Nelson BC Memorial Cemetery CD – brand new

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Nelson_BC_Memorial_Cemetery-viewNelson Memorial Cemetery view, British Columbia, Canada

The BCGS has just published the Nelson BC Memorial Cemetery CD. This CD contains transcriptions done by Audrey and Henry E. Stevenson along with some photographs and other images from the cemetery and headstones.

The cemetery CD index has over 6500 names listed.

Now for sale – BCGS Cemetery Publication #C120. $20.00

Contact the BCGS Cemetery Committee at or 604 502 9119 (Surrey BC) to order your copy.

Nelson BC Cemetery CD poster

See the BCGS Cemetery Committee page or the BCGS Publications page for more information.

Cemetery Tours – Burnaby & Vancouver – Sept 2014

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Join Lorraine Irving from the BC Genealogical Society for a walking tour of the cemetery’s highest sections, Horne 1 and 2. Enjoy a fantastic view of downtown Vancouver and the mountains. You’ll hear about a soldier who fought in the Riel Rebellion that’s buried near the WW1 cenotaph, a survivor of the Titanic, and more.

Sunday, September 14, 2014 2-3:30 pm. Free.



A walking tour with historian Maurice Guibord

Sat., September 27, 2014, 1-2 pm. Meet inside the cemetery entrance at corner of Imperial St. & Patterson Ave.  Call Maurice Guibord, Vancouver, 604-253-9311 Cell 604-771-3047

Free, followed by coffee on site, courtesy of the cemetery management.

Wear comfortable walking shoes, as this tour entails a fair bit of walking.

Around 1919, Burnaby’s Ocean View Cemetery created a burial section on its perimeter as far from its entrance as one could walk, in order to meet the needs of non-Europeans seeking internment of their deceased. This small segregated plot was named Mongolia, one of the racist epithets designating Asians during that period. You will see buried there, side by side, the well-known Vancouverite Won Alexander Cumyow, and Ross Hendrix, later made famous by his Vancouver-raised grandson, guitarist Jimi Hendrix.

This measure was but a symptom of the racism exercised well into the 1960s in cemeteries in the British Empire, a reflection of the racial climate experienced in the day-to-day life of non-whites.

At Ocean View, you will see the evolution of this approach to burial over a century, from segregated plots to accommodating sections in mausoleums, and to sections catering largely to the Chinese community, where feng-shui stipulations and family estates lay a new claim to identity for this community. You will witness the effects of trans-Pacific political decisions that dramatically reformed centuries-held traditions such as the removal of remains back to China, to the advent of reverse migration of remains from China to North America.

Kelowna – Selected Genealogical Sources

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Collins_tobacco_field-Mission_Valley-Kelowna-1898Kelowna & District Genealogical Society. Currently the society has over 11575 obituaries indexed and available, as well as transcriptions, photographs and publications of Central Okanagan cemeteries. The Society publishes a newsletter, “Okanagan Researcher” quarterly and has partnered with the Kelowna Branch of the Okanagan Regional Library where the genealogical library collection is now located. See the Society’s website for indexes and details on these and other projects.:

Video about the Kelowna & District Genealogical Society and the Kelowna Public Library, ShawTV Okanagan, 2011:

Kelowna Branch, Okanagan Regional Library:

Kelowna and its Surroundings in the Province of British Columbia, Dominion of Canada (The Agricultural and Trades Association of Okanagan Mission Valley, 1898). A douwnloadable .pdf copy of Kelowna and its Surroundings, 1898 was digitized from a BCGS members’ private collections and is available free by clicking the link. This copy shows interesting effects of its age and includes the photo show above which was not apparently included in the original publication. Another copy is downloadable here from the Internet Archive in a variety of formats.

Names mentioned in this pamphet are

Lakeview Hotel, Arch. Macdonald – ad
Kelowna Shoppers Union – ad
Lequime Bros. & Co – ad
Growley & Downton – ad
D. W. Sutherland – ad

Mr. T. Woods
Wm. Postill
Mr. Swallwell
Mr. A. Postill (the late)
Mr. Whelan
Mr. J. Christian
Mr. Conroy
Mr. Price Ellison, Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP)
Mr. J. T. Davies
Mr. La Belle
Mr. Dell
Mr. Watson
Mr. R.E. Chrichton
Mr. W.D. Hobson, Justice
Mr. G.G. Mackay
Messrs. Collins and Hotman, tobacco
Mr. Eli Lequime
Mr. Bernard Lequime
Mr. J. Corsorso
Mr. Fitzgerald Healey
Mr. Tidmarsh
Lord Aberdeen
Gusichan Ranch
Mr. Alan Chrichton
Mr. Crozier
Mr. Ray
Mr. J. L. Pridham, Justice of the Peace (JP)
Mr. Dundas
Mr. T. W. Stirling
Mr. Knox
Mr. Weddell
Mr. Bailey, postmaster, librarian
Mr. C.S. Smith
Mr. C.A.S. Atwood
Mr. Bailey
George Rose
Mr. Raymer

Photographs included are Kelowna and Okanagan Lake, The Wharf – Kelowna, T. W. Stirling’s Orchard, G. Whalen’s Orchard & House, Duck Lake, Episcopal Church, and separated, Mr. Collin’s Tobacco Field.

A Pictorial History of Kelowna BC:

BC Orchard Industry Museum, BC Orchard Industry Museum, BC Wine Museum, Okanagan Military Museum, Central Okanagan Sports Hall of Fame Museum, The Laurel Packinghouse:

Kelowna Public Archives:  Search Kelowna Public Archives collections at MemoryBC. See that entry below.

Vince Bezeau Military Library and Archives, Okanagan Military Museum:

Memory BC, The British Columbia Archival Information Network. Search by individual topics, places, people, repositories (Kelowna Public Archives, British Columbia Archives, Anglican Provincial Synod of British Columbia Archives, etc.): or all “Kelowna” entries:;search?query=kelowna

Kelowna Photo History, Castanet Forum – Kelowna photos from family collections posted to the forum discussions:

The Kelowna Story: An Okanagan History by Sharron J. Simpson (Harbour Publishing, 2011). Available at the BCGS Library.

Kelowna 100 Years History: One Hundred Years of History, edited by Diana Knowles (Kelowna Museum Association, 2005). Available at the BCGS Library.

Ham and Rail Fanning, The History of Present-Day of Rail Activities in Kelowna:

Kelowna Street Names, Their Origins: A Brief History, Okanagan Historical Society, Kelowna Branch (1994, 2010). Available at the BCGS Library.

Kelowna Streets, Kelowna,com, Marshall Jones, Managing Editor:

Index to articles about Kelowna people, places and topics published in Okanagan Historical Society (OHS) Annual Reports, No 1-76 (1926-):     Most OHS Reports have been digitized and may be read and searched as part of the University of British Columbia Library’s Digital Collections:

Okanagan Historical Society:


Historical Municipal Boundaries, City of Kelowna (.pdf format):,d.cGE

Kettle Valley Railway & Connecting Railway Trails:

The photograph above shows “Mr. Collins; Tobacco Field – Okanagan Mission Valley, Near Kelowna, BC”. found with a 1898 booklet, Kelowna and its Surroundings in the Province of British Columbia, Dominion of Canada, published by the Agricultural and Trades Association of Okanagan, Mission Valley. Private collection. Some 1890s residents of Okanagan Mission Valley petitioned the provincial government “to proclaim a parcel of land a public commons and that a road should be built”. Their names were extracted from the Sessional Papers of the British Columbia Government, 1890, by Hugh Armstrong and are published on the British Columbia GenWeb site.

BCGS General Meeting – June 11, 2014 – BCGS Book Awards and Strawberry Tea!

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BCGS Strawberry Tea - June 2013


The next BC Genealogical Society General Meeting will be Wednesday, June 11, 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm at the Danish Lutheran Church, Downstairs Hall, in Burnaby, 6010 Kincaid Street.

See the Google map or download a printable map of the Danish Church’s location with directions.


This will be Announcement Night for the BCGS Family History Book Awards. Authors will be speaking about their books and books will be available to buy. Learn more about the BCGS annual Family History Book Awards hereContinue reading

Reminder – BCGS General Meeting, Aug. 14, 2013 in Burnaby

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Brunette Bridge picnic, 1896

The next BC Genealogical Society General Meeting is Wednesday, 14 August, 2013, 7:30 pm, at the Danish Lutheran Church, 6010 Kincaid Street in Burnaby.

Group Sessions after the general meeting will be:
English – Occupations with Susan Snalam
Canada/USA – Homesteading in Western Canada with Judith Ueland and M. Diane Rogers

See a printable map of the Danish Church area with directions here.

The photograph above shows a Brunette Creek, New Westminster area picnic, c. 1896, from the New Westminster Public Library’s collection, Accession #13. Those in the photo are identified as: Mrs. James Brymner, Mr. Fisher, Mr. Brymner, Mr. Lowry, and Mrs. Brymner.  Follow this link to search the New Westminster Public Library‘s Historical Photo Database.

Reminder: Women at Mountain View Cemetery, Vancouver, Walking Tour, August 4, 2013

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 Hepburn and Tomlinson headstones, Mountain View Cemetery, Vancouver, BC

Join the Women at Mountain View Cemetery, Vancouver, Walking Tour, August 4, 2013, 10 am to noon, with Lorraine Irving and  M. Diane Rogers of the BC Genealogical Society, and Jolene Cumming of the Herstory Cafe.

Tour details on the City of Vancouver Event Calendar.

Photograph taken at Mountain View Cemetery, July 2013. Headstones: Kathleen Alloway Tyler HEPBURN  (née GODDARD), died 1953, and George Howard TOMLINSON, died 1956, Mountain View Cemetery, Vancouver, BC.

Mountain View Cemetery’s current website:

The former City of Vancouver website’s Mountain View Cemetery webpages with a burial index, access to maps and the VanMap cemetery search application:

This article originally posted July 9, 2013.