NOVA SCOTIA MUSEUM OF INDUSTRY
After all of my meanderings and ramblings in the Cobequid Hills, it's not until some time mid-afternoon that I finally arrive in New Glasgow. It's not the first time that I've been here of course - you might recall that I came here back in 2003 .
Many years ago I had read a book about Nova Scotia - a book on the natural history of the Province, of all things. This book mentioned, quite casually, that there were a couple of vintage steam locomotives lying around on plinths and that sort of thing in the town. Of course, with the passion that I have for Victorian engineering and industrial archaeology, I came here back then to track them down. However, despite driving around the town in the sleet and freezing rain for an hour or two, could I find them? Could I heck! There wasn't even anyone about to ask, and in that sort of weather it wasn't anything of a surprise
The guy with the vintage fire engine, he to whom I had just been speaking for a couple of hours or so, gave the impression of being interested in trains, machinery and the like so I took the opportunity to mention this to him. He told me that quite a few years ago a new museum had opened up here, the New Glasgow Museum of Industry or some such like. The Museum people had been round the town collecting all of the locomotives and they had taken them over there.
AHHHHH - that explains a lot.
Next job was to find the New Glasgow Museum of Industry and that wasn't as easy as it might sound either. I had an aimless (well, not really aimless because it gave me an opportunity to see the town) half hour driving around looking, but then I stumbled upon someone opening up the theatre or concert hall or whatever it is.
I can't remember who it was now that I spoke to, but anyway that person quickly put me right. What had misled me was that with the place being known as the New Glasgow Museum of Industry, I was expecting to find it in New Glasgow. That was rather a silly assumption because the Museum isn't there at all but in Stellarton a couple of miles away. Neither is it called the New Glasgow Museum of Industry, but the Nova Scotia Museum of Industry.
Furthermore, not only is it in Stellarton but it's just the other side of the interchange where I turned off the main highway to head into New Glasgow half an hour ago. Yes, I'd been 50 yards away from it, but seeing as it was the other side of the bypass, no wonder I couldn't find it. If you head into town from the Highway, as I did, you are not going to see it at all.
So having finally sorted myself out I finally arrived at the museum, just as the weather broke and with the rain coming down in sheets. And much to my chagrin I don't have much time for a visit. It's not too far off closing time. That took me completely by surprise as I'm so used to coming to visitor centres and the like and finding them closed. I usually have to hijack passing UNESCO delegations or climb over the roofs of Visitor Centres if I ever want to see any tourist attractions on my voyages.
With not much time to visit the Museum, I had to be selective about what I saw. I've prepared three pages of what I consider to be the most important exhibits, and I'll have to come back another time to see the rest.
I was bundled out of the Museum precisely at closing time, in something of rather indecent haste and that was rather a shame. It serves me right for spending all my time talking to people I meet along the way, although the converse of that is that it was this guy who directed me to where I might find Albion and Samson, saving me hours of aimless driving around the area as I had done in 2003
But not to worry. Next time I am in Nova Scotia I'll come back. It's a fascinating place, this Museum, well-worth the admission fee (especially as I managed to blag my way in to see Albion). And now that I know where the place is, I'll have much more time to spend browsing the exhibits.