Image courtesy Cortes island Museum

The Cortes Island Museum’s virtual archives

The Cortes Island Museum‘s virtual archives went online on March 30th.

photo courtesy Cortes Island Museum and Archives

Managing Director Jane Newman explained. “It is quite a big feat for the Museum and it has been a long time coming. There have been two very significant grants from Library & Archives Canada. We’ve digitized over 4,000 of our photographs, records from the collection and they are all viewable for free.” 

Go to Cortes, look under Archives in the top menu and use the search engine.

A few quick searches produced:

  • for “fishing” – 121 photographs which can be enlarged to full size, 9 oral recordings, and the index cards for 22 written records.
  • for “Squirrel Cove” – 70 photographs, a recording, and 17 index cards for texts
  • for “Mike Manson” – 35 photographs, 3 recordings and 8 index cards.

Newman added, “The history albums that many people look at when they come into the museum are not part of the archives collection. They are copies of photographs. They are all in that database, so it is pretty exciting for us and people on Cortes Island who may never have been to the museum, and didn’t have time to dig in and spend a few hours here with help from one of the volunteers or staff. You can do it from the comfort of your home; and you can do it from the around the world.”

She pointed out that this also creates value for museum curators, both off island and here on Cortes Island. 

“It opens up the door for us to be able to cross reference all kinds of stories that may have small aspects of the bigger picture that we might be trying to express in one of our exhibits or a talk that we might give,” said Newman. 

She added that over the past few years, Jill Milton, Donna McLaren and Valerie Wernet have worked very hard on all of this. Maeve Le Duc did the recent scanning. 

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