ELLA Goodlad is a regular volunteer who oversees the Photograph Digitization Project. Here

Museum builds up digital photo collection

Images of the past being carefully preserved in Terrace

The Terrace and District Museum Society is bridging history with the modern world by making old photographs digital in an effort to preserve them.

Before Ella Goodlad, a volunteer with the society and Heritage Park Museum, arrived to do the job, old pictures that tell the story of Terrace were scattered throughout the top floor of the historical Kalum Lake Hotel, said Heritage Park Museum curator Kelsey Wiebe, who is also working on the project.

Since, Goodlad has organized old photos, placed them in acid-free paper which slows material decomposition, and has started scanning images with a high quality scanner. But the project is not only about preserving what the society already has, it’s about finding more.

“We’ve been limited to a pioneer story,” said Wiebe, explaining that collecting history is really about telling community stories of the past. “We want to … make it more diverse and inclusive so we actually reflect the community identity.”

Wiebe is asking community members to call Heritage Park Museum and arrange to drop off photos.

The photos will be scanned, logged in digital format, and returned upon request, she said.

“We’re especially looking for photos of any time period of Terrace history,” said Wiebe. “Especially people and places of the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s.”

Old photos owned by the museum society are currently being stored in a fireproof container at city hall here, and scanned images are being compiled into a digital archive.

To date, people and places are being identified and recorded and soon the society will be reaching out to the community for help with the task, said Wiebe.

“Eventually, they will be made available online so that everyone can search them,” she said.

Wiebe added that more pictures are historical than people might think.

“History generally is just the story of the past, so it’s quite expansive,” she said. “We want to incorporate all the stories of the community.”