Our town became Sexsmith in honour of David Sexsmith, a trapper, and trader who first came to the area in 1898 and set up a stopping place just north of the present town in 1912. Sexsmith re-established his store and Post Office at the present town site in 1916.
The Town has an active Museum Society who have restored the Paszkowski house, the livery barn, and the blacksmith’s shop, as well as returning the NAR station to town. There is also a rail car sitting beside the NAR Station on a short track.
From the May long weekend to September’s Labour Day weekend, from 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., the Museum Society has two employees who will guide you through the Paszkowski house and the Blacksmith Shop.
After visiting the house and shop, you may want to walk around our 1920’s and 30’s downtown.
The Paszkowski House
A pre-World War II farm House, donated by the Paszkowski family and moved from their farm just east of Sexsmith to its present location on 99th Avenue, across from the Museum.
It was Walter’s home, growing up. Walter is one of Sexsmith’s most famous sons and below is a bit of information on him.
Mr. Walter Paszkowski’s political career started when he served as a school trustee. He was Councillor of Sexsmith from 1979 – 1982. In 1983, he became Mayor of Sexsmith and served in that capacity until 1988. In 1989, Walter successfully ran for provincial office, serving as Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development, Minister of Transportation and Utilities, and Minister of Municipal Affairs. He was involved in a number of international missions to promote trade with Canada, during this time. Since retiring from provincial politics in March 2001, he has worked for the County of Grande Prairie No. 1 as their economic development officer.
His family’s home is a definite asset to Sexsmith.
The Blacksmith Shop had been approved as a Registered Historic Resource by the Alberta Culture minister, which means it has been designated as a Provincial Historical Site.
One of the first buildings in Sexsmith was this blacksmith shop, an essential element of any farming community. It was acquired by the Town of Sexsmith in 1986 and was restored under the auspices of the Sexsmith Museum Society, which continues to maintain and interpret it. With its early equipment in place, it affords visitors a unique opportunity to see how this most critical local industry was conducted during the early and middle years of the twentieth century.