The Helen Creighton Folklore Society respectfully acknowledges that it operates on the ancestral territory of the Mi’kmaq. We recognize with respect and honour, the contributions of the Elders and Tradition Bearers of the First Peoples of Canada. We celebrate through story, song, music, and by listening to each other with appreciation and understanding.

The Helen Creighton Folklore Society is named in honour of folklorist Helen Creighton (1899-1989), who collected and published traditional music, stories and lore of Maritime Canada.

More about the Society

Folklife Collection Online

Recordings for Sale: CD’s, downloads

You Ask, We Answer


Video Spotlight:

Helen and Pete Concert Recording

Helen and Pete: a concert celebrating the friendship of Helen Creighton and Pete Seeger.

Videography by Everett Stone

News and Events

Lucy Maud Montgomery’s 150 birthday!
With Rosalee Peppard Lockyer
Sunday, June 2, 2024 at 1:30pm
Dartmouth Heritage Museum, Evergreen House,
26 Newcastle Street, Dartmouth
Cost: Free will donation
Donations are for the Helen Creighton Folklore Society (HCFS) and the Dartmouth Heritage Museum Society (DHMS) 
Please reserve a seat by calling DHM at 902-464-2300

ISTIA CANCELLED!!! Due to illness

Helen Creighton Folk Club

The McMillan’s Camp Boys are kicking off their tour at

Helen Creighton Folk Club,

Thursday, April 4 at 7pm,

Evergreen House, Dartmouth Heritage Museum, 26 Newcastle St in Dartmouth.

The McMillan’s Camp Boys are our featured performers after our Open Mic session. Performers please sign up for open mic by 6:45.

CANCELLED!! Helen Creighton Folk Club is cancelled for Thursday, March 6th, 2024 due to the forecasted heavy rain and freezing rain.

Do you have a folk related project you would like to complete and need a little more funding? Check out the Grants-In-Aid program administered by the Helen Creighton Folklore Society.
Deadline: February 29, 2024

ISTIA or I Sing Therefore I Am is a singalong group.

Thursday, January 15, 2024

7-9pm

Dartmouth Heritage Museum, Evergreen House, 26 Newcastle Street, Dartmouth, NS

Cost: donation

In Memoriam: Alan Wilson

Alan’s contribution to Canadian history and folklore was important and his dedication to Maritime folk culture was evident in his taking on the task of acting as Chair of the inaugural Dr. Helen Creighton Memorial Foundation which was established in 1990.  That foundation later merged with the Helen Creighton Folklore Society which continues to do the work that Alan so ably facilitated in the early years.  

Clary Croft
HCFS Board member

https://www.dignitymemorial.com/en-ca/obituaries/halifax-ns/dr-allan-r-wilson-11150046

Helen Creighton Folk Club

Dartmouth Heritage Museum,

26 Newcastle Street, Dartmouth, NS

Open Mic format and featured performer: Alexander Gallant

7-9pm. 

Performers, please sign up before 6:45pm.

Cost: Free will donation

I Sing Therefore I Am (ISTIA)

Thursday, January 25, 2024, 7pm

Dartmouth Heritage Museum, Evergreen House, 26 Newcastle Street, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

What is I Sing Therefore I Am?
 
It is many things: 

A Gathering of people who love to sing

An Opportunity to

  • learn, and learn about, a wide variety of “singable songs” from a wide variety of song styles. Songs that work well in a group context and have something special that makes them either beautiful or interesting or both. 
  • Sing in a non-judgemental and supportive environment with experienced song leaders 
  • Experience the thrill of group singing.

I Sing Therefore I Am is based on three foundational principles:

  • Everyone can sing
  • We are happy when we sing
  • We are especially happy when we sing together.

And a fourth one – fun!
 
Everyone is welcome. No previous singing or choir experience is necessary.
 
No preparation is necessary –just “drop in and sing”. Songbooks are provided.

ISTIA is held at 7 pm at Evergreen House (Helen Creighton’s former home and site of the Dartmouth Heritage Museum) at 26 Newcastle Street in Dartmouth, usually on the third Thursday of each month

To sign up for email alerts, please send an email to istians2023@gmail.com 

The Helen Creighton Folk Club!

Open Mic

We invite you to celebrate the new year!

When: Thursday, January 4, 2024

Where: Evergreen House, 26 Newcastle St, Dartmouth NS

Helen Creighton’s former home and now part of the Dartmouth Heritage Museum

Doors open at 6:30pm. Event starts at 7pm. Performers, please arrive by 6:45 to sign up.

Cost: Free Will Donation towards the featured performer and the Society’s work.

Women and The Power of Song by Margo Carruthers.

