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Chimczuk Museum uncorks Windsor’s whisky history with Beyond the Barrel exhibit

Beyond the Barrel: Windsor’s Whisky History is on display at the Chimczuk Museum. June 22, 2024. (Sanjay Maru/CTV News Windsor) Beyond the Barrel: Windsor’s Whisky History is on display at the Chimczuk Museum. June 22, 2024. (Sanjay Maru/CTV News Windsor)
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The Chimczuk Museum is pouring out the history of whisky and its connection to Windsor-Essex through the opening of a temporary exhibit titled “Beyond the Barrel: Windsor’s Whisky History.”

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held Saturday for the event.

The exhibit features a collection of artifacts and photographs centered on themes such as farming, early whisky production, distilleries, the Prohibition era in Windsor-Detroit, and the post-Prohibition whisky market.

“We have so many artifacts all the way from the mid-1800s to modern day,” said exhibit curator Nicole Chittle.

Chittle explained that curating exhibits can be challenging due to the difficulty in obtaining the necessary historical pieces.

However, she noted that this exhibit was an exception.

“So many people donated beautiful artifacts. We also had personal collections loaned to us. It took a few weeks to select pieces that would complement each other and tell the story fully. There’s a lot in here to see,” said Chittle.

Beyond the Barrel: Windsor’s Whisky History is on display at the Chimczuk Museum. June 22, 2024. (Sanjay Maru/CTV News Windsor)Despite her extensive knowledge of the city’s whisky history from her role at Museum Windsor, Chittle was surprised by the number of people involved in the illegal smuggling of alcohol, known as rum-running.

“It’s likely everyone, whether they know it or not, probably had a family member at some point who was involved in rum-running,” added Chittle.

“Beyond the Barrel: Windsor’s Whisky History” will remain open until mid-January.

Plans are underway for the museum to host a special event this fall featuring whisky tastings, Chittle said.

Beyond the Barrel: Windsor’s Whisky History is on display at the Chimczuk Museum. June 22, 2024. (Sanjay Maru/CTV News Windsor)

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