Volunteer’s Views – The years bring change but history remains the same…

By Kathryn, Valued Volunteer!

Hard to believe that I have been volunteering for the Oshawa Community  Museum and Archives for nearly eleven years, it only seems like yesterday that I met everyone at the Jubilee Pavilion. The room they were in was large dark, damp and uninviting; a make shift office while the Guy house was under repairs from the disastrous fire. I recall my volunteer duties were working on a data entry program of current newspaper articles and later moving on in the summer to assisting with the weekly Victorian Tea and the children’s programs.

Kathryn helping with an Archaeology program
Kathryn helping with an Archaeology program

Back then I might reflect that Murray MacKay was a prominent fixture at the museum. He always was cheerfully attending to the museum’s maintenance needs; his pride in keeping the museum to its historical presence was surely apparent in his affection for the houses.

When I first started with the museum the drive shed was not there, just grass; I think there was a sleigh cutter sled covered by a tarp up in the garage? Monthly meeting where held at the Albert United Church and social media, gee what was that! The old boards that made up the deck in front of the garden by the Henry house were a thorn in Murray’s side as he was always worried someone’s foot would go through and twist their ankle!  The Victorian teas really are the same; however, we used real pretty delicate napkins.  Now, disposable… a sign of the times.

Robinson House
Robinson House

As for Robinson House, so many fantastic exhibits have come and gone. As well, who could deny that the upgraded walk way, front steps and little tweaks each year at the general store has certainly enhanced its historical beauty.

I have not even touched on the impressive restoration projects, the new friendship with Trent University and the behind working of the museum staff to preserve our local history that I have witnessed and been a part of as a volunteer.

Volunteering for the Oshawa Community Museum and Archives as always been a pleasure for me; the staff has continually extended their appreciation for my time and being a part of Oshawa’s history has been an honor for me.

Kathryn and Jennifer at the United Way Volunteer Fair, 2014
Kathryn and Jennifer at the United Way Volunteer Fair, 2014


Thank you Kathryn for your post and for all of your hard work over the years!

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