Delta Marsh History Initiative, Steering Committee Meeting

9:00 am, 20 February 2006
Home of Shirley Christianson, Portage la Prairie

Present:     Barry Bills, Shirley Christianson, Denzil Gamble, Gordon Goldsborough (sec), Bob Jones, Winnie Pauch, Glen Suggett

1.  Minutes of the last meeting (23 January 2006) were approved by consensus.

2.  Business

a)   Ward tapes – Goldsborough has delivered the tapes to the audiovisual department at the University of Manitoba for transfer to digital media. The estimated cost will be about $150. There is no information on when the transfer will be done. He had a phone call from the University Archivist, expressing interest in obtaining a copy of the tapes.

b)  Progress report – Suggett reported that he has finished reading the Atkinson log. He has emailed a report draft to Terry Atkinson who confirmed its accuracy and he will send it to Sheridan Atkinson. The log reports that duck populations were low for 5 to 6 years in the late 1950s, coinciding with a drought – it was almost like a switch had been turned – and this decline may have driven the call in the mid-1960s to “do something.” This may suggest that the decline was due not to habitat change but possibly due to overhunting. He would like to talk with local farmers to ask if farming practices changed around this time. Was the widespread adoption of combines versus threshers, and the use of fertilizers, a contributing factor in the decline? Carp churning action decreases the food for diving ducks. Suggett has also been working on Jimmy Robinson and is about half done. He is looking for information on how Jimmy met Clara. He has emailed Dick Wallin to ask and, so far, has not had a reply. As for other Tin Town interviews, he is trying to locate the Bickle audio tapes and the Crawford/Dangerfield photo scans. Goldsborough will check if they are among his files. Suggett’s interview with Norman Cuthbert was postponed until one of his sons can attend. He will re-try this Wednesday (22 February) afternoon. He suggests an interview with Monty Simpson and Brian Dahling when done with Mr. Cuthbert. Can we get a copy of the Cuthbert family book from Georginia Cuthbert? Christianson will look into it. Suggett has also started working on James Ford Bell using the book loaned by Jones.

c)   Bally DVD – This disk donated by Kim Bally was given to Suggett.

d)  Fish fry – Dennis Wiens has offered a photo for the silent auction. Suggett has given a “prize package” to den Haan.

3.  Next meeting: The next meeting will be held at the home of Shirley Christianson (118 Wilkinson Crescent, Portage la Prairie) at 9:00 am on Wednesday, 22 March 2006.

4.  Adjournment: The meeting was adjourned at 10:10 AM.