“History is alive, you just have to look for the stories.”
That’s Janice Pugsley Slauenwhite’s philosophy. She’s the director at Macdonald Museum in Middleton where the bricks and mortar of the past have just gone digital in a brand new interactive website.
“We have lots of stories we will be telling at Macdonald Museum,” she said. “We’re the keepers of the memories, the anchor for those who are looking for their roots.”
Pugsley Slauenwhite said the museum launched its new website to create a new look.
“The old site was very hard to update and not mobile friendly,” she said. “Now we have a fresh new look. We have a new logo and our pages are colourful and information easier to find.”
They’ve pulled some information from the old site and are updating on the new site as they go along. And there’s a link to the museum’s newsletter and to its Facebook page.
Go online to www.macdonaldmuseum.ca and you’ll see a dynamic website that even includes 360-degree virtual tours of their genealogical research library, the clock and watch collection, the gift shop and lobby, and the old school room.
“The virtual tours are from the past site, but will be update in the spring,” she said. “We are still making improvements but wanted to launch now so that our events listings would be available.”
And events can be viewed on the new website as either a list or in calendar format.
The museum, at 21 School Street, came into being in the 1980s with a mandate to collect and preserve the history of the Annapolis Valley. It had been the Macdonald Consolidated School from 1903 to 1979, one of four built by Sir. William Christopher Macdonald who had made his fortune in tobacco.
The Annapolis Valley Historical Society acts as a governing body for the museum and meets regularly at the museum.
Besides its permanent collections, the museum is known for it genealogy department, and also houses the local sports wall of fame.
The new website is part of efforts to have people take part in the past. Putting the past in pixels gives people greater access.
“We welcome the community to get involved with the museum, whether they join the board, become a volunteer, or support our new ideas financially, we appreciate any help we get,” Pugsley Slauenwhite said. “We’re having a lot of fun developing our plans for next season when we open in April. There’s lots to do so anyone can give us a call at 902-825-6116 and tell us how they would like to participate.”
The museum closes for the winter on Dec. 15.
Pugsley Slauenwhite doesn’t want people to forget social media.
“We’d love to see more ‘likes’ on our Facebook page Annapolis Valley Macdonald Museum,” she said.
And those stories?
“People are welcome to share their stories with us,” she said – and any old pictures to go with them. She’s even thinking of having people come in and speak about their memories. “We could have a memory night sometime.”
Go To: www.macdonaldmuseum.ca