The Institute for Architectural Studies and Conservation, in association with Beaconsfield Historic House, will once again be presenting its winter lecture series this January. The theme for 2015 is Bringing Heritage into the Future and the Institute has assembled a variety of specialists to explore stories of our connections with the Island’s built heritage.
Beginning January 5, the series kicks off with Mary Gallant of the PEI Scottish Settlers Historical Society presenting “Glenaladale 1884: A Remarkable Island Residence”. Her talk will explore the history of the beautiful house and its historical associations with the family of Captain John MacDonald who brought the Island’s first Catholic Scottish settlers – the Glenaladale Settlers – to Prince Edward Island. Other members of the family, such as Father John MacDonald, who brought the Glasgow Irish to the Island, an event which set in motion the arrival of the Monaghan Irish in 1830, and Sir William C. MacDonald, tobacco magnate and philanthropist, are important figures in the history of PEI, and indeed the country.
The series continues on January 12, when poet, editor, and lecturer in Island Studies at the University of Prince Edward Island, Laurie Brinklow, presents “My Island’s the House that I Sleep in at Night”. Inspired by Gaston Bachelard’s book, The Poetics of Space (1958), this lecture connects body, house, and poem with the concept of island, which is illustrated through the words and artistic imaginings of islanders from Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, the Gulf Islands, and Tasmania. By looking at the components of a house, such as rooms and walls, doors and windows, attics and cellars, and comparing them to the body, an island, and the poem, she hopes to deepen our understanding of home. When the intimacy of a house imprints on our psyches, when our treasured island places do the same, we hold them deep in our memory. They become the places we return to for reassurance, security, comfort, home.
On January 19, Harry Holman, a historian and writer whose career has included serving as the Director of Culture, Heritage and Libraries and the Provincial Archivist, joins us to discuss one of the Island’s most talented architects in “Architect for a Changing City: C.B. Chappell and the Evolving Face of Charlottetown”. The talk will focus primarily on how the period from the 1880s to the 1930s was one of enormous change for Charlottetown and how one architect contributed to the look of the city during that period.
The series will conclude on January 26, with the City of Charlottetown’s Manager of the Planning and Heritage Department, Alex Forbes, presenting an illustrated historical overview of the significant planning initiatives implemented in the City entitled, “How Plans Transform Communities”. A native Islander, Mr. Forbes has over 23 years of experience in planning and heritage in both New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island. In addition to his latest role at the City of Charlottetown, his career has included working as Assistant Director of Development Services and Assistant Director for Strategic Direction and Internal Consulting for the City of Fredericton.
Please come join the Institute and its friends to welcome this fascinating and diverse group of speakers as they share with us their illustrated lectures. Bringing Heritage into the Future runs on Mondays in January 2015 (5, 12, 19 and 26) at 7pm at Beaconsfield’s Carriage House. Admission is open to the public by donation and light refreshments will be served. Storm dates to be announced via local media.