Services & Events
We offer many cultural services & events at the Colby-Curtis Museum. Sign-up for our Newsletter to stay informed of our latest events!
Reserve your seat before September 6th : firstname.lastname@example.org or 819-876-7322.
On the eve of the arrival of its first wave of immigrants from the British Isles, the Eastern Townships remained an outpost of New England, much as it had been since the arrival of its first American settlers in the decade following the American Revolution. British Colonial authorities had demonstrated, on a number of occasions since the 1790’s, their concern about the large number of Americans living in Canada. This anxiety had been most keenly felt during the War of 1812. The attempt to attract large numbers of immigrants to the Townships from Great Britain, was to a significant degree a response to the perceived threat to Canada, emanating from the United States. The plan to populate the Townships with English speaking Europeans met with mixed results at best. Between 1826 and 1839, the British American Land Company (BALC) purchased better than 640,000 acres in the Upper St. Francis region, but by mid-century the British born population of the area totaled a mere 13,338, or 23 percent of the 58,203 people who inhabited the Townships. However, the immigrants from the old country included a number of well born and influential civil servants, who operated out of the Sherbrooke area and whose policies made them unpopular with the region’s American settlers, especially those who resided in Stanstead County.
Although it was evident that British settlement in the Eastern Townships had peaked by 1851, the same could not be said of French – Canadian migration to the region. Between 1844 and 1851 the French population of the Townships increased from 14,580 to 33,971. Although French Canadians had made up only 23 percent of the total population of the region, according to the 1844 census, seven years later that figure stood at 36 percent. The abolition of the Seigneurial system in 1854, followed by the large scale exodus of French – Canadians to New England, would lead the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church to promote colonization, or group settlement, schemes in the peripheral Townships and by 1867, French speakers made up just under 50 percent of the total population of the Eastern Townships. Thus by the time of Confederation, the Eastern Townships had become a cultural mosaic.
Jeff Packard : Good Fences make Good Neighbours : The False 45th Parallel and our International Border
Reserve your seat before September 20th: email@example.com or 819-876-7322.
The Quebec-Vermont border is a strangely arbitrary affair. It cuts across the very grain of our countryside in the Eastern Townships and the Northeast Kingdom, perversely defying a landscape far more predisposed to follow its geological foundation, now expressed by lakes, rivers and mountain ranges, all of which dutifully trend north-south. Its placement in men’s minds dates back to the Plymouth Company Charter of 1606, but it was not until 1766, following the closure of the French and Indian War and the creation of the new British colonial province of Québec, that an attempt was made to mark the imaginary line on the ground. To a large extent the survey of the purported 45th line of north latitude was born out of avarice, and was the subject of much dispute until the signing of the Treaty of Washington in 1842. This well-illustrated presentation traces the history of our international border in the local area and the cast of British, Canadian, American, German, Swiss and Dutch characters who placed it, surveyed it, renounced it, fought over it, arbitrated on it, re-surveyed it and finally acquiesced/compromised about it.
Dr. Jeffrey Packard: Dr. Packard is a retired geoscientist and enthusiastic amateur historian and map-lover. His family have been seasonal residents on the shores of Lake Memphrémagog for five generations. Jeff and his wife currently divide their time equally between the Eastern Townships and Calgary, Alberta.
Tea is served from June to August
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Tea Room Menu includes Tea, Scones, Devonshire cream, a cookie selection, cakes, and jam.
Per person: $10
The Stanstead Historical Society has developed a garden inspired by Carrollcroft’s nineteenth-century gardens and opened it to the public. Visitors can stroll the walkways or relax on one of the garden benches. There are beautiful peonies, irises, roses and other old-fashioned flowers to admire.
Carriage House & Mansur School
In the carriage house next to Carrollcroft house, visitors can explore many of the Society’s larger, more rustic artifacts, including agricultural implements and tools from various trades, sleighs and a rare and admired Concord stagecoach, built about 1870 and fully restored.
The Stanstead Historical Society was founded in 1929 in the century old school house –the Mansur School House– a historic landmark that remains under the Society’s care. The Mansur school was built in 1819 as a wooden structure, by 1844 it had become a brick building. The school was built on land donated by Daniel Mansur. The area where the school was located was referred to as “The Center” and was thickly populated during the 19th century. The Mansur School is located on route 143 in Stanstead East.
