Student Museum Musings – Nicole and Mary

This semester, we are happy to host two students from Durham College’s Library and Information Technician program who are able to get hands-on experience in the workplace while offering valuable assistance where we need the help.  Read on to meet Nicole and Mary!


Hello, my name is Nicole Bray and I am a second year student in the Library and Information Program at Durham College.  I chose to have a field placement at the Oshawa Museum & Archives after I saw Jennifer’s presentation for one of my classes.  She made working at the archives sound fun and interesting.  And everyone has certainly lived up to my first impression.  At the moment I am working on the Education in Oshawa e-publication.  It’s really interesting to read up about all the different schools that were once in Oshawa.  I look forward to the rest of the time I’ll spend here at the Archives.


Hello all! My name is Mary Sherlock and I am a 2nd year Durham College student in the Library and Information Technician program. This is my last year in the program and I am excited for what the future may bring! I am here as a placement student in the archive and am loving every second of it so far! I have a great love for history, especially Canada’s history, which makes me all the more excited for my time here. This placement will  give me a great opportunity to see if working in an archive or museum setting is something I wish to do after I graduate, also to gather as much educational experience as possible to apply towards school, work, and life.

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Durham LIT Students on a Fall visit to the Oshawa Museum


The Month That Was – February 1952

Oshawa Daily Times – February 1 1952

Ottawa (CP) – Canada’s railroading business has hit the $1 billion a year class for the first time in the country’s transportation history.

Unofficial figures compiled today indicate that the combination of near-record traffic volume and increased freight rates pushed the carriers’ 1951 gross into the 10 figure mark for an all-time high in their straight railway earnings.

However, rising expenses kept their net income well below the war and post-war highs.

A gross intake of close to $1, 100, 000, 000 is the estimate for the companies’ earnings on railway operations within Canada. That does not include steamships, hotels and other enterprises or Canadian owned rail subsidiaries in the United States.

Though the companies’ books are not yet closed on 1951, the indications now are that the Canadian National Railways grossed about $550 million on its rail division, with the Canadian Pacific Railway taking in about $433 million. Income of the smaller companies would bring the aggregate up to some $1,080,000,000.


Rite Demands Athletic Prowess: Braving the icy waters of New York’s East river, three divers plunge in (top) to retrieve a cross thrown by a priest of the Greek Orthodox Church of St. John the Baptist. It is an annual rite, preformed to celebrate the Feast of Epiphany. At bottom, during a similar ritual in the Hudson River. Gus Kottenkos comes up with the cross. It was his 11th recovery out of 13 tries.

Dog’s Taste Complicates Housing
London (CP) – Gretchen, a sleek daschund who didn’t like Canada, may have to move over and make room in her dog-house, figuratively speaking, for a couple of human beings.

For the last four years, ever since she took a dislike to the chilly Canadian climate, Gretchen has been a problem to her mistress, Mrs. Mary Stott, and to property owners.

Now it looks as though Mrs. Stott and her 16-year-old daughter, Hyllerie, may have to move again- all because Gretchen is back in the dog-house. The municipal authorities who won Mrs. Stott’s apartment in nearby Ilford have sent her six warnings that she must get rid of the dog-or move out.

“Dogs aren’t even allowed to visit the apartment,” Mrs. Stott said.

“I wish we’d given Canada another chance,” she added with a sight. “I’m sure we could have found friends who would have given us a home and allowed us to keep Gretchen.”

The Stotts emigrated in 1947 and lived in two Toronto hotels. Gretchen made many friends, the family says, but couldn’t stand the climate.

Back in Britain. Gretchen was boarded out with Mrs. Ethel Lee. But Mrs. Lee left to visit her daughter in Montreal, and Gretchen was back in the bosom of the family.

That brought the six strict warnings from the housing authorities. Now Mrs. Stott doesn’t know what to do. Her only consolation is that Mrs. Lee will soon be back, bringing with her a new dog coat form Montreal.

