Nova Scotia Museum Canada 150 Project

Published January 1, 2017 by A.J.B. Johnston

With strange things afoot in Washington today, maybe it’s a good time to say a bit more about something closer to home — the new exhibit the Nova Scotia Museum has in the works to mark Canada 150.

It will be a travelling exhibit that tells the stories of an inspiring cast of women and men in Nova Scotia who overcame barriers and stood out in remarkable ways since 1867. Some names people will immediately recognize; others I think not. There was an advisory committee involved to make sure that the selections reflected the various regions and cultural communities. In addition, we aimed to come close to a 50/50 split between men and women. A lot to juggle, to be sure, but what’s better than a good challenge?

Though the period was 150 years, we managed to come up with 16 decades, beginning with the 1860s and ending with the 2010s. Within each decade we came up with three people, so 48 individuals in total. However, not everyone gets into the final exhibit. One of each group of three per decade was selected to be included, but the other two have go up for a vote by the public. That means the final exhibit will present the stories (plus images and related artifacts) of 16 x 2 = 32 people plus two theme elements on WW1 and WW2.

If you’d like to have your say when the voting comes — to show your pride and enthusiasm for for a particular barrier-breaker, Cape Bretoner, Truronian, Acadian, Mi’kmaq, African Nova Scotian or GLBT individual — you will be encouraged to do exactly that. The voting will be done online for roughly a month, from late February to late March. The precise details are being finalized as to how that will work.

The exhibit is slated to open at the Nova Scotia Museum shortly before Canada Day. It will then — in whole or in part — travel around the province.

It has been a great project to work on. There have been so very many inspiring people who helped transform Nova Scotia over the past 150 years.

I’ll post more information as it becomes available.

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