From the Vault Friday: Greeting Card

Image: SPRA Fonds 049

Todays “From the Vault Friday” features an embroidered greeting card from the Forrest Falk fonds (Fonds 049). The card was sent to his wife, Edith Paige, by Edith’s father. Addressed to Miss E.C. Paige, the card reads:

“Dear Edith

This was supposed to be sent to you a year ago last chmas I misplaced it + could not find it till we made a general clean out for a move.

Yours  Ever, Dad”

Embroidered silk cards existed as early as the 1900 Paris Exposition, but they soared in popularity during the First World War. Machine produced cards were also in existence but their colours were never as bright and they never achieved the popularity of the hand-stitched cards. The last known production of hand-embroidered cards was in the mid-1920s.

 

Learn more about embroidered cards in the September 2017 issue of Telling Our Stories (page 14).

View a selection of photos from the Forrest Falk fonds (Fonds 049) on Alberta On Record.

Read more about the Forrest Falk fonds (fonds 049) here.

 

From the Vault Friday is a social media campaign that highlights interesting materials from the collections of the South Peace Regional Archives. This project was made possible by an Access to Holdings Grant from the Archives Society of Alberta.

Soldier Spotlight: Josephine Mary Ann “Bubs” Fulks

Date of Birth: 25 Oct 1919
Date of Death: 18 April 2015
“Bubs was born on Oct. 25, 1919 in Fort. Saskatchewan to Walter and Josephine Wood. She was the fourth child of five. She was quickly nicknamed Bubbles and became known as Bubs for most of her life. Growing up in Radway, Alberta by the railway tracks, the train would always remind her of the comfort of home. Bubs joined the WRCNS in 1943 at Edmonton, and was sent overseas to Britain. These were days of immense pride for Bubs. She always spoke of the comradery, companionship and honour that serving her country had given her, and was faithful in her Remembrance Day attendance.”

The Archives’ online Soldiers’ Memorial. Each week, our volunteers select a remarkable individual to showcase in this blog series. The Soldiers’ Memorial commemorates more than 1,100 WWI veterans and 2,300 WWII veterans from our region. Three dedicated volunteers have contributed over 1,200 hours to this project by researching and writing biographies. Our goal is to have all South Peace soldiers acknowledged for their service. If you know of someone who lived in the South Peace and should be listed on the Memorial, or would like to get involved by researching a local veteran, please contact the Archives.

Featured image is a still from the video of her funeral, from the Bear Creek Funeral Home YouTube channel

Movie Monday: Fashion Show

Image: A film still showing models in a local fashion show (SPRA 0477.04.03.07, Fonds 477: Eaglesham and District Drama Club fonds)

Movie Monday highlights videos from the Archives’ film collection. Every week, an archival film will be featured on our YouTube channel and here on our blog. The Movie Monday project is made possible with the generous funding support of Swan City Rotary Club of Grande Prairie.

If you have an interest in fashions of the past, this Movie Monday is for you! Today we are sharing footage from a 1989 fashion show, presented by the Eaglesham and District Agricultural Society.

The outfits in the fashion show were created and donated by local businesses, and modelled by local citizens. Clothing categories included sports and casual wear, Western wear, career wear, and dress wear. Models ranged in age from toddlers to senior citizens, making it a true community affair. Throughout the show, door prizes were offered and accessories were demonstrated by volunteers.

The Eaglesham and District Agricultural Society was founded in 1971 with fifty-one charter members. The Society purchased a fairgrounds where exhibition buildings, a race track, ball diamond, BMX track, and playground were added over the years. The Agricultural Society supported – and continues to support – many community events like the fashion show featured in this video. The Society’s aim is to enhance the quality of life in the district by strengthening relationships between rural communities and by supporting local youth and cultivating leadership.

Note: some portions of this film have been muted due to copyright.

From the Vault Friday: Peace Country Classic

Image: SPRA fonds 267

Todays “From the Vault Friday” features a flyer from the Peace Country Classic Agri-Show fonds (Fonds 267). The response to the concept of a Peace Country Classis Agri-Show was strong in 1985 when the first show was launched to showcase the agricultural community in the Peace Country. It operated under the auspices of The Grande Prairie and District Agricultural and Exhibition Society.

By 1986, the three-day event at Evergreen Park was a combined agricultural show including a seed fair, a bull and female show and sale, a trade show, craft exhibitions, a farmer’s market, and offered informal seminars and meetings. Always held in March, the show was a way to kick off the spring farming season and included a social aspect with a pancake breakfasts, beef-on-a-bun lunches and a banquet on Friday night. There were always major draws for trips as well as giveaways.

The 1986 show hoped to see 5 000 people attend; by 1998, the 13th annual show expected 25 000 to attend, appealing to a more diverse audience including school children and city folk as well as farmers and ranchers. To draw the larger crowd, organizers had added horse events, increased the machinery and commercial displays, offered two full days of demonstrations and seminars and added a family pavilion and a Farm Family Award.

Read more about the Peace Country Classic Agri-Show fonds (Fonds 267) here.

