Stories Beneath the Surface explores life in the Columbia valley between Revelstoke and the Upper Arrow Lake prior to the flooding of the region by the Hugh Keenleyside Dam at Castlegar 50 years ago. The exhibition opened at the Revelstoke Museum & Archives last fall. (Agathe Bernard Photography)

Revelstoke Museum raising funds to create Washed Away film

The film will be about the displacement of people from the damming of the Columbia River

Revelstoke Museum and Archives created the exhibition Stories Beneath the Surface in 2018 to bring awareness to a fading story of the Columbia Valley – the displacement of approximately 2,000 people to make way for the reservoir of the Hugh Keenleyside Dam that opened at Castlegar in 1969.

Museum curator Cathy English became aware that many of the local schoolchildren, and many new residents, knew about “the flats” south of Revelstoke, but did not know the history of land use in the region. The dam was far away – close to 230 kilometres south – and built so long ago. How could it be relevant to us now?

LAST YEAR: Stories Beneath the Surface exhibition now open at Revelstoke Museum

Stories Beneath the Surface tells the stories of the communities that existed in the valley south of Revelstoke: the Ukrainian settlement of Mount Cartier, Twelve Mile, where a ferry crossed the river, the farming community of Sidmouth and the once-thriving Arrowhead, a transportation and forestry hub.

The exhibition gives a snapshot of the lives of the settlers in the region. The narrative then shifts to displacement. Three video interviews of former residents of the valley share common themes of sadness and powerlessness. There was little negotiation. Residents were told that they needed to leave and told what they would be paid for their properties.

The exhibition has been widely viewed by local residents and visitors alike, and eight school classes from Grades 1 to 5 visited and learned the stories. A whole new generation of residents will grow up here knowing the stories of the land and the river.

READ MORE: Revelstokian calling on the city to clean up the Columbia River

There are more stories to be gathered and told. The museum will conduct interviews and collect photographs. A film project is currently underway. The museum is collaborating with award-winning photographer and filmmaker Agathe Bernard to create Washed Away, a short film telling the stories of the connection that people had to the Columbia River and the land that it flowed through.

Washed Away will tell the stories of the displacement of the Sinixt people who once lived and thrived in the valley, the displacement of the salmon and other species and the displacement of the settlers.

READ MORE: Revelstoke library fundraising for new technology centre

Revelstoke Museum and Archives thanks the Community Initiatives Program of Columbia Basin Trust for funding for this project. Additional funding is needed to complete the film project and bring this story to a wider audience. The museum welcomes donations from anyone who wishes to contribute. Donations can be made online through Canada Helps. Find the link on the homepage of our website: www.revelstokemuseum.ca Cash and cheque donations can be handed in at the museum, or sent by mail to Box 1908, Revelstoke, B.C. V0E 2S0. Receipts for tax purposes will be issued for all donations.


 

@RevelstokeRevue
editor@revelstoketimesreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Revelstokians trying to make a difference with Mindful Mondays

Locals invite you to make changes to reduce your carbon footprint starting one day a week

Revelstoke and District Humane Society raises $4,200

The community came out for their annual photos with Santa event

Keep that ‘friendly small town’ feel in Revelstoke this Welcome Week

Make friends with your new neighbours at one of many fun events Nov. 23-30

Okanagan teenagers found after missing for four days

The pair, believed to be dating, had been missing since Nov. 15.

Investigation ongoing after shots fired in North Okanagan

RCMP have no updates from Nov. 1 incident

‘Midget’ no more: Sweeping division name changes coming to minor hockey in Canada

Alpha-numeric division names will be used for the 2020-2021 season and beyond

Colin James and Blues Trio cranks up Interior stages

Tickets on sale Friday for Vernon, Penticton, Nelson and Cranbrook shows

Ottawa urges CN and union to continue talks as 3,200 workers go on strike

The rail workers began their strike after failing to reach a deal by a midnight deadline

Student tells B.C. Supreme Court she wasn’t allowed to leave Indigenous smudging ceremony

Girl cross-examined Monday in Nanaimo courtroom, case continues Tuesday

Trans Mountain received $320M in government subsidies in first half 2019: report

The money included $135.8 million in direct subsidies and $183.8 million in indirect subsidies

Missing hunter located by Central Okanagan Search and Rescue

The hunter went missing after being separated from his partner around 5:30 p.m. on Monday

Penticton artist brings joy to others through her painting

Hedy Munawych is 96 years old and just loves painting the beauty of the world around her.

Most Read