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Association of Manitoba Museums
A Museum Called Manitoba
150th year since Canada’s Confederation -- in 2017.
150th anniversary of Manitoba becoming a province -- in 2020.

These two milestones inspired A Museum Called Manitoba – the Association of Manitoba Museums online exhibit of 150 artifacts telling Manitoba’s stories. Museums throughout the province submitted almost 250 artifacts for inclusion in this exhibit from which AMM adjudicators selected 150.

These 150 artifacts could be called priceless but, after all, they are just things. Their real value lies in the stories of the people who owned, used, lived in, and cherished these artifacts.

The Association of Manitoba Museums has strived to ensure the artifact descriptions are accurate and The Association of Manitoba Museums has strived to ensure the artifact descriptions are accurate and informative. However, we realize errors can still occur and relevant information could be missed. If you notice a mistake, or have additional information that would be relevant, please email your comments and suggestions to us. This is a living exhibit and as such changes and updates are expected.

Curator's Remarks

What we now call Manitoba has existed for billions of years (sometimes under water). This land has been home to Indigenous peoples for thousands of years, so 150 years is but a brief snapshot of time. This exhibit cannot tell the complete story of Manitoba. Nor can 150 objects represent all things to all people. This exhibit does, however, represent some of our smallest and largest museums, both rural and urban institutions, with contributions from every geographic region in the province. This collection is one perspective of the unique and fascinating people and places that make Manitoba the special place it is.

If Manitoba truly is the “Heart of the Continent”, then this exhibit represents the emotions at the heart of our province. The collection is not organized by geography or chronology, nor does it rely on classifications like agriculture, sports, or religion. Instead, these 150 artifacts are grouped into chapters that tell stories of human emotion from love and joy to fear and sadness.

Each emotion is expressed in many chapters and, of course, each chapter reflects multiple emotions. For example, the chapter Paying the Price includes objects that tell stories of fear, sadness and courage, but chapters like Challenges and Hardships or Hopes and Dreams also tell tales of courage. Similarly, the chapter Fun and Games includes artifacts with stories of joy and wonder, but chapters like The World we Live In and Imagination also tell of wonder.

Working on this project has provided me the opportunity to hear numerous fascinating stories and has given me a new appreciation for our province and the people who live here. I truly enjoyed getting to know Manitoba through the stories of these objects, and I hope you do too.

Matthew P. Komus BA PGDip

A Museum Called Manitoba exhibit
150 artifact stories in twelve chapters

The World We Live In: The natural environment shapes, challenges and provides for the people that call Manitoba home.

Challenges and Hardships: People in Manitoba have struggled to overcome a difficult climate and challenging remoteness.

Innovation: Problems have been solved by clever ideas and inventions that improved the lives of Manitobans and Canadians.

Connections: Manitobans have used many methods to stay connected to each other, to other communities, to Canada and tothe world.

Making Your Mark: Manitoba may not have a large population, but its citizens have made a major impact on Canada and around the world.

What We Can’t Live Without: Imagine life in Manitoba without these functionalobjects. We can’t!

Home Sweet Home: Comfort, security, and a little tender loving care -- sometimes small things make a big difference.

Body and Soul: Manitobans areresourceful in finding ways to ensure their physical health and enhance their spiritual well-being.

Fun and Games: Life isn’t just hard work! Manitobans have discovered myriad ways to rejuvenate, relax and just plain have fun!

Paying the Price: Unfortunately, tragedy and war are an inevitable part of history and people sometimes pay the highest price.

Imagination: Is it the cold? The isolation? Manitobans are creative in many unique and artistic ways. The resulting vibrant arts and culture community has helped shape the province’s identity.

Hopes and Dreams: In striving to achieve their hopes and dreams, many passionate Manitobans have improved not only their own lives but also those of their families and communities.

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