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Official Blog of the Chilliwack Museum and Archives

Archive for the ‘Donations’ Category

Facial Recognition – Archives Style

Posted on: July 25th, 2018 by Tristan Evans

Unidentified group with big smiles [2016.032.002.0786]

Big tech companies and government agencies have the advantage of using facial recognition software to help them identify individuals from digital images.  While I love a good conspiracy theory, I’ll break the myth and let you know that as a small community archives, we do not have such technology in our possession.  However, we here at the Chilliwack Museum and Archives have a secret tool that Google, Facebook, and large agencies do not have.  We have a great set of dedicated volunteers and a community that cares about preserving Chilliwack’s history.

 

Unknown individual doing something important [2016.032.002.0784]

 

Today I am going to tap into the community (you) and ask for help.  Throughout this blog you’ll notice photographs from a large collection.  The donor, I, and our volunteers have all tried to identify these remaining photographs from this large collection.  Unfortunately we have not had any luck.  This is when I ask you to kindly put on your archives hat and see if you recognize any of the individuals in these photos and/or maybe the event itself.

 

 

 

 

 

Looks like a charismatic speaker [2016.032.002.0787]

Any information you have on these photographs is appreciated.  Feel free to contact me directly if you recognize these photographs and I will gladly update our database.   You can find my contact information at the bottom of the blog post.  After you’ve looked at all the photographs of course.

 

 

 

 

 

Kids being patient [2016.032.002.0788]

Just three more photographs to go.  How about this fantastic family on the right with “smiling” kids?

 

 

 

 

 

 

More smiles [2016.032.002.0790]

Almost done.  How come this family is so lucky?  They appear in a few of these photographs!

 

 

 

 

 

Where is this store? I don’t know, do you? [2016.032.002.0791]

You made it to the final image… for now.  Recognize where this store is?

 

Thank you for looking.

 

Tristan Evans

[email protected]

604-792-5210 ext. 104

What’s Behind the Locked Doors?

Posted on: May 16th, 2018 by Tristan Evans

Today I would like to use this opportunity to promote a new event here at the Archives.  Starting this year we have been having free behind-the-scenes tours of the Chilliwack Archives.  The free tours are open to everyone and take place on the last Friday of the month.  Hint, May 25th for this month.  Each tour runs between 45 minutes to an hour.

 

Archivist Tristan Evans is pleased with the new sandwich board sign. Photo credit: Adrienne Rempel [February 6, 2018]

Are you curious what we are hiding behind those secret archive doors?  Ever wondered where I disappear to when you request to view a fonds or photograph?  Are you a long-time history nerd with serious questions and you want to know more about our local collections?  Come to the tour.  Are you brand new to the history field and just looking to see what all the hype is about at the Archives?  Come to the tour.  The tour is open to everyone, no previous research experience required.  Seriously, it is a really great opportunity.

 

Below is all the information you need:

 

Price: FREE!!!

Where: Evergreen Hall, Chilliwack Archives, 9291 Corbould Street, Chilliwack, BC V2P 4A6

When: Last Friday of every month at 3:00 PM

Reservation: Not required!  All you need to do is stop by the Archives at 3:00 PM

 

“I don’t always go on free tours, but when I do, it’s to visit the Chilliwack Archives”

-World’s Most Interesting Man

 

Archive Door protecting the secrets of the archive stacks. Photo credit: Tristan Evans [May 16, 2018]

I know that I’m not alone when I say I love visiting archives.  Sure museums are fun, but how often do you get to see behind the scenes?  You will be rewarded with the opportunity to explore how we catalogue and preserve archival records and cultural objects.  At most institutions you are lucky to peak behind an archive door and glimpse a view at the secrets of the archival world.  These glimpses into the mysterious world of an archivist are usually reserved for special occasions such as “archives week” or “culture week.”  Not here at the Chilliwack Museum and Archives.  We are very fortunate here in Chilliwack to have a large and diverse collection of archival records, artifacts, and cultural objects for a community of our size.  My job is to preserve these archival records; but also, to make them available to the community.  So please, stop by on the last Friday of every month, 3:00 PM, no RSVP!

 

Are you sold yet?  If not, here are a couple comments I’ve heard after our first three tours:

Newspapers… Boxes and boxes of newspapers. Photo credit: Tristan Evans [May 16, 2018]

“Good Tour”

“Great Tour”

“I really enjoyed that, thank you”

“Oh wow!  That was the greatest tour I have ever had in my entire life.  It totally changed my life.  Nothing can ever top this”

 

Okay… Maybe I slightly misquoted that last one and perhaps exaggerated a little bit.  In all seriousness though, these tours are great.  I really hope to keep them going and they are something that very few institutions offer.  Generally speaking, the public is forbidden to go behind-the-scenes of an archive.  These tours tear down those restrictions.  They make my job less of a mystery to you, the public, and they are a perfect opportunity for you to ask questions you may have about our collections or general Chilliwack community history.  I really hope to see you on May 25th or any other last Friday of the month.

Coming Home: F. W. Lee Painting Returns to Chilliwack

Posted on: April 11th, 2018 by Tristan Evans

In my last blog post, Frederick Walter Lee: the life of a Painter, Teacher, Photographer, Poet, Musician and Activist, I wrote about the unique life of one of Chilliwack’s most well-rounded artist.  Admittedly, my inspiration for this blog post came from a phone call I received earlier in 2018 from Beth McLean, an employee of the Provincial Archives of Saskatchewan.

 

“Chilliwack Sunset, 1937” Watercolour painting by F. W. Lee [2018.008]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To my surprise and delight, Beth had an original F. W. Lee watercolour painting and she wanted to donate the image to our Archives.  After a phone call, some brief email correspondence, and a completed deed-of-gift form, Beth kindly mailed us the watercolour image which we added to the Frederick Walter Lee fonds.

 

I asked Beth if she would be comfortable sharing her story for a future “Coming Home” blog piece on the painting that she donated.  Beth was happy to share how she came across the painting, found our institution, and decided to donate the painting to us.  Beth kindly shared the following story with us:

 

“I can tell you that it was a few summers ago when I stopped at a house where there was a garage sale on the driveway.  The painting’s quality and style caught my eye from several yards away as I was walking from the car.  I believe they were asking $2 and I could hardly believe my luck.  I definitely thought this was my Antiques Roadshow moment. 

 

When I got home, I searched for the artist online and came across the Chilliwack Archives collection description of one of Mr. Lee’s works.  Reading about his time in Saskatchewan was interesting as it possibly explained why the painting was at a garage sale in Regina, even though it was painted later in his life.  Perhaps he had made a friend here and the painting was a gift?

 

F. W. Lee painting a landscape mural, with two women and a man looking on. [P5352]

After a discussion with my Provincial Archivist, I contacted you [Chilliwack Museum and Archives] in hopes that your Archives would like the painting to come home.”

 

Nearly every archival record, artifact, and cultural object at the Chilliwack Museum and Archives is here because of donations from the community.  Often these donations come from local families, individuals, and organizations.  Increasingly in the digital age more donations significant to Chilliwack history are coming home from across the country or even as far away as England and Texas.

 

In order to preserve and tell Chilliwack’s history, we rely on the generosity of donors willing to part with their precious archival material.  I would like to personally thank all donors who have taken their time to stop by the Archives and donate material.