All the latest about your favourite Museum.
International Museum Day - May 18
1977, ICOM, the International Council of Museums has organized
International Museum Day to call attention to the importance of museums
to the fabric of societies around the world.
Apparently the WDM once had an even longer name! In a May 12, 1949 article “Giants Bossed The Frontiers” by W.J. Bradley in The Western Producer, pictures are identified as having been taken at the Western Canadian Development Museum in North Battleford.
I love the WDM! - Katelynn, student from Kamsack, at the
Yorkton WDM, November 2012
Memorial Cup Visits Saskatoon WDM
young fans got a chance to pose with the Memorial Cup at the Saskatoon
WDM, May 14.
Did you know that Junior hockey’s Memorial Cup was first played in 1919 with the Regina Pats taking on the University of Toronto? Though the Pats lost that year, the team won bragging rights as the winner of the 1925 Cup and again in 1930. The Regina Monarchs won in 1928.
Find out more about Saskatchewan hockey history -->
Summer Employment Opportunities
May 14, 2013 - Click on the position titles to find out more about these interesting opportunities.
Ride the Short Line 101 at Moose Jaw WDM
May 14, 2013 - On Saturday, May 18th, in celebration of International Museum Day, the WDM - Moose Jaw and the Moose Jaw Steam Club are planning for the 1914 Vulcan steam locomotive to have its inaugural run on the 2013 summer season.
Saskatchewan Fashion Week 2013:
Fashions by Phyllis Baker Online Exhibit
selected designs from Phyllis Baker’s Just Looking...Thank You
exhibit of art clothing that toured the province in the 1990s along
with the sketches she worked from.
See Fashions by Phyllis Baker -->
Five Milestones that Changed the Way We Use the Telephone
we make local telephone calls in SK will change this week with the
introduction of 10-digit dialing and a new area code (639). It isn’t
the first time that the way we make telephone calls has changed.
Check out Five Saskatchewan telephone milestones -->
Summer Employment Opportunities
Click on the position titles to find out more about these interesting opportunities.
North Battleford Centennial Bell Ringing
As part of the City of North Battleford Centennial Proclamation Birthday Party held on May 1, at exactly 3:55pm, bells rang across the city. Staff at the North Battleford WDM joined in, ringing the bell in front of St. Anthony's Roman Catholic Church in the Heritage Village.
Riding High - The Story of the Mounted Police Statue at the North Battleford WDM
In 1925 there were over one million horses in Saskatchewan. But forty
years later in 1965 when the Western Development Museum needed a horse,
staff looked to Alberta for help.
Read more about how the mountie made his way to the WDM -->
Congratulations to North Battleford which is celebrating one hundred years as a city this year.
See vintage photos of North Battleford ->
Three Cheers for our Museum Volunteers!
do more than 1200 people give more than 65,000 hours of time and talent?
Each year at the four WDMs in Saskatchewan, that's where.
Volunteers saw and hammer, cut and stitch, churn and cream, gas up and steam up, tap a telegraph key or tune a shortwave radio, and share their love of Saskatchewan history with Museum visitors.
Three cheers for our Museum volunteers. You share your heritage hearts proudly. Where would the WDM be without you?
Award Winners Wyatt in Concert at Saskatoon WDM
The WDM is pleased to announce a concert by Saskatoon-based country-rock
band WYATT as they launch their second studio album You
Shoulda Been There Last Night! featuring the single, “Jesse James.” The
music video for “Jesse James”
was filmed at the Saskatoon WDM.
Donation to North Battleford WDM for Elevator
April 12, 2013 - Maureen Campbell recently presented Cheryl Stewart a donation of $1000.00 for the painting of the elevator at the North Battleford WDM.
Saskatchewan's Contributions to World Health Shine at WDMs
4, 2013 - Saskatchewan has a long tradition of caring for the sick.
From the farm women who campaigned for improvement in rural housing and
health, to the Saskatchewan Anti-Tuberculosis Commission, to the first
government-operated air ambulance service in North America, to the
development of the cobalt bomb, to the implementation of Medicare,
Saskatchewan has been a leader on the world stage.
Learn more about Saskatchewan's contributions to health care at Moose Jaw WDM -->
Now on display at Moose Jaw WDM:
Scotty's Skull from the RSM
4, 2013 - 65,000,000 years ago, dinosaurs like Tyrannosaurus Rex
prowled our province.
In 1991, a T. rex fossil skeleton was found near Eastend, Saskatchewan. It was dubbed Scotty. This exhibit, on loan from the Royal Saskatchewan Museum from April - September 2013, features a cast of Scotty's massive skull.
