Opened in 2004, Amherst Island’s Neilson Store Museum highlights artifacts from Island families and Island history since its first settlement in 1789, when it was originally named Isle Tonti. Items in the collection include the MV Amherst Islander’s ship’s wheel, bell, and logs. Designated under the Ontario Heritage Act, the Museum itself is also an exhibit having once been owned by James S. Neilson, an island grain merchant who opened his first general store in 1873, with the store remaining in the Neilson family for more than one hundred years. Light Refreshments after the talk. We encourage you to get involved as a volunteer and are grateful for assistance with our talks, special exhibits and fund-raising events.
You can also become a Museum member and/or donor (with a donation of $200 you will be recognized on our Donors’ Board at the Museum).
Donations to your island Museum always welcome! (donations are tax-deductible)
Back Room Talk
If Lilacs Could Sing!
On Friday, March 20 at 7:00 pm (almost the first day of spring!), join us at the Museum for an evening of song and poetry with Stephen Bruce Medd, author of “If Lilacs Could Sing”.
Bruce writes and adapts historical ballads for a journey through time in his book of songs and history. He retells the stories of the Loyalists refugee settlers, the First Peoples (Huron-Wendat, Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabe) that lived in our area. Stephen writes, “Folk music, with its evocative lyrics about people, places and time, was the most natural way for me to tell some of the fascinating stories of our past. Lilacs were brought to North America in the early seventeenth century by the first European settlers. The sweet fragrance of their softly clustered flowers is a harbinger of Spring. But they also mark the beginning of the colonization of North America and the transformation of the traditional lands of the Indigenous people. Imagine what ballads we might hear If Lilacs Could Sing!”