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Showing posts from May, 2017

The McCardell Mystery

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Many people think that prior to photo-editing software like Photoshop it was impossible to manipulate photos. However, photographers have been experimenting with photo manipulation since the 19th century. An example of this was found in our Archives by staff looking into an inquiry from a researcher.

The image is a lantern slide from the Mary Schaffer fonds, and was part of her collection of slides used to lecture on various topics related to the mountains and their history. The image (see below) is that of a man standing in front of a small wooden shack. The image was taken in 1883, and has been identified as William "Billy" McCardell at the Cave and Basin site.

William McCardell was one of the 3 men who are widely considered as the discoverers of the hot springs at the now Cave and Basin site in 1883. Accompanied by fellow CPR workers Franklin McCabe and William's brother Thomas, they happened upon the springs while prospecting on Sulphur Mountain. In William McCardell&#…

Mountain Treasures on Library Shelves

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"I must admit that I have attacks of qualms every time I look at the empty shelves in my office, but I know they are in good hands, and will be looked after better than I can, and that they will be occasionally used. The collector is the one who has received the greatest pleasure from the library and no one else can possibly capture that feeling."- Edward C. Porter in a letter to Vancouver Public Library librarian Elizabeth B. Walker on December 18th, 1963 The life of an object is something that museums, archives, libraries and galleries all try to discover because it tells a story. Whether that story is about a memory of a loved one or an epic mountaineering tale, it's the stories that give objects value.The following is the story of the Alpine Club of Canada's Library Collection and its' journey from the private collection of an avid mountaineer to The Alpine Club of Canada.  
From the very beginnings of The Alpine Club of Canada it was intended that the Club hav…

Shoe & Tell at the Whyte

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"Shoes accompany us on all our journeys.  They say who we are, where we came from and where we are going."
Last week the Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies had some very special visitors come in to take a behind-the-scenes tour of our heritage collection area. The ladies of the Canmore Shoe Project were more than happy to take a few hours out of the first nice spring day of the year to take a tour with Curatorial Assistant Pamela Knott down into the vault to see highlights of the shoes in our collection. 
The Canmore Shoe Project is a writing and performance workshop where immigrant women from all over the world tell the stories of their arrival in Canada - through a pair of shoes. The Shoe Project was originally created by novelist Katherine Govier and supported by the Bata Shoe Museum in Toronto. The Canmore contingent of the Shoe Project is organized by Canadian novelist Marina Endicott, who coaches the participants in writing their shoe memoirs. Some of the countries repr…

Dusting Off the Blog Boots

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As we venture back out into the world of blogging we’d like to give you (our readers) an idea of the types of posts we will be sharing and what kind of journey we will be taking you on.
Previously the focus of the blog was to get input from the public on the Gateway to the Rockies permanent exhibition. We would like to thank everyone who contributed their ideas to this process of developing quality exhibitions at the Whyte Museum. The Gateway to the Rockies exhibition is up in our Heritage Gallery and our Curatorial Team works tirelessly to keep developing new pop-up exhibits to display more of our amazing collection, connecting visitors with Banff and Rocky Mountain history. 
On this blog you will get a behind-the-scenes look at the exhibits, events, and collections of the Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies. Our museum houses over 7500 artifacts, 7200 artworks, 500,000 archival images, as well as two library collections totaling 16,000+ published materials (books, periodicals, etc...…