In the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region of the 1930s, there were two specialized service outlets of great use to the local population. The first of these was the post office. In a region where newcomers were forced to leave their families to settle far away, letters were the only means of keeping in touch with brothers and sisters who had not been seen for years. The postmaster then became more than just a mere civil servant: he also played a community role by maintaining the social fabric.
The second service outlet was the blacksmith's shop. Although there is hardly such a thing as a working smithy today, in the 1930s it was the equivalent of today's neighbourhood garage. The smith was involved in all types of repair of farm equipment and horse-drawn carriages as well as in other tasks.
The Postal Museum was created and the Blacksmith's Shop reconstructed in order to give an idea of the role both the postmaster and the smith played in community dynamics in the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region of the early 20th century.
Picnic in front of the first covered bridge to be constructed in the Abitibi region, on the Peter Brown River, 1914. Coll. Société d'histoire d'Amos.