As Canada’s 145th birthday fades into memory, here at the Museum we try to keep memories of bygone days alive.
One exhibit that is on display but you might have missed, is the Skyline.
One reason you may have overlooked it is the fact that it is outside in the display area. This area houses many artifacts too large to be inside. This Skyline model was built in the 1950’s and donated to the Museum in 1985. It was restored in 1999 by John Sorka. Fittingly, being outside and not completely encased, it is finely covered in Cariboo dust and pulp mill detritus.
The Skyline is a model of the method of moving logs across the Fraser River.
When methods of using tugs and log rafts failed in the early 1950’s, it was necessary to construct skylines in order to move logs across the river as the old Fraser River Bridge (now the walking bridge) could not support heavy logging trucks. The skylines were quickly put in to place. They were located at the Cottonwood Canyon, Woodpecker and over the Fraser River at the Plywood Plant. At the Plywood Plant location, there was a railway crane on the West Side that sorted and stored logs. On the plant side of the river, the logs were put in to a pond and moved to a plywood plant or sawmill nearby.
The Fraser River Skyline was operated by George Oliver and Otto Siewert.
It remained in operation to move logs from the west side until the Moffat Bridge was built in 1970.
And as you are acquainting yourself with the Skyline, be aware of the fact that I quoted the ‘blurb’ almost word for word, so it should have a familiar ring to it.
As well as the Skyline, there are many items in the outside display area you could learn a lot from – next time you go for an evening drive, swing in to the Museum and check it out.
As we “Cariboo-ize” our Gift Shop, be certain to browse through the books for sale. Congratulations to local author, Verena Berger, whose “Canadian Moment” has been published by MacLeans.
The Museum has been carrying her book of humourous stories about adjusting to rural life in Canada since last spring.
Hope to see you as you “pass time” at the Museum.
The great essentials in life are something to do, something to love, something to hope for.
Honey Affleck is chair of the museum commission and regular Observer contributor.