100th Anniversary of the Death of Albert "Ginger" Goodwin

Recipient of the 2019 Governor General’s History Award for Excellence in Community Programming

January 13, 2020

Cumberland Museum and Archives, Cumberland, British Columbia

On July 27, 1918, a labour activist, union organizer, and conscientious objector named Albert “Ginger” Goodwin was shot and killed while attempting to evade military conscription in Cumberland, British Columbia. The circumstances surrounding his death were controversial and sparked outrage among workers throughout the province, leading to the Vancouver General Strike on August 2, 1918.

To mark the centenary of Ginger Goodwin’s death, the Cumberland Museum and Archives led a series of programs and events that engaged the public with history through artistic, academic and immersive experiences. The activities were dynamic and participatory — including tours, workshops, music, lectures, visual art and historical re-enactments — and examined the historical and contemporary questions of social justice, work, ethnicity, and gender.

The events culminated with an emotional community re-enactment of Goodwin’s funeral. The commemoration of Ginger Goodwin’s life and death sparked a renewed interest and re-examination of this pivotal moment in Canadian labour history.

This project was planned over the course of two years in collaboration with historians, municipal representatives, artists, writers and volunteers. Its success is a testament to the organizers’ vision and commitment to community engagement.