Crawford Dental Collection Gets a New Home

January 13, 2011

The Dentistry Canada Museum’s collection of over 1500 dental artifacts was officially presented to the Museum of Health Care at Kingston, Ontario, during a ceremony held in November.

The collection, now known as the “Dr. Ralph and Mrs. Olga Crawford Dental Collection,” represents an invaluable cross-section of dental equipment and practice procedures in Canada from the past 200 years.

Dr. Crawford, a past editor of JCDA and CDA president in 1984-85, began the collection as a dental student in the 1960s and later decorated his Winnipeg dental practice with the artifacts.

“Olga and I are absolutely thrilled with the Dental Collection’s new home,” said Dr. Crawford. “Since oral health is an integral part of overall health, it is ideal that dentistry’s proud past is displayed right alongside the other health disciplines within the Museum of Health Care at Kingston.”

The Dentistry Canada Fund (DCF), the Canadian charity for oral health for 15 years, invited Dr. Crawford and his wife Olga to establish the Dentistry Canada Museum at DCF’s Ottawa headquarters in 1997. When the DCF closed down its activities in 2008, the collection was offered to the Museum of Health Care at Kingston.

“The addition of the Crawford Dental Collection will not only benefit the museum's growing health and health care collections, but also ensure that this significant legacy of Canadian dental history remains a rich and publicly accessible national resource,” said Dr. James Low, executive director of the Museum of Health Care.

The Crawford Dental Collection will be ready for public display beginning in the spring of 2011, once renovations at the Kingston museum are completed.