With the Memories of Niagara project successfully wrapped up and on-display, I was able to continue some volunteer work at the Niagara Historical Museum.
I really looked forward to my weekly shift, where I would catalogue material or interact with researchers by phone, email or in-person and provide assistance if possible.
Driving into NOTL was pleasant, and the relaxed atmosphere at the museum was a stark change from my previous work experiences. I loved it.
The interest people had in finding historical information was pretty steady. They contacted the museum wanting to find out more about their home, their family history, or general interest in military history, economics, community organizations etc. As I looked into each request, a snowball effect occurred. Looking for a specific document or photograph, my attention would be caught by unrelated material stored nearby. Anything I thought remotely useful or interesting I copied down, vowing to look more deeply into the subject if time allowed.
Slowly, I built a repertoire of historical information and became increasingly informed about the museum’s holdings.
Soon, I was being paid for my work, landing a job in the summer of 2012. This coincided with the War of 1812 Bicentennial, which meant I was kept very busy for the next few months.