Provincial Museum and Archives of Alberta
Sketch by Marlena Wyman, no date
The Royal Alberta Museum in Glenora was built in 1965 and opened to the public in 1967. Originally named the Provincial Museum and Archives, it was made possible through a partnership between the Confederation Memorial Centennial Program and the Government of Alberta. An Australian museum professional, Raymond O. Harrison, was hired in 1962 to build the museum, locate staffing, and develop the exhibits.
The exterior is faced with Tyndall stone that incorporates petroglyph designs from the Writing-on-Stone Provincial Park site. The interior walls are marble and the floors black granite; all Canadian stone.
The original museum also housed the archives, and the museum galleries featured Fur Trade, Native Peoples of Alberta, Agriculture, Pioneer Life, and Industry & Commerce. Starting in the 1960s, the museum’s popular habitat dioramas were added at the rate of one per year until 1979.
In 2003 the Provincial Archives of Alberta moved to a separate facility. In 2005 the museum was designated the Royal Alberta Museum by Queen Elizabeth II when she visited for Alberta’s 100th anniversary. The original building closed its doors in 2015 to focus on the construction and move to the new downtown location of the Royal Alberta Museum that opened in 2018.
The provincial government is presently seeking ideas for the continued use of the Glenora building.