The Museum of the Cariboo Chilcotin may not be what it was when it was on Fourth Avenue but museum staff have the museum’s temporary home at the Tourism Discovery Centre looking pretty good these days.
The museum was moved from its former home on Fourth Avenue in June to its temporary location at the TDC to make way for a new 72-bed care facility being developed by InSite.
William Adams, the museum’s curator and executive director said they have been able to display about five per cent of the museum’s collection on the main floor of the TDC while the bulk of the collection is in storage in the basement of the centre.
Some of the museum’s iconic collection now occupies the main floor including the Cowboy Hall of Fame trophy and artifacts, the antique piano from the early days of the Alkali Lake Ranch, a telephone booth from the early days on Oliver Street, the safe from the city’s first courthouse and an early dentist’s chair with a peddle pump drill.
Then there is the oil barrel bull which held the cow patties used in the politicians’ bull throwing contest that was held during earlier Stampedes, plus display cases filled with Stampede, Stampede Queen and other rodeo memorabilia.
The popular replica of the early PGE train station is in place, although the train is not yet operational. There is also a replica of a lumber mill yard.
Four of the museum’s large collection of saddles are on display in the log cabin where people can sit and read about the area’s history.
Welcoming guests to that room is a mannequin dressed as Willie Crosina when he was the Stampede rodeo clown.
Adams said Crosina borrowed the wig again for a recent event.
Adams and his new assistant Joe Borsato are now working on establishing space and display cases for some of the First Nations artifacts in the museum’s collection that can be put back on display.
The Williams Lake Museum and Historical Society which manages the museum will hold a special general meeting in city council chambers Thursday, Sept. 28 starting at 7 p.m. to update the public on the museum activities.