Special Open Mic!

The Helen Creighton Folklore Society & Big Turnip Records would like to thank everyone who so enthusiastically continues to support The Helen Creighton Folk Club!

And welcome you to another exciting musical evening.

When: Thursday, November 9th, 2023

Where: Evergreen House, 26 Newcastle St, Dartmouth NS

Helen Creighton’s former home and now part of the Dartmouth Heritage Museum

This premiere folk event will be an all open mic.

Doors open at 6:30pm. Event starts at 7pm. Performers, please arrive by 6:45 to sign up.

Cost: Free Will Donation towards the Society’s work.

Helen Creighton Folk Club Postponed until November 9th as the HCFS is heavily involved in Our Heritage Concert. Tickets for the Concert are still available – see below:

Buy tickets to Our Heritage Concert here:

Dartmouth Heritage Museum https://www.dartmouthheritagemuseum.ns.ca/product-category/event-tickets/

OR here:

Cole Harbour Farm Museum

https://coleharbourfarmmuseum.ca/product/our-heritage-ticket/?fbclid=IwAR2ms25PILXkdq4907Od4BOdGw5UljS2tzQ6exekBD02fMCQwKFqaIk0_Vw

There will be NO OPEN MIC at the next Helen Creighton Folk Club, instead we will have three very special guests who happen to be in town:

Here at last is the recording of marvellous Margo Carruthers as she performs Women (and the Power of) Song at Helen’s House, Evergreen, Dartmouth Heritage Museum.
Special thanks to David Farrell of duo The Strange Valentines for the video recording.

Finally! The Helen Creighton Collection is now ONLINE!

Helen Creighton: Folklife

https://archives.novascotia.ca/creighton/

Specia Online Event!

Tuesday, August 15, 6-8pm

This is a special event celebrating the collected works of folklorist, Dr. Helen Creighton. We are so excited!

August Break

Our monthly Helen Creighton Folk Club open mic will be taking a break for the month of August. We resume in September.

Stay tuned!

Jacques Mindreau
Open Mic

Open Mic too! Performers please sign up before 6:45pm

Helen Creighton Folk Club Special Event!

Beni Rowland (Ontario)
Celtic, Folk, Alternative
&
Alasdair Roberts (Scotland)
with Pete Johnston & Mairi Morrison
Scottish & British Isles Trad
Special Event, Special Guests!

Helen Creighton Folk Club Open Mic

Featured Artists:

C.A. & Sonny
C.A. and Sonny from Ottawa

Helen Creighton Folk Club Open Mic

New Venue! Evergreen House, Dartmouth Heritage Museum, 26 Newcastle Street, Dartmouth, NS

May 4th, 2023 from 7pm – 9pm

Performers, please arrive before 6:45 to sign up.

Featured Artist: Old Beef Stringband

Old Beef Stringband
Old Beef Stringband

Apirl 6, 2023

Ian Van Der Wee

Due to a scheduling conflict, we were unable to reschedule Old Beef Stringband.

Thursday, March 2, 2023

Christ Church, corner of Octerloney and Wentworth streets in Dartmouth, NS. 

Open Mic format, 7-9pm. Performers, please sign up before 6:45pm.

Cost: Free will donation

Featured Artists: Old Beef Stringband

Check out their video clip in our video spotlight on this page.

Old Beef Stringband

Help Save the Dartmouth Heritage Museum! Deadline February 17th.

Find out more: https://www.helencreighton.org/help-save-the-dartmouth-heritage-museum/

Grants-In-Aid

deadline: February 28, 2023

Have a folk related project in mind? we may be able to help: https://www.helencreighton.org/activities/grants-in-aid/

Helen Creighton Folk Club

Our next featured artist is Jenny Lapp. see her video on this page.

Open Mic format, 7-9pm. Performers, please sign up before 6:45pm.

Cost: Free will donation

Jenny Lapp featured at the Helen Creighton Folk Club, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.

Helen Creighton Folk Club

The popular Helen Creighton Folk Club resumes for the New Year on Thursday, January 12, 2023 at Christ Church, corner of Octerloney and Dundas streets in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.

Open Mic format, 7-9pm. Performers, please sign up before 6:45pm.

Cost: Free will donation

Special Guest: Owen Steel

It’s’ Giving Tuesday on November 29th!

As a non-profit charitable organization, The Helen Creighton Folklore Society relies on your support to keep it’s programs running successfully. 

