The Westman Recycling Council was started by a small group of avid recyclers with financial and volunteer help from the Kiwanis Club of Brandon, among others. Volunteers organized the first outdoor recycling depots in June and October 1989. The first event with recorded minutes was the first annual meeting, November 15, 1989.
The organization was incorporated in February 1990, and became a registered charity in 1995. The Mission Statement was: "to support and promote the reduction, re-use, and recycling of material resources for the benefit of Westman's environment and future generations."
The major partner in the work of the organization was the City of Brandon. In 2003, Westman Recycling, in partnership with the City, built a Material Recovery Facility (MRF) at the Brandon Landfill; Westman Recycling owned the building on the City-owned land. It was a $4 million structure - financed by federal and provincial grants (about one-quarter of the total) and a mortgage (about three-quarters). Details are in the Board and other Committee minutes and agreements.
In late 2005, Westman Recycling faced a severe cash crunch - as a result of poor markets for recyclables, changes in support funding from the Manitoba Product Stewardship Corporation (MPSC), and a drop in public recycling levels. In February 2006, the City decided to sign a contract with another organization to operate the MRF; after that there appeared to be no role for Westman Recycling.
A general meeting on September 22, 2008 voted to dissolve the organization. At that meeting, the suggestion was made (agreed to by consensus) that the files of the organization be donated to Brandon University to be made available for researchers. A Board of Directors meeting on the same date voted to donate all remaining funds to a perpetual "Westman Recycling" fund with the Brandon Area Community Foundation.
A final wind-up meeting was held on March 26, 2009
The organization was overseen by volunteers / volunteer Board of Directors. The files were first held by volunteers / Board members in their homes. In May 1991, the organization hired David McConkey as Coordinator / General Manager, who was directed by the Board to manage the files on a daily basis from that date forward.
The files were kept in the organization's rented office space in the 1300 block of Pacific Avenue from May 1991 to September 1992, and then in the rented space in the Massey building at 6th Street and Pacific Avenue. The files were kept at the new facility at the landfill from April 2003 to February 2006. They were then stored in the basement of the Marquis Project, 912 Rosser Avenue, until August 2011 when they were donated to the S.J. McKee Archives, Brandon University.
Some files (e.g. minutes from 1995-96) were found to be missing entirely. Other files were disposed of by recycling and/or shredding as they were judged to be confidential (e.g. personnel), of an ordinary business nature only (e.g. invoices), or not useful for future research (e.g. extra copies, routine correspondence, building and equipment plans and other arrangements).
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of records that document the origin, activities, demise, and legacy of the Westman Recycling Council. Records include minutes, financial summaries, scrapbooks, newsletters, brochures, media clippings, photographs and miscellaneous documents related to the construction in collaboration with the City of Brandon of Brandon's principal recycling facility.
Administrative history courtesy David McConkey. See additional notes on the organization in the curatorial file. Description by Tom Mitchell.
Copy of the Japanese National Hymn arranged for the pianoforte by Sydney Osborne. Also includes the music for Kathleen Mavourneen arranged for piano by Percy E. Douglas and Donau Wellen by I. Ivanovici, easily arranged by Percy E. Douglas.
Copy of Favorite Songs No. 569, which includes Blue-Beads: Indian Love Song (words by Beth Slater Whitson, music by Leo Friedman), Afterwards (words by Mary Mark Lemon, music by John W. Mullen) and Irish Beauties (composed by Percy Wenrich).
Copyright 1909 by McKinley Music Co. (Blue-Beads) and 1911 by Frank K. Root & Co. (Irish Beauties). Jean C. Scott written on the front cover.
ALEXANDER MACPHAIL (14 July 1900 - 29 July 1986)
Alex was born in Vista, MB on July 14, 1900, son of John and Catherine MacPhail. He married Florence Turner (d. 1977) at Winnipeg on December 22, 1948 and together they farmed the family farm at Vista. In 1965 they purchased a house in Shoal Lake but continued to farm in Vista until Alex's retirement in 1973, when he sold the farm.
Alex was involved in the 4-H Club at Vista and was a member of the Grain Growers Association. He was also very interested in Wildlife Conservation, an interest which led him to donate a 1/4 section of land to them. Alex also started a museum in Shoal Lake, which in time he turned over to the Village. He was a school trustee for Islay School Board at Vista from 1937-1939 and took the position of Chairman from 1939, until the school closed on 1968. During his years of farming he was a registed Seed Grower and in 1957 was awarded the Robertson Certificate. As a hobby he was a beekeeper. Alexander MacMillan MacPhail passed away at the Shoal Lake-Strathclair Health Centre on Tuesday, July 29, 1986 at the age of 86 years.
MARION (MACPHAIL) MCCORMACK (1903 - 10 February 1988)
Marion attended Islay School and Rosburn Collegiate. Upon graduation, she attended Manitoba Normal School, and became a teacher. She worked at Perth, Islay (1927-1934), Plumas, Strathclair and Minnedosa.
She met and married Coll McCormack (d. 1973) in 1952, and they lived in Minnedosa. She retired from teaching in 1967. Marion McCormack passed away on February 10, 1988.
IAIN MACPHAIL (1912-1937)
Iain MacPhail was born in Vista, MB in 1912. During the years that he was attending high school, he took a keen interest in farming. After he completed his Grande XII, some of the farm projects were expanded, including bee keeping. It was while attending a Bee-Keepers Course at the University of Manitoba that Iain took ill and passed away in 1937.
JOHN ARMSTRONG (6 May 1930 - 21 June 2005)
John Armstrong was born May 6, 1930, the second son of Kate (McKinnon) and William Armstrong. He attended Perth school for his elementary grades, then Vista and Rossburn where he finished high school. John farmed with his dad and brother Hugh, except for one year of permit teaching on the Daupin River Reserve, which was accessible by canoe.
John lived at home with his parents and cared for them until his dad's passing in 1972 and his mother's in 1982. At one time John was a leader of the 4-H Seed Club and was able to help members with his weed and plant identification skills. He did some secretarial work for 4-H and the Argyle Presbyterian Church. John William Armstrong of Rossburn passed away June 21, 2005 at the Shoal Lake-Strathclair Health Centre.
The records in this collection were accumulated in the residence of Alexander MacPhail from various family members. The materials were discovered in the attic of MacPhail's house on the MacPhail land in Vista, MB in 2005. Subsequently they were given to Gerald R. Brown by the family living in the MacPhail house. They resided in Brown's home until their donation to the McKee Archives in September 2006.
Scope and Content
The collection consists of teaching materials and textbooks used by members of the MacPhail family - Alex, Marion and Iain. It has been divided into two sub-series, including: (1) Textbooks; and (2) Teaching materials.
Biographical notes were written by Gerald R. Brown and were taken from his "Vista Tales . . . from Islay School District No. 733 in Vista, Manitoba." Description by Christy Henry.