My Reflections of Oshawa

By Lisa Terech, Community Engagement

Earlier this year, the Oshawa Community Museum began a project to commemorate the 90th Anniversary of Oshawa being a City.  We’ve called the project Reflections of Oshawa, and we are collecting memories from the community of what Oshawa means to them and their memories of the City.  Recently, a great deal of my time has been dedicated to this project, whether it’s co-ordinating the AMAZING youth volunteers we have, or scheduling interviews with community members.  With ‘Reflections’ being such a dominant theme right now, it has given me the opportunity to do my own reflecting on Oshawa.

Firstly when I think of Oshawa’s history, I can’t help but think of my beloved Grandpa.  He was born in one of the row townhouses on Olive Avenue, worked for Duplate, lived in Oshawa his entire life; to me, he represented all that is positive and good about Oshawa.  He would often share stories about his childhood growing up, and I think one of my favourites is how during the hot summer nights, he and his sisters would take blankets and sleep outside in Cowan Park rather than in the hot, un-air conditioned townhouse.  What a different world he lived in!

Me and my Grandpa at my university graduation

Me and my Grandpa at my university graduation

Another favourite Reflection for me involves the Museum!  I have fond memories of visiting the Oshawa Community Museum when it was the Oshawa Sydenham Museum on a school trip! I was in Grade 4, and we went to school in the schoolroom exhibit in Robinson House, and we churned butter in the Henry House Kitchen.  Today, when school tours come through, students get the chance to ‘go to school’ in the schoolroom exhibit, and many churn butter in the Henry House Kitchen! While somethings change, the good things stay the same.

The schoolroom exhibit in Robinson House and I'm playing the role of the teacher, a different role from when I visited in Grade 4.

The schoolroom exhibit in Robinson House and I’m playing the role of the teacher, a different role from when I visited in Grade 4.

What are your Reflections of Oshawa? What makes Oshawa the city you know and love?

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