Find out more about Scotty's Skull -->
Bring your class to see Scotty's
North Battleford WDM Great Escapes Raffle April Winner
April 4, 2013 - Congratulations to Dennis and Thelma Van Der Haegen who were the lucky winners in the April Draw of the WDM's Great Escape Raffle.
Western Development Museum Open Mondays
Effective April 1, 2013, the Western Development Museum’s (WDM) four exhibit locations in Moose Jaw, North Battleford, Saskatoon, and Yorkton will reopen on Mondays throughout the year, with the exception of January, February and March.
Click to read Media Release
Derby Car Restoration Set to Begin
March 19, 2013 - The Saskatoon Antique Auto Club and the WDM are pleased to announce a new partnership, the restoration of a 1927 Derby car. The restoration will be completed in 2014 as a SAAC 50th anniversary project
You can see the unrestored Derby during the Draggins Car Show March 29-30, 2013 at Prairieland Park in Saskatoon.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
March 15, 2013
Ever heard of Sinnett, Saskatchewan?
Located a few kilometres northeast of Lanigan, Sinnett was the heart of
a district known as the Irish Colony. The village was named after
immigration agent and missionary priest Father John Sinnett who founded
the settlement in 1905.
By 1910, St. Ignatius and St. Patrick’s churches along with Loyola and Manresa Schools had been built to serve the spiritual and educational needs of the community.
Sisters of Service
In 1940, Sister Catherine Donnelly, a member of the Sisters of Service in Toronto, arrived to teach in the new Loyola Continuation School or high school. Other Sisters followed in the early 1940s and 1950s. The Sisters were enthusiastic supporters of drama and oratory as well as Catholic education. For nearly 30 years, the Sisters were an integral part of Irish Colony life. In the late 1960s when the school closed due to low enrollment, the Sisters left the community.
Sisters of Service, Sinnett, SK, 1942.
WDM, Sisters of Service collection, WDM-2012-S-88
Telling the Story
Though today there is little trace of the once flourishing community, the Sinnett story is told in Jack Coughlin’s book, The Irish Colony of Saskatchewan published in 1995 and by the Sisters of Service Archives in Toronto. The Sisters recently donated a 1960s grey dress and hat to the WDM and generously offered to share photographs that document their stay in Sinnett.
Saskatoon WDM Recognized by National Magazine
12, 2013 - The Saskatoon Western Development Museum is the recipient of three 2013
Reader’s Choice Awards from RVwest Magazine.
Find out more about RVwest and which awards the WDM won -->
WDM Celebrates Canada Agriculture Awareness Week
March 6, 2013 - The Western Development Museum in Saskatchewan
joins Canadians across the country to celebrate our deep-seated love of
the land during Canada Agriculture Literacy Week.
More than 65 years ago, the Western Development Museum was envisioned as a place to honour the role of farmers and settlers in the Canadian West. Today, the WDM takes a broad look at the province, but continues to collect and showcase the important place of agriculture in modern Saskatchewan.
The WDM is the first museum in Canada to sign the partnership agreement with Agriculture More Than Ever.
The WDM has preserved an original prairie grain elevator at the North Battleford WDM. Built in the town of Keatley in 1928, in 1983 the elevator was moved from 60 km northeast of North Battleford to the Museum village.
Winning the Prairie Gamble: Farm Life in Saskatchewan, an exhibit in the Saskatoon WDM, showcases one hundred years of farming, from 1905 to 2005. Not forgotten, rapid changes in farming since the 1950s can be traced in the exhibit,
Another gallery in the Saskatoon WDM celebrates the evolution of farming through an impressive look at changing machines and equipment.
The Agricultural Hall of Fame,, honouring Saskatchewan farm movers-and-shakers is located at the Saskatoon WDM.
At the Yorkton WDM, the challenges of early farm years are evocatively revealed in a log house built in 1899 by homesteaders from Ukraine.
The Moose Jaw WDM shows the hardships of travel in early Saskatchewan. Getting grain to market was a challenge then, as now.
On the WDM’s website, researchers can find 18 agriculture related research papers. Also featured are numerous articles by the WDM Collections Curator, Ruth Bitner.
Students and teachers are invited to delve into a wealth of information. All WDMs offer discovery boxes about agriculture in Saskatchewan, First Nations farming and Métis farming.
“That was my favourite part of the day!” Special WDM programs celebrate Saskatchewan’s long and heartfelt connection to the land. Each fall, Grade 4 students in and around Saskatoon and North Battleford gather to enjoy Grade 4 Harvest.
Celebrate Canada Agriculture Literacy Week at the Western Development Museum.
