Museum was many Years in the making

Museum was many Years in the making

The Ladysmith Museum has a history of its own, which will be celebrated at its fifth anniversary open house, Saturday, June 18

Bernardien KnolLadysmith Museum

The Ladysmith Museum has a history of its own, which will be celebrated at its fifth anniversary open house, Saturday, June 18 – check out the planned events at www.ladysmithhistoricalsociety.ca

A long-standing dream of many locals, over a great number of years, the museum has been developed and run by volunteers of the Ladysmith & District Historical Society (LDHS), a group of history buffs that rallied behind the efforts of author Viola Cull, aunt of well-known town historian Rob Johnson.

Viola wrote two books about early Ladysmith history, and from there the dream for a museum was born.

For a long time it remained dormant, though.

Throughout most of the 90’s, the late Kit Willmot remained the only active member of the LDHS, carrying the torch for Ladysmith history.

Things changed when Marina Sacht from Take5 teamed up with Willmot to produce a history column. This revitalized LDHS and the inaugural meeting with a Board of Directors was held in January, 1999.

One of the most exciting long-term goals to come out of that meeting was the establishment and finding of a suitable location for a public LDHS Museum.

Some may claim that plans for a museum go back much further. Ray Knight, well-known businessman and life-long collector of Ladysmith history, made the first public display of historical photographs in the front window of Knight’s Hardware Store in 1954.

Others may say that the idea of a public museum goes back way further, to the year 1904 when J.A. Knight opened Knight’s Stationery store.  Mr. Knight senior also worked as a professional photographer.  We owe the majority of historic photographs of Ladysmith’s buildings, streets and events to him.

The dream for a ‘real’ museum gained support from the Chamber of Commerce, Mayor Rob Hutchins and Town Council. It was in the summer of 2011, when Maureen Martin was President of LDHS, that it finally came true.  The Resources Center moved to its new location, and the Ladysmith & District Credit Union, which owned the vacated building, offered it to LDHS “free to use” and develop as a museum.

The official Opening of Ladysmith Museum took place May 18, 2012. The museum features a storytelling timeline, dating back to 1890 when the area was known as Oyster Harbour.  Great care has been taken in the layout of exhibits that reveal details about the people, industries and events that have made Ladysmith what it is today.

Exhibits have grown and have become more professional looking over the years, as resources increased.  Temporary exhibits have gone up – the current one on the Revitalization of Downtown Ladysmith 30 years ago.

The above article is an abbreviated version of an item submitted by Bernardien Knol, Curator of the Ladysmith Museum.

 

Just Posted

Woman charged with numerous drug offenses

Police make arrest on an outstanding warrant dating back to earlier raid on Chemainus property

Saltair Marine’s ‘Silver Bullet’ found by RCMP months after reported theft

The $20,000 vessel was stolen from the Ladysmith Marina back in July

Ladysmith author wins American award for her new children’s book: The Moon Watched it All

Shelley Leedahl’s book took gold in the All Ages Picture Book category

Ladysmith Historical Society sees big turnout for salmon dinner fundraiser

Over 200 people attended the event held as a fundraiser to support the Society

Nanaimo Ladysmith school district deciding how best to provide menstrual products for students

Early cost estimates tag $75,000 for product dispensers; trustees seek student consultation

VIDEO: First all-female spacewalk team makes history

NASA astronauts Christina Koch and Jessica Meir did work on International Space Station’s power grid

Zantac, the over-the-counter heartburn drug, pulled in Canada, U.S.

Health Canada also investigates possible carcinogen in some ranitidine drugs

B.C. public safety minister says cannabis edibles not in stores til January

Mike Farnworth says he wants regional issues considered when it comes to licensing

Greta Thunberg calls for climate action in Alberta, but doesn’t talk oilsands

Swedish teen was met with some oil and gas industry supporters who came in a truck convoy

Scheer denies spreading ‘misinformation’ in predicting unannounced Liberal taxes

Conservative leader had claimed that a potential NDP-Liberal coalition could lead to a hike in GST

Council asks to limit cruise ship visits to Victoria harbour

Mayor says motion is not meant to curtail current visits or limit local cruise industry expansion

Chilliwack man pleads guilty in crash that killed pregnant woman

Frank Tessman charged under Motor Vehicle Act for accident that killed Kelowna school teacher

Campaign brings NDP leader Jagmeet Singh through Nanaimo-Ladysmith

Singh says his party has ‘momentum’ heading into election day

Greens want climate protection added to international trade agreements

Green Party leader Elizabeth May campaigns in Nanaimo-Ladysmith

Most Read