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Friends of the Provincial Archives of Saskatchewan (FOPASK)

  Greetings, fellow FOPASKers. A few days ago Friend Ron sent along a couple of photos he had discovered in his family archive, which he sent along with this request: We have this photograph of Sprucedale Farm  It appears to be in southern Saskatchewan from  the lack of trees and rolling hills. With all your connections, would you have any way of finding out where this was located? I believe the owners were Don and Kate McLaren but I have been unable to find their names anywhere. With your sleuthing abilities perhaps you might come up with something.   With great appreciation,         Ron D About the gopher's sleuthing abilities, pshaw, although I did check a couple of books of Saskatchewan place names, finding Spruce Bay and Spruce Lake, both in the parkland zone on the NorthWest side. As Ron notes, Sprucedale doesn't look like a good fit. There is also the date on the barn, 1910, when there was still land to be settled on in southern areas of the province.  As for sleuthing,
Recent posts

Talking About If These Places Could Talk: Snapshots of Saskatchewan by Crista Bradley

  Talking About If These Places Could Talk: Snapshots of Saskatchewan Crista Bradley When I was granted a one-year research sabbatical leave from the University of Regina Archives in July 2019, I was able to move forward with a project that’s been on my mind for several years.   The objective of the sabbatical was to research and write a children's book and companion educator’s guide that would help kids connect with Saskatchewan archives and further develop their understanding of our province’s diverse history. The year was rich and the pace was vigorous as I worked to review the professional literature on youth outreach and archival/historical products designed for children, identify a theme and format for the book, and investigate publishing options.   With support from a SCAA Professional Development Grant, I attended Canada History’s Historical Thinking Summer Institute, to help me frame my approach to packaging historical informati

Call to Saskatchewan Archivists

     Across Canada, undocumented and unmarked graves of Indigenous children are being located at former Residential Schools, reaffirming the testimony of residential school survivors. The role of residential schools in the wilful dismantling and destruction of Indigenous peoples’ cultures and families is becoming increasingly obvious. Many are looking for ways to provide aid and support to Indigenous communities in their grief. Archives have a very particular and important role to play in these efforts.      At this time, we urge members of the Saskatchewan Council for Archives and Archivists to dig deep into their collections to see if they have anything that could be useful in identifying Indigenous children in unmarked graves at these residential school burial sites. Furthermore, we would encourage archivists to assess their holdings for any materials that relate to Indigenous genealogy. Families were torn apart by the residential school system and other co

Gopher Gazette: the sourdough starter edition

From time-to-time we welcome the input from our friend the Interim Gopher, Bill Armstrong, of the Friends of Saskatchewan Archives (FoSA) in contributing stories and additional insights to "Outside the Box." Salutations to all those flour-coated FOPASKers out there. The gopher has stumbled upon a commentary that explains why you are sitting by your stove at 3 am, waiting for the bread to be baked, or punching a mound of dough at any hour of the day. Bet you didn't realize what you were doing was so culturally significant.. https://heritagesask.ca/news/blog/the-stuff-of-life-the-living-heritage-of-bread-in-a-time-of-change Turning to another matter, the photo of the fowl supper, which produced some wicked punning from members Ralph and Frank, also brought a query about what happened to the Matador Co-op Farm. A link to story that appeared in Prairies North magazine proved a dead end. The gopher did discover that the farm continued into the second generat

2020-21 SCAA Board of Directors Nominations

With the arrival of spring comes another annual renewal – the recruitment of new Board members to the SCAA Board of Directors. Once again, we have openings on our Board of Directors and we are always pleased to get some new faces on the Board. I would encourage anyone who is interested in supporting archives across Saskatchewan to consider putting your name forward for the Board. It’s a great opportunity to meet other archivists, learn more about the issues facing archives, and, of course, volunteer work always looks great on a resume! I’m about to start my fifth year on the Board and I’ve had a wonderful experience. In my time on the Board, I’ve learned about adjudicating grants, reading financial statements, understanding bylaws and policy governance, and explored many other facets of the workings of a province-wide professional organization. If you don’t have experience, don’t worry! Neither did I when I started on the Board. I’ve also had the opportunity to meet people who w

SICC ē-micimināyakik Gathering

On May 2-3, the Saskatchewan Indigenous Cultural Center hosted the ē-micimināyakik gathering, or the Indigenous museums gathering-- one of the first of its kind to be held in Canada. This gathering addressed many of the challenges and concerns around making accessible, preserving, and respecting both tangible and intangible elements of Indigenous history. ē-micimināyakik roughly translates to "holding on to things for everyone,"  and that was ultimately the idea at the heart of the gathering -- how can we (both as Indigenous and Newcomer curators) hold on to things in a good way, and particularly in a way that meets the needs of those people with whom the thing originated. So, far from being a gathering targeted only at museums, interested participants came from a broad array of backgrounds including libraries and archives (like myself), copyright offices, and other cultural centers. Below I will summarize some of the things I learned (note that this is from the perspecti

Audio-Visual Preservation Workshop

On 19 March 2019, 16 participants gathered at the Provincial Archives of Saskatchewan in Regina to increase their knowledge of the preservation of audio-visual records, from Donald Johnson, Special Media Archivist. Audio-visual records are a challenge because they require equipment to be accessible. Some of that equipment is becoming harder to find, and in good enough condition to use. The focus was on audio recordings, such as on audio cassette, reels or CDs, and moving images on a variety of media such as video, DVD or Blu-ray, but it also touched on film. There are a wide variety of formats that have been used over time. Many have not been produced with preservation in mind, and many individuals buy them without thinking what archivists would like to preserve. Depending on the acquisition policies of different institutions, certain media may be found in one type of institution and not in others. For example, the records used in radio stations are less likely to be in personal