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Personal and Family Collections
Many British Columbia archives and museums have collections which include personal and family papers and photographs.
The British Columbia Archives. Search the online catalogue for personal and family names.
675 Belleville Street,
Victoria, BC V8W 9W2
BC Archives telephone: 250-387-1952
The Cloverdale Branch, Surrey Public Library, Surrey, BC has a collection of British Columbia genealogy and history books.
5642 - 176A Street
Surrey, BC V3S 4G9
The British Columbia Genealogical Society's Walter Draycott Library's collections include some family papers and many British Columbia biographies, histories and family histories. See the Library catalogues on the British Columbia Genealogical Society's website. Many of the BC publications have been name indexed. Contact the Library for more information.
The BCGS Walter Draycott Library
211-12837 76th Avenue Surrey, BC
Call to check hours before visiting.
Telephone or fax: 604 502-9119
MemoryBC, British Columbia's Archival Information Network has searchable descriptions of many archival collections from around British Columbia.
West Beyond the West includes searchable digitized content from a number of British Columbia archives (Campbell River Museum & Archives, Salt Spring Island Archives, Simon Fraser University, University of British Columbia, University of Victoria, Vancouver Public Library, West Vancouver Memorial Library).
Guides to British Columbia Research
A recent published guide to Canadian genealogy research includes a chapter on British Columbia.
- Sherry Irvine and Dave Obee, Finding Your Canadian Ancestors, A Beginner's Guide. Provo, Utah: Ancestry Publications, 2007.
- The Genealogy Department of the Cloverdale Library, Surrey BC has a Britsh Columbia Research Guide online. (Published April 2011).
An index to many published biographies, census records (1881–1891), directories to 1913, genealogies, local histories, and vital records in newspapers for British Columbia is:
- Elliot, Noel Montgomery, ed. The Western Canadians, 1600–1900: An Alphabetized Directory of the People, Places, and Vital Dates. 3 vols. Toronto: Genealogical Research Library, 1994. (Family History Library book 971 D22w.) Indexes about 300,000 names from various sources for the provinces of Alberta, British Columbia, Northwest Territories, Saskatchewan, and Yukon (also includes Alaska). Sources are listed at the end of each volume.
Writing and Sharing Your Family History
Sharing your own family history is valuable for several reasons:
- It helps you see gaps in your own research and raises opportunities to find new information.
- It helps other researchers progress in researching ancestors you share in common.
- It draws other researchers to you who already have information about your family that you do not yet possess.
- It draws together researchers with common interests, sparking collaboration opportunities. For instance, researchers in various localities might choose to do lookups for each other in remote repositories. Your readers may also share photos of your ancestors that you have never seen before.
- The British Columbia Genealogical Society has an annual Family History Book Award to encourage family history research and writing in and about British Columbia, Canada. Books chosen must be written by a British Columbia author or relate to British Columbia family history.
- See also:
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