From the Vault Friday is a social media campaign that highlights interesting materials from the collections of the South Peace Regional Archives. This project was made possible by an Access to Holdings Grant from the Archives Society of Alberta.

Soldier Spotlight: Staff Sergeant Major Charles Turner

Photograph: Charles T. M. Turner and his army friend outside a tent during World War I, ca. 1915 (SPRA 2011.44.05)

Regimental Number: 30650
Rank: Staff Sergeant Major
Branch: Canadian Army Service Corps

Charles was born in Chilliwack, British Columbia on December 7, 1891. He traveled to Valcartier to enlist in the Canadian Army in September of 1914. While serving in France, Charles was billeted at the Dubois home. He married daughter Jeanne in 1916. They made their home in England for a time, and their first son, Charles, was born on March 13, 1917. From February 1918 onward, Charles served only in England. In January of 1919, he spent some time at an RFC base. After the war, the Turners moved to Calgary, then to Bezanson, where Charles filed on the western half of 33-71-26-W5 in 1919, and finally into Grande Prairie around 1921. Charles died in early 1976 and was buried in the Grande Prairie Cemetery.

Sources: surname file; news clippings

The Archives’ online Soldiers’ Memorial. Each week, our volunteers select a remarkable individual to showcase in this blog series. The Soldiers’ Memorial commemorates more than 1,100 WWI veterans and 2,300 WWII veterans from our region. Three dedicated volunteers have contributed over 1,200 hours to this project by researching and writing biographies. Our goal is to have all South Peace soldiers acknowledged for their service. If you know of someone who lived in the South Peace and should be listed on the Memorial, or would like to get involved by researching a local veteran, please contact the Archives.

Movie Monday: Outdoor Activities

Image: A film still showing a picnic (SPRA 449.01.11, Fonds 449: Foster Family fonds)

Movie Monday highlights videos from the Archives’ film collection. Every week, an archival film will be featured on our YouTube channel and here on our blog. The Movie Monday project is made possible with the generous funding support of Swan City Rotary Club of Grande Prairie

Today’s film from the Foster family fonds will have us all looking forward to the activities we will be enjoying in a few months’ time when summer returns! The film includes footage taken in 1957 and 1964, and as the title suggests, focuses on the many outdoor activities enjoyed by the Foster family – boating, swimming, waterskiing, fishing, picnics, etc.

One of the more unusual activities shown in this film is the climbing of the Puskwaskau forestry tower. The Puskwaskau Tower was completed and began operation in the mid-1940s. According to an annual report from the Department of Lands and Mines, it was “equipped with a thirty-watt transmitter receiver combination set” and was the twelfth lookout tower to be erected in the Northern Alberta Forest District. Lookout towers such as the one at Puskwaskau play a crucial role in the detection of wildfires. Observers have the responsibility of reporting any wildfire activity within a 40-kilometer radius of their tower – that’s an area of 5,027 square kilometers!

Today there are 127 lookout towers across Alberta. However, it is no longer permitted for the public to climb these towers!

From the Vault Friday: St. Patrick’s Day

Image: SPRA 032.08.06

Todays “From the Vault Friday” features a newspaper clipping from the Campbell family fonds (Fonds 032). The article, dated March 17 1959, is titled “Hold St. Patrick’s Day Tea”. The tea was hosted by St. Joseph’s Church and included a bakery booth and an apron booth. The article highlights several of the women volunteers who organized and implemented the event.
This clipping is contained in the Isabel Campbell Reference Collections. Isabel Campbell made numerous contributions to preserving the history of the Peace Country including gathering archival material for preservation from organizations, government, social groups, and individuals, and painstakingly indexing articles in Grande Prairie newspapers from 1913 to 1961 for research purposes. Isabel was also the first secretary for the Pioneer Museum Society of Grande Prairie and District when it was formed in 1961. In 1989, she donated her historical collection Grande Prairie Public Library. The library still has an Isabel Campbell room dedicated to local history resources, although Isabel’s collections have since been transferred to South Peace Regional Archives.

For more information about Isabel Campell, visit Fonds 032: Campbell family fonds.

Featured image: SPRA 1969.59.17

From the Vault Friday is a social media campaign to that highlights interesting materials from the collections of the South Peace Regional Archives. This project was made possible by an Access to Holdings Grant from the Archives Society of Alberta.

