Situated in the oldest settlement of Galician people in Western Canada, Cook's Creek Heritage Museum is housed in the old Roman Catholic Rectory of St.Michael's Parish in Cooks Creek, Manitoba, Canada, which was built in 1937.
The early pioneers who settled in Cook's Creek were from Eastern Poland, Western Ukraine and other Eastern European Slavic countries. It is hard to imagine the incredible hardships involved in piercing the wilderness. Through the arid summers and the bitter cold winters these hardy pioneers toiled for the generations that would follow.
Many of the newcomers clung to their faith. Thus the early settlers brought many religious articles such as holy pictures, Bibles, Prayer Books and crosses. As well, traditional costumes, folk art, and kitchen and farm tools were lovingly brought to this land.
In 1968, Alois Krivanek, the priest of St.Michael's at that time, realized the importance of preserving these articles, and thus preserving the heritage of the area. He followed his dream, giving us one of Manitoba's greatest treasures - Cook's Creek Heritage Museum. The museum offers an opportunity to bring back memories of the past and a chance for visitors to increase their love and knowledge of our Canadian history, which will be passed on to future generations.
"Without the memories of the past there can be no dream of the future"
Above image (sourced with permission from the book In the Footsteps of Polish Pioneers on the Canadian Prairies ).