Meanwhile, if the eviction notice is finally served, Gretchen may have to give up part of that dog-house.


The Daily Times-Gazette –February 8, 1952

Driver Rides Air-Borne Truck 30ft.
A CPR Express truck went through some rare shenanigans in the wee small hours of the morning in Bowmanville without doing very much damage either to its driver or itself.

At 1:30 a.m. the truck-driver, John Carney, of 29 River Crescent, Toronto, was eastbound on No. 2 Highway, when he skidded on the overhead bride crossing the CPR tracks. Tearing a 25 foot gap in the south rail, he then slide over to the north side of the road, went through the railing and plunging some 30 feet on to the right-of-way below. Carney stayed in the truck all the way, and only received a severe shake-up. The truck, went over the edge but sustained relatively little damage, remained where it was until CPR could make arrangements to have it removed.

Accession Ceremonies Break Nation’s Mourning For Beloved Sovereign
London (CP) – Historic pomp and ceremony relieved royal mourning today to mark the accession of Queen Elizabeth II to Britain’s throne. Union Jacks lowered to half-staff since the death of King George VI two days ago, waved at their accustomed height throughout the realm as the royal proclamation was read to the people. After six hours they were to be lowered again, to remain at half-staff until the King’s funeral Feb. 15.

In London, a fanfare of trumpets sounded from the balcony of St. James Palace, where the new Queen had made her declaration of accession an hour earlier in a simple 15-minute ceremony.

In bright sunshine, the liveried Garter King-of-Arms, Sir George Bellew, read the statement by the accession council declaring the 25-year-old sovereign “Queen of this realm and of her other realms and territories, head of the Common-wealth, defender of the faith.”

Other heralds, in picturesque 15th-century dress then read the proclamation at Charing Cross, from the steps of the Royal Exchange and from just inside the Temple Bar. A fifth reading was given by Col. James Carkeet, governor of the Tower of London, he stood in the courtyard surrounded by a square of Yeomen of the Guard, clad in the uniforms of the first Elizabeth.

A 62-gun accession salute boomed across the Thames from the tower guns as he finished.

Meanwhile at Sandringham, where Queen Elizabeth will pay homage to her father later today, the King’s body, clad in the uniform of an admiral of the fleet, lay in state in a plain oak coffin. Later today, it will be carried 200 yards to the little 16th-century royal chapel of St. Mary Magdalence

At the chapel the King’s people-his farmers, gamekeepers, woodsmen and villagers for West Newton, Deringsgham, Sherrnborne, Flitcham, Wolferton, Castle Rising and Hillington, which nestle under the royal walls- will take their last leave of the man they called their squire.

There will be a short service in the chapel Monday. Then the coffin will be placed on a gun carriage and a guard of honor of 20 grenadiers will draw the cortege slowly down the two-mile-long rhododenrum banked drive to the railway station.

By train the coffin will travel to London to lie in state at West Minster Hall, in the Palace of Westminster.

Prime Minister Churchill in a broadcast last night pledging loyalty to the new Queen an praising as a model monarch the late George VI.

Most of his broadcast, heard over much of the world was eulogy to the dead ruler, his close friend, who he said had walked fearlessly with death. But the veteran statesman whose career began in the reign of Victoria said in closing that he felt a thrill “in evoking once more the prayer and the anthem, ‘God Save The Queen’.”

Churchill linked the coming reign with the greatness of the first Elizabethan era of four centuries ago and said the sovereignty of the new Queen Bess “will command the loyalty of her native land and of all other parts of the British Commonwealth and Empire.”

Throughout yesterday a string of motorcars drew up at the east lodge by the jubilee gates of Sandringham House. One by one, the kings neighbours and friends came to pay their respects in the traditional manner by signing the visitors’ book.

A few wore mourning clothes. Others had mourning bands on their sleeves. Those who signed has been presented at court or were known personally to the royal family.

Queen Mother, Elizabeth and Princess Margaret remained in seclusion throughout the day. At dusk last night, as rain began to fall, lights burned in only one room of the house.