Please consider a tax deductible donation to help support the following important programs:

Music Festivals for Music Students

Each year the HCFS offers awards for folk music and speech categories to provincial music festivals for students of music in Nova Scotia. Currently, music festivals occur in Annapolis Valley, Lunenburg County, New Glasgow, Queens County, Truro, and the Kiwanis Festivals in Halifax and Sydney. In any given year, there can be one or more folk categories in various age groups per festival and the Society provides an award in the form of a small honorarium. We provide as much support as donations will allow. It is such a joy to support students who perform folk songs and music particularly of material in the Helen Creighton Collection.

Grants-In-Aid

The Grants in Aid program is for folklore researchers and those interested in pursuing folk related projects in Atlantic Canada. The aid provided is up to $1000 depending on donations raised by the Society. The GIA program funds a variety of researchers such as authors, musicians, folklore students, community museums and historians for projects such as books, oral history collecting, oral storytelling recordings, traditional music, traditional dance, folk craft, etc…The Grant is administered by the Helen Creighton Folklore Society and applications are reviewed in consultation with a Grants-In-Aid Committee consisting of experts in the folklore, history and music communities.

Please donate to the Helen Creighton Folklore Society at Canada Helps! from now until November 29th.

The first five $100 donations will receive your choice of two Helen Creighton products for free, plus a Fred Redden recording.

The Dusty Halos at Folk Club!

Coming up next for Helen Creighton Folk Club: The Dusty Halos! This event is also an open mic. Performers, please arrive before 6:45 to sign up.

Please note that the venue has changed from the Hall to the Church. The Church address is 61 Dundas Street, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia (corner of Dundas and Octerloney).

Cost: Free will donation towards the Society’s work. Sponsored by the Helen Creighton Folklore Society and Big Turnip Records.

Giving Tuesday is November 29, 2022. Please consider giving to the Helen Creighton Folklore Society.

The Helen Creighton Folk Club presents The Dusty Halos
The Dusty Halos will be featured at the Helen Creighton Folk Club

Here it is! the video from the concert: Helen and Pete. if you missed it, watch it here. If you were there, watch it again!

Helen and Pete Concert: celebrating the lifelong friendship of Helen Creighton and Pete Seeger.

Coming up at Helen Creighton Folk Club is the darling duo, The Strange Valentines!

The Strange Valentines

Many thanks to everyone who attended the Helen and Pete concert. It was a memorable night of stories and songs. It sure was nice to see everyone in person and to hear everyone singing along!

McMillan’s Camp Boys at Helen Creighton Folk Club

The ’Boys’ have been regulars at the Folk Club from the beginning. Their music is in the style of Appalachian Folk with great harmonies. A show not to be missed!

Get your tickets here: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/421747868227
Helen’s Birthday Tea
Helen Creighton Folk Club
We’re back!!! Helen Creighton Folk Club featuring Amy Lou Keeler. Open Mic too.

Ghosts!
Kids! Do you know a scary story?
Ghost Story Writing Contest for Kids!

Forerunners are warnings of impending death.
Forerunners are warnings of impending death.

Congratulations to Bev Lamb!

Bev Lamb is a supporter of the Helen Creighton Folklore Society and he is often seen at our events including our new Folk Club open mic.
Bev sometimes features songs and folklore from the Helen Creighton Collection on his radio show, Touchstone, and he has interviewed members of the Society on its varied folk programs, events and recordings.

Bev has just received the NCRA Community Radio Award in the Folk catogory. Bev has been at CKDU Radio as a programmer since 1985. you can catch his show every Saturday from 10am-12pm.
Thank you Bev for your continued support over the years. Congratulations on a well deserved recognition!

Folk club featuring Basil
The Helen Creighton Folklore Society requests your help with our Giving Challenge.
For the month of June, every $1 you give enters us to win $20,000 from @CanadaHelps.
With your support, we’ll be able to increase our Grants-In-Aid program and help others to collect, preserve and promote community and cultural projects. Donate here.

Coming up!

This special folk event will present featured performers followed by an open mic. Doors open at 6:30pm. Event starts at 7pm. Performers, please arrive by 6:45 to sign up.

Cost: Free Will Donation towards the featured performer and the Society’s work.

The Lunenburg County Music Festival is pleased to announce the following:

There were 4 classes of performances devoted to songs from the Helen Creighton collection:

10 years & under, 14 years & under,16 years & under, 18 years & under

Featuring a total of 8 entrants.

The two highest placements in these classes were:

Junior: Breton Hayden, performed “Green Bushes”

Senior: Sofia Andreu, performed “Mary Hamilton”

The Helen Creighton Folklore Society would like to congratulate Breton and Sofia, recipients of the Helen Creighton Award! Thank you!

The Helen Creighton Folklore Society sends our appreciation to all the participants for performing songs from the Helen Creighton Collection. It’s so important to honour the songs of our ancestors.