Saskatoon Streetcar Celebrates 100 Years
1, 2013 - Six shiny new streetcars set out on the inaugural run of the
Saskatoon Municipal Railway (SMR) on January 1, 1913. SMR #12 is the only
surviving car from the original fleet. In fact, very few streetcars of this
period have survived anywhere in Canada.
Find out why SMR #12 travelled to California and who brought it home -->
February is Black History Month in Canada
February 15, 2013
church, north of Maidstone, SK, 2012
R. Bitner photo
February is Black History Month in Canada, a time to "honour the legacy of black Canadians, past and present."
Did you know that a group of freedom-seeking black homesteaders settled in Saskatchewan, north of Maidstone, beginning in 1910?
The Shiloh church and cemetery are all that remain of this once tight-knit community. A monument to the Shiloh people stands in the churchyard, a tribute erected in 2002 by the Shiloh Baptist Church and Cemetery Restoration Society of Edmonton.
to the Shiloh people, 2012
R. Bitner photo
This monument is dedicated to our African American ancestors who are now
remembered as the Shiloh people named in honor of this little log Church
they once worshipped in. The Shiloh People began settling in this area
during the spring of 1910, emigrating to Saskatchewan from Oklahoma.
Many blacks had migrated to Oklahoma from the American South hoping to gain racial equality. This would never come to be because, in 1907, a segregationist state government was voted in. This bitter blow to our ancestors’ aspirations encouraged them to pay special heed to Canadian advertisements placed in Oklahoma newspapers.
"Free Land for the Millions, One Hundred and Sixty Acres of Free Land!" the ads proclaimed. Seizing this opportunity to escape the darkness of Oklahoma segregation laws, our ancestors journeyed north to Saskatchewan. Black pioneers were unwelcome in the West. Nonetheless, they persevered and their determination allowed them to defy the racial stereotypes. Even with limited means, many were able to gain ownership of their homesteads. Though the Black community no longer exists, the story of the Shiloh peoples’ settlement in Western Canada is as significant as any told.
to the Shiloh people, 2012
R. Bitner photo
The name of each person buried in the Shiloh cemetery is shown on the plaque.
The Shiloh church and cemetery was designated a Municipal Heritage Property in 1991.
Deemed Unsuitable, a book by R. Bruce Shepard, documents black immigration to Saskatchewan during the settlement years.
Smarter Science, Better Buildings Public Open House at Saskatoon WDM
February 11, 2013
Learn about energy efficient homes, past and present. The WDM has partnered
with the Saskatchewan Environmental Society (SES) to offer a new program for
Grade 7 students entitled, Smarter Science, Better Buildings.
Students will tour relevant exhibits and explore work stations designed around water conservation, efficient lighting, home retrofits, solar heating, building materials as well as a model of a net-zero home.
The public is invited to learn more about this program at a public open house on February 15 from 1-3 pm. Thanks to the Saskatchewan Environmental Society, VerEco Homes and Sunridge Group for their dedication to this project and to SaskEnergy and SaskPower for their sponsorship.
WDM Signs Partnership with Agriculture More Than Ever
The WDM is pleased to announce it is the first
museum in Canada to
sign a partnership agreement with Agriculture More Than Ever.
Agriculture More Than Ever, started by Farm Credit Canada (FCC), is a multi-year initiative to improve perceptions about agriculture in Canada. Its aim is to close the gap in perceptions between producers and the public.
The WDM joins with more than 70 other Agriculture More Than Ever partners to promote the contributions made by farmers, ranchers and the industry to the economy, environment and health of people around the world.
“The Western Development Museum is an ideal partner to celebrate agriculture and share positive stories about living and working in the industry, which is what Agriculture More Than Ever is all about,” says FCC President and CEO Greg Stewart. “The way we portray agriculture has a direct and powerful effect on how the public views our industry.”
WDM opens its doors to Canada’s newest citizens with the Cultural Access Pass
June 19, 2012
WDM has joined the Institute for Canadian Citizenship’s Cultural Access
Pass program to welcome new citizens to its four provincial locations in
North Battleford, Moose Jaw,
Saskatoon and Yorkton and
introduce them to Saskatchewan’s history.
From coast-to-coast, CAP provides new Canadian citizens, and their children, a year of free access to more than 1,000 Canadian attractions from museums and historic sites to national and provincial parks. The Cultural Access Pass program introduces our country’s newest citizens to Canadian experiences, even offering access to volunteer and employment resources. With an average of almost 100 registrations per day, more than 50,000 new citizens have become Cultural Access Pass members.
“The CAP program is one way the WDM can help meet the challenges of a growing Saskatchewan, educating new Canadian citizens about our province’s unique heritage,” said Joan Champ, Executive Director of the Museum. “We look forward to welcoming Saskatchewan’s – and Canada’s – newest residents through our doors.”