The Tour - As Written by Ab & Harriet Chapman
The Glass House
Let's have a short run-down of a few of the items each building contains; The Glass House houses a collection of glassware from cup glass to Depression glass; china - from Ironstone (remember the large white soup plates you ate your hot porridge from each morning?) to fine English and European china; lamps - many models and sizes, including a beautiful hanging lamp complete with hand-painted shade and crystal drops; bathroom sets (mostly missing the mug that went under the bed, guess it got the most practical use); gramophones with both cylinder and 1/4 inch thick discs; stereoscopes and cards; and photograph and postcard albums. Our lady visitors seem to like the Glass House more than the other buildings.
The Library & Smoke Shop
Next in line is the library and Smoke shop. Here we have modem books as well as old, dog-eared volumes. Our oldest book is a huge Bible with an inscription on the cover showing it was given as a gift in 1756. It is written in the German language. Here also is a conglomerate of newspapers, news-magazines, farm journals, and craft magazines. There is a "Grain Growers Guide", September 10th, 1919, Volume XII, No. 37, publjshed weekly with George F. Chipnan, Editor and Manager, which has a page of Arch Dale's "Doo Dads". There is also "True Story" magazine, October; 1925, Volume XIII, No. 3, published monthly by True Story Publishing Company, New York, New York. It has proven to be a real eye-catcher. There's many a gal who remembers avidly reading "True Story" and hiding it quickly under a pillow when Mom and Dad approached. The Smoke Shop consists of tins, cans, and humidors that once contained that evil weed called tobacco. One tin has the price ten cents stamped on it. Imagine!
Also displayed here are articles pertaining to tobacco - pipes, tobacco cutters, cigar lighter and other numerous articles. A guest book in this building shows visitors' names from many places in Canada, Great Britain, and the United States.
The General Store
Let's move on to the General Store, On the way we pass a C. P. R. baggage wagon on which proudly stands a large brass school bell purchased at Gainsborough, Saskatchewan; as well as a feed cooker or pig scalder and a wooden-wheeled child's wagon. Outside the store, a hand-wound barber pole is placed on the wall. Inside are many articles that were found in most country stores, haberdashery shops, and hardware stores. There is also a wooden apple-barrel from Ontario with a checkerboard tacked on the lid, as well as a "Whatzit". What it is, is a large, cumbersome butter roller standing on 24 inch legs, It was put out by the T. Eaton Company about 1917. There is, of course, a large pot-bellied stove in the General Store.
Now we are going to Robinville School which is the former country school in our neighbouring district. In here we have a varied collection of sealers such as Beaver, Canadian Queen, Doolittle, and Mason, as well as bottles. It's a real find to come across an embossed bottle bearing the name and address of a chemist or druggist, or an old pop bottle whose manufacturer has long been outof existence, a Raleigh's peddlar's carrying case of 1921 with many full bottles and tins, sits or. a table. Besides it is an electric refrigerator with the cooling unit on the outside on top of the refrigerator. Shelves inside the classroom are lined with old and new school books such as a sot of Canadian Readers, published by Gage and Company, Toronto, dating from 1881 to 1883, and a set of Victorian Readers, published by Copp, Clark Company and W.G, Gage Company Limited, Toronto, dated 1898, There are also map cases, chalk boxes, slates and slate pencils, and four heavy ledgers containing accounts of Christie's School Supply Limited, Brandon, Manitoba. These ledgers show the company dealings with schools all over Western Canada and Ontario. These are accounts of the years 1910 to 1916. We had hoped to set this building up as an old-time classroom, however, because it is a fairly large building and our collection is also fairly large, the additional space was used to display radios, cameras, harnesses, Indian artifacts, and war-time mementos.
From Robinville we walk to Pendennis Station. This contains railroad lanterns, brochures for travelling by rail or steamer, mail sacks and locks, and a long pole with a hoop on one end used to pick up messages without stopping the train. Here also we see a large collection of wrenches. Many an old-timer reminisces here while: displaying a badly- bent finger or a hand missing a finger and pointing to the wrench that did it to him. Also on display are license plates (still with one or two missing to complete the set), tools, keys, washing machines and a string of brass harness bells, each one with its own distinctive ring and tone.
For more about the other buildings, visit our "Buildings" section, and for a complete photo record visit "The Chapman Museum Photo Album"