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Famous door salvaged from storage holds a special significance for former manager Phil Dobson
Opportunity knocked and a valuable door that’s a big part of Chemainus history is now on display at the Chemainus Valley Museum. The Museum recently installed the old Chemainus sawmill door in the new addition, with the help of muscle power from Chemainus firefighters.
in the Chemainus Courier Dec. 17, 2018 11:10 a.m.
Construction of the long-awaited Chemainus Valley Museum expansion is expected to begin within a week or two.
Notable locals gathered outside the Chemainus Valley Museum (CVM) Friday afternoon (April 5) to break ground on the museum’s long-anticipated expansion.
Read more in
Apr. 9, 2013 10:00 a.m.
by NICK BEKOLAY
The Chemainus Valley Museum is celebrating its 25th anniversary with a big party on Wednesday, Aug. 17 (2016) at Waterwheel Plaza.
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printed Aug. 11, 2016 5:00 p.m.
article by LEXI BAINAS
The Chemainus and District Chamber of Commerce recently presented a photo of Chemainus from the
early 1970s to the museum.
Brad Grigor (far left) and Peter Matthews from the Chemainus and District Chamber of Commerce presented this photo of Chemainus from the early 1970s to Erik Viestrup, president of the Chemainus Valley Historical Society, Dec. 14 at the Chemainus Valley Museum.
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printed Dec. 30, 2013 2:00 p.m.
article by LINDSAY CHUNG
Story of the 5 Cent Chocolate Bar War depicted
"It’s a collaborative effort in the truest sense of the word.The new 5 Cent Candy Bar War Mural for the outdoor gallery brought together many different facets of the community, including the Chemainus Festival of Murals Society, Cowichan Neighbourhood House, the Chemainus Valley Museum, Chemainus Secondary School students and others. "
Mural, mural, soon to be on the wall… With the 5 Cent Mural, from left are: Peter Collum, Shannon Bellamy, Cim MacDonald, Moe Vessey, Gabi Jones, Anjilee Manhas, Arlene Robinson and Amy Brophy. (Photo by Don Bodger)
“That’s why it’s such a collaborative effort,” stressed Chemainus
Valley Museum board member Amy Brophy, who helped facilitate its completion.
printed i CHEMAINUS VALLEY COURIER
"Chemainus is itself almost a living museum, it unashamedly displays it`s history on the walls of the town and has become a major tourist attraction on Vancouver Island. It also has a small museum in Waterwheel Park which has many interesting artifacts on display. Of note are items attributed to Bob Swanson during his tenure as mill engineer. Mr. Swanson was famous for his work on air horns, for example, the horns atop the old B.C. Hydro building in Vancouver that play O'Canada at noon. He was also the major moving force behind the refurbishing of the Royal Hudson locomotive that now hauls excursions to Squamish from West Vancouver."
Big team behind the scenes makes all the necessary arrangements
The expanded Chemainus Valley Museum re-opened March 1 with new and reconfigured displays.
Volunteers have been busy redesigning the museum within its new space since Dec. 15, according to Amy Trippe Brophy, president of the Chemainus Valley Historical Society and Museum.
“We welcome the community to come and visit the ‘new’ museum and get re-acquainted with our wonderful history,” noted Brophy.
She added tremendous thanks are due to Chemainus Fire Department men and women who gladly stepped forward and helped move heavy artifacts and cases several times. Eric Veistrup, along with contractor Ken Stanton, managed the construction project over the past five-plus years; Norma Greer spearheaded the lion’s share of fundraising, supported by treasurer Johanna van Barneveld; logging historian Sandy Macham offered his expertise along with former MacMillan Bloedel employee Doug Simmonds; the planning committee of Val Galvin, Darcie Edwards, Linda Tucker and Brophy executed the move and redesign; Galvin’s friends and family also stepped up handily to the task to meet the March 1 opening; and Peggy Allen-Newman provided invaluable guidance with her display expertise along with her creative and educational window displays facing Waterwheel Plaza for numerous years.
New members and volunteers are always welcomed. The museum’s spring hours are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily.
Mar. 5, 2019 10:30 a.m.
More space for exhibits and audio-visual displays
Chemainus Valley Museum members are thrilled with the completion of the expanded museum in downtown Chemainus and look forward to the ribbon-cutting celebration event Saturday, Aug. 17 (2019) at noon.
”The added space – twice its original size – has allowed for more artifacts, improved displays, interactive exhibits and a better audio-visual area,” pointed out Amy Trippe Brophy, current president of the Chemainus Valley Historical Society and Museum.
The most famous recent addition with the expansion is ‘The Door’ that H.R. MacMillan slammed on the way out of the Chemainus Mill in 1916 on the verge of being fired, only to say the next time he passed through the door he’d own the place. And that’s exactly what happened.
MacMillan bought the Victoria Lumber Company in 1948 and the rest, as they say, is history.
The museum has also just acquired a de Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver aircraft model with an eight-foot span. Known around these parts as the Work Horse of the West Coast, it is now swooping down from the beams at the entrance to the museum.
The original museum opened 28 years ago in 1991.
printed in the Chemainus Valley Courier Aug. 13, 2019 4:35 p.m.
Well over a hundred came to wander through our scavenger hunt. We even "spooked" a few with our live mannequins!
with help from a genuine mounty!
"Many thanks to Cst. Mitch McLean of the North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP and the many volunteers who helped bring the Museum to life today. And thank you to the community for stopping in and taking part in our Halloween Hunt. A fun time was had by all!"
Step back in time
Connect with history
German born Horst (Pat) Herrmann had created the beautiful animal carvings that graced Waterwheel Park and has been installed by Ian Shaw. The cougar was just one of them. Mr Herrmann passed away in the summer of 2009.
On September 8th 2000, the Cougar was placed on a stump behind the fence by the H.R.MacMillan statue. It remained there for over 15 years when the Municipality had to remove it due to the stump rotting out.
Many tourists and local citizens missed seeing it and the Municipality brought it back and placed it on top of the entry arch to Waterwheel Park where it had to be removed again after 3 years due to rot in the archway.
The cougar can be now seen on display in the front window or close up inside the Museum.
"It truly takes a village to raise a cougar", observed Chemainus Valley Museum Board member Amy Brophy.
"The Chemainus Valley Museum and Municipality of North Cowichan collaborated on a project with several community volunteers to bring a six-foot historic cougar sculpture out of the elements – where it experienced considerable wear and tear over the years – and into a new forever home inside the Museum. The cougar now looks out proudly over its new domain from the Museum window at the current exit doors."
Read more on how this came to be Chemainus Courier
Frank Ludwig, a former member of the band TROOPER, grew up on Vancouver Island. Frank Ludwig said about the song, “It’s really about the spirit of a Vancouver Island town, specifically Chemainus and Alberni.”