In July 1980, a group of individuals involved in the cultural life of the Salaberry-de-Valleyfield region, one of whom was Mr. Marcel Brisebois (former director of the Montreal Museum of Contemporary Art),initiated the Ecomusée des Deux-Rives. In June 2004, after restructuring the organisation with the intention of obtaining its own permanent site, the Ecomusée became the Musée de société des Deux-Rives. Since then, the population has felt a growing relationship with its museum: a museum that speaks of them, that explores their historical heritage and reinforces a sense of pride, and, above all, a captivating museum that is accessible to everyone, near and far.
The Musée de société des Deux-Rives has always had one unwavering objective: to endow the region with a permanent site for cultural and museological activities.Thirty-one years later, the dream came true. Since November 2010, the Museum resides in the heart of the city, in a former protestant church built in 1882. At one time, the church stood face to face with the giant industrial complex of the Montreal Cottons Company, a textile factory that transformed cotton fibre into various fabrics and materials. This church, a genuine jewel of architectural heritage, was acquired by the municipality in 2008 and underwent substantial renovations in its conversion to a museum. However, the main characteristic features were retained; any added elements — architectural, decorative, or visual — are faithful to the spirit of the original design and enhance the structure’s new vocation. The doors of the Museum were officially opened in October 2011.
The MUSO; a museum firmly rooted in its own local history, which surprises with its innovative initiatives to document as well as disseminate the voice of the past via the living and breathing memories of those here in today’s society.
From church to museum…
This video explains the steps taken to revamp the church into a unique cultural institution.
Special thanks to Montmusée under the auspices of the Cellule régionale d’expertise en muséologie, with thanks to the financial support of the Quebec Ministry of Culture, Communications, the Status of Women and the sponsorship of CRÉ Vallée du Haut Saint Laurent who helped produce this video.
Where does “MUSO” come from?
In conjunction with the acquisition of a permanent location in downtown Salaberry-de-Valleyfield (the former United Church at the corner of Dufferin and Grande-Ile), the Musée de société des Deux-Rives wanted to revitalize its name into one that better reflected its mission: that of a museum in the service of society and the people who compose it. A short and simple designation is chosen, a name that brings to mind the substantial efforts, over the last 30 years, made by those who gave to the institution its notoriety and expertise.
MU is the diminutive of MUSÉE.
SO is the diminutive of SOCIÉTÉ
Together, they form the acronym MUSO, a logo that is easily committed to memory. The word MUSO will be very visible, often repeated, and instantly recognisable … expect it to quickly carve a niche for itself at the nucleus of our community and beyond!
To emphasise the connection with our past and with our region of myriad waterways, and in order that the populace may see themselves in their museum, the words Deux-Rives remain in the long version of the name and in our communications.
The brilliant red symbolises a museum that dares to engage itself in the community and suggest a different approach … a daring one! The red also signifies that MUSO will be at the heart of the city as well as at the heart of our regional growth. A final point … in contrast to the grey of the building, the red is stunning!
So there you have it… Welcome to the MUSO, your Musée de société des Deux-Rives!
MUSO … the heartfelt symbol of our institution