More summer student introductions-Meet Jia Jia!

Hello! My name is Jia Jia. I’m the Project Archivist this summer at the Musée Héritage Museum in St. Albert.  My job is partially funded by the Federal Young Canada Works grant program which assists students to gain work experience, related to their degree programs, during the summer months.  I’m currently working towards my Master of Library and Information Studies degree at the University of Alberta. Just one year left! I’m thrilled to be a part of the Musée Héritage Museum team this summer and I’m learning a lot about archives and about the history and community of St. Albert.

The Musée Héritage Museum’s focus on outreach is one thing that I really love. Especially because we archivists are often “closeted” in a windowless back rooms and whenever we discover anything interesting, we are largely excited about our discoveries all on our own. However, outreach and programming, exhibitions and events, even this blog, all are chances for us to share with you what we’ve discovered and what we’re excited about.

My main project this summer is to process the records of Brigadier-General Raymond Brutinel. He was a fascinating man who commanded the Canadian Motor Machine Gun Brigade in WWI and ran a resistance group from his home in France in WWII… that’s just a few of the highlights from his life!

The Museum has published a biography of Brutinel written by close family friends, which is full of stories, photographs, and letters by Brutinel.  I highly encourage you to check it out if you want to read a detailed account of his life (

But, more than second-hand compilations and biographies, what’s most meaningful to me and what draws me to archives is the primary, first-hand evidence in the records. Brutinel’s archive contains some remarkable documents, such as a WWI interim operations report from 1918 that details military maneuvers and troop movements over a three-day period in August complete with maps and sketches. There’s a lot to discover. And I’m pleased to say that Brutinel’s archival records are being processed and will be available for researchers soon!

So if you’re curious about Brutinel, or any records in the Musée Héritage Museum’s archives please get in touch with us! You can email or check out the website at  Spend some time with the records, make discoveries, and celebrate with those of us who work in “the back room”.