing about it is the history of what hasn't happened in the last 25 or so years. So it was completed in 1920. It underwent a lot of repairs, I'm going to show you a few more photos in a second. Because there was for example, in the 1930 31, there was a flood that took out a lot of the bridge, so it had to be repaired many times, but it was built to hold trains. And so it was very conservatively built. So there's a lot of very good timber in it. But some of the timbers on the outside often looked like it looked like it was about to fall apart. And this, this is the structure that the Ministry of Transportation who actually own it, this is what they wanted to see taken down. But a lot of people are really fond of it. The last time that train went over this bridge was in 1979. And since 1979, it has been received absolutely no maintenance. And of course, these bridges require maintenance, constant maintenance to keep them working. So what happened in in, as I had mentioned before, in in April, the government announced this and it started I don't know if you read about it over here, but it started sort of a media blitz about it. And it was constantly in the news. And this is the bridge. So 1979 was the last time a train went over it. And you see here this, this last approach where you would go on to the bridge was taped was removed actually on both ends on the north and south end in 1998, because there was a fire in in 1988. And then there was a second sort of by vandals and there was a second fire in 1998. And after the 1998 they said Well nobody else can go on this because you can sort of see in the center there's a huge burned hole in there now and so used to be that people would go on and walk across it I have photos of people walking on it, but after that they removed these approaches and made that impossible. So So I haven't received any kind of maintenance for years. But all kinds of abuse and even though the approaches haven't been there since 98, and during that 98 fire it was actually the the Martin Mars water bombers were used to put that fire out so it's been subjected to that and winds and all kinds of things and yet it's still standing so it must have a lot of integrity and later on it was shown that that it definitely does. Okay, this is just standing and looking through many of the bends. This is Tom Patterson, TW Patterson, he was one of the people we really that I know of really started the writing campaign to save this Trustwave wrote about it constantly. And we had him for the exhibit deliver a wonderful talk as well, on the reasons why the trestle should be saved. And this is the other shots just above the river. And these are some couch and historical members. And another detail. And there's the river itself, quite low, because it's summertime. Okay, and this is on the left is Ralph Morris. And he was a senior engineer for CNN for decades, but for two and a half decades, he took care of the bridges in the couch and Valley. And he was called in on a couple of occasions to for his advice, really about this bridge. He I remember meeting him in the summer of 2006. And he came to see the bridge and really believe that it was well worth saving, I should say at this point that that another engineering company had already proposed that they take it down it would cost $6 million to take it down that was the James climate engineering company. And they they it seemed like the only option was to take it down. And but as I said people like Tom Patterson, another another people said no, you this is really has to be saved. And Ralph Morris is one of them. But I was really lucky, being in the archives that he brought in a number of slides, photographs, reports to about his work on the Kinsel trestle, which really became integral to to saving it a little bit later, this person on the right that Steve Pollack, he also worked tirelessly to raise awareness about saving the Kinsel trestle. Okay, so this is 1980, when you can still walk across it, you can still see the rails are are on there as well. I should just tell you that in the end, if, if you don't know actually that the it has been decided to save it? Well, at least there's been an initial study. That's because the company called McDonald and Lawrence got involved. And they're a timber framing company in Cobble Hill. And they have a really quite stellar reputation. They've, for example, worked on the roof of Windsor Castle, when the when there was a devastating fire in 1994. And Gordon McDonald also worked on the Shackleton huts in Antarctica. So it's really quite, quite amazing. And they looked at this thing called the hill, they looked at this in their own backyard and said, No, this can definitely be saved, because they're their specialty is is heritage, timber, historic timber structures.

Unknown Speaker 48:03
So they all submit a proposal to the TBR D. And after some time, it was decided that yes, they could go ahead with an initial study. And they did that study just as last November, it's decided that yes, it definitely could be saved, not only saved but can be cheaper, of course, to rehabilitate it than it would be to take advantage of another one, which was the the initial idea. So we're pretty happy with those developments. And what you see here included, the first person who spearheaded the drop to save against a truck strike called Jack Kennedy made his name I believe that in 1997, but in 92, he started the either the writer and he started writing about it. And he started corresponding with people in government about having the site established the National Heritage Site, which in the end didn't come to anything, but he certainly did try it. So these are his photos from the next few slides. You can see how much of the grid was taken out from the from the hybrid rebuild that went over went through a number of repairs of major repairs over the years it's astonishing to see this now because there's so much Bush around as you keep the top here

Unknown Speaker 49:43
the how trust there was a series of how trusses and they were originally at the top back in 1995. We started building at the very bottom of the business

Unknown Speaker 50:00
I'm very concerned about taking the history of what he calls challenging country that's happy. And then there's the physical capital again. And then the consequence is the noisy family. And I found this picture for my what's called a time exhibit. And I fell in love with it. So we ended up using it under brochures in Nebraska and brochures for you today. But it also speaks to the importance of our archives as well. The archives are still part of the museum, but physically located in another place. Now. They were in the train station. But it was decided that not only do we want a more secure buildings, so we moved it to a brick building, but Second City Hall. But we also got a little bit more space than what we had before. So we're delighted to have that New York tech space, it's hard for me because I realized how often I've run into the archives for information until it's actually it's really, the archives are a really important part of what we do. I know you're, you're no stranger to that at all.

Unknown Speaker 51:23
I will I believe that.

Unknown Speaker 51:34
Couple questions if you have a picture of an old wood stove

Unknown Speaker 51:51
the ones the explanation that I've heard that makes sense, and literally has to do with an emotion. I don't know if that's really true. But that's what I've been told. So. So apparently, washing day Monday, through Monday, and then Tuesday was called. And I haven't heard, I don't know if anybody else knows another explanation. But that's, that's what if you were looking at a virus all day long

Unknown Speaker 52:28
Yeah. Oh, God, actually. Oh, that would have fallen off five or six years with a Pharisee can happen. And, of course, the couch. I don't know when Saltspring. And she made a stop being part of that

Unknown Speaker 52:54
was for First Nations. It's not like that. The mandate excludes the European pioneer settlements, because that's who started the society where people who are interested in saving. We have we do have First Nations, our tech that came through the Pioneer founders that we have, but it's not the focus of our collection and also the plants and cultural center in Duncan just minutes from where we are and of course they have a wonderful question for stations are, we're really fortunate to have question donated services after three months, Charlie, Charlie, and his daughter Bella and a few other artists as well. And in fact, for our summer exhibits, because it's the Indigenous Games that summer, my mind will be focusing on certifications, including things like catching sweaters, but again, sort of the pioneer and first nations working together for example, with a with a sweater that's German a COVID with the lady who missed Aran sweaters but topic, people from the capsule tribe how to do it and apparently that's how it all started. So there those stories, but I would say no, it's not the focus of the museum.

Unknown Speaker 54:24
Time is that we pay a nominal fee very, very normal eight for the use of the building and they give us a small grant of the goal to get a small grant come work couch.

Unknown Speaker 54:41
And then I'd say about half of the funding comes through direct access grantees.

Unknown Speaker 54:52
No more questions. Thanks very much.