The Stratford Perth Museum was incorporated as a not-for-profit in 1997. The museum’s collection dates back to the beginning of the 20th century when the Library Act of 1902 permitted local libraries to collect and display museum collections. The collection has continued to grow over the years and has been housed and exhibited in a number of homes which include Fryfogel Tavern, a factory on King Street in Stratford and the Stratford Normal School, adjacent to the Festival Theatre. In 2008, having outgrown the Stratford Normal School, the Stratford Perth Museum Association purchased its present 7 acres on the old Huron Road. The site is complemented by an 1870 Victorian buff brick home, woodlots and trails – a home with room to grow and endless potential to interpret our rich cultural heritage and to deliver indoor and outdoor programming.
1. Anne Frank – A History for Today
Anne Frank: A History for Today was presented in conjunction with the Stratford Festival’s production of The Diary of Anne Frank. It explored the life of Anne Frank and her family, from her early life in Germany, to their period in hiding in the Netherlands, and to their incarceration in various concentration camps. This information was presented through a detailed timeline of the Frank family, and the general history and events of the Second World War, and was accompanied by dozens of photographs.
This exhibit was augmented by 17 artifacts from the Montreal Memorial Holocaust Centre, including Jewish identity items, personal effects recovered from concentration camps, a 1947 edition of The Diary of Anne Frank in Dutch, and a prisoner’s uniform jacket from Auschwitz-Birkenau.
2. The Franklin Exploration
This pop-up display, presented in conjunction with Parks Canada and the Royal Ontario Museum examines the mysteries surrounding the Franklin Expedition and sheds light on the historical context of science and exploration in the 19th century. The display focuses on Inuit traditional knowledge, the reasons behind the fatal expedition and the clues collected during the initial research efforts. It allows the visitor to create links with contemporary research in the Arctic and the methodology and progress of ongoing scientific work in the Canadian North.
Supporting the exhibit are reproductions of Franklin Expedition artifacts, dive equipment, photos, and resource materials.
3. Nanuk’s Journey : Inuit Art from the Samuel and Esther Sarick Collection at the Art Gallery of Ontario
Nanuk’s Journey features major sculptures from the AGO’s Samuel and Esther Sarick Collection. Focussed on the subject of Nanuk the polar bear, the exhibition complements the Stratford Festival’s The Breathing Hole, a new play by Colleen Murphy directed by Reneltta Arluk (Gwich’in and Chipewyan-Cree).
Nanuk’s Journey is curated by Andrew Hunter (the AGO’s Fredrik S. Eaton Curator, Canadian Art) in consultation with Inuvialuit Reneltta Arluk. The exhibit includes work by: deceased Cape Dorset artist and hunter Tim Pitsiulak, Tudlik, Niviaksiak, Matthew Aqugaaq, David Ruben Piqtoukun, Osuitok Ipeelee, Pauta Saila, Andy Miki, Parr and Bill Nasogaluak, among other notable Inuit artists.
4. The Canadian Jewish Experience
This amazing exhibit presents a powerful sample of Jewish contributions to Canada. It has travelled for the past two years across Canada, to universities, museums, city halls and community centres. Among the nine different subject areas highlighted in the exhibit are the History of Jewish Migration, Arts and Culture, Business, Architects and City Builders, Sports Figures, and Human Rights Development.
Jews have lived in Canada for nearly 250 years. Their numbers were few at first, but grew with immigration. Their entry was not easy. Canada until the 1960s had professional, educational and immigration barriers and prejudices targeting Jews.
Today things have changed. Now nearly 400,000 Jewish people live in all Provinces and Territories in Canada, and contribute to the diverse cultural communities that thrive within Canada’s mosaic.
5. Harper Lee: To Kill a Mockingbird
The Stratford Perth Museum partnered with the Monroe County Museum to present Harper Lee: To Kill a Mockingbird exhibit for the summer of 2018. This is the first travelling exhibit ever created by the museum in Monroeville, Alabama.
This original and exclusive exhibit turns the pages of one of the world’s most loved novels. The iconic book is arguably one of the most enduring written works of our time and is as relevant today as it was in the 1930s when it was set and in the 1960s when it was published and despite dealing with an uncomfortable subject it has been a must read and loved book for generations.
The exhibit examines that phenomenon – a book that is so important to individuals, holds a special place in American culture and is remarkably popular around the world having sold 30 million copies in 40 languages?
Thousands of people flock to Harper Lee’s hometown of Monroeville and the Monroe County Museum each year to see the exhibit Harper Lee: In Her Own Words. The museum is in the courthouse that was the setting for the climax of the movie.The Stratford Perth Museum is very proud of its partnership with the Monroe County Museum and to be able to present this exhibit in 2018.
6. Shakespeare’s First Folio
In 2014 the Stratford Perth Museum displayed Shakespeare’s First Folio for a weekend in July. Valued at as much as $21 million the First Folio displayed at the museum was published in 1623 and is the only one in Canada and one of 235 in the world. The response was so high that we sold tickets with a one hour viewing window. Through Yapsody, that was not only possible but it enabled us to manage patrons and visitors to pick time slots. The weekend was completely sold out and they averaged a person a minute with perfect patron flow.
John Kastner, General Manager of Stratford Perth Museum, was recommended Yapsody by Stratford Museum’s website provider and provincial tourism partner. With access to the extensive feature set on Yapsody and high control over the tickets sold, the museum was better able to manage every aspect of ticket selling and haven’t looked back since.
“Yapsody has been critical to the recent success and the growth of the Stratford Perth Museum. Its real value is giving us an up to the minute total as to the number of tickets sold.”
– John Kastner, General Manager of
Stratford Perth Museum
“For us at the Stratford Perth Museum, Yapsody has been an incredible part of our remarkable growth over the past five years,” says John Kastner, General Manager of Stratford Perth Museum. Regarding the successful Bieber exhibit, John says, “Without Yapsody, we would have had to turn people away at the door – which would have been terrible.” Like most clients, John was exceptionally pleased with the customer support he received. “The chat feature on the website is outstanding. The help is informed, valuable and almost always ends in a solution,” he adds.
Read about their journey with Yapsody here.