Family: Bonds and BelongingWatch


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Of Mines and Men

Of Mines and Men [excerpt], 1945–1948. This film was created by the BC Government Travel Bureau Photographic Branch and was used to attract employees and their families to the mining industry. The film emphasizes the comfort of miners and their families at mining camps. Credit: BCA AAAA2457

Vancouver Island Home Industry

Back to Back: A Vancouver Island Home Industry [excerpt], 1932-1933.

This documentary film was created by the BC Forest Service to showcase Vancouver Island home industries. The film illustrates how the famous Cowichan sweaters are made by women on the Koksilah Reserve in Duncan, BC. Knitter Mary Ann Modeste is featured.
Credit: BCA AAAA0155

Fairbridge Farm School

Fairbridge Farm School scenes [excerpt], ca. 1936-1940

Between 1935 and 1951 more than 300 children from England arrived at the Prince of Wales Fairbridge Farm School at Cowichan Station on Vancouver Island, BC. Many were orphans; others were voluntarily sent by their parents who believed they were sending them to a better life.

The Fairbridge Farm was established with the intention of helping these children grow up in a healthy environment and giving them the opportunity to learn useful skills so they could create better lives for themselves. In this film, you‘ll see how the boys were taught a variety of farming skills while the girls were taught domestic skills. The film also shows the children dressed up for a Guy Fawkes’ Day parade.

More recently Fairbridge Farm has been in the news because of public hearings held in the United Kingdom about allegations of abuse of some of the thousands of children—some taken without parental consent—sent to these farms and schools.

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Credit: BCA AAAA2430

Harriet Gerry Excerpt

Watch this excerpt of a film taken by Nurse Harriet Gerry, who worked for the federal Department of Indian and Northern Affairs. The amateur footage of First Nations communities includes scenes of children at play and a family arriving home with a new baby in around 1941. Credit: BCA AAAA0545