The Queen’s 130-mile trip to Sandringham will be the last stage of a sorrowing 4000-mile journey from the animal ranges in East Africa where Wednesday the tidings of the King’s sudden passing and her own accession to the throne came to her.

Elizabeth displayed her queenly qualities when she returned, pale but composed, in yesterday’s gathering dusk to the homeland she had left just one week earlier on a holiday and state tour with her husband. It was to have taken them around the world, through Ceylon, Australia, and New Zealand.

There was a heavy sadness to her eyes, but she showed no other outward effect of her grief nor to the burdening weight of new responsibilities.

She at once approved the arrangements for her father’s funeral which were made by her councillors. The last services and burial will take place at S. George’s Chapel at Windsor a week from today.

The King will be buried within the royal castle’s St. George’s Chapel, resting place for the bones of many another sovereign.

There are buried the late King’s father and every other British monarch from the days of George III, except for the last reigning Queen, Victoria.

As the arrangements were announced, the busy mills of Manchester sped bolts of bolts of black and purple fabric throughout the kingdom to drape in mourning the entrances of public buildings, stores, and theaters, and the quiet suburban homes.

Every store in London will close on the day of the funeral.

The BBC cancelled all comedy shows, dance music and other light entertainment, both on the radio and on television, until after the King’s funeral.

In his broadcast Churchill said Elizabeth’s gifts have “stirred the only part of our Commonwealth she has to visit (Canada)” and he raised hopes for the future under the Queen with a reminder that “some of the greatest periods in our history have unfolded under their sceptre.”

Terming the constitutional monarchy the “most deeply founded and dearly cherished” of British Institutions, Churchill said the late King’s “conduct on the throne may well be a model and a guide to constitutional sovereigns throughout the world today and also in future generations.”

The last few months if the King’s life, Churchill said, “made a profound and an enduring impression and should be a help to all.”

“During these last months the King walked with death as if death were a companion, an acquaintance whom he recognizes and did not fear. In the end death came as a friend after a happy day of sunshine and sport.

“In this period of mourning and meditation, amid our cares and toils, every home in all the realms joined together under the crown may draw comfort for tonight, and strength for the future, from his bearing and fortitude.”


Century Old Book Shows Burial Record
Bowmanville- In a cubbyhole in the big steel vault built into a corner of Town Clerk Alick Lyle’s office rests a book that had quite the story to tell.

Properly titled the volume is called: Registry of Burials of Bowmanville Cemetery. It dates back to the spring of 1857 and faithfully lists the individual names of the 7, 526 persons who have been interred in Bowmanville Cemetery since that time.

Bound in calfskin, the volume will be 100 years old in 1957. The pages of the book seem similar to parchment used in olden days; the paper is watermarked: T. Dewdney – 1856. When purchased from Henry Rowsell, the proprietor of a Toronto stationary store, the book cost seven-pound-ten sterling, which is approximately $21 at the current rate of exchange.

First entry in the ledger is devoted to the re-internment of Miss Marjorie Beith, sister of Robert Beith, who came from Scotland and who were among the first settlers in Darlington Township. Miss Beith, was born in Scotland but came to Canada in 1826. She understood, and was first buried elsewhere in the Township before being re-interred in Bowmanville Cemetery prior to August, 1857.

The first five entries in the burial registry lack in sufficient detail to identify the individual. First detailed entry is the sixth which makes note of the death of Donald Cameron, 64, of Bowmanville. He was buried Aug. 13, 1857; the account was charged to Malcolm Cameron, relationship unknown.

The first page of the ledger id interesting in other respects. Twenty-eight persons had a “Cause of Death” listed beside their names in a special column. Of these, 12 died of “consumption” or Tuberculosis as it is known today. Other death dealers included croup, cancer, scrofula, inflamed bluffer and cankers.

Only one person, Solomon Tyler, 83, is listed as dying of old age. He was born in Vermont and died in Bowmanville. The balance of the entries indicate no cause of death.


