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Summerland Museum to hold online auction

Items for sale include tools, television and old wheelchair
A promotional item from Smith and Henry in Summerland, dating to the mid 20th century, is one of the items available through the Summerland Museum and Archives de-accessioning auction. (Summerland Museum and Archives photo)

The Summerland Museum and Archives Society is selling off some old items in its Spring Cleaning Auction.

The items up for sale include tools, old suitcases, washing machines and washtubs, barber equipment and hair curling irons, a television from the 1950s and a wheelchair from the early 20th century.

This is the second time the museum is holding a sale of de-accessioned items that have been removed from its permanent collection.

Petra Höller, curator of the museum, said the sale is part of an ongoing effort to ensure the items in the museum have relevance. Items on display need to have a strong connection to the community.

“Our purpose here is to celebrate the history of our local content,” she said. “It has to come back to Summerland.”

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The museum is facing problems because of a lack of space to store items. Höller said there is little space available to store newly acquired items. The area in the back of the museum is full, and additional items are being stored in the basement of the Summerland RCMP detachment.

Storing items also comes at a cost, as there is time involved in recording and digitizing the information and expenses in properly caring for each item, whether on display or in storage.

“The perpetual care of these items costs money,” Höller said.

In many cases, there are other similar artifacts to those listed in the auction. These items, which remain in the museum’s collection are in better condition or have more complete information about their history.

Some of the auction items have attracted attention in the past. The wheelchair has been used by theatre groups in past productions, Höller said.

The online auction can be viewed at It will remain active until May 24.

On May 25 from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., the museum will host a panel discussion titled, “What to do with my stuff.” This discussion covers how to disperse estate items and how to leave a lasting legacy in the community. The session will be at the George Ryga Arts and Cultural Centre, 9525 Wharton St.

John Arendt

About the Author: John Arendt

John Arendt has worked as a journalist for more than 30 years. He has a Bachelor of Applied Arts in Journalism degree from Ryerson Polytechnical Institute.
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