Collections

Entrance

 Originally, this was the kitchen and entrance to the living quarters of Station Agents and their families. Many gift shop items are displayed and the souvenirs in the glass showcase are for sale. Please sign the register before proceeding to the kitchen.

Country Kitchen

Here we see an old coal and wood range with warming oven and reservoir. The sideboard provided a work top and cupboard space for dishes, supplies and cutlery. The cupboard on the left also provided a work surface and the bins below held large supplies of sugar and flour.

Living Room

This room is comfortably arranged with a velour chesterfield and chair and an Axminster rug in the centre. The pump organ dates back to the early 1900's and the wind-up record player was popular in many homes in the 1920's and 30's. The telephone switchboard, used up until the change to dial in 1973, grew from 10 or 12 numbers in 1913 to over 100 by the end of its era. The telephone booth originally sat in the corner of the old cafe.

Upstairs

Up the winding stairway, the second floor originally consisted of 4 bedrooms; one was converted into a bathroom about the year 1950 - a big improvement over the path to the outhouse. The bedroom contains a bedstead from the early 1940's, the dresser and washstand date back to the more profitable 1920's. The hand made bedspread was made by one of our pioneer women and dates back to 1900. The china water pitcher and basin and the chamber pot under the bed were treasured possessions in almost every bedroom.

Sports Display

This room was converted from a bedroom to depict the history of a very sports-minded community. Memorabilia from local sports days past grace the walls. From curling and hockey to baseball and golf, we see an array of equipment used by many in the pursuit of enjoyment and pleasure over the years.

Child's Room

This room displays a crib, a baby carriage and a doll carriage of the 1940's, a walker, playpen, and high chair. The brass 4 poster bed was popular back in the 1920's. The wooden cradle was brought to this area with settlers effects in 1917.

Ticket Agent's Office

Located off the living room, it was the work place of the station agent. The bay window allowed visibility down the track in both directions and the telegraph system could be operated at the same time. Presently the back half of the office is being used for administration and record keeping.

Waiting Room

This room was used by passengers, friends and relatives waiting for the train's arrival or departure. Temporary displays are set up here and track lighting has been installed to provide proper lighting for art displays. The old pot-bellied stove, back in its original spot, kept travellers and those waiting for the train comfortably warm. The glass display case houses Dr. Dunnet's instruments and many of his medical books. He was a very important part of the community for over 50 years. Looking in the ticket agent's window, you can visualize days of the past as depicted by local artist, Paul Geraghty.

School Room

ImageOff the waiting room, what was once the agent's helper's room, is now a replica of a one-room country school. The flooring and V-joint wall boards came from the original Crown School. Blackboards and some of the desks are from the Avonlea School. The map holder, originally from Truax School, is an important part of every classroom. The teacher's bell dates back to the 1890's.

Old Cafe and Country Store

Also off the waiting room, the "Baggage Room" is now a replica of the Chinese Cafe. The pie cupboard, counter and swivel stools were originally in the Avonlea Cafe as was the large wooden chair in the waiting room - a favorite spot to hang out! The Old Country Store display on the left contains many items found on the shelves years ago. The scale, butcher block and paper holder were equipment from the early days of The Avonlea Trading Company.

Law Enforcement

Through the double doors into the freight shed, we see the NWMP barracks. Inside, the black metal bars of the cell restrained many culprits between 1912 and 1988 when it was no longer used. The mountie in his red serge was a striking , very respected man.

Farm and Ranch Display

Around the corner you'll see the ranch display fenced off with the rails on which the rancher's favourite saddle sits and the bridle hangs. Branding irons of local ranchers hang on the wall. The buffalo skull was found a few miles west of Avonlea.

Clayworks

The Clayworks in the Dirt Hills provided employment for many from 1914 until its closing in 1989. Samples of brick and of the equipment used demonstrates the hard labour involved. The unique buildings and kilns still stand 8 miles west of Avonlea and are now part of a National Heritage Site.

Legion Room

Shown in this display are uniforms from WWI and WWII and some equipment used. Photos of local veterans grace the walls.

Freight Shed

The CN Baggage Wagon holds a variety of items it carried over the years - cream cans, egg crates, trunks, etc. The scale is original CN equipment and still weighs accurately.

In the other corner, one of the most important businesses, The Blacksmith Shop is depicted. The forge, anvil, stone grinder, etc. were a necessary part of the farming and ranching world. Agricultural tools of all sorts, wood lather, and many ingenious inventions are displayed near the sliding door.

CN Cook Car

ImageThe CN Cook-Bunk Car used by foremen of the maintenance crews from 1912 to 1986 rests on rails by the platform and is home to many railway artifacts.

St. David's Anglican Church

The Truax St. David's Anglican Church stands at the south side of the lawn. Built in 1927, it has been restored to its original condition and also displays artifacts from other churches in the area.

Pioneer Display Building

 ImageThe 50' X 100' Pioneer Display Building just north of the station was built in 1996. A portion of the floor was cemented in 2001 and a 24' x 24' x 16' room was constructed in 2002. The "Avonlea Before the Plow" exhibit completed for the Centennial year Saskatchewan's 2005, and the Main Street display are located in the Display Building adjacent to the Museum.

Avonlea Before the Plow

 This fascinating art installation takes the viewer through four eras in the history of the plains. "The Life Before Man: Avonlea Under the Sea" exhibit is a wrap around mural with life-sized marine reptiles that lived in the sea which occupied the area of Avonlea 60 million years ago. A tipi ring exhibit includes a breath-taking 16' high diorama of the Dirt Hills and ceremonial circle overlooking the "living sky" of the Missouri Coteau with a Golden Eagle gliding overhead. An almost life sized mural of a tipi encampment with people, dogs, and equipment depicts life as it might have appeared 200 years ago. Finally, the Avonlea Arrowhead and Buffalo Jump, which dates back to approximately 400 A.D., monumentally displays the walls of the badlands valley with a 10 foot tall plexiglass window to the past where the viewer can see the mural of a buffalo jump taking place.

Main Street

Volunteers and staff continue to work on the Main Street display housed in the Pioneer Display Building. The interiors of the Barber Shop, General Store and Blacksmith Shop have been completed in 2010, and work continues on the interiors of the Doctor's Office/Drugstore and Business Office.