International Museum Day

Today (18 May 2020) is International Museum Day.

The International Council of Museums – ICOM is encouraging people to share something from their collection and share why it is important. Members of our CWA of WA Archives Team’ recently decided to have another attempt to identify and tell the story of a very old photo in the collection. (See below).

The photo is of the unveiling of a plaque and it was taken on the 29th July 1936. We only knew that because that information was written across the bottom of the photo. COVID-19 pandemic isolation has enabled further research, and it is amazing what can be achieved virtually. Backwards and forwards went emails, books were pulled from shelves and finally with a little help from ‘Google’, we ascertained that it is an Associated Country Women of the World (ACWW) photograph. It was brought back by a member of the first Western Australian delegation to attend an ACWW World Conference, the 4th Triennial Conference, in London in June 1939. The photo was taken at the official unveiling of the plaque, a month after the 3rd Triennial Conference in Washington DC, in June 1936. The following words are on the plaque, which was placed on the International Peace Bridge between Canada and the USA; “This plaque marks the crossing from the United States of America into the Dominion of Canada of a delegation from the Associated Country Women, and is dedicated to the rural women of the Continent and entrusted to their perpetual care.”

Following the Washington DC conference, a significant number of delegates set off towards Canada undertaking a ‘Pilgrimage of Friendship’. This culminated with a stop at the Peace Bridge, where Madge Watts spoke with dignitaries from both countries of the work of ACWW and presented a bronze plaque dedicated to the rural women of both countries. The plaque is still nearby. It has gone missing a couple of times, but has re-appeared or been anonymously returned. It has now found a home in Mather Arch Park, near the base of the Peace Bridge, Fort Erie, Ontario Canada. #Our2020 #IMD2020