The Lake Country Museum and Archives has recently completed a major digitization project of archival records, making them available to the public at no cost through the museum’s website.
Life Histories: Historical Manuscripts of the District of Lake Country, B.C., funded through the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre’s British Columbia History Digitization Program, are a series of original manuscripts which describe aspects of Lake Country’s history from the late 1800s to the 1950s.
The first 47 manuscripts are posted on the website, and include more than 1,200 pages of primary source documents. Each manuscript is displayed as a photograph of the original document and also as an easily readable and text-searchable print document, one that can be located through the Internet using Google search. The full manuscripts are downloadable in pdf format from the Lake Country Museum’s website, www.lakecountrymuseum.com.
The following excerpt is from one of the manuscripts now available, Record of a Life, by Northcote Henry Caesar:
In 1899 Valentine and myself divided up, He taking boat Wanderer & cash
Taking up a piece of land near Bear Creek with very nice bay
Quite sheltered from all winds, But he soon sold the Wanderer
Gave up his land and put up a stoppinghouse on the Vernon Road
Where the stage between Vernon and Kelowna stopped to change horses
Messrs Johnsen and Carswell bought his boat the Wanderer
And took it to Long Lake for towing logs from Woods Lake and odd jobs
This significant project has created a database of electronic text records of Lake Country’s history, and reduces physical contact and possible damage of the original manuscripts. It was developed to increase the accessibility of the Museum’s archival collections to the greater community and to provide access to primary source material for researchers.
Dr. Duane Thomson, president of the Lake Country Heritage and Cultural Society, stated, “Ì am immensely pleased that these documents are now more accessible to the public. This project represents a great step forward for the Lake Country Museum and we hope will be of significant value to historians studying the development and growth of the Lake Country community.
Life Histories are a continuing project and additional manuscripts will be added to the museum website database each year.