February 12, 1952- The Daily Times Gazette

Britain’s Heart Stilled In Two Minute Silence
London (Reuters) – For two minutes today the heart of Britain stopped beating as the King’s funeral service started in Windsor.

Throughout the land work came to a standstill and in factories, offices and city streets men, women, and children rose to attention to stand with bowed heads.

In London, the silence began with the boom of police torpedoes. Elsewhere air-raid sirens signalled the 2 p.m. GTM (9 a.m. EST) hush.

The silence was requested by the Queen.

All traffic jerked to a halt in London.

At the cenotaph in Whitehall, passing by the funeral procession not long before, a crowd gathered to observe the silence.

In Piccadilly and Leicester Square, Londoners stood like statues in memory of the King. Piccadilly Circus was a mass of unmoved humanity. Bus drivers jumped from their seats and stood in the roadway.

Subway trains everywhere stopped at the neatest station to observe the silence.

Buckingham Palace guards sprang to attention and sloped arms before hundreds of people. From nearby Wellington barracks came the sound of the last post. Far underground in the coal mines of South Wales, miners stood in the dim light of their tiny lamps to pay their tribute.


The Cancer, Polio and Tuberculosis Committee of the Odd Fellow and Rebekah Lodges in Oshawa last night presented the Oshawa General Hospital with an oxygen machine and tent. Shown in the above photo are (left to right) Claude Keating, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee; Orville MaGee, vice chairman of the CPT Committee; Mary Mason, intermediate nurse; Mrs. William Leavitt, secretary of the CPT Committee; Eleanor Stark, graduate nurse; Mrs. George Kinsmen, chairmen of the investigative committee of the CPT Committee; Miss Mary Bourne, superintendent of the Oshawa General Hospital; Mrs. J. K. Wickens, treasurer of the CPT Committee; and Norman Hinds, chairman of the CPT Committee.


February 22 1952- The Daily Times Gazette

Donald Motors, Dundas Street East, Whitby, was broken into last night for the 15th time in 15 years. Thieves, working in a brilliantly lighted room facing on Highway No. 2, opened a “burglar-proof” safe and smashed concrete surrounding an inner strong box which they removed. Cash and cheques were in the box.

The yeggs made off in a new grey de luxe Chevrolet, bearing dealers plates, which they stole from Donald’s service station. Another Whitby service station, owned by W. Wilson and opposite Pickering Farms, was entered last night and a greasing machine, spark plug cleaner and some tools were stolen.

The robbery at Donalds duplicated one carried cut there a year ago. At that time the thieves used a greasing lift to raise a half-ton safe onto a truck they stole from the garage. No trace was ever found of either the truck or the safe.

After that robbery, Mr. Donald purchased the burglar-proof safe and set it in concrete. He kept cash, cheques and company records in an inner strong box which was also imbedded in concrete. The thieves last night broke into the garage through a service entrance door on the North side of the building.

They hacksawed their way through the safe’s other door and smashed the cement surrounding the strong box. All that was done in the lighted glass-fronted showroom. Whitby police noticed the open safe in the room at 3:45 a.m. this morning.

OPP figure print expert George Long is investigating.


Giving Tuesday 2017

By Laura Suchan, Executive Director

This year Giving Tuesday, a movement for giving and volunteering taking place each year after Cyber Monday, will be celebrated on November 28.  As the unofficial start to the giving season, Giving Tuesday has become a day where charities, companies and individuals can join together to share commitments, rally for favourite causes and thank donors and supporters.

Givign Tuesday

The Oshawa Museum is highlighting donations to the Artefact Fund for this Giving Tuesday. As an external agency of the city, the Oshawa Historical Society receives an annual grant for the operation of the museum which covers general expenses including electricity, office supplies, insurance, accounting, salaries, promotion, etc.  However expenses related to artefact purchases, conservation work or exhibit development are often not covered in the operating budget.  With this mind the Board of Directors established the Acquisition Account in 1995 to fund those purchases not included as part of the museum’s operating budget.  Most of the funds in the account comes from donations and may be used to finance,

  1. the purchase of artefacts historically relevant to Oshawa
  2. the restoration or conservation of artefacts in the collection
  3. projects relating to improving the accessibility of the collection
  4. the purchase of items and services as deemed appropriate by the Board of Directors to support the above.

