Stettler museum adds new items to collection

Surrounded by history – Stettler Town and Country Museum curator Wilda Gibbon spent the winter sorting through new items and rearranging the museum’s layout.

JULIE BERTRAND/Independent reporter

With the start of May came the re-opening of the Stettler Town and Country Museum.

Museum curator Wilda Gibbon spent the winter cataloguing new items and rearranging the museum’s rooms with the help of staff members.

“We change everything every year. You have to, because otherwise, people don’t come back,” said Wilda Gibbon.

“And we like people to come back again.”

Many new items have been added to the museum’s collection.

Two bookcases are filled with more than 200 dolls wearing traditional costumes from around the world. The collection previously belonged to a Stettler resident.

“She bought the dolls when traveling, and some were given to her by friends and relatives,” said Gibbon.

Canadian Pacific Railway donated some dishes and silverware to commemorate the 125th anniversary of the driving in of the last spike of the railway on Nov. 7, 1885 in Craigellachie, B.C.

“They are some of the dishes and the silverware that were used in the C.P.R. dining room then,” explained Gibbon.

Gibbon also used the museum’s down time to revamp the music room.

A Swiss-made music box and an Edison home phonograph joined the collection of pianos and assorted audio equipment.

“When we were looking at the music section, we realized we do not have a tape recorder. Since some of them can be 40 to 50 years old, so we should have one,” said Gibbon.

Gibbon is very happy that, in spite of this year’s winter, all the museum buildings remained dry

“We were really worried about them,” remembered Gibbon.

She is already busy planning events for 2012.

“The C.N. will be 100 years old this year in December. Next year, we will be celebrating its 100th birthday,” said Gibbon.

Preparations have already started for it. The CN building has been completely shingled and is now being given a fresh coat of paint.

The museum, which is a charity organization, depends on the generosity of local residents.

“People bring a lot of estates to the museum. We appreciate it very much,” concluded Gibbon.

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