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Alberta Online Encyclopedia
Women of Aspenland: Images from central Alberta See more of the Virtual Museum of Canada
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The Women
Social Landscape
The Region

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The Project

The Women of Aspenland Virtual Exhibit was developed by the Heritage Community Foundation as a means of making these resources accessible to all Canadians. Additional profiles of women were added from a range of sources. As well, these lives were placed in a context of social history in Alberta, from fur trade to women’s rights, and from kitchen to social activism. The lives of women and the region are also illumined by a range of perspectives and points of view that draw on research into women’s history and the different facets of community life. The website is a part of the Alberta Online Encyclopedia—the Heritage Community Foundation initiative that is giving a World Wide Web presence to the historical, natural, cultural, scientific and technological heritage of Alberta. It is also a vehicle for ensuring that our heritage is valued by everyone.

The virtual exhibit draws on two projects undertaken by the Central Alberta Regional Museums Network (CARMN) with funding support from the Museums Alberta Regional Museums Grants Program. The Grants Program was designed to promote research into community life to deepen understanding of the way in which communities develop and the stories of people and their role in shaping community. Two projects were undertaken by CARMN:

Who We Are: The Women of Aspenland Project began in 1995 and initially involved 11 community museums in documenting the lives of local women, and creating museum exhibits.

Aspenland 1998: Local Knowledge and a Sense of Place, a publication in which a range of writers explore different aspects of place in central Alberta.

Both projects were led by David J. Goa, Curator of Folklife at the Provincial Museum of Alberta and Morris Flewwelling, Executive Director of the Red Deer and District Museum.  Each of the participating network museums decided that each year they would document the lives and work of a few women in their respective communities. The elements of the research documentation used in the virtual production include:

  • family photographs
  • archival photographs
  • personal and public documents
  • letters of appreciation written by friends and community members
  • taped conversations with the subjects or others familiar with the subject
  • exhibit text developed for the physical exhibition


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