Our members and donors have told us repeatedly how much pride they take in the museum and its collection. Archivist, Jennifer Weymark, wrote the following about the impact of your donations to the Acquisitions Fund and what it means to our collection growth,

The majority of the time, we rely on the public to donate items to help our collection grow.  These donations are  important as they bring to us items that had been tucked away and are now available for the public to research.  We appreciate each and every donation.

However there are times when we come across items that will  enhance our collection, that have research value and that belong in the public domain and that are for sale.  It is then that we rely on donations to the Acquisition Fund to purchase these items for our collections. Thanks to the wonderful generosity of our members, we have recently been able to purchase  a wonderful marriage certificate dating back to March 21, 1872.  The marriage is between  George Lankin, a mariner from the Village of Oshawa and Mary Matilda Smith, a spinster from East Whitby Township.  While the names may not be familiar, this marriage license contains a wealth of important research information. Not only is it an important piece for those researching the family names of Lankin and Smith in this area but the license also tells us more about what early Oshawa was like.  It can be used to document local employment opportunities;  it is the first one I have come across the lists the gentleman as a mariner. The license also states that the Right Honorable John Baron Lisgar was the Governor General of Canada in 1872.

With each new acquisition we are able to add to our community history in unique and wonderful ways.  Acquisitions help the Oshawa Museum not only preserve  our history but strategically develop the collection for future generations.

Donations in the amount of $25, $50, $100 or more would help  us meet our goal. Please use this link to make a donation in any amount:  You can also send your donation by mail to Oshawa Historical Society, 1450 Simcoe Street South, Oshawa, Ontario L1H 8S8.

As Giving Tuesday draws near, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your continued support.


The Month That Was – August 1902

Ontario Reformer
Bullets in Their Brain
Edition 01 August 1902

Many Strange Things Found in the Brain – Some Curious Cases

The idea that the human brain is an organ so extremely delicate in its structure that it cannot bear the slightest physical hurt sometimes appears to receive a contradiction in the experience of people who have been met with peculiar injuries to the head. The history of brain surgery presents some remarkable facts in regard to the extent to which the thinking organ will sometimes resist the effects of external injury. It has been shown that in some cases quantities of its substance may be removed without appreciably diminishing the normal intelligence of the patient; while some have been known to carry the most extraordinary foreign substance embedded in their skulls for years.

Finds of the most singular kind have been made in the interior substances of the living human brain. The strangest things have been known to find entry there through accident or design. In one case it was the blade of a penknife that was carried about in the brain for half a lifetime without the patient being in the least aware of it: in another it was a penholder that had somehow found its way there and remained in its living hiding-place without apparently interfering with the thinking power of the organ: while only a week or so ago a piece of slate pencil was recovered from a boy’s brain after it had been hidden there for several years.

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Ontario Reformer
The McLaughlin Carriage Co.’s Employes [SIC] Excursion
Edition 22 August 1902

Saturday morning last the sun rose upon a cloudless sky, for the weather clerk had notice that on that day the employees of the McLaughlin Carriage Company were to run their excursion to Orillia. A special train had been chartered for the occasion and the extremely low rate of $1.95 was secured for the excursionists. Long before the hour set for departure the street corners along Simcoe and King streets were crowded with people waiting for cars to carry them to the station. About eight o’clock the train of eleven coaches drawn by two engines, started from Oshawa. The train was tastily decorated for the occasion by the Committes [SIC]. The service rendered by the railway was highly satisfactory, for the run was made in about three hours and a half, which was passed by the excursionists in pleasant conversation and in viewing the varied scenery of river, lake, hill, and harvest.

