News Flash

City News

Posted on: January 18, 2022

More Archival Records Available Online after a Busy 2021

Archival Pic of 1948 Flood City Archives Annual Report

COQUITLAM, B.C., Jan. 18, 2022 – The past met the present at the City of Coquitlam Archives in 2021, as the continuing pandemic led to more history being accessed online.

The past year saw a significant increase in traffic on the Quest online search portal, while Archives staff focused on improving database descriptions to facilitate research, digitizing photos and documents, posting online exhibits and assisting the public and City staff. Highlights from the year’s activities can be found in the Archives Annual Report 2021 posted at www.coquitlam.ca/cityarchives.

2021 By the Numbers

Archives activities in 2021 included the following:

  • 58 per cent increase in traffic on the Quest online search portal from 2020;
  • 60,671 page views on Quest from 11,320 viewers in Canada, United States, United Kingdom, India, Brazil and Australia (to date, Quest has received more than 280,000 page views by over 31,000 unique visitors);
  • 572 archival descriptions added to the Quest online database;
  • Over 200 reference requests from the public and City staff;
  • 29 researchers reviewed archival materials on-site;
  • 23 accessions (acquired archival materials) completed; and
  • Three new online exhibits produced.

Public Outreach

The Archives continued to raise public awareness of its work, collections and local history in 2021. One example is three new online exhibits that highlighted the Great Flood of 1948, the art of archival processing and the 1991 B.C. Summer Games. All online exhibits (17 in total) can be viewed at www.coquitlam.ca/onlineexhibit.

Archives staff also curated an exhibit at Coquitlam Public Library in summer 2021 featuring artwork the City had commissioned in the early 2000s by well-known artist Barb Wood. As well, the popular weekly Throwback Thursday (#TBT) posts highlighting archival holdings continued on the City’s Facebook, Instagram and Twitter channels. Staff have posted more than 350 Throwback Thursday posts to date.

Acquisition Highlights

The Archives received 23 donations of materials in 2021, including: 

  • Pen and ink prints, drawings and mockups featuring Coquitlam by Barb Wood;
  • Scrapbooks documenting Dr. Thomas G. Gaunt’s career at Crease Clinic and the Provincial Mental Hospital, Essondale;
  • Westwood Racetrack yearbooks, newsletters and other records created by the Sports Car Club of BC and collected by Ken Haywood;
  • Photos taken by Craig Hodge from his days as a local newspaper photographer; and
  • Various records from ArtsConnect Tri-Cities Arts Council, Community Planning Library, Hoy Scott Watershed Society, Burquitlam Community Association and Canadian Federation of University Women.

Plans for 2022

Many of the Archives’ existing activities will continue into 2022, including producing new online exhibits, continuing to build a social media presence and facilitating the transfer of historical records to the Archives from the community and City. Preservation efforts will include a new digital preservation program and ongoing digitizing of collections with conservation concerns. 

About the City of Coquitlam Archives

Founded in 2013, the City of Coquitlam Archives serves a dual purpose: to preserve and to make accessible records of enduring value to the community. The Archives continually works to raise its profile to encourage people to use its services and discover the trove of records in the collection. Outreach includes a series of online exhibits, weekly Throwback Thursday posts (#TBT )on the City’s social media platforms and a small collection of historic photos at www.historypin.org.

Thousands of archival records, including hundreds of historical images, are available in digital form through the Archives’ online search portal Quest at www.searcharchives.coquitlam.ca.   

The Archives is open for drop-in visits Tuesday to Thursday from noon until 4 p.m. An appointment is recommended for those wishing to consult archival material. 

Contact 604-927-3900 or archives@coquitlam.ca to book an appointment.

Media contact
Jamie Sanford 
City Archivist
City of Coquitlam
604-927-3900
archives@coquitlam.ca 

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