Middleville & District Museum

6 Oct 2015

Apple Dolls on Display

Apple dolls made by area students will be on display this Saturday at our season closing Apple Day celebrations. Come for the dolls, stay for the apple pie and Balderson Cheese or the fresh-pressed apple juice.

25 Sep 2015

Mark Your Calendars!

A Day at the Fair 2015

It was wonderful to see so many at the fair taking in the exhibits, the horse shows, the children's games, and enjoying  the great lunch and dinner. Thanks to everyone who stopped at the Museum tent to buy quilt tickets also.

We Have a Winner!

Congratulations to Marcia Bolger of Clayton. She is the happy winner of this year's quilt. Thank you to all who purchased tickets and to all who sold tickets for us. Your support is greatly appreciated.

21 Sep 2015

Lanark County Interval House Races to End Violence Against Women

Most often Lanark County Interval House writes about the horror women experience as a result of violence and their need to flee/run from violence.  This reality hasn’t ended but in an effort to extend our hand and help these women and their children reach their goals,  LCIH is happy to  have hosted their first eRace Violence walk/run/cycle event at the Middleville & District Museum in the Lanark Highlands this past Sunday September 13th! 

63 pre-registered runners, bikers and walkers, joined by some 13 intense souls who came out to register the morning of, braved the elements and took to the roads with smiles (or perhaps grimaces) but still all in support of the work of Lanark County Interval House!

Despite the rain, the wonderful team at the Middleville Museum along with the dedicated community volunteers made this event a true success, helping LCIH to raise almost $3000 in funds! These funds will stay right here in Lanark County to help local Women and Children flee violence. The success of this first race event highlights this community's commitment to the issues facing many women and their children in Lanark County - thank you.  

The event also included bake goods provided by the museum staff, Coutts Coffee,  prizes from many local business, race tech-shirts, mini massages for runners by Back on Track Physiotherapy, Yoga provided by Medicine Bird Studio, Fruit from Freshco and Water from Lanark Pure Water! The generosity from our community for this event was unbelievable! Participants included  mom’s with their kids, competitive runners & Cyclists and six brave duathlon participants (who ran 5.5km then cycled 16.3km followed by a 9.3km run before calling it a day!) This event honoured the strength and determination that women have to keep themselves and their children safe in an effort to cross their finish line to a life free of threat and violence.

We are grateful to the all who participated and supported this event!  We intend to make eRACE Violence an annual event and look forward to increasing participation from across the county in the years to come. If you have any questions please contact fundraising@lcih.com or visit LCIH.org



15 Sep 2015

Rainy Race Day

The eRace Violence race for Interval House was a great success. You can see for yourself by looking at these smiling faces.

9 Sep 2015

It's Almost Fair Time

Just a week and a half until the big day. We hope you have all of your Fair entries ready to drop off next Friday night! (Sept. 18) spend a day admiring all the exhibits and horse shows then wander over to the Museum before heading back for the best Turkey Dinner anywhere!
ps. Don't forget to get your tickets for the Quilt Draw taking place at 4:30 at the Fairgrounds. This is a major annual fundraiser for us so your support is greatly appreciated.

    Trophy donated by the T. Eaton Co. awarded to Alex Bowes for his prize-winning sheep.

Middleville Museum supports eRace Violence for Lanark County Interval House

12 Aug 2015

We Cracked It!

Last Sunday, at the Middleville and District Museum, the dastardly deed was done: Don and Mark Hagan cracked the oldTownship safe that originally came to the office about 1905.

The idea for holding a safe-cracking Museum event came from Middleville’s Emma Schonauer, eight years old, who visits the Museum often and became curious about what might be in the huge old safe. Thank you, Emma!

People from the area came to the Museum to watch the safe-cracking team at work – and work they did, patiently  drillingout the old lock. Everyone was invited to enter a draw by offering their best guesses about what would be found once the safe was opened. Frankly, no one was sure there’d be anything in there at all – but lo and behold, the rusty, dingy safe turned out to be full of all kinds of old records. The records, which at a glance seem to include receipts, bills and birth and death recordscan’t be examined closely at this point, as they are too fragile to be handled. The museum will be consulting people with expertise in preserving such material to explore the finds in more detail.

Joyce Tennant was the lucky winner of the draw, and was happy to be given a Museum T-shirt as her prize.

A big thanks to the Hagans; to Clarence Gemmill and Trevor Porteous for providing terrific music for the event; and to the community for coming out to take part in an historic Middleville moment.

    Mark Hagan behind the drilling.

    A rapt audience!


    Inside the safe - old Lanark Township documents dating from the 1800s. 

    Joyce Tennant

    Don Hagan, Alice Borrowman, Emma Schonauer, Mark Hagan

7 Aug 2015

A Big Thank You

Thank you so much.

