The Musée Vankleek Hill Museum began its summer season on July 6.  This is an unusual summer as the museum joins forces with other public spaces and private business to do its best to counter COVID-19 while providing services during a pandemic.

The Museum summer employees for 2020 are Vankleek Hill Collegiate Grade 12 student Natalia Larosa who explained, “I just completed grade eleven and will be beginning grade 12 in the fall. As a person and student, I wholeheartedly enjoy history and love to continuously learn. My goal at the museum this summer is to learn more about this area’s history and expand my knowledge even further. I thoroughly enjoy reading and writing, making this job a perfect fit for my interests and personality.”

And, there is McGill University second-year student Elizabeth MacDougall of Williamstown. “This year I will be going into my second year at McGill University where I have just declared my major in Anthropology. In particular I am hoping to focus my studies on Archaeology and so I am excited to get some experience working with real artifacts. My dad grew up in Vankleek Hill and my mom worked at local museums throughout her university years, so I feel like getting this job was somehow meant to be.”

The COVID-19 masked employees are doing a mix of work that includes creating a postcard exhibit of Vankleek Hill scenes, transcribing details from the 1870s Robertson General Store Ledger to provide researchers with more family history online and in paper format, creating a blog of Vankleek Hill Stories to make more of our local history accessible, especially during the pandemic.

For July, the public will not be permitted to go inside the museum. The summer employees will respond to family history and genealogy requests received via mail, Facebook, email, telephone, or a knock on the museum door.

In August, the Museum looks forward to setting specific days and times to welcome ‘masked’ visitors. There is already a booking for a walking tour in August, and volunteers are set to be as protective and creative as possible, as we walk and talk about those wonderful pre-pandemic times in Vankleek Hill.

Facebook: Vankleek Hill Museum   E-mail: [email protected]  Call 613-678-2323.