Vancouver Public Library Special Collections, 350 West Georgia Street
Vancouver Public Library Northwest History Collection
Vancouver Public Library Special Collections maintains a heritage collection concerned with the history of British Columbia. Materials focus on the early history and exploration of British Columbia and the Northwest coast, the Yukon prior to 1898, early Oregon and Washington to 1846, Alaska prior to 1867, and the Klondike gold rush. The collection is particularly strong in the history of Vancouver and the Lower Mainland. Also emphasized is the history of the First Nations people of British Columbia as well as the history of ethnic groups. The Northwest Collection contains about 27,000 books, serials, maps, audio-visual materials (video and audio cassettes, CD-ROMs, DVDs), microforms (microfiche and microfilm) and about 3,000 pamphlets and ephemera, covering the history of the Pacific Northwest. Dates range from the late 1780s to current titles on British Columbia.
The Northwest Collection also includes early British Columbia newspapers on microfilm.
Access to the collection is provided through the Library catalogue for books, maps, government publications, directories and audio-visual materials. The Northwest Subject Card Index provides access to pamphlets, newspaper and magazine articles, book chapters, ephemera, and information about ships and shipping. The card index was closed in August 1998 - citations to material indexed after August 1998 can be found online in the <a target=newpage href="http://www3.vpl.ca/nm/cn/CNsimpleSearch.htm">British Columbia Index</a>.
The library has a comprehensive set of British Columbia City Directories, from 1860-2000 (1996 for Vancouver), available on microfim. The directories from 1860 to 1935 have now been put online and are available at:
<a target=newpage href="http://www.vpl.ca/bccd/index.php">www.vpl.ca/bccd/index.php</a>
Special Collections Hours: Monday-Saturday, 10:00am-6:00pm and Sunday: 11 am-6:00 pm.
Created by BCANS Coordinator, June 5, 2011.
Revised by BCANS Coordinator, June 6, 2011; January 21, 2015.