The Oshawa Citizen’s Band was in attendance to furnish music for the day and the baseball and lacrosse teams went along to play games.

When Orillia was reached part of people got off the train and formed a procession, headed by the band, which proceeded to the park, while the train carried the remainder direct to the Park. Here dinner was partaken of by those who had carried their blankets, the rest going to the hotels. In the afternoon a baseball game was played between the Oshawa team and a team from the employees of the Tudhope Carriage Co., of Orillia. The Oshawa players were to fast for Orillia and succeeded in scoring 22 runs to Orillia’s 6.  There was no programme of games as the lacrosse game on the oval called for 3 o’clock. Those who did not attend the lacrosse game spent the balance of the afternoon taking in the town or quietly resting in the park, which is beautifully situated on the shore of Lake Couchiching … The whole day was pleasantly spent by employer and employee and showed the harmony that exists in this great Oshawa industry. The return journey was commenced about 7 o’clock and by 11 o’clock all were safely at home save for a few who remained over Sunday. The Committee of Management carried out the whole program successfully and it is due to their untiring efforts that the 700 people who went to Orillia enjoyed as ideal holiday…

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Ontario Reformer
Edition 01 August 1902

A very severe thunderstorm, accompanied by rain and lightning stuck this camp on Saturday afternoon and raised great havoc. The large dining tent was blown down and the centre poles broken. The headquarters tent was also blown down and part of the contents of the canteen destroyed. One of the small tents was broken down and most of the bedding in the others was very wet afterwards. The occupants of the other tents, had to hang on to their tents for about half an hour or all would have been blown down. On Sunday afternoon another sudden storm came up, but as the officers had timely warning very little damage was done, excepting in the cook house where a large amount of bread was destroyed, almost depriving the boys of their next morning’s breakfast; no order could be got uptown, as the telephone lines were destroyed. However, the younger boys did not suffer any as Mr. Carey kindly offered them shelter in his barn, which was gratefully accepted. However, the younger boys did not suffer any as Mr. Carey kindly offered them shelter in his barn, which was gratefully accepted.


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Ontario Reformer
Excursion to Toronto
Edition 01 August 1902

Durham Old Boy’s Association of Toronto has invited all former and present residents of Durham County to be their guests in Yoronto [SIC], on Monday next, as a grand reunion picnic to e held on the beautiful grounds of Dr. John Hoskin, K.C. The Dale, Howard Street of Bloor. A free dinner will be served at12 o’clock, and a splendid program will follow. Cheap rates have been obtained on the Grand Trunk Railway, going by local train only, and returning by any train same day as follows: –

Darlington –   7:00 a.m.                  $1.25
Oshawa et. –  8:00 “                        $1.10
Whitby –         8:00 “                           $ 1.10
Pickering –      8:00 “                          $1.10


Ontario Reformer
Kawartha Lakes
Edition 01 August 1902

A Place to Spend a Happy Holiday

Before deciding on a place at which to spend the vacation this summer, it is well to take into consideration the many advantages of the Kawartha Lakes region of Ontario, Canada. As a place for camping the region has no superior. For the most part, the shores of the lakes are untouched by man. Nature is seen in all her grand disorder, there being nowhere that artificially, which to the true lover of nature, often spoils landscape. Pure air and water, each of which in a factor in choosing a summering place are assured in that region. Transportation on the lakes is also amply provided by a steamboat line plying between Lakefield and Coboconk, a distance of 70 miles. There is an additional attraction for the angler, as the fishing in the lakes is very good. The gamey [muskellunge] and black basses are here to reward the sportsman.

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Ontario Reformer
Canadian Prosperity
Edition 01 August, 1902

Canada’s prosperity, at present, is unprecedented. The trade returns for the final year ending June 30th, 1902, exceeded four hundred million dollars – the exact figures being $414, 517, 368, while those of last year were $377, 689, 653, being an increase of $36, 826, 653 or 72 per cent over and above the trade of 1893, which was the last year during the life of the late government.


