The Society


The mandate of the Helen Creighton Folklore Society is to encourage and promote work that reflects the diverse folk culture of the Maritimes as exemplified by the work begun by Dr. Helen Creighton.


The Helen Creighton Folklore Festival was launched in 1989 to honour Dr. Creighton at her 90th birthday celebration. The Festival, created through the efforts of her friends and the city of Dartmouth, celebrated the life and work of “Canada’s First Lady of Folklore.” The event was held each fall at the Alderney Gate Public Library in Dartmouth until 1993, and then at the Halifax Citadel from 1994-6. It featured music, dance, demonstrations of traditional crafts, and storytelling. The Festival sponsored a national competition for a commissioned piece of work based on folk music from the Helen Creighton collection. It also co-sponsored, with the Alderney Gate Public Library, a ghost-story writing contest for young people.

The Helen Creighton Folklore Festival Society of Dartmouth changed its name in 1997, and was registered as The Helen Creighton Folklore Society. Also in 1997, The Helen Creighton Folklore Society merged with The Dr. Helen Creighton Memorial Foundation. The Foundation had been established by the Province of Nova Scotia in 1990 at the University of King’s College.

In 1999, The Fred Redden Society for Traditional Music was also incorporated into The Helen Creighton Folklore Society.

In 2013, the Nova Scotia Community Foundation created the Helen Creighton Folklore Society Fund.

It is the annual endowment from this fund along with donations that allows The Helen Creighton Folklore Society to provide annual grants to folklore researchers and awards to Provincial Music Festivals. Other activities depend upon donations and volunteer support.

Board Updates

The HCFS has an active Board and volunteers. The Board meets on a regular basis and has various focus’s areas. A few of our latest projects in development are…

  • Researching material in the Helen Creighton Collection for possible publication.
  • Seeking out vocal, choir, musical arrangements of Helen’s collected materials.
  • Collaborating with like-minded organizations such as The Dartmouth Heritage Museum and Big Turnip Records.
  • Outreach to Schools:
  • Workshops and Presentations on folklore, songs, stories, Helen Creighton. To book, Contact Us.
  • Assisting with the online organization of the Helen Creighton Collection in the Nova Scotia Archives.
  • Supporting local heritage via partnerships

HCFS looking for assistance in these Focus Areas

If you have a skill or talent, please consider volunteering

  • Education: finding ways to connect with schools and museums.
  • Website /Social Media
  • Fundraising/Sponsors/Donations
  • Partnerships and Collaborations
  • Concerts/Festivals
  • Youth involvement: upcoming musicians, singers, storytellers, traditional crafters
  • Celebrating various cultural traditions, folklore, stories, songs, craft

Want to learn more or get involved? Contact Us.

Annual General Meeting:

The Society’s AGM is in March.

Board Members 2024-25

  • Jon Stone – Chair
  • Cindy Campbell-Stone – Vice Chair, Social Media, Website
  • Margo Carruthers – Secretary
  • Pat Dickson – Treasurer
  • Clary Croft – Past Chair, Archives, Ghost Story Writing Contest
  • James Morrison – Chair of the Grants-in-Aid Committee
  • Joleen Gordon – Traditional Craft
  • Mickie Zinck – Creighton Family Representative
  • Bob Williamson – Music Festivals
  • Martha Healy – Education-schools
  • Rosalee Peppard Lockyer – Heritage Ambassador
  • Dylan Jewers – Helen Creighton Folk Club
  • Linda Nicholl – Member-at-large
  • Joe Pitre – Member-at-large
  • Janet Mills – Trad Night
  • Ceo Gaudet – ISTIA
  • Rob Hutten – ISTIA
  • Elinor Benjamin – Storytellers Circle of Halifax
  • Maria Weaver – Member-at-large
  • David Farrell – Trad Night