Staff Picks: Favourites from the Canadian Museum of History
Francine’s Pick: Keeping the Faith
Francine Lapointe, Supervisor, Special Events and Partnerships
Many people don’t realize that St. Onuphrius Church, which will be featured in the new Canadian History Hall, is a genuine artifact. It was built in 1907 in Smoky Lake, Alberta and later transported to the Canadian Museum of History, where our conservators reassembled it, piece by piece, complete with its original ritual objects, religious decor and furnishings. The church was reconsecrated inside the Museum in 1996, and the local Ukrainian community still uses it for certain religious ceremonies. This historical building resonates with me because it continues to create tangible memories for Ukrainian Canadians. The fact that visitors can touch the walls of the church and know it is an actual artifact often leaves them with a sense of awe. It’s a unique experience.
Shalina’s Pick: Canadian Coat of Arms
Shalina Gouin, Program Interpreter, Visitor Services
I love the large, bronze Canadian coat of arms hanging in the main lobby, because it embodies my three great passions: history, symbolism, and fantasy. As a Program Interpreter, as well as an artist, I constantly use objects and symbols to convey stories and knowledge. I’m always amazed at the depth of information that heraldry can convey with such efficiency. The Canadian coat of arms is a symbol that many of us take for granted. I see it everywhere: on our passports, constitution and historical buildings. The one in the Museum came from an old post office in Toronto. To me, it’s like a company logo, but so much more! It represents everything about my country and where we’ve been together.
Shainna’s Pick: Spotlight on Fun
Shainna Berthiaume, Program Coordinator
When I first saw the Theatre inside the Children’s Museum, it brought back memories of being in my first play so many years ago. As a child, I fell in love with the magic, intimacy and excitement of live theatre. The vivid colours and the sense of fun in this space are amazing. The backstage area is perfect, with shelves full of props, masks and other treasures for children to explore. It’s wonderful to watch them pick out a costume for a show they’re about to put on for their families. But the children’s smiles as they make their way onstage are the main reason I love this special place.
What about you? What’s your favourite thing about the Canadian Museum of History?