The Chilliwack Museum and Archives has unveiled this year’s Chilliwack Heritage Awards. The awards, which recognize individuals, businesses, governments, or groups whose efforts have made important contributions to the culture, history, and heritage of Chilliwack, will be presented during the museum society’s annual general meeting on May 2.
Among the four recipients this year is the Chilliwack Progress and Black Press Media.
In 2014, Black Press Media released the Chilliwack Progress historic newspaper online at www.chilliwackmuseum.ca, making available the years 1891-2007 accessible and searchable to the general public, free of charge. (It’s also available under the “archive” tab at www.theprogress.com.)
The project, funded by the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre (UBC), the City of Chilliwack, and the Chilliwack Foundation involved the digitization of over 100 years of historic Chilliwack Progress newspapers. “This remarkable achievement is unique in Canada, and marks a major contribution to local knowledge,” the museum said in releasing the this year’s winners.
Also being honoured is “The Poppy Project” by Pierce Smith and Dr. Molly Ungar. In 2014, University of the Fraser Valley student Pierce Smith, with the advice and guidance of history professor Molly Ungar, completed work on an interactive online exhibit called The Poppy Project. This interactive Google map, hosted on www.chilliwackmuseum.ca, shows the historic dwellings of people from Chilliwack listed on the Chilliwack War Memorial who died during the First and Second World Wars.
The Chilliwack Sports Hall of Fame is also being recognized. Established in 2012 by the late Judy Fitzsimmons, the Hall of Fame recognizes excellence in Chilliwack’s sporting community. In October of 2014, the group hosted its second induction ceremony and unveiled a publicly accessible presentation of sports in Chilliwack. Sports play a positive, community-building role in Chilliwack, and have done so for generations.
The fourth award will go to Linda Phelps. Since 2007, artist volunteer Phelps has curated the Chambers Gallery Art Program, under the auspices of the Chilliwack Visual Artists Association. Phelps mounted over 35 community art exhibits, spending approximately 30-36 hours with each artist.
The awards will be presented at the museum society’s AGM, Saturday May 2, at 1 p.m. at the Chilliwack Museum (45820 Spadina Avenue). The public is invited to attend.