Mountain Shooting Star 58.45.23-A - Collection of Glenbow
Used with permission of Annora Brown Estate
Picture courtesy of Mary-Beth Laviolette
Annora Brown was a passionate conservationist, an accomplished historian and educator, and a prolific artist. The work she produced between 1930 and 1960 was of the highest quality. It was about the life and landscape of Southwestern Alberta. Then, because of diminished health, she had to leave her home in Fort Macleod and retire to the Saanich Peninsula on Vancouver Island.
Many of her paintings hang in private homes, offices and galleries. Glenbow Museum Archives collection of 260 paintings of flora, landscape and Blackfoot culture have only recently been photographed, digitized, and made available to the public as images and prints. They are pristine in quality and a reminder of the unique contribution this gifted artist has bequeathed.
Little has been done since her retirement in 1965 to celebrate her work and identify her legacy – until now!
In conjunction with the Fort Macleod Library, I am announcing the launching of an “Annora Brown Life & Legacy (2017) Project”. And you, the citizens of Southern Alberta, are invited to participate in this project.
I’m calling for “Do Crews” (of individuals or groups) to volunteer to help search out the legacy aspects of this woman’s multi-faceted life. Through the year we will collect and collate these learnings, try to find her diaries and sketch books, make an inventory of privately owned paintings, and seek out the numerous ways we can name and celebrate her legacy.
Whatever your interest – be it conservationist, artist, educator, citizen – we need your help. Bring your web-building and social media outreach skills so we can fan the flames that bring this person’s “Life & Legacy” back to life. Our Annora Brown is a National Treasure. As part of our “Canada 150” celebrations we need to share this wonderful story.
You may contact us at the email address shown below.
We are constantly adding new material to our website so we invite you to come back and see our progress.
We have just added Legacy Learning 23 - When we look closely at Annora Brown’s landscape paintings we see how masterfully she planned her design techniques and use of colour and light to express what she wanted to say.
Selected readings of Annora’s Stories of Waterton As told by her in “Sketches from Life” have been added to the "Artist" section.
We would like to thank the Estate of Annora Brown for their recognition of this project.
Information and pictures have been added to the Artist section about the Daughter of the Prairies - Gallery Exhibit at Galt Museum, Lethbridge, Summer of 2016 - Curated by Mary-Beth Laviolette.
Ten years ago, when I did research to write my drama about Ms. Brown, I was shown four diaries that were in the care of a now deceased Fort Macleod resident. These diaries have recently been located and the information they contain is invaluable to the understanding of Ms. Brown and her work.
A reference to Annora Brown can now be found on Wikipedia at:
Does anyone have a copy of any of the children’s books she illustrated? Give them to the Fort Macleod Library, or let me know their whereabouts for our collection. Winged Canoes at Nootka; Totems Tipis & Tumplines; Up Up & Away; Canaries for the Clotheslines; No Man Stands Alone are some books that carry Annora Brown’s name.
What other memorabilia and memories might be shared?
As for privately owned paintings – we are confirming copyright details so we can gather an inventory of the work she did. The scope of her subject matter and painting style is incredible. Details about this inventory would be shared only at the owner’s discretion.
Finally, we are still looking for contacts from Deep Cove or the Saanich Peninsula – so we can do follow-up on the twenty years Annora Brown spent in retirement.
Our goal is to preserve and record the life and achievements of Ms. Brown. If you have any information, know where we can locate private / public paintings, would like to send us copies of books or you are willing to donate to help with costs for acquiring / re-matting paintings and prints etc., please contact us at
We Need Your Help
Then enter “Annora Brown” into Keywords/Phrase
Or you may order prints at:
Digitized photographs of 260 Annora Brown paintings in the Glenbow Museum (wild flowers, Blackfoot culture & art, landscapes in the Oldman and Waterton River drainage area) can be viewed at:
“The Estate of Annora Brown recognizes the work and effort that has been taken by individuals with regards to the study and accumulation of information based around her life and work.”
Ward A.F. Brown
September 20th, 2017
The Annora Brown Story on YouTube
A dramatization of pioneer artist Annora Brown’s story can now be seen on YouTube at “Annora Brown: Interpreter of the Foothills”.
Filming this project was done by diploma-program students at Lethbridge College’s Digital Communications & Media Class this past winter. Images of Annora, some of her paintings and photos from the region are projected throughout the production. By way of expressing our gratitude, Letters of Appreciation were given to the students and their instructor George Gallant by Joyce Sasse and Gerry Alex.
The music background sound-track is being added by Duncan Metcalfe (a Digital Audio Arts student at the University of Lethbridge).
In the near future this same video, broken into 20-minute segments for teaching purposes, will be posted on Vimeo.
In the video the role of Annora Brown is dramatized by Doris Blackburn, whose family were close friends with Miss Brown. She, along with cast members Susan Vogelaar, Gerry Alex and Joyce Sasse, have re-enacted the script twelve times since it was first presented at the Waterton Wildflower Festival in 2008. All previous productions have displayed paintings borrowed from private collectors.
Volunteers of all ages have given generously of their time and talents to make the above productions come to life.
Furthermore, with the full endorsement of the Annora Brown Estate, this video (and other materials written by Joyce Sasse) is made available to the public through “Creative Commons Licensing” (CC-BY-NC-SA).
CC materials are free for use to the public domain, subject to the following – BY requires that credit be given to the author when written material is used. NC limits the distribution to non-commercial usage. SA (share alike) requires that the item retain its original license when the material is re-mixed, re-distributed or shared.
The above indicates up-dated means by which copyright privileges may now be made more accessible to educators.
The fullness of Annora Brown’s Legacy is yet to be determined.