Series GR-3354 - British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority films

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority films

General material designation

  • moving images

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

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Dates of creation area


  • 1945-1984 (Creation)
    British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority

Physical description area

Physical description

164 film items : 16 mm and additional film elements

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Archival description area

Name of creator


Biographical history

BC Hydro was created in 1962 when the BC government merged the recently nationalized BC Electric Railway Co. with the BC Power Commission in order to have a utility large enough to undertake massive hydroelectric developments on the Peace and Columbia rivers. When the province acquired BC Electric it took possession of a gas company and a variety of transit lines. BC Hydro began shedding these operations in 1979; by the end of the 1980s it was purely an electrical utility. In 2003 the province created a separate company, BC Transmission Corporation, to operate Hydro's transmission assets. In 2010 Hydro and BCTC reconsolidated into a single company. BC Hydro is the largest of the provincial crown corporations and third largest electric utility in Canada, delivering electricity to more than 94 percent of the province's population. The corporation generates power primarily from hydroelectric generating stations around the province; the rest is produced at steam, gas turbine and stationary diesel plants. It is regulated by the BC Utilities Commission.

Custodial history

Scope and content

The fonds consists of industrial, engineering, and public relations films created for or by British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority and its predecessors (the British Columbia Electric Company and the British Columbia Power Commission) from 1945 to about 1984. This material includes 164 unique film items in 16 mm film, each containing one or more printing elements such as prints, sound tracks, negative reels, selected out-takes and unedited footage. In some cases, there are no edited prints, only miscellaneous reels of footage.

Most of the BC Electric and BC Hydro films are the work of Vancouver producer Lew M. Parry. The fonds also includes a number of non-Hydro films produced by Parry, as well as a selection of prints and film material relevant to BC which had been circulated through (or stored at) Hydro's film library.

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

This material was transferred to the BC Archives from the British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority in 1981, 1984, and 1992.


At the BC Archives, the films have been arranged into four series, the first three of which reflect the sponsoring organization (and therefore the period of their creation):
GR-3354.A: British Columbia Electric Company films (1945-1961)
GR-3354.B: British Columbia Power Commission films (1955-1961)
GR-3354.C: British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority films (1961-ca. 1984)
GR-3354.D: Film library films (1946-1976)

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Location of originals

Availability of other formats

In some cases, video or digital copies have been made, check the item level descriptions within each sub-series for details.

Restrictions on access

No access restrictions apply.
Conservation: Film originals are in cold storage and are not accessible.

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Finding aids

Lower level descriptions for sub-series and items are available.

Associated materials

Related film accessions can be found in PR-1834, the Lew M. Parry fonds.

Related materials


General note

Accession number(s): F1981:08; F1981:17; F1984:11; F1992:05; 91-5940

General note

This series description was previously listed as fonds description AAAA8054.


Moving image originals are in cold storage.

Physical description

The series includes magnetic and optical sound tracks, out-takes, and compilations of selected footage.

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