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British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General
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Robert Bonner interview : [Mitchell, 1980]

T0244:0005: Robert Bonner: early years, education, military school, legal training and interest in politics. 1920-1950
TRACK 1: Robert Bonner discusses his personal and family background. Recollections of growing up and going to school in Vancouver during the 1920s and 1930s. Important influences during his early years. The effect of growing up during the Depression. Early interest in politics. Criticism of socialists. Recollection of political action during his days at UBC. Work experience during his student days. Comments on his ambition to be a lawyer from an early age. Undergraduate experience at UBC. TRACK 2: Robert Bonner recounts his reaction to the outbreak of WWII. Training as an officer with the Seaforth Highlanders. Discussion of his service overseas. Being wounded during the invasion of Italy and convalescence in England. Return to Canada and assumption of the duties of Training Officer with the Canadian Officers' Training Corps at UBC. The importance of his military training and experiences. Entry into law school at UBC. Comments on legal training. Memories of UBC law school. Graduation from law school in 1948 and work for a legal firm in Vancouver. Interest in Conservative politics. More interested in federal than provincial politics. Along with other young Tories, advocated the break;-up of Coalition in B.C. General comments on the Coalition government and its decline.

T0244:0006: Robert Bonner: Social Credit, the 1952 election and becoming Attorney General. 1950-1952
TRACK 1: Robert Bonner recalls nominating W.A.C. Bennett for provincial leadership of the Conservative Party, 1950. Reasons for supporting W.A.C. Bennett in his challenge to Herbert Anscomb's leadership of the party. Further recollections of W.A.C. Bennett: crossing the floor of the House; joining Social Credit. Recollections of the 1952 election in B.C. and reactions to its outcome. The effect of the single transferable ballot. Meeting with W.A.C. Bennett after he assumed the leadership of the Social Credit Party and being offered the position of Attorney General in his prospective administration. Considerations taken into account when making his decision to accept Bennett's offer. The possibility of Gordon Wismer becoming Attorney General. Reaction to the outcome of the 1952 election in legal circles. TRACK 2: Robert Bonner comments on W.A.C. Bennett's self-confidence. Events surrounding the Social Credit Party being called upon by the Lieutenant Governor to form a government in 1952. W.A.C. Bennett's influence on Bonner's way of approaching problems. Comments on becoming Attorney General. Anecdote about John Diefenbaker's remarks shortly after Bonner became Attorney General. Recollection of his early Socred colleagues. Relations with the civil service. The 1952 election as an experiment in democracy. Comments on Social Credit. Election to the Legislature in the Columbia by-election, 1952. Comments on the by-election campaign. The importance of the by-election to the survival of the government. General comments on the first Social Credit administration.

T0244:0007: Robert Bonner: the 1953 provincial election and early days of Social Credit government in B.C. 1952-1953
TRACK 1: Robert Bonner discusses aspects of the early years of the first Social Credit government in B.C. Relations between the Alberta Social Credit government and Social Credit in B.C. Meeting between members of the Alberta Social Credit government and the new B.C. government in Edmonton, 1952. Political philosophy and political action. Comments on the philosophy of the first Social Credit government. Reflections on B.C. during the 1950s. Reasons for the development of B.C. by the Social Credit government. Comments on planning. Policy development. Recollections of the legislative session of 1953 and the planned self-defeat of the government. Bonner's reply to the Speech from the Throne. The defeat of the government over the Rolston Formula. Recollections of the provincial election of 1953. Bonner's campaign in the multiple-member of Point Grey. TRACK 2: Further comments on the Point Grey constituency and the provincial election campaign of 1953. Comments on campaigning. The role of a; parliamentary opposition. Evaluation of Harold Winch as Leader of the Opposition. The defeat of Einar Gunderson in the 1953 election and its effect upon the government. Bonner, Gunderson and W.A.C. Bennett served as a kind of inner-cabinet during the early years of the Social Credit administration. General comments on the members of the first Social Credit government as a group. Personal relationship with the Premier. Comments of the interaction between Bonner and Bennett on decision-making. Example of the genesis of the Two River Policy. Travelling with the Premier. Bonner's avoidance of playing bridge with the Premier. Bonner would refer to W.A.C. Bennett as "Mr. Premier". The Social Credit caucus. The operation of the Social Credit cabinet The lack of a complicated committee system helped the government run smoothly. The operation of Treasury Board and the experience of appearing before it as a Minister.

T0244:0008: Robert Bonner: aspects of the administration of the portfolio of Attorney General. 1952-1968
TRACK 1: Robert Bonner discusses his duties and responsibilities as Attorney General of British Columbia. Anecdote about meeting with a deputy of a new department. Aspects of administration of the various departments within his ministry. Distinction between the formulation and execution of government policy. Relations with his administrative staff. Politics and the public service. The special characteristics of the Attorney General portfolio. Relationship between the Attorney General and his Deputy Minister. Lawyers as poor administrators. Firing of Dave Barrett, a social worker, for conducting political activity while on the public payroll, 1960. The Attorney General as chief law officer. Abolishing patronage after becoming Attorney General. Comments on the labour movement in British Columbia. Differentiation between labour leaders and the labour force. [TRACK 2: blank?]

T0244:0009: Robert Bonner: aspects of government administration and the Doukhobors in B.C. 1952-1968
TRACK 1: Robert Bonner discusses the mechanics of holding more than a single cabinet portfolio at a time. Comments on the Social Credit cabinet. Attitudes towards business and subsequent involvement in the world of business as opposed to pursuit of a legal career. A day in the life of the Attorney General. Comments on the style of government practiced by the Social Credit government. The legislative process. The role of House Leader. Comments on the tone of the legislature during the years he served in government. The role of Legislative Counsel. The relationship between senior civil servants and cabinet ministers and the distinction between policy formulation and execution. Filling the basic task of governmental reform. TRACK 2: Discussion of the government's problems in dealing with the Doukhobor community. The problems were simple and related to obeying the laws of the province. The problem of school truancy among Doukhobor children. Bombings and arson. The claim of religious persecution by Freedomite Doukhobors. Coