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Fort St. John museum news

As restrictions loosen, we will be offering more guided tours to schools and other groups this spring. We are in need of more volunteer tour guides!
FSJMuseumArchives-HelgerudElectric-I984.104.85
A monochrome historical photograph of three men in a field standing in front of a Helgerud Electric truck. The man on the left is Barry Helgerud. (Fort St. John North Peace Museum Archives/I984.104.85)

Did you know that the museum has a Facebook page? This is a great resource to learn more about the history of the North Peace.

Each Tuesday, we feature an artefact, photograph, or document from our collection and tell you the story behind it. On Thursdays, we post a trivia question often involving a historic photograph or a close-up of an artefact in our collection. We also post about what’s going on behind the scenes at the museum, which events are coming up, what’s new in our gift shop, and what else is going on that’s related to history in the Peace. Follow the Fort St. John North Peace Museum page to learn more about local history!

As restrictions loosen, we will be offering more guided tours to schools and other groups this spring. We are in need of more volunteer tour guides! We provide training and you work the tours that fit with your schedule. If you’re interested in helping out with this fun and rewarding position, please contact Heather at 250-787-0430 or fsjnpmuseum@fsjmail.com.

Exhibits

• Soaring Over the North Peace (new permanent exhibit): Fasten your seat belts and get ready to soar through the aviation history of the North Peace Region of British Columbia. From a 1935 mercy flight to the creation of Canadian Pacific Airlines and from bush pilots to helicopters, this new permanent exhibit looks at how aviation transformed the history of our area. Did you know Fort St. John’s control tower was once deemed “Canada’s Worst Tower” or that bush pilot Jimmy Anderson used the Alaska Highway as his landing strip? Trace our aviation history through historic photographs, artefacts, personal recollections, and more.

• Exhibit Updates: Our movie theatre exhibit sign has been updated. We’ve added newly donated items to our railway exhibit as well. Look for our new free exhibit on surgery in our early hospitals. It’ll be on display in the Fort St. John Hospital lobby after April 14. Our Indigenous place names exhibit has been delayed due to unforeseen circumstances. Look for it later this spring at the airport.

Archives

We’re off to the races in our archives again this year responding to over 40 inquiries in less than three months! Our newspaper scanners are part way through the Alaska Highway News in 1982. We’re looking for more volunteers to help us scan the newspapers. We train you and you set your own schedule. If you’d like to get involved, contact Heather at fsjnpmuseum@fsjmail.com or 250-787-0430. There are opportunities to get involved in-person or volunteer from home.

Collections Management

Did you know that the most popular items donated to the museum are photographs? We love photographs. The more we know about the photograph (who is in it, where it was taken, when it was taken, any stories associated with it, etc.), the better. We even have a team of volunteers that helps identify photographs such as our large collection of Rudy Schubert negatives. We go through a whole in depth process of cataloguing each photograph individually (rather than an album as a whole). It takes ages to do but makes searching for photographs so much easier! This comes in handy when developing exhibits and programs as well as when responding to archival requests.

Fundraisers

If you’re cleaning up this spring and have metal to recycle, you can select the FSJ North Peace Museum at ABC Recycling as the charity to donate your ticket to! De-clutter your home and yard and help preserve local history at the same time!

When purchasing bread and goodies at COBS Bread Fort St. John, mention the FSJ North Peace Museum and they will donate 5% of your purchase to the museum! Enjoy baked goods, support a local business, and help us present the history of the North Peace.

Museum Gift Shop

We’ve been busy ordering new items for the museum gift shop. We have some fun items for kids including glow in the dark stars and putty, dinosaur excavation kits, kinetic rings, magnetic Canada puzzles, and stretchy slingshot frogs. We have a variety of new interactive kids books on dinosaurs, birds, wildlife, wasp’s nests, and more. For adults (or anyone interested in natural history), we have three handbooks from the Royal BC Museum including Hoofed Mammals of British Columbia (revised edition), Bats of British Columbia (revised second edition), and Mushrooms of British Columbia. 


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