In proportion to population, the trade of Canada is not considerable more than double the relative volume of trade of the United States. In 1901 the latter, with its seventy millions of people, had a total volume of exports and imports aggregating $2, 301, 937, 156, which proportionately, is not on half of Canada’s trade last year.

This is not due to any epidemic growth in any one line of progress, but the progress along all the avenues of trade. The agricultural increase last year was very remarkable, and the exports exceeded those of the year previous more than 50 per cent. Nor did the manufacturers’ exports fall off, but were ahead of the times in every [way].


Ontario Reformer
Ontario Malleable Iron Co. Employees Annual Picnic
Edition 01 August 1902

The employees of the Ontario Malleable Iron Co., with their families and friends, held their annual picnic at Oshawa-on-the-Lake last Saturday. The affair was a success and a day of delight to all who took part in it. When all had assembled the number was computed at between two and three thousand. The event was highly creditable to all concerned, evincing thorough and hearty harmony between employers and employees. The large crowd were accommodated to the utmost by the Street Railway Co. and Mr. Arthur Henry. An excellent program of sports and attractions was provided for the entertainments of all present. The weather, in the morning and afternoon was fine and warm, but towards evening a severe thunder and rain storm was disappointing to many who were just at supper the lawns.

The music furnished by the Oshawa Citizen’s Band afforded delight to listeners on the grounds in the afternoon, and during the evening in the pavilion where dancing was pleasantly indulged in.

Student Museum Musings – Durham LIT Students

Their semester has wrapped up, but before they were finished, two students from the Durham College Library & Information Technician program shared their experiences as interns at the Oshawa Museum.  Here’s what they had to say.


As part of the final year at Durham College’s Library and Information Technician program, I am at the Oshawa Museum completing field placement hours. I have had the opportunity to work on the museum’s newest publication – The Annotated Memoirs of Rev. Thomas Henry. I got thrown onto this project as a sort of “happy accident:”  I was originally slated to be working in the archive, but help was needed elsewhere.

The book is being annotated by Laura Suchan, Executive Director of the Oshawa Museum, and Stoney Kudel, president of the Oshawa Historical Society. I have been designing the overall layout of the book.


A973.13.1 – Elder Thomas Henry

As an out-of-town student, working on this book has been my introduction to the history of Oshawa and the Henry family. I can’t begin to say how much research has gone into this publication. On my part, it was mostly because I was unfamiliar with a lot of the stories that I was reading about, and I wanted to relate what was happening in Oshawa (then East Whitby Township) to what I knew about the history of Ontario and Canada as a whole.

The museum is fortunate enough to have a lot of the Henry family’s history. I’ve had the opportunity to search through letters, early censuses and photographs, all in the sake of finding information for this book. I’ve enjoyed learning the different histories – being told to sit down and do research has been a dream these past few months.

Unfortunately, with the semester ending, I am finished my internship at the museum, and as of now, the book is not yet complete, though it should be soon. I look forward to seeing how all the work we’ve done comes together in print.


I’m a firm believer in what we learn from our past will guide us in the future so history has always been a huge interest of mine. Learning about how an archive and museum are run in class was fun, but actually getting to come into the archives and be able to see and touch history with my own two hands was another experience all together. From my time at the archives I was able to see the real behind the scenes of how an archives is run and operated daily. Through the task I was assigned I got to see what it was like to actually go through a donation and learned the value of recording everything. I also got a chance to see just how much time one project can take. From going through the newspapers, clipping, photocopying, and encasing them it took around 19 hours. With how little staff and money is usually given to archives you can see how much one person needs to do.

I’m very grateful for the experience! and now when I go to museums/archives I will truly know the value of them, not just from a preserving history stance.

Thank you to Jenn and Amanda for sharing their stories!

Want to know more about our Winter Semester post-secondary students? Jenn, Peter, Sarah, and Elora introduced themselves in an earlier post!