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Construction Grinds to Halt

Dale Wilson Canada Canadian dale wilson Dartmouth Heritage Museum Evergreen House Halifax Regional Municipality historical photo processes Program Support Building studio William Valentine

Little could we have known when the first shovel went into the ground that a pandemic was looming on the horizon. Yet, here we sit since March sequestered in a hold-and-wait pattern. As a result of the hiatus it becomes most unlikely the Dartmouth Heritage Museum's "Program Support Building" will open on 6 June as previously scheduled. 

At one time the June opening was important; it being the 181st anniversary of the first known photograph (a Talbot photogenic drawing) having been made in British North America. However, when the current situation is considered, the date is no longer important -- the health and safety of the handful of volunteers is of the highest priority. To respect Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil's appeal, we are staying the blazes home. 

By the same token, we are quite proud of the accomplishments to date and the attached images will introduce the facility. As you may see, the exterior is completed save for a few minor touch-ups. The entire building could be finished within a week, given the opportunity. However, that can wait until it is safe to proceed. 

In the interim, I introduce the program support building:

The skylight and open double doors will provide ample actinic light. On the opposite shore of Halifax Harbour was the studio of artist and daguerreotypist William Valentine. Valentines studio is reported to be the first permanent photo studio in British North America.


The hardware was forged by blacksmith Kevin Thomas at nearby Cole Harbour Heritage Farm Museum. Kevin is also one of the primary volunteers that is working on the facility. 


These doors WILL open at an appropriate time. 




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  • Mickie Zinck on

    Congrats on the new program support building. Can’t wait to see what projects happen there. Great job Terry, Dale and Kevin.

  • Dawn Reiss on

    Lovely! I really like the hand forged hardware by Kevin!

  • Mark Chin-Yee on

    Kudos to Dale, Kevin and Terry for pulling this off. It will allow the Dartmouth Heritage Museum to expand and diversify the programs offered to the public. Again, congratulations to all involved.

  • Marilyn Purchase on

    Bravo Terry…..and crew…….

  • Kevin H. Thomas on

    It has been great to have the opportunity to both help with the buildings construction and hand forging the various pieces of hardware for the building. The building is truly a great addition to the Dartmouth Heritage Museum. I look forward to seeing the various programs taking place there in the future. Kevin.

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