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Photograph of Mary MacRae Ishikawa, taken ca. 1895.

Museum opens for the season May 18 to 20th

The Glengarry Pioneer Museum is opening its doors for its 57th year this coming long weekend and has some interesting new exhibits for visitors to enjoy. Saturday of the long weekend is International Museum’s Day, so if you are looking for an educational adventure this weekend, pack a picnic, and visit your community museum on Saturday, Sunday or Monday May 18-20th from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The museum in Dunvegan consists of 10 log and timbre-frame buildings. One new temporary exhibit will be devoted to “People, Places & Professions of Glengarry”, covering several men and women who were ordinary and extraordinary in their time. People like David Murdoch MacPherson, known as “The Cheese King” who by 1889 owned close to 80 cheese factories in Glengarry County and adjacent areas of Eastern Ontario, Quebec and in northern New York State., or Mary MacRae Ishikawa who married a Japanese businessman, travelled to Germany and at the outbreak of WWI were forced to separate – her husband went back to Japan and she and her young daughter came back to Glengarry. Another museum building will have a temporary exhibit called “Doodads & What-cha-ma-call-its”, exploring some of the unusual tools in the collection. Everybody knows drills, saws, and sledgehammers, but what about froes, flails and bung hole boarers?

Curator and Administrator, Jennifer Black is pleased with the support the community provides every spring in preparation for opening and this year is no exception. The annual Spring Cleaning Day saw over 25 volunteers working to clean and prepare the many buildings for opening, and several others, including the Twistle Guild of Glengarry have put in many hours to assist with unpacking artifacts and setting up exhibits. The Maxville Horticultural Society will be donating a rustic pollinator house for the museum gardens at 10:30 on Saturday of opening weekend. “Community involvement is a treasured asset for this museum” says Black. “Thank you to all those who volunteer their time. The museum couldn’t survive without you”. The museum always welcomes new volunteers who want to contribute to their community, are interested in local history, or even students needing volunteer hours.

Admission to the museum is $5 for adults and $2 for students, but the beginning of the season is the perfect time to purchase a membership and not have to worry about general admission for the rest of the year. Memberships cost only $20 for an individual or $30 for a family. Memberships and admission help keep museum doors open, so what better way to show your support!

The Glengarry Pioneer Museum will be open on weekends only until June 14, after which it will be open six days a week, from Tuesday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The museum season is filled with fun special events such as a historical driving tour, ‘Smith-In Blacksmith weekend, guest speakers, Classical Music Under the Stars, art show with the Glengarry Artists’ Collective, a Celtic Festival, Harvest Fall Festival, 1812 Living History Weekend, Witches New Year around Halloween and lastly a Christmas event at the beginning of December. There is something new at each event and more details can be found at www.glengarrypioneermuseum.ca or by calling the museum at 613-527-5230.

The museum is located in the center of Dunvegan on County Road 24 (Dunvegan Road) at the crossroads with County Road 30 (Greenfield Road).


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