It’s every photographers dream; complete and unfettered access to a museum after hours.  Over the Canadian Thanksgiving holiday weekend, we were presented with such an opportunity.  Our dearest friends, the Mudpuppy’s, arranged with their dad who is a curator at the Metchosin Pioneer Museum to get us in after the museum closed.  We had a few hours to go through and document as much as we could, photographically, and came away with an incredible set of images to share over the coming weeks.

The “Antiques Roadshow” is a rather popular feature on PBS here in North America, and I believe it is syndicated world-wide.  Here at The Hollow, we’re going to take a slightly different spin to this concept with our own new running series we’re titling “The Antiques Toad Show“.  Without further ado, let’s hop to it, shall we?

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

When we first arrived, my plan was to get in and take a quick look around to try to find the highlights.  I really wanted to capture the important pieces first and foremost, just in case we ran out of time.  Immediately upon entering the museum, this plan flew out the window due to the sheer volume of pieces on display coupled with the fact that they were ALL fabulous.

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Extremely tight quarters created some serious challenges during composition at times.  We did our best to work around these limitations and were thrilled to come away with a pretty full basket of images.

Many of the items on display at the museum came from the time the area was settled.  Harsh landscapes and climate contributed to creating difficult living conditions, but the early settlers did the best they could.  Implements were simple in design and provided a specific function making life much easier.  Today, all these years later, these artifacts now are full of rich textures and wear, producing truly compelling photographs.

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Throughout the museum displays were setup to try to show life as it was during these times.  The items on display here in a little girls room really showed how simple things were back then.  We found no X-Box’s, no iPhones…  toys came without a plug.  Imagination was the graphics engine and good vision the High Definition feed.  If you wanted to see a high-resolution widescreen image of the world you lived in, you threw open the curtains.

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

The dresser is worn and full of character.  Little leather booties sit atop it, and a soft green sweater and hand mirror present a scene that could be ripped from the pages of a history book.  Can’t we all picture a wee little doll of a girl sitting on her bed with this mirror, wearing the sweater and brushing her hair…  these memories all come to life through the artifacts on display.

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

This classic typewriter beckons the visitor to sit a spell and type a love letter to your beau, who may be thousands of miles away…  or send a note to Grandma who checks with the mailman every day to see if something has arrived.  Even things such as photography that we take for granted these days was a rare thing to encounter.

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

This is the earliest version of a laptop computer.  It never requires a reboot and there is no need to constantly update it’s software.  Information is accessible with the flick of a page.  I loved the well-loved appearance this book had, you can sense the people who’ve used it over the years and how they’ve taken care of it.  Even with the gentle use, wear is evident.  This wear is like a fingerprint of those who enjoyed it left behind for us to discover.

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Artifacts - Metchosin Pioneer Museum, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

It’s now time to wrap up today’s post.  The years of enjoyment show on the face of this classic clock, just like they do for all of us.  Time is a constant, it always marches forward; it’s a real experience to stand time still for a moment to take in some of these wonderful items and the history that they hold within.  We really hope you enjoyed viewing these as much as we did in bringing them to you.  Please do stay tuned, we’ve got plenty more coming from the museum over the coming weeks.

Thanks so kindly for your visit today, we sincerely appreciate it.  We always encourage everyone to leave us any comments you may have as we truly love to hear from all our visitors.




  1. avatar Edith Levy says:

    Fantastic Toad. What an incredible place. You’ve ally captured the beauty of these items. You may have been in close quarters but your compositions are spot on.

  2. avatar ChrisdMRF says:

    Great blog as ever Toad. Love the images they remind me of a place I visited on holiday this year.

  3. avatar Len Saltiel says:

    Great post Toad. You really crack me up with the “Antiques Toad Show”. All images are so well composed and processed. Well done , my friend.

  4. Looks like a really cool place to explore. The images are top-notch as usual, as is the story behind them.

  5. avatar Fred Norris says:

    This looks like it is going to be a cracker of a series!Really love your image of the cookbook Toad,thanks for sharing.

  6. avatar Rick says:

    Excellent! What a great place to be able to have to your self to document in images!

  7. avatar Rachel Cohen says:

    Toad this is great stuff! I love all the images! Spectacular processing! When I saw the cookbook, it just made me want to pick it up. There’s something wonderful about old books.
    I love museums like this. Isn’t history amazing! Thanks for sharing all this with us!

    • You and I share a love for all things old, I see, Rachel! I totally agree with your comments here, my friend!! Thank you so much for taking the time to visit and for leaving us these great comments here, we sure do appreciate it!

  8. avatar Mrs. Mudpuppy says:

    Great set of shots Toad, you’ve really captured the essence of the place. Thanks for breathing new life into those old pieces, so happy you are able to share them with the world!

  9. avatar Jim Nix says:

    nicely done Toad, great series as usual! I especially love that shot of the book, just really nice!!

  10. avatar Scott Wood says:

    What a great opportunity. So glad that you got it and walked away with some great images. Thanks for sharing.

  11. avatar Jimi Jones says:

    I watch the “Road Show” somewhat regularly, hoping to see something I may have lying around. But the “Toad Show” is the ticket!

    What a great opportunity, a museum to run freely about and grab images. Super cool!
    I absolutely love museums and this one is surely a treasure trove of a by-gone era. You’ve captured these images quite well, my friend. Looking forward to the next episode… and without commercial interruption. LOL

    Nice post, Toad!

    • 🙂 LOL Thanks Jimi, we really appreciate all your kindness, my friend! Great comments! I am so happy to see you’ve had a chance to visit and to leave us these absolutely incredible comments! You, sir, are the best of the best!

  12. avatar Adam Allegro says:

    Fantastic post. I have had this opportunity during the day at some of the not very frequently visited museums around Europe. Very cool indeed. Nice work buddy.