Donating records to the Archives
The City of Vancouver Archives has been acquiring and preserving historical records since 1933. We collect both civic government records and records from businesses, individuals, and organizations in the private sector.
Private sector records
Private sector records may be as extensive as the business records of a corporation or as small as a single photograph found under the floorboards.
We welcome the donation of records — such as minutes, correspondence, and reports — from organizations and societies that are part of the cultural or political life of Vancouver.
We also preserve personal papers, diaries, photographs, oral histories, films, and similar unpublished records.
Preserving Vancouver's history
Donating private records:
- Makes a lasting contribution to the historical narrative of our city.
- Preserves the records in a controlled environment.
When to make your donation
Sooner is better, so we can ensure the preservation of the records.
If the records you intend to donate are still in use — for example, recent minutes of an existing society — we can discuss a schedule of regular transfers.
We can discuss the schedule of a future transfer of all records, or as a bequest from your estate.
We prefer to have the copyright of the records transferred to the City of Vancouver Archives, if possible.
Public access to the records
It is possible to restrict access to all or some records for a period of time. We can discuss placing restrictions on sensitive material.
Preparing records for donation
Please don't reorganize, repair, or clean your records. We prefer to keep the original order, and our preservation staff can conserve the materials, if necessary.