Fonds - Mt. Ida Women’s Institute

Title and statement of responsibility area

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Mt. Ida Women’s Institute

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Mt. Ida Women's Institute, R.R. 1, Salmon Arm, B.C.

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Dates of creation area


  • 1915-1981 (Creation)
    Mt. Ida Women's Institute, R.R. 1, Salmon Arm, B.C.
    Salmon Arm

Physical description area

Physical description

1.3 cm textual records

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Administrative history

A group met December 29, 1914 at the home of Mrs. J. Kernaghan to create a Women’s Institute for the Mt Ida District. The women drafted a Declaration of Organization. Mrs. Elgood of Silver Creek was elected President, Mrs. Raby was elected Vice- President, and Mrs. Rich was elected Secretary Treasurer. Directors were Mrs. Wall, Mrs. Kernaghan and Miss Rich. The name of the Institute was the Mt. Ida R.R. 1 Salmon Arm, BC.

The official date of incorporation was February 18, 1915. Charter members were Mrs. R. Arthurs, Mrs. W. Garbutt, and Mrs. John Jackson.

The Women’s Institute was originally formed in Ontario in 1897 by Mrs. Adelaide Hoodless, with its objective being to form an organization similar to the Farmer’s Institute, where members could learn the best and most scientific methods of running a home. Its objectives have changed to include community assistance, sponsoring projects (flower shows, small fairs, school fairs, handicrafts exhibits, and health exhibits). The motto of the British Columbia Women’s Institute was “For Home and Country”

The work of the Mt. Ida group was charitable and educational in nature. The group helped new people to the district and those who had lost their homes to fire. The “homeless” were given clothing. The men overseas were knitted socks, gloves, and caps, and sent magazines and papers. The group donated money to the Y.W.C.A., prisoners of war, British Empire Relief of the Allies’ Fund, Halifax Relief Fund, the Army and Navy, sent layettes to India and Korea, sent sewing machines to India, shipped old clothing to mills in Eastern Canada in exchange for blankets, socks, sheeting, dress goods, etc, and the Salmon Arm General Hospital. The group also helped with the March of Dimes and the Salvation Army.

A second focus of the group was education of women and children. The group held cooking demonstrations and lectures for the membership. In turn the members helped the boys and girls of the district with flower and vegetable gardens and helped with eggs for hatching and raising chickens.

A third function was to raise funds. The organization held a plowing match, fancy dress dance, bazaars, and bake sales to make money.

According to the hand written history enclosed in the minute book, the [Mt. Ida] “Hall was moved to another piece of land, new kitchen built on and paid for, bought chairs, stoves, and dishes. Piano bought in 1939.” The move of the Hall is not documented elsewhere. The kitchen was renovated in 1954.

The group put cooking and needlework in the Fall Fair at Salmon Arm and sent Delegates to conventions. It catered to 366 people for the Old Timers’ Centennial Dinner in 1958, the Salute to the Sockeye, and the Mountie Bank Dinner.

Custodial history

Scope and content

The fonds consists of one series containing one minute book that spans the years 1915-1920 and includes financial records and membership lists.

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  • English

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MS 112

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  • English

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