July 2023 Volume 19

The Opening of the Fortis Nation Gallery

Pat Bignall
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In April, 2021, Ronnie G. Chin/Fortis Nation Archives sent a written proposal to the Kingston College Board seeking its approval to install 65 historical KC photographs and documents on the inner walls of the Douglas Forrest Building when the renovation and expansion processes were completed. The proposal to the Board specifically stated that the project would be of no cost to Kingston College as KCOB George Jograj had given his commitment to fund it in its entirety.

The Board responded positively to the proposal and a written approval was April, 2022.

Sixty-five (65) prints were done on archival paper which is guaranteed to last over 100 years. The prints were matted and framed. The processes of printing and framing were completed in July, 2022, however, the building was still a work in progress. In July 2022 a mock presentation was made to Principal Dave Myrie in the presence of the school Chaplin - Father Michael Brown, Board Member - Peter John Gordon and George Jograj, the KCOB who funded the project.

During the first week of July 2023, sixty-five (65) prints were installed in the building. While not in any chronological order, this first installation featured historical KC photos - some that have never been published, others highlighting some of our accomplishments over the years and the others depicting historical documents. Additionally, every print that was installed had a narrative which provided insight.

On Tuesday, July 11, 2023, the Fortis Nation Gallery was declared officially opened for viewing. A wide cross-section of people from the Fortis Nation came and many others had already viewed during the installation process. The photographs were received with excitement and pride of history.

For the second installation, we are hoping to create a sports gallery on the 2nd floor. Our target is 135 photos comprising winning teams and historical sporting images.

Our third, and not necessarily final, installation will see the utilization of the first floor library to showcase headmasters, major scholarship winners and more.

The Fortis Nation Archives expresses its gratitude to Principal Dave Myrie for his overwhelming support of the project, KCOB - George Jograj, who funded the first installation in its entirety and KCOB - Warren Chen Shui who stored the prints for almost one year.

These installations of historical KC photos and documents will certainly aid in the preservation of our illustrious history.

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