The Lakes District Museum Society will be digitizing all of its hard-copy archives.
The move is supported by $24,977 in funding from the Canadian government, the Museum Society said in a press release on April 11.
Over the next seven months, museum staff will use imaging technology to make digital copies of 7,000 pages of documents, 3,000 photographs and about 400 editions of heritage newspapers published in the Lakes District since 1920.
Back-up copies will be stored off-site for safe keeping.
Visitors and residents will be able to access the files on a public computer in the museum by spring
From mid-April, museum archives will be closed to the public for about eight weeks amid preparations for the digitization project.
“We are thrilled to receive this grant,” said Lyle Graham, vice-president of the Lakes District Museum Society.
“With this funding from the government of Canada, we will be able to make our archives more accessible to visitors, preserve digital copies of our archival materials in their current state, and protect our archives from catastrophic loss. It will also allow us to respond to research requests in a timelier manner.”
The digitization endeavour in Burns Lake is among 52 projects across Canada - 12 of them in British Columbia - to receive $1.5 million to support documentary heritage preservation activities this year under Library and Archives Canada’s Documentary Heritage Communities Program.
The Lakes District Museum Society was formed in 1978 to gather and preserve information, records and objects of historical and cultural value tied to the area.
The museum along Highway 16 contains thousands of items donated by the region’s pioneers and their descendants.