RBCM Archives

Series GR-1661 - Records of the Deputy Provincial Secretary

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Records of the Deputy Provincial Secretary

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  • textual material

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Reference code

GR-1661

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area

Date(s)

  • 1954-1983 (Creation)
    Creator
    British Columbia. Dept. of the Provincial Secretary

Physical description area

Physical description

Originals, 7.41 m

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Name of creator

British Columbia. Dept. of the Provincial Secretary (1872-1976)

Biographical history

The Dept. of the Provincial Secretary was established in 1872. Prior to that, the origins of this department was in the offices of the Colonial Secretaries for the Colony of Vancouver Island (1863-1866), the Colony of British Columbia (1864-1866) and the united colony of British Columbia (1866-1871). When British Columbia joined confederation in 1871, the name Colonial Secretary remained in place until April 1872 when a Provincial Secretary was named to assume the duties and functions (SBC 1872, c. 15). The mandate of the Provincial Secretary included all the powers, duties and functions held by provincial secretaries and registrars in other provinces of the Dominion of Canada. They included being the keeper of the Great Seal of the Province, with the authority to issues letters patent and commissions, and being the keeper of all registers and archives of the province and previous governments of the province. As with other departments, it was also the duty of the Provincial Secretary to make an annual report to the Lieutenant-Governor. The first annual report was produced in 1972. At various times, different agencies have been under the direction of the Provincial Secretary such as treasury and audit branches, Bureau of Mines, gold commissioners, Returned Soldiers’ Commission, Provincial Library and Archives, Provincial Board of Health, Vital Statistics, Provincial Home, and others. In most instances these agencies were later transferred to the control of new ministries established to administer the specific function or functions. At various times and for varying periods, the Provincial Secretary was responsible for industrial schools, mothers’ pensions, administration of the Infants’ Act, protection of historic sites, and arbitration of labour disputes. In 1947, the Dept. of the Provincial Secretary administered the Civil Service Commission, Government Printing Bureau, Superannuation Commission, mental hospitals, institution farms, homes for the aged, inspector of hospitals, and the Elections Act. In 1976, with the addition of travel and tourism functions from the Dept. of Recreation and Travel Industry, the Dept. of the Provincial Secretary was renamed the Ministry of the Provincial Secretary and Travel Industry (OIC 3199/76).

Custodial history

Scope and content

Records of the Deputy Provincial Secretary relating to the operations of the Ministry's branches. Many of these records deal with heritage conservation, museums, and cultural organizations. Records also deal with the administration of Royal Canadian Humane Association awards for bravery and life-saving.

GR-1661 is a pot-pourri of records accumulated by the office of the Deputy Provincial Secretary and by his various Assistant Deputy Ministers.The diversity of this collection is testimony to the multi- faceted operations and responsibilities of the Provincial Secretary's department.

A substantial number of the files deal with Heritage Conservation policies and heritage sites, such as Craigflower Schoolhouse, Barkerville, and Fort Steele.Many of the files also deal with cultural organizations and activities, with provincial fitness and recreation programmes, and with special interest groups.Other files in this unit pertain to the Royal Canadian Humane Association awards for bravery (which were coordinated by the ministry), to specific legislation re:the provincial flag, the provincial tartan, etc., and to the organization of out-of-town Cabinet meetings.

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

The records were transferred to the Provincial Archives from the Provincial Secretary's vault in the Parliament Buildings in 1986.

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There are no access restrictions.

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General note

Accession number(s): G86-112

General note

In 1986 maps and plans were removed from the original files and re-accessioned by the Archives Map Department as M889013. These maps and plans were returned to their files in 2015: box 4, file 4; box 5, file 2; box 8, file 1; box 11, file 4; box 9, file 2; box 15, file 8; box 17, file 4; box 17, file 5; box 19, file 2, box 19, file 7; box 23, file 4; box 23, file 9 and box 25, file 6.

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