Series GR-1727 - Bench books

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Bench books

General material designation

  • textual record

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on the contents of the series.

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area


  • 1864-1964 (Creation)
    British Columbia. Judiciary

Physical description area

Physical description

780 volumes

Publisher's series area

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Archival description area

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Biographical history

Custodial history

Records in the file in container 002340-1024 were originally transferred with accession G85-128 (BC Court, Kamloops; minute books, ca. 1880-1887) but were reaccessioned at the Archives into G88-135. These records complement those found in volumes 15 and 16, and may have been torn out of another of Walkem's benchbooks.

Scope and content

This series comprises mostly of bench books for civil and criminal cases heard by various judges and chief justices in the Supreme Court, County Court, Court of Appeal, Admiralty Court, Circuit Courts and Assizes. The series also includes notes on commissions of inquiry as well as miscellaneous court information. Civil and criminal cases are often included in the same volume and records from different judges, different levels of courts, different time periods and geographic areas may be mixed in the same volume, particularly for the earlier period..

For loose material removed from the volumes in GR-1727 see GR-2783.

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

Justice Walkem's records in container 002340-2024 were originally transferred from Kamloops Sherriff Services in 1985 with accession G85-128 (BC Court, Kamloops; minute books, ca. 1880-1887) but were reaccessioned at the Archives into G88-135.

Justice Calder's records in container 902071-0001 were originally transferred from Court Services in 1993 with accession G85-124 (BC mixed court records (Kamloops); mechanics lien and minute books) but were reaccessioned at the Archives into G88-135.

Stipendiary Magistrate H A Bryant's records in container 902071-0001 were originally transferred from the Government Agent in Quesnel in 1980 with accession G80-017 (Record book containing notes of Stipendiary Magistrate H.A. Bryant) but were reaccessioned at the Archives in G88-135.

A bench book belonging to Justice Archer Martin dated 1940 from the Court of Appeal was donated by the Victoria Courthouse in 2021.


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Location of originals

Availability of other formats

Restrictions on access

Records created prior to 1910 are open. All other bench books may be accessed only for historical or statistical research purposes, and the terms of access will be subject to the BC Archives research agreement. All requests for access to post-1909 bench books must be vetted by either the judge who created the bench book(s), or if that judge is deceased, by the Chief Justice or Judge of the relevant court.

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Finding aids

Associated materials

Bench books may also be found in GR-0584, GR-1889, GR-1607, GR-1889, GR-2025, GR-2029, GR-2030 to GR-2035 , GR-2084 to GR-2087, GR-2183, GR-2185, GR-2183, GR-2196, GR-2197, GR-2310, GR-2411.

Related materials


A bench book from Justice Archer Martin from the Court of Appeal for 1940 was added to the series in 2021.

General note

Archives code(s): G81-050.

General note

Accession number(s): G81-050, G88-135, G85-128, G80-017, 2021.253

General note

Loose material relating to Justice Walkem found in container 002340-1024 has been described with this series, as appears to consist mainly of pages from Justice Walkem's bench books dating from 1886 to 1891. The material from 1886 covers the month of June, which is missing from volume 15 in this series. The pages cover cases heard at the Nelson County Court and Clinton and Kamloops Assizes, and several involve members of the local Indigenous and Chinese communities.

Accompanying material

For loose material removed from the volumes in GR-1727, see GR-2783.

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