Archives Moment: More than just paper

The Musée Héritage Museum Archives houses many different types of items in its collection. Paper documents are the most well known generally, but our archives also holds a substantial amount of audiovisual materials as well.

Photographs are by the far the most requested items in our archives. Our photographs go all the way back to the beginning of St. Albert in the late 1800s up to the current time. What many people may not be aware of is that in order for us to reproduce photographs or negatives, we have to first scan them in very high quality in order to both preserve them better and be able to use the images.

Audio is another large component of our archives. Our audio content consists of a variety of items, such as music, speeches, radio broadcasts and advertisements, and even commentary to horse races! Our oral histories is our most prominent audio collection, mostly captured on audio cassettes. Our oral histories capture the voices of prominent St. Albertans over the years, including Mary Callihoo, John Cunningham, Vera Chevigny, Marie Wolniewicz, Lois Hole, and Elke Blodgett. If you are interesting in reading summaries of these oral histories, please visit here: https://archives.museeheritage.ca/oral-histories.

Our music content can be found on various medias, such as 8 tracks, compact discs (CD) and records. Have you heard of the local bands, P.I.T.C.H & S.P.I.C.E (People in The Crowd Harmonizing, and Spreading Peace in Crowds Everywhere)? They were groups of St. Albert High School students formed in 1968 by Father Ubald Duchesneau, OMI. We have their records in our collection, along with many other musical themed items.

Our video collection consist of VHS, Beta, DVD, film, digitial, and rare media known as Videodiscs. The content ranges from home videos to commercial. One of our recent acquisitions is a copy of the 1988 film, Cowboys Don’t Cry, that features scenes from St. Albert’s revered Bruin Inn!

If you are interested in learning more about our audiovisual collection or have any other general questions about our archives, please email archives@artsandheritage.ca or phone 780-459-1528.