The museum boutique sales a variety of beautiful objects and produce made by local artisans.
Sandra Veillette: Magnets with feathers, wood, small stones.
Darlene Lussier: Stained glass window hangings, jewellery.
Suzanne Lachapelle: alpaca socks, bird feeders, and house candles & soap.
Suzanne Ménard, Murielle Galvin, Susanne Bouchard: create beautiful hand woven placemats.
Sarah Jacques cloth bags hand painted mugs.
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Become a Volunteer
Be a volunteer and support the Colby-Curtis Museum/Stanstead Historical Society! One of the better-known benefits of volunteering is the impact on the community. Unpaid volunteers are often the glue that holds a community together. Volunteering allows you to connect to your community and make it a better place.
Employment Opportunity & Internships
DIRECTOR – STANSTEAD HISTORICAL SOCIETY AND COLBY-CURTIS MUSEUM
Accredited by Québec since 1975, the Colby-Curtis Museum is owned and operated by the 84-year-old Stanstead Historical Society. The position advertised is that of “Director, Stanstead Historical Society and Colby-Curtis Museum”.
The Society and Museum, open year-round, are located in Stanstead, in the Eastern Townships of Quebec near the Vermont border. They are housed in “Carrollcroft”, a Victorian residence built in 1859 by Charles C. Colby, a prominent lawyer and member of Sir John A. Macdonald’s cabinet.
In addition to opening the house and its collection to the public, Museum holds a significant documentary archive and hosts temporary exhibits showcasing the history of this border region.
The diversity of the Museum’s activities is reflected in the diversity of the tasks assigned to the Director, which include responsibility for a heritage home and museum, permanent and temporary exhibits, a gift shop and tea room, two archival collections, a substantial number of genealogical resources and a considerable reserve of everyday historical items stored in an adjacent historical building.
Reporting to the Board of Directors, the Director is responsible for the financial, material and human resources of the organisation. He or she plans, coordinates and implements the administrative and budgetary functions of the organisation; conducts outreach and ensures visibility for the organisation; and cultivates relationships with the local business community, private donors and public agencies in order to secure necessary funding. Her or she coordinates special events, exhibits and educational activities and is responsible for supervising all Museum personnel.
The Director is responsible for supervising the work of the Museum Technician, the Administrative Assistant and the Archivist, as well as the Museum’s guides and maintenance staff.
The Director is responsible for all aspects of the management and daily operation of the Museum, including:
• planning for and managing the human, physical and financial resources of the Museum and Historical Society, within the policy guidelines set by the Board;
• supervising the management of the collections;
• planning and implementing educational, outreach and exhibition activities;
• establishing and maintaining productive relations with various levels of government, including all relevant granting agencies;
• representing and promoting the Museum within the professional museum milieu, within the community and through the media.
Education and Experience
• a recognized university degree in Museology, History or Ethnology, or another related field
• relevant managerial experience (operating budget and human resources)
Knowledge and Skills
The successful candidate will demonstrate:
• comprehensive knowledge of conservation and collection management;
• knowledge of, or interest in, local history and willingness to live and work in a small community;
• familiarity with current written and electronic media and communication technologies;
• a sound understanding of local, regional and provincial economic realities;
• familiarity with the Microsoft Office Suite; and
• be fully bilingual in English and in French (written and oral).
Additional expertise or interest in archive management is considered a valuable asset.
We are currently seeking applications from candidates who:
• are tactful, diplomatic and politically astute;
• are entrepreneurial, creative and innovative;
• have excellent communication skills, both written and oral;
• are comfortable working with the public;
• show leadership, initiative, energy and availability;
• can manage multiple files effectively;
• are able to meet deadlines and deliver outcomes;
• work well within a team and adapt quickly to change.
This is a permanent, full-time post with benefits and the opportunity to enjoy outstanding quality of life. The successful candidate will be required to sign a two-year contract.
The deadline for applications is December 1, 2018. Please forward your Curriculum vitae and cover letter by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by post to:
The Search Committee
535 Dufferin St.
Stanstead, QC J0B 3E0