Elizabeth McLain, Clayton’s wife, was the original Curator, and volunteered at the Museum from 1971 to her passing in 2001. Already a teacher, she became educated in museum practices through Museums Association of Saskatchewan seminars and courses to receive her Diploma in Museumology in 1991. Lucille Bullerwell volunteered alongside Elizabeth for many years, and continues as our Curator to this day.
Both volunteer curators have been instrumental in introducing industry standards to the museum and archives, and having them incorporated into our protocols. Lucille has spoken about retirement but continues to be a passionate advocate for what we do here, and an indispensable resource for procedural advice and for her extensive knowledge of the collections.
Preserving and cataloguing the artifact collections, the archives, and the stories of our community for future generations is an ongoing process, and something we take very seriously. The Museums Association of Saskatchewan and the Saskatchewan Council for Archives and Archivists, of which we are members, provide community museums and archives access to professional training and resources.
CARE & PRESERVATION OF ARTIFACTS
The Clayton McLain Memorial Museum has been a member of the Museums Association of Saskatchewan (MAS) since its inception. MAS was established more than 50 years ago in response to the record number of community museums in the province. Canada’s Centennial celebrations in 1967 had inspired many communities to set up museums or pioneer villages to preserve their history, but many organizations needed the necessary skills to maintain their collections.
In 1988, MAS produced the “Standards for Saskatchewan Museums,” which was the first set of standards published in Canada by a museum’s association for its members. The Association’s focus has always been on training and education, and conservation services. Over the years, CMMM curators, board members and volunteers have participated in MAS workshops, networking events, symposiums, and conservation programs. The museum is continually updating and expanding its practices to reflect current museum industry standards.
CONSERVATION & STORAGE OF ARCHIVAL ITEMS
Conservation and storage protocols at the Museum and Archives Administration Centre (MAAC) vary depending on the type of media and the age and condition of the items. The successful storage of film, photographs, audio recordings, and video, as well as a variety of papers, maps, and books, depends upon specialized knowledge. We have been a member of the Saskatchewan Council for Archives and Archivists (SCAA) for more than 10 years. Our curator, and many of our board members and volunteers have completed course work in a wide variety of archival topics. Training and access to resources through the SCAA has made it possible to preserve the valuable historic resources we have on site.
Our memberships in MAS and the SCAA have provided access to the training and resources we needed to preserve the artifacts and archival materials in our possession. We have also taken a professional approach to cataloguing and collections management by using content management software made specifically for museums. PastPerfect will allow us to upload select portions of our collections to an online home as we expand our web presence.