The Canby Heritage and Landmark Commission was recognized at last week’s City Council meeting for a groundbreaking heritage trail focusing on the historical contributions of local women — the first of its kind in the state. The self-guided walking tour is called Building a Better Community and can be taken by following a brochure produced by the Heritage and Landmark Commission.
Building A Better Community is a self-guided walking tour that takes visitors through the heart of historic downtown Canby. There are nine stops along the way at locations significant to the women who shaped and reshaped the cultural, social, economic, and political fabric of Canby. The Women’s Heritage Trail begins in Triangle Park, which features interpretive signage with additional information and a map of all of the sites.
The project highlights nine women whom the Heritage Commission says are “representative of the hundreds of women who played a significant role in making Canby a better place.”
“Women shaped and reshaped the cultural, social, economic, and political fabric of Canby as it evolved from a collection of farms in the 1880s into a thriving community in the 20th century,” the brochure says. “On occasion, they broke gender norms to instigate change. More often, they embraced traditional roles to improve the circumstances of their community. In most cases, their efforts received limited recognition and/or went unrecorded.”
The project team included Carol Palmer, Canby Economic Development Director Jamie Stickel, Library Director Irene Green, local historians and Canby Historical Society members Peggy Sigler and Nora Clark, and Canby Kiwanis President Tony Crawford, who says this recognition is something the whole city can be proud of.
Christine Curran, deputy historic preservation officer for the State Historic Preservation Office, presented the award to the project team at last week’s council meeting and said there are a number of reasons this project stood out, including a citywide essay contest featuring Canby School District students writing about the women who inspire them.
Some of the most exceptional entries from the essay contest were selected to be preserved in a book at the Canby Public Library.