NLHS receives grant from the Virtual Museum of Canada
The North Lanark Historical Society is pleased to announce that we have received a $10,000 grant from the Virtual Museum of Canada’s Community Stories Investment Program! This funding will allow us to create a bilingual online exhibit commemorating the Almonte Train Accident. Our project, titled “Memories of ’42: Stories of the Almonte Train Wreck” will be showcased on the Virtual Museum of Canada’s website alongside a rich collection of Canadian heritage. The Virtual Museum of Canada (VMC) celebrates stories and treasures entrusted to Canadian museums and shares them in innovative and dynamic ways.
Over the past two decades, the North Lanark Historical Society has collected stories from survivors, first responders, and residents of Almonte with recollections of the Accident. The exhibition will include some of these shared memories, both the painful and the joyful. With the funding and publicity of the Community Stories project, the Historical Society hopes to enhance their collection of oral histories and interview more individuals with memories of the accident. Time is running out to collect information on what continues to be one of the worst railway accidents in Canadian history. The Historical Society believes these stories are significant and deserve to be heard and shared, both locally and nationally.
Despite the powerful impact the crash had on the town of Almonte, many residents today would be surprised that there was once a passenger train that ran through the area. Passenger service ceased in 1979 and the station was demolished. In 2011, the train tracks were removed. The Historical Society has sought to commemorate this event and keep it in community memory. 2017 marks the 75th anniversary of the Almonte Train Accident and the Historical Society believes the Community Stories program will allow us to produce a professional, bilingual exhibit that engages Canadians across the country.
The North Lanark Historical Society (NLHS) is also gathering information to publish the most comprehensive book to date on the accident. The NLHS would appreciate your help to gather accounts from survivors, witnesses, and those who remember that day. Did you or someone you know survive the accident? Give aid or shelter to the injured? Narrowly escape a place on the train? Or recall a story of the train wreck told to you by a friend or family member? We need your story. If you have any information, please contact Ed and Doreen Wilson at 613-256-2866, or Melissa at the North Lanark Regional Museum at 613-257-8503 or email email@example.com.