Skip to content

Fort St. John museum happenings: Schubert's film captures live on

Volunteers spent 75+ hours last month helping to identify people and places from the 1950s and 60s
In May 1942, Staff Sergeant Rudy Schubert, a Canadian who had enlisted in the American Army, came north with the 341st Engineers to work on the Alaska Highway. As a photographer, Rudy took both still and motion pictures documenting the construction of the highway. He also recorded the soldier’s life on the highway and the adventures and hardships they experienced. After the war in Europe, Rudy returned to Fort St. John to marry his wartime sweetheart and raise a family. Through the years, he captured many images of the people and events in the Peace. In 1947, he filmed the "Land Beyond the Peace", a documentary promoting both the Peace Country and the Alaska Highway. In 1957, he waited on the banks of the Peace River to film the famous collapse of the bridge at Taylor. He lived in Fort St. John until his passing in 1992 at the age of 81.

The North Peace Historical Society is enjoying being able to do so many more events and activities at the beginning of 2023 than we could in early 2022. We’ve just put our hands-on/interactive items back in our displays which had been removed due to the pandemic. We recommend washing or sanitizing your hands when entering and exiting the museum if you choose to handle these items.

Our Forts to Furs presentations on February 10th were well received. We enjoyed sharing our fur trade history and are very thankful for Raymond Ensz of the Fort St. John Trappers Association who provided a fascinating presentation on trapping today. We had 191 people through during our BC Family Day Winter Scavenger Hunts and Open House on February 17-20. They learned fun facts and stories about winter artefacts on display and explored the museum. Thanks to our volunteers, the North Peace Historical Society, and the support of the Province of British Columbia for making this event possible.

Upcoming Events

• North Peace Historical Society AGM (Wednesday, March 1st at 7 p.m. at the Fort St. John North Peace Museum): Join us for our first in-person AGM since 2020. Arthur Hadland will present “A Voice for the Peace” looking at the history along the Peace River from the last ice age to the present. We will provide coffee, tea, and baked goods.

• Kids’ Night at the Museum: One-Room Schools (Friday, March 10th at 7 p.m. at the Fort St. John North Peace Museum): What was it like to attend a one-room school in the North Peace about 50-100 years ago? Find out about the ups and downs of our early schools through photographs, stories, and an interactive presentation. Learn how to write with pens dipped in ink. Try our school-related searches, sorting activities, puzzles, and crafts. REGISTRATION IS MANDATORY AND LIMITED. Event tickets are $5/child or $10/family and must be purchased in advance. Children must be accompanied by an adult (free). Tickets are available at the museum starting Monday, February 27.

Animal Footprint Kit

Available at the Fort St. John North Peace Museum Friday, April 14 as long as supplies last

Celebrate the biodiversity of the North Peace Region of British Columbia through a free take home kit sponsored by Burger King. This kit introduces children ages 3-12 and their families to notable local animals from beaver to lynx. Discover fun facts about wildlife in the Peace Region and learn what their footprints look like. Use your knowledge to pair animals to their footprints in a matching game. Create your own animal footprints with salt dough.


• “A Long Way” Ethel Rutledge’s Journey to Providence Hospital (Free Exhibit at the Fort St. John Hospital): Experience Ethel Rutledge’s journey from Hudson’s Hope to Providence Hospital in Fort St. John to give birth in 1932. Told in Ethel’s words, this exhibit looks at the challenges and dangers of her sleigh rides to and from the hospital as well as the long wait before and after giving birth. This exhibit is presented in partnership with the Fort St. John Hospital Arts Committee. The display case is in the hospital lobby between reception and Cool Beans Cafe.

Exhibit Updates

We recently made room for a beautiful wax sculpture and display case which will form the basis of our new Tse’K’wa (Charlie Lake Cave) exhibit. We will be working with Tse’K’wa and Indigenous groups to develop new interpretive signs for this exhibit. In rearranging the front of the museum to accommodate this display case, we have moved our dinosaur exhibit and will be working to update the signs and make it more interactive as well. We’ve incorporated a model of the Peace River Suspension Bridge (the old Taylor bridge) built by volunteer Ed Scriba in our Alaska Highway display. There are lots of exciting changes going on in the museum!

Collections & Archives

A huge thank you to our team of volunteers working to identify our collection of Rudy Schubert negatives from the 1950s and 1960s. They’ll have contributed over 75 hours in February alone. I’m always impressed at how well they remember things from over 50 years ago! We’ve responded to over 25 inquiries in our archives so far this year and are working on cataloguing a huge collection of items (mostly photographs) pertaining to Alvina Stuby (later Cook) and family.

Bottles & Bread to Preserve History

Do you have some empty bottles, juice boxes, or cans? Bring them to the Fort St. John North Peace Museum and we’ll take them to the recycle depot for you. Please don’t flatten them. Do you shop at COBS Bakery? Mention the Fort St. John North Peace Museum and COBS will donate 5% of your purchase to the museum.

Museum Gift Shop

Check out our selection of gifts made locally in the North Peace! For those looking for tasty treats, we have honey and a selection of jams and jellies. We have silk and knit scarves, hats, baby booties, cards, tea towels, bags, woodworking, salves, and more!

We now carry Braiding Sweetgrass for Young Adults by Robin Wall Kimmerer (as well as the adult version). Adapted for young adults by Monique Gray Smith, this new edition reinforces how wider ecological understanding stems from listening to the earth’s oldest teachers: the plants around us. With informative sidebars, reflection questions, and art from illustrator Nicole Neidhardt, Braiding Sweetgrass for Young Adults brings Indigenous wisdom, scientific knowledge, and the lessons of plant life to a new generation. Purchases from the museum gift shop help us preserve and present the history of Fort St. John and area through exhibits, educational initiatives, and collections management.

Heather Sjoblom is manager and curator of the Fort St. John North Peace Museum

push icon
Be the first to read breaking stories. Enable push notifications on your device. Disable anytime.
No thanks