The Helen Creighton Award is given annually for performances of material from the Helen Creighton Collection at Nova Scotia Music Festivals for Students.

Helen Creighton Folk Club!

This premiere folk event will present featured performers followed by an open mic. Doors open at 6:30pm. Event starts at 7pm. Performers, please arrive by 6:45 to sign up.

Cost: Free Will Donation towards the featured performer and the Society’s work.

Open Mic Event!
Helen Creighton Folk Club

Celebrating African Heritage Month!

Dr. Helen Creighton during her lifetime career of collecting folk songs and folklore from the Maritimes recorded many songs from Nova Scotia’s Black communities. Some of the highlights of those field recordings from the 40s, 50s and 60s are complied in an album called “Sankofa Songs: A Legacy of Roots and Rhythm”, African Nova Scotia Songs.

Sankofa Songs
Sankofa Songs CD

Bandcamp digital recording

Strange Valentines

The Helen Creighton Folklore Society is pleased to receive a generous donation from the Strange Valentines!

The Strange Valentines are Australian David Farrel and Nova Scotian Janet Mills. They just released a new album called Heroines and Scoundrels on Bandcamp.

The album honours the collections of Helen Creighton and Roy McKenzie with the Strange Valentines’ versions of songs, such as, the romantic, Broken Ring, and the tricky, Dick Turpin and the Lawyer.

“The stories of these songs are amazing, I can’t believe how much drama there is. You’ve got romance, you’ve got bushrangers and highwaymen, there’s serial killers, poisonings, it’s kind of incredible. And the strong defiant women of the time, really something. The stories pull you in, I can easily see how a night of entertainment in the 1700s would have been absolutely compelling. We knew we had to do something with these songs” [Janet on song research] 

Congratulations and a big thank you to the Strange Valentines!

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT

The Helen Creighton Folklore Society regrets to inform everyone that the Grants In Aid Program has been postponed until 2023. 

Due to various impacts from the pandemic, Grants In Aid will not be accepting applications or fulfilling any grants for 2022. 

We apologize for any inconvenience. Please check back here or the Grants In Aid page for any updates.

In memory of Paul Healy

Paul Healy was a friend and supporter of the Helen Creighton Folklore Society. Recently a donation to the Society was made in memory of Paul. 

He liked to tell stories and sing at our open mic’s. He had a great sense of humour, a love of puns, and a joy of life that was contagious.

Paul will be greatly missed and fondly remembered.

A Poem and Heartfelt Message From WTF:What the Folk

Hi everyone,
Well… we’ve certainly been through a much longer hiatus than any of us would have even thought possible back in February 2019. Yes… it’s been that long since we’ve gathered for music and merrymaking at Wright House, our home away from home, in Halifax’s south end every second Friday of the month.
But… as hard as it has been for us humans… we are capable of understanding the rationale behind our absence but what about Wright House? Are historic houses capable of feelings? Of course they are… especially on Christmas Eve when disbelief is suspended and all things are possible.
With that premise in mind…I have penned you a poem (see below) reflecting the spirit of Christmasses past; embracing the spirit of friends who have passed; sharing the spirit of love and goodwill that is within each and every one of us. And within each and every thing… especially on Christmas Eve 🙂
Xo Margo
A heartfelt Merry Christmas from the Helen Creighton Folklore Society and What The Folk!

Read Poem: WTF Night Before Christmas

Read and Listen: Oxen on Christmas Eve

Read and Listen: The Cherry Tree Carol

Read: Christmas Crossing: an illuminating story

Happy Holidays for Leo Guyette

A lovely Christmas present was given to Leo by his family via donations to the Helen Creighton Folklore Society. Leo is a regular audience member at our open mic sessions at WTF: What the Folk (before we had to suspend gatherings due to the pandemic).
We miss seeing Leo, his smile and enthusiasm. Hopefully, we can all gather again for WTF in 2022.

A very Merry Christmas to you, Leo!

Giving Tuesday November 30, 2021!

Well, you did it! You made our very first Giving Tuesday a success and donated more than our goal of $1000. There are still a couple of donations to arrive yet for a grand total and we are so thankful for anything you can donate at anytime.
Thank you so much for being a folk friend.

Be a Friend anytime. Its easy to donate and support the Helen Creighton Folklore Society.

Audience at WTF: What the Folk open mic
WTF: What the Folk open mic at the Local Women’s Council House, Halifax 2014-2015

WTF: What the Folk!

WTF open mic is on a long hiatus because of the pandemic. We tried having a WTF outside in the summer but the weather didn’t cooperate. We had hoped to have a WTF in November 2021 but alas, it did not work out. We will try again when restrictions are lifted. WTF will be back! So stay tuned.