Algonquin College Masonry Class at Work

Sixteen students from the historic masonry class at Algonquin College (Perth) are spending their final days of the course at the Middleville Museumon a field placement. Under the supervision of their instructor Darren MacDonald, they are busy removing old mortar and repointing the exterior side walls of the old schoolhouse using hydraulic lime. Last year a different group did the same work under the windows. According to MacDonald, the old building is in good shape. 
This excellent program at Algonguin not only educates and trains much needed masons but also provides a service to historical organizations to make upgrades to their facilities that would otherwise be completely unaffordable. 
Other sites that Algonquin students have been involved with include the Mississippi Textile Museum, the old Beckwith United Church, the Perth Museum (Matheson House), and the Smiths Falls Railway Station (theatre).
While most of the projects are local, Darren has just returned from Churchill Manitoba where he and six students worked on a battery wall at historic Cape Mary for Parks Canada.
The Museum Board and all of its patrons are grateful for all the hard work put in by the students, their instructor, and the college to make these projects happen. The walls look amazing as all the old plaster comes off. With any luck, we may be able to get the front wall done next year!

25 Jul 2015

Treasure found in Massachusett State Safe

Will we find treasure in the old Lanark Township safe. See for yourself on Sunday August 9 at 1 p.m. at the Museum. The Museum opens at 11 a.m.

Photos from the Massachusetts's safe

The following excerpt is from a piece in the Boston Globe by Joshua Millar from 2013:

"The items included Confederate money from 1864; a weathered ledgerbook, dated 1896-1899, outlining pay for “Massachusetts volunteer militia service in Spanish-American War”; World War I savings bonds; boxes of old checkbooks; and metal stamps with the engraved signatures of former treasurers, including Foster Furcolo, who became the state’s 60th governor in 1957.
Also interred in the safe were a very old photograph of an elevated train, a 1936 stock certificate from the Boston Beer Co., and a role of magnetic tape from 1971, probably containing old computer files from the era long before thumb drives and cloud computing.
No one could say for sure why such an eclectic collection of items found itself socked away in this one safe.
Mixed in with the papers was an assortment of items that looked as if they were out of a thrift store, what MacDonald called “costume jewelry.” They included a bronze cross necklace and a Masonic ring, probably left in a long-ago abandoned safe-deposit box.
But perhaps the most intriguing item, provenance unknown, was a note inked in elaborate cursive script on a small piece of aged paper dated 1787: “Voucher for rations delivered at the Port of Williamston.”
Treasury staff members said they had no idea where the item was from or its significance. But that note and other historical documents from the safe are set to be examined this week by a specialist from the state archives.
The jewelry, they said, will be turned over to the unclaimed property division, which will auction it off on eBay. With nothing to identify its rightful owner, MacDonald said, there is not much else that can be done."

21 Jul 2015

Heritage Day 2015

Once again, a big thank you to all the volunteers and participants who made this such a successful day. See you again next year!

20 Jul 2015

Safe-cracking Techniques: FYI

Who knows how Dan Hagan will open the safe?! This article explains some possibilities; some unlikely and some quite possible. See for yourself and then join us on August 9 at 1;00 p.m.
It'll be a blast (umm, I don't mean that exactly!)


Not Dan Hagan, by the way.

18 Jul 2015

Do You Know What's In the Safe?

Many years ago, when the Township Hall was in Middleville, a very large safe guarded the municipality’s valuables. Time passed, the Municipal Hall relocated, and the safe was moved to the Middleville & District Museum. Unfortunately, the combination for the safe was lost in the transition.
Fast forward to Sunday, August  9.  The Museum has invited Don Hagan, a ‘safecracker,’ to try his hand at opening the safe, and the public is invited to watch the event. Curiosity has been building as to what will be found inside: Perhaps some old money, no longer legal tender? A gold watch that was to be given to an employee on his retirement? Stock certificates for a defunct corporation?
Or...maybe there will be nothing – nothing at all – inside.
You never know. Come and watch with bated breath! The safe will be opened at 1:00 o’clock; if you’re at the Museum before then, you can take your best guess as to what will be found, write it down on a ticket (to be provided) – and see if you guessed right.
A prize will be awarded to the first correct guess drawn!
And while you’re there, take the opportunity to wander around the Museum and see its amazing collection of local historic artifacts. Don’t forget that the tickets for the Museum’s annual Quilt Raffle (to be drawn at the Fall Fair in September) will be available. As well, Claudia Smith’s wonderful collection of stories, gathered from descendants of this area’s original settlers; museum T-shirts, which always attract attention; and several other books and monographs  of local historic interest will also be on sale.
The Museum is open Friday through Sunday, and Holiday Mondays, from Victoria Day to Labour Day; hours are 11:00 to 3:00. For more information, see our website (http://middlevillemuseum.blogspot.ca/) or call 613-259-5462

4 Jul 2015

Heritage Day

Things took a little longer back in the day. Come to Heritage Day on July 11 and see how things were done ... from spinning wool for clothes to old washing machines and the farm equipment used to put food on the table. 
Everything is happening at the Middleville Fairgrounds and the Middleville Museum with free transportation between sites. 

Admission is $5 for the day. See you there!

13 Jun 2015

Family History Day

Drop in for a chat about your Lanark area family history from 11 to 3 on Sunday June 14 with David Murdoch.