Heritage, Innovation & the Livable City: Spying on E-Town

Tonight was the kickoff of the Edmonton Heritage Council’s first ever community symposium, called Heritage, Innovation & the Livable City (on ShareEdmonton). I came across the event online a few weeks ago, and thought it would be really interesting and likely very educational. Here is the EHC’s introduction to the symposium:

“Heritage”, “innovation” and “livability” are terms not often used in relation to each other. To many people, interest in heritage seems contrary to the spirit of innovation and has little currency in the pace of urban life.

This inaugural symposium brings together community members, heritage organizations and engaging speakers to explore how Edmonton’s unique heritage has shaped—and is shaping— the city and region.

Linda Goyette was our keynote speaker this evening. She delivered a very spirited talk entitled Spying on E-Town. Linda took us on a journey across Edmonton, pointing out well-known features like the High Level Bridge as well as lesser known ones, such as the many statues around the city that help to tell the story of Edmonton. Along the way she highlighted and paid tribute to the many archivists, historians, and other heritage workers, some of whom were in the room, that ensure Edmonton’s history is not forgotten.

I wrote down a few notes from Linda’s talk to follow up on:

  • There are 23 distinct museums in Edmonton, but no civic museum.
  • A book that caught my eye, because of the subtitle as well as the publication date (2009) – Aboriginal Edmonton: A Statistics Story.
  • Ian Mulder, an artist responsible for many murals throughout the city. He has apparently just relocated to Toronto, unfortunately.
  • The City of Edmonton Archives recently hired someone dedicated to the digital side of things. Anyone have any further details?
  • Christian Nelson’s 3D models of Edmonton buildings are really neat and take advantage of modern technology, but they too are a form of digital preservation.

Tomorrow starts with a keynote address from Ken Tingley, Edmonton’s first historian laureate. I’m looking forward to it!

3 thoughts on “Heritage, Innovation & the Livable City: Spying on E-Town

  1. Mack – Funny you mention the digital archives recent hire. I just did my orientation course at the City and she was there…and we spoke at length about documents that require to be archived. I don’t quite remember her name, but could probably figure it out if you are interested in exploring further…

  2. Mack – glad to hear people are coming into the archives and talking about it. Her name is Elizabeth Walker and she is keen to help us (I’m also a city archivist) move into the 20th century. We have a lot of records already in the archives that were born-digital and more are on their way. So far the City and most people in the public have no idea how we are going to save, sort, appraise, and provide access to them. That’s her job and its a big one. Once we figure it out – we’ll be offering our advice to Edmontonians for their digital records, same as we do now for their paper and photographic treasures.

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