When the city launched the virtual wing of the Selkirk Museum in 2018 it was with the knowledge that it was an incomplete site at that time and due to the fact that history is constantly being made, it always would be.
The site – www.selkirkmuseum.ca – builds on the vision laid out in the Capturing Our Shared Heritage paper and thanks to the Selkirk Heritage Endowment Fund (SHEF) it has evolved significantly over the years.
Ellie Longbottom, Culture Coordinator for the city, said there are some recent additions to the site that are worth checking out.
“We’re always adding content to the website so we can give visitors and residents the best virtual experience possible,” Longbottom said.
“And of course what’s really special about the site is that it’s made to function well on your phone or tablet, so you can be walking around present day Selkirk and be immersed in the past through your mobile device. People really enjoy that.”
Constantly updating history
Newly added exhibits include Selkirk Transit, the Garry Theatre and the city’s bowling alleys.
Longbottom said the site features a Selkirk timeline that begins with the creation of the Town of Selkirk and takes visitors all the way up to life in the City of Selkirk in chronological order.
There are self-guided tours of the Streets of Selkirk and Historic Homes and the website has an interactive map and includes an icon showing where you are on the tour and guides you to all the stops on the tour.
In the streets tour, when you arrive at a specified street, you are able to click on it and read about its history. The tour concentrates on streets along Eveline Street.
Search through history
You can browse through a collection of newspapers and bylaws, both of which are searchable by keywords.
While there is a lot of great material in the archives for you to explore, Longbottom says the city still has a lot of catching up to do.
“We have documents and by-laws that date back almost 100 years ago, so we have a lot of content left to upload,” said Longbottom.
“We continuously have people scanning and uploading these documents. While there’s lots of things for you to search and read, it’s nowhere near complete yet.”
Oral history interviews with residents will be part of the virtual experience beginning this fall.
Sign up for the latest!
If you’d like to receive updates from the Selkirk Musuem on new exhibits or newly published articles, you can sign up for their mailing list right off the home page of their website.
The museum aligns with the city’s Strategic Plan by capitalizing on Selkirk’s tourism potential, revitalizing Selkirk’s image, providing the best possible recreation opportunities for Selkirk residents and revitalizing downtown.
City council has adopted a strategy and established a steering committee that is building the foundation of the museum. The strategy has been developed to guide the establishment of the virtual wing of the Selkirk Museum and community archive for City of Selkirk.
Long-term plans call for the creation of a physical museum, but until that time the virtual wing of the Selkirk Museum will take you back as far as you’re willing to venture.