New exhibit puts stories to Rossland historical objects

The Rossland museum unveiled its new exhibit on Friday entitled Objects of Significance.

Katherine van der Veen

The Rossland museum unveiled its new exhibit on Thursday entitled Objects of Significance.

The exhibit is being housed at the Nelson and District Credit Union Rossland Branch until the end of March and can be viewed during the hours of 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The objects themselves are a collection chosen by various organization in the community, including the Rossland News.

Object include pins from the first Winter Carnival, a Rossland student’s school timetable and an early Chinese gardener’s hat.

Renate Fleming, exhibit co-ordinator, said she was intrigued by the idea of this type of exhibit in Rossland, so she applied for grants and received them.

“It’s been almost two years I’ve been working on this exhibit,” Fleming said. “It’s been a lot of work, a lot of fun and a great experience.”

She said she learned a lot about the history of Rossland, met a lot of new people and heard some very interesting stories.

Fleming thanked the museum board, the credit union and the contributors.

Katherine van der Veen is the curator of the exhibit.

She explained that usually there is one theme for an exhibit, and that theme is driven by the curator or a directive of the museum.

“That was not the case for this project,” van der Veen said. “The Objects of Significance project emphasizes participation by the community.”

She noted that individual perceptions from sources outside of the museum are important for understanding why certain items are important to the community.

“This exhibit has engaged the community in a dialogue regarding the cultural and social history of Rossland, as well as encouraging an exchange of opinion in relation to how the past is interpreted and preserved for future generations,” she said.

She said the exhibit is important not only to this community, but also to other small communities with rural museums because it encourages a multi-voice dialogue between remembering the past and movement towards the future.

“Museums are caretakers of material objects, it is the people within the community and the surrounding areas who continue to remember the past… that brings the history to life.”

The exhibit is on now at the Nelson and District Credit Union Rossland Branch on Columbia Avenue in Rossland. It is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

More info at the museum’s website here.