Accessing The Archives
We are committed to assisting everyone who contacts us, but because we are a volunteer-based operation with limited hours of operation, it can sometimes take time to process an individual request.
Requests for information may be made in person, by telephone or through writing. Every effort shall be made to assist visitors, however, Archives staff reserve the right to limit research on behalf of a patron if it requires an inordinate amount of time.
Please note for non-residents a fee is charged to cover administration costs.
Some of the Archives holdings may not be immediately accessible for the following reasons:
- Records are subject to the provisions of the Personal Information Protection Act of British Columbia.
- Access restrictions placed by the donor.
- Unprocessed records which may contain restricted information.
- The records are too fragile or damaged to be handled or copied for viewing
Reproductions of materials are available conditional upon any donor or copyright restrictions and the fragility of the material. Users will be charged fees to offset costs associated with providing the reproduction(s).
We require all researchers to register by completing an Information Request form. The personal information collected on the form is only used for purposes of responding to the inquiry, keeping a record of the materials accessed by the researcher which may be of use to them in the future and generating statistics containing non-personal data (i.e. data which does not contain personally identifiable information.)
Archival material is unique and irreplaceable, therefore, researchers are asked to observe the following procedures when handling them. We reserve the right to refuse or remove materials from visitors who do not comply with these regulations or who are disruptive.
- Observe directions given by staff when using accessing archival materials. Ask for assistance if needed.
- Only pencils or an electronic device can be used for note-taking in the archives. No pens, markers, etc.
- No food or drink is permitted in the Reference Services Room.
- Please wash your hands before handling materials, and avoid applying any lotion or hand-sanitizer prior to your visit, if possible.
- Only use one box and one folder at a time, to avoid getting materials mixed up!
- Handle all items gently on a flat surface and use any supports given to you by the Archivist. Report any damage to staff immediately.
- You may be asked to wear gloves when using material that is susceptible to damage.
- Avoid “flipping” through books or pages – old paper can be very brittle & will break if handled roughly.
- Removal of staples and pins is prohibited. If fasteners must be removed in order to read documents, ask staff for assistance. Report problems to staff.
- No archival or library material may be removed from the Reference Services Room.
- The Reference Services Room is a quiet study area, therefore, conversation should be kept at an appropriate level and cell phones should be either turned off or set to silent mode.