Soldier Spotlight: Violet Remnant Dryer

Violet Remnant was a 16 year old shop assistant in Wrecclesham, Surrey, not far from the Canadian Army Base in Aldershot, when she first met Arnold Dryer at a dance in the Village Hall. Arnold’s squadron was billeted nearby in the village of Rowledge. The relationship blossomed, and from wherever Arnold’s squadron moved to, his letters found their way back to Violet. At 18, Vi joined the Air Force, working as a clerk in RAF records in Gloucestershire. When the war ended, they were afraid that Arnold would be drafted home, so with four days’ notice, they planned a wedding. “We still needed clothing coupons to buy new clothing,” Vi remembered. “I bought a royal blue dress, and my mother used seven of her own coupons to buy Arnold some Oxford shoes. There was no way she was going to let him go up the aisle in army boots!”. They were married on April 23, 1945 in Rowledge, England. After the wedding, Arnold was indeed sent back to Canada, and Vi waited for permission from the Canadian Wives Bureau to join him. She was discharged from the Air Force and put in time helping at the local post office. In June she sailed on the Aquatania with another bride bound for Grande Prairie, Betty Eskdale. The war brides were processed through immigration at Pier 21 in Halifax. Vi arrived on July 4, 1946 (along with her sister-in-law, Pat Dryer who was married to Arnold’s brother, Robert). The editor of the newspaper, J.B. Yule, was one person Vi met on her first day in Grande Prairie. The news of their arrival was proclaimed on the front page in the next issue of the paper: “Three War Brides Arrive Grande Prairie”. Although the young Mrs. Dryer was “homesick off and on” over the next year, she enjoyed being on the farm and the many good neighbours. Violet and Arnold had three children: Dale, Mark, and Ann. Grande Prairie is still Vi’s home 60+ years later.  

Violet in her uniform, SPRA 259.02.05 | Violet and her husband, Arnold Dryer, on their wedding day, SPRA 0259.02.01 | Violet Remnant Dryer, SPRA 0553.06 

The Archives’ online Soldiers’ Memorial. Each week, our volunteers select a remarkable individual to showcase in this blog series. The Soldiers’ Memorial commemorates more than 1,100 WWI veterans and 2,300 WWII veterans from our region. Three dedicated volunteers have contributed over 1,200 hours to this project by researching and writing biographies. Our goal is to have all South Peace soldiers acknowledged for their service. If you know of someone who lived in the South Peace and should be listed on the Memorial, or would like to get involved by researching a local veteran, please contact the Archives.

Featured Photo: Violet’s Travel Certificate, SPRA

Movie Monday: Air Show and Rotary Convention

Image: A film still depicting planes at an air show (SPRA 1974.74.22, Fonds 138: Griff James fonds)

Movie Monday highlights videos from the Archives’ film collection. Every week, an archival film will be featured on our YouTube channel and here on our blog. The Movie Monday project is made possible with the generous funding support of Swan City Rotary Club of Grande Prairie.

Today’s Movie Monday film features two Rotary-related events. The first is an air show that was sponsored by the Rotary Club of Grande Prairie, and the second is a Rotary convention.

The Rotary Club of Grande Prairie was formed in January of 1951, meeting at the York Hotel. For its first fundraiser, the club created and sold calendars that featured the birthdays and anniversaries of community members. The project started in 1963 and lasted until the early 1970’s. In 1973, Rotary assumed responsibility for the operation and maintenance of the city’s campground. And that same year, the club’s Green-a-thon program began, encouraging students to become involved in the community and keep the city clean. These are only a few of the ventures undertaken by the Rotary Club of Grande Prairie in its first decades, and many of the club’s early projects still continue today!

On October 13, 1986, the Swan City Rotary Club was chartered, thanks to the sponsorship of the Rotary Club of Grande Prairie. In turn, the Swan City Rotary Club now funds the Movie Monday project here at the South Peace Regional Archives! Rotary clubs set an excellent example of teamwork, community service, and creating goodwill within their local communities and beyond.

From the Vault Friday: Farm Women’s Union of Alberta Bulletin

Image: FWUA Bulletin, SPRA Fonds 055

Todays “From the Vault Friday” comes from the Farm Women’s Union of Alberta, Canuck Local 105 Fonds (Fonds 055).
This artifact is a Farm Women’s Union of Alberta bulletin from May 1969 by Mary Stimson. In the letter she asks if women are satisfied with how the world treats them and raises issue with the rising costs of living, costs of childcare (which was needed as the rising cost of living meant many women with families now had to work outside the home), and supporting further practical education for women to make it easier to pursue careers. She ends the publication with a quotation: “Indifference is the invincible giant of the world”

The Farm Women’s Union of Alberta was organized in 1949, a re-organization of United Farm Women of Alberta. The aim of the FWUA was a prosperous agriculture community, with the amenities of modern living for every member of the farm family. It’s objectives were to work as farm women, cooperating with the men and juniors to attain the objectives of the Farmers Union of Alberta; to obtain improved educational, health and welfare services for the farm family and the total rural community; to promote a continuing education program for farm women; to develop citizenship and leadership by supporting all branches of the FUA, especially youth activities and 4-H; and to strive for international peace through affiliation with the Associated Country Women of the World. The FWUA also involved itself with political action regarding changes to divorce laws and revision of the Estate Tax Act and Income Tax Act to benefit farm women.

The Canuck Local 105 was formed c. 1958, possibly from the base of the Bear Lake Women’s Community Club.

Learn more about the Farm Women’s Union of Alberta, Canuck Local 105 Fonds (Fonds 055).

From the Vault Friday is a social media campaign that highlights interesting materials from the collections of the South Peace Regional Archives. This project was made possible by an Access to Holdings Grant from the Archives Society of Alberta.