A photo taken in 1906 in Arrowhead, an Arrow Lakes community that has since become a ghost town. Photo: Arrow Lakes Historical Society

History springs eternal in Nakusp

Annual provincial meeting here May 24-27

The Arrow Lakes Historical Society is hosting the British Columbia Historical Federation 2018 Conference and Annual General Meeting in Nakusp between Thursday, May 24th, and Sunday, May 27th. The title and theme of the conference is history.springs.eternal., symbolizing the connecting of history, nature, and people in the region.

Members of the public are invited to attend, free of charge, lectures on Thursday afternoon and Saturday afternoon at the Seniors’ Hall, as well as the official conference opening on Friday morning at the Nakusp Arena Auditorium.

Thursday afternoon’s lectures at the Seniors’ Hall feature Bruce Rohn at 1:00, speaking on “Life in Renata: Until the Town Was Destroyed by the Hugh Keenleyside Dam”. At 2:00, Tracy Fetters of the Nakusp Rail Society will talk about “Big Artifacts: The Challenges of Bringing the Nakusp Caboose and Snow Plow to Town”. West Kootenay historian Greg Nesteroff will speak at 3:00 on “Postcards of the Arrow Lakes”.

Doors at the arena open at 8:00 on Friday morning, May 25th. The official opening begins at 8:30, with welcomes from presidents of the Arrow Lakes Historical Society and the BC Historical Federation. Rosemarie Parent will speak on the “History of the Arrow Lakes Historical Society Archives”. The keynote address will be given by Jennifer Dunkerson, Heritage BC planner for the Columbia Basin: “Strategic Directions for Heritage Resources in the Columbia River Basin”. The morning will wrap up with a talk by Western Canada’s foremost baseball historian and former CBC radio reporter, Jay-Dell Mah: “Western Canada’s Baseball History: An Example of The Importance of Small Archival Collections”.

Saturday afternoon’s lectures at the Seniors’ Hall kick off at 1:00 with Cameron Leitch speaking on the “History of Logging in the Arrow Lakes Area”. This theme carries on at 2:00, with Gray Creek author Tom Lymbery taking an entertaining look at “Chain Saw History”. The final lecture is by Nauticapedia’s webmaster John MacFarlane, speaking on “Facebook: Not What But How”.

In addition to the free lectures and speeches, conference delegates will also be taking part in several historical field trips to Sandon, New Denver, Trout Lake, Halcyon Hot Springs, and to the Nakusp Hot Springs. There will also be a presentation by Eileen Delehanty Pearkes, author of A River Captured, and a showing of the ALHS film Our Coloured Past.

The BC Historical Federation encourages interest in the history of British Columbia, and acts as an umbrella organization for provincial historical societies. Each year, the Federation recognizes outstanding contributions by individuals and groups who study and promote British Columbia history, through the annual presentation of awards or special certificates, including presentation of the Lieutenant-Governor’s Medal for Historical Writing. This year, these presentations will take place at the BCHF Book Prize Gala on Saturday, May 26th.

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