Interactive Alberta: Church history on an iPad
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The Church History Department has released a new app for the iPad that showcases the history of the Church in southern Alberta, Canada. The app highlights historical sites through photos, videos and audio. Stories about early Latter-day Saints in that area come to life through interactive digital technology.
Getting into the app is easy. It's free and downloads onto an iPad in less than a minute. Upon entering the app, the user will be looking at a map of Alberta enlarged to show four Mormon settlements. Flashing points call attention to the cities of Cardston, Magrath, Raymond and Stirling. Users can make their selections by touching the city they want to explore.
Touching "Cardston" brings up a city map with three locations to explore: the Cardston Alberta Temple, the Card home and Cardston itself. Touching the temple icon brings up a detailed page about the temple including text, photos, a narrated video and audio information. The Cardston location has photos with brief descriptions. Touch on the photo and it enlarges with more text about that specific location. The Cardston home location has a video and black and white photos from the early settlement that take the user on a journey through time. It's easier to understand how the pioneers lived with the help of multimeida features like video.
"Investigating Magrath" reveals a single location to explore called Irrigation Park. Audio narration describes the settlement and gives a brief history. A two-minute video goes into detail about a historical project to irrigate the desert land and describes how Mormon men were given jobs to help build a canal. Photos and text describe the history of Magrath and the Galt Canal compared to how it was at that time and how it appears today.
"Exploring Raymond" within the app is particularly interesting. The only location to see is the Old Second Ward Meetinghouse. Audio narration gives a background story on the settlement in about four minutes. A video about Sugar City talks about Jesse Knight's sons being sent to survey the land. Photos and text tell the story of Jesse Knight, the Raymond Chapel and the desire of people from different Mormon towns in Alberta to be selected for the site of the future temple.
In "Stirling" one location is available for exploration. Touching the historic marker reveals a four-minute audio track about the town. A video shows how the Saints put the principles of community, cooperation and faith together into planning the four towns in Alberta. Photos and text explain Theodore Bradley's life and his obedience to Wilford Woodruff by taking a group of settlers to Alberta. More photos and text show the first settlers in Stirling and information about the town.
Two final sections can be explored by touching the icons at the bottom of the iPad app. One icon explores the points of interest about the Mormon settlements. It's helpful for those who want a quick overview. Another icon at the bottom of the app called "People" gives a quick overview of the men and women associated with the southern Alberta area. Tapping here will give a bullet list of these people and their bios.
Overall, the Church History Department has released an app that explains the history of these important Mormon settlements in this part of Canada. The app is available in English and can be downloaded directly through iTunes at no cost.