Terry Reksten Memorial Fund

Terry Reksten


The Friends of the BC Archives (FBCA) administers the Terry Reksten Memorial Fund, which honours the popular BC historian who passed away in 2001. Terry Reksten brought the history of British Columbia alive through her best-selling books, including Rattenbury (1978), More English Than the English (1988; reprinted 2001), and The Dunsmuir Saga (1991). Her last book, An Illustrated History of British Columbia (2001) was published just two weeks before her death at the age of 59.

Terry championed community archives and drew extensively on them in her many publications. On her passing, the Reksten family asked the FBCA to establish a memorial fund in Terry’s name, to honour her and the work she did for the preservation of the history of BC. Thanks to several significant donations, the Fund has grown substantially since it was established in 2002.


The Terry Reksten Memorial Fund offers two (2) grants of $1000 each to a community archives, historical association, or museum. The grants are intended to assist in acquiring, preserving, indexing and/or disseminating archival material relating to BC and its regions.

Eligible applicants must be open to the public in regular posted hours and have three or fewer paid employees. No organization is eligible to receive a grant from the Fund in two consecutive years.

Applications are adjudicated by representatives of the FBCA, the Reksten family, and the Archives Association of BC (AABC). The next call for applications will be released in late-spring 2023. You can find the 2022 guidelines at the following link (PDF): Terry Reksten Memorial Fund Guidelines 2022.

Please email applications to: Info@FriendsBCArchives.ca

The recipients will be announced in September or earlier. Successful applicants are asked to notify the FBCA when their project is completed and to provide a short report that will be published in the FBCA newsletter and website.

Past Terry Reksten Memorial Fund Recipients

2022: The Lillooet & District Historical Society will be using the funds for the purchase of an archival quality photo and document scanner; the Society’s collections include photographs and textual records dating to the 19th century, and relate to settler and Indigenous history of the region.

The Princeton & District Museum & Archives Society will be using the funds to purchase a museum quality storage cabinet for materials from its First Nations Belongings repository.   The Society was established in 1958, and with a mandate to collect and preserve historically important local material.

2021: The Sicamous and District Museum and Historical Society for the purchase of PastPerfect software to begin the process of documenting their collection. The museum is home to a collection of community information such as copies of the local newspaper, information on local buildings and events, people, photographs, business documents, and CPR records.

The Sidney Museum and Archives for the purchase an archival quality photo and film negative scanner to digitize community photographs and documents. Images to be digitized include film negatives of emergency services, youth and adult sports leagues on the Saanich peninsula, community schools, local infrastructure, periodicals, individual communities and municipalities, First Nation communities, and numerous other local subjects.

2020: The Stó:lō Research and Resource Management Centre to support rehousing of treaty material from the last 30 years during which various Stó:lō First Nations have engaged in treaty negotiations with the Provincial and Federal governments.

The Western Front Society for rehousing of 50 1⁄4” open reel audio tapes and 1 linear meter of textual and graphic materials chronicling performances from Western Front’s New Music program, its involvement in Vancouver Co-op Radio broadcasts, and experimental poetry and literary events from the 1970s.

2019: The Trail Museum & Archives for the purchase of film reel storage boxes and film guards to preserve valuable moving images, including archival Trail Smoke Eater
hockey footage, the 1951 Jubilee Parade, and the 1938 Trail Smoke Eaters Allan Cup homecoming.

The Esquimalt Municipal Archives to purchase boxes and other archival supplies to rehouse a collection of Esquimalt District and Township of Esquimalt property assessment rolls from 1893 to 1973.

2018: The Qualicum Beach Historical & Museum Society to purchase archival-quality shelving and to digitize photographs and documents in your recently acquired H. R. MacMillan fonds.

The Port Coquitlam Heritage Museum & Archives for the purchase of archival supplies for storing and preserving photographs and documents in the community archives collection.

2017: The Simpcw First Nations Archives in Barriere, BC for the purchase of archival supplies to organize and preserve its photograph collection.

The Museum at Campbell River for the digitization of aural histories originally recorded on now-obsolete tapes.

2016: Cortes Island Museum and Archives Society for a project to digitize the oral histories in our archives and use them to produce, in partnership with Cortes Community Radio CKTZ, a series of Cortes History Moment radio spots.

Bamfield Historical Society for the acquisition of archival containers for the purpose of proper storage of documents and physical items held by the Bamfield Community Museum and Archives.

2015: Salt Spring Island Historical Society for an oral history project relating to the Salt Spring Elementary school. Western Front Media Archives to implement an on-line database.

2014: Whistler Museum & Archives project to digitize the Florence Petersen film collection Vancouver Maritime Museum to rehouse glass plate negatives and lantern slides.

2013: Horsefly Historical Society , an oral history project PAARC (Pacific Assn of Artist Run Centres) to implement an on-line database.

2012: Sunshine Coast Museum & Archives, preservation of a high-risk segment of the Sunshine Coast newspaper collection.

2011: R.J. Haney Heritage Village & Museum (Salmon Arm) supplies to house a 33 year collection of the Salmon Arm Observer images.

2010: The Chase and District Museum and Archives Society received funds to transfer taped oral histories to a more stable medium.

2009: Japanese Canadian National Museum and Archives for a project to purchase supplies to rehouse an extensive collection of photographs, textual records and artifacts documenting the voyage of the Suian Maru, a vessel which brought 83 Japanese migrants to B.C. in 1906.

2008: The Sidney Museum and Archives, to purchase archival supplies for the rehousing of photographs and negatives from the Dominion of Canada Experimental Farm fond (1913-1976).

2007: The Hope in Shadows Photographic Archive of Vancouver, to purchase supplies and enclosures to ensure adequate preservation of the photographs created for the Hope in Shadows Exhibition and Calendar.

2006: Quesnel and District Museum and Archives. They used their grant of $700 to purchase a digital recorder in order to collect aural histories within the community.

2005: Comox Archives and Museum Society. The award aided the transfer of oral histories that were deteriorating on tape, to a more stable format.

2004: Bowen Island Historians. The grant was used to re-house maps and plans in their Archives.

2003: Bulkley Valley Museum, Smithers. They received $500 to copy and encapsulate the more fragile and most often utilized maps in the museum collection, in order to help them preserve and share the history of the Bulkley Valley.

2002: Aldergrove Heritage Society. Their project was to “sort, identify and scan original photographs from the Aldergrove Star fonds to provide public accessibility.”

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