Collection - Ernest A. Woods collection

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Ernest A. Woods collection

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Physical description area

Physical description

167 photographs
1 certificate
1 postcard

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Archival description area

Name of creator

Biographical history

Ernest Alfred Woods was born in Carlton, Nottinghamshire, England on March 25, 1882, the son of Henry Charles and Clara Woods. In 1906 he travelled to Canada and settled in Victoria where he remained until July 1907 when he moved to Prince Rupert to enter employment with the Grand Trunk Pacific Railroad as a confidential clerk and private secretary to James H. Bacon, harbour engineer. Woods continued with this job until 1909 when he accepted the position of confidential secretary to David H. Hays, sole agent for the G.T.P. Railroad Town Development Co. Ltd, helping Hays conduct the sale of the remainder of the town lots in Prince Rupert. In December 1909 Woods married Elizabeth Saunders of Waddington, Lincoln, England and in 1910 built a home on Borden Street. Elizabeth was a nurse during the First World War. Woods was the first president of the Sons of England Benefit Society and was choirmaster and organist of First United Church, which opened in 1908. He was appointed the first city clerk in June 1910 after the city was incorporated on March 10, 1910. The clerk position also involved the duties of city treasurer and purchasing agent. Wood retained the position until 1912 when the offices were separated and remained city clerk until 1923 when the family moved to Seattle. During the Second World War, he served in the Corps of Military Staff Clerks in Vancouver and Victoria. Woods wore a patch over his left eye because he had lost his eye when he was a child He died in Victoria on July 8, 1952 at the age of 69. He and his wife Lizzie had two daughters, Doreen born September 27, 1912 and Enid born February 11, 1917.

Custodial history

Nadyne Elizabeth Hindle, the grand daughter of Ernest and Elizabeth Woods, donated the collection to the archives on September 1, 2005. Most of the photographs were taken by Woods and some by other early photographers in Prince Rupert.

Scope and content

The fonds consists of photographs of early Prince Rupert showing the building of the town site from the first pile driven to build the wharf in 1906, the first grade of the railway in 1908, the first GTP passenger train, and scenes of early Prince Rupert and the surrounding area up until to the 1920s. There are photographs of people in Prince Rupert, including family and colleagues, nurses during WWI, the drydock, planes, parades, boats, steamships, reservoirs, the Skeena River, Ocean Falls, the cold storage plant, football games, picnics, fire trucks, one photograph of native children in Metlakatla, and a logging camp at Alice Arm. It also includes a certificate of appointment from when Ernest was made a Notary Public on September 21, 1909 and a postcard received by Ernest in Prince Rupert in July 1907, mailed from England June 3, 1907.

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Description record identifier

2005.039.100- 167

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Created on November 25, 2013
Revised by BCANS Coordinator, Feb 14, 2014

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