ARCHIVES

The Sooke Region Museum's archives section houses some eight thousand historic photographs, and more than six thousand historical documents and a range of newspaper clippings.

Collections of more recent colour photographs document scenery and much of the flora of the area, from the beaches to the trees of the rainforest to wildflowers.
Bound volumes contain original issues of the region's local newspaper, the Sooke News Mirror, and its predecessor, the Grapevine, dating from the current copies back to the first issue in 1959.

Genealogical charts have been assembled recording the origins and interconnections of many of the early families.

A collection of early maps has been assembled, relative to the geography and history of the area.

A collection of Aural History tape recordings dating from the 1970s have captured the voices and stories of members of pioneer families and of Elders of the T'Sou-ke and Pacheedaht nations.

Our VHS videotape collections document many of the events and happenings of the region from the 1970s to the present.

A 40 min. slideshow produced for the museum in 1977 tells a story of the history of the Sooke area from First Nations Elders' memories to modern times, illustrating a way of life recollected with fondness, while currently undergoing much change.

A 20 min. 16 mm movie was produced in 1983, providing the only complete documentation of an important historic industry long gone, The Fishtraps of Sooke. A copy of this film production is now held in Canada's National Archives, and videocopies are shown at the museum.

In 1986 a 29 min. 16 mm movie The All Sooke Day Story was produced by the museum, graphically illustrating historic logging skills carried out by loggers in the forests, and their evolvement into the competitive logger sports competitions of current times. Videotapes of this production are shown regularly at the museum.

Books published under the banner of the museum include:

  • "101 Historical Buildings of the Sooke Region" (1984)
  • "4000 Years, A History of the Rainforest of Vancouver Island's Southwest Coast" (1989)
  • "T'Sou-ke - A Festival of Community Spirit - 1790 - 1990" (1991)
    "The Sooke Story - The History and the Heartbeat" (1999)
  • "A Guide to the Sooke Region" (2001)
  • Co-published with the Municipality of Sooke, "Profiles of a Community" 200

And two booklets, "Legends of T'Sou-ke and West Coast Bands" (1978) and
"That Was the Way it Was" (1990)