Artist David Lester. Excerpt from “Direct Action Gets the Goods: A Graphic History of the Strike as Political Protest” with Graphic History Collection (Between the Lines Press, forthcoming)

When Albert ‘Ginger’ Goodwin arrived in Cumberland in the fall of 1910 to take up work as a mule driver in the No. 5 mine, he could not have imagined the impact of his legacy both in the Village and across the country. Although 100 years has passed since Goodwin was shot and killed by Special Constable Dan Campbell in the woods beyond Comox Lake, sparking Vancouver and Canada’s first general strike, his life and death continues to evoke strong emotions and fiery conversations. Over the years, the Goodwin story has caught the imagination and attention of diverse artists and historians. These voices will be featured in an exhibit Goodwin’s Reach, debuting at the Cumberland Museum and Archives during Miners Memorial June 22-24, and running until October 12, 2018.

Goodwin’s Reach showcases community and professional visual artists, musicians, documentary makers, fiction and non-fiction authors and playwrights all inspired by Ginger Goodwin’s life and death narrative. For former Cumberland resident Tom Hutton, the Goodwin story is a personal one. Hutton’s grandfather rowed up Cumberland Lake weekly delivering supplies to Goodwin and other draft evaders. His painting titled “Cruikshank River Valley – Where Ginger Goodwin was Shot” evokes the rustic beauty of the region where Goodwin met his untimely death. Nanaimo Art Gallery Curator, Jesse Birch’s publication ‘Ginger Goodwin Way’ documents the exhibition of the same name which was featured at the Or Gallery (Vancouver) in 2010. Playful pieces by Cumberland’s Dawn Copeman lighten the mood of an otherwise dark and controversial topic, while graphic novel artists such as Montreal’s (former Cumberland) Laura Ellyn, and Dave Lester (Vancouver) share the story through a contemporary medium. Enjoy music and film clips, including a short film produced by Micheal Stephen (Nanaimo) from his play ‘The Ginger Goodwin Story’ – created for the exhibit, and the ‘reading nook’ with books, scripts, graphic novels, and essays from participating artists and authors.

Items from the Cumberland Museum and Archives permanent collections including Ruth Master’s leather bound compendium on Ginger Goodwin, and George Sawchuk’s ‘Homage’ piece will be on view, along with items on loan. With over 17 featured creators, Goodwin’s Reach is a must see exhibit for those seeking to learn more about Ginger Goodwin, his legacy, and the significance of his death 100 years later.

On Sunday, June 24th, join the Cumberland Museum and Archives and friends for an old fashioned skillet breakfast, with a serving of creativity. Guest artists from the Goodwin’s Reach exhibit will be in attendance to share their connection to the story, inspiration, and process. Tickets are $10 and available at

Anna Rambow

Engagement Coordinator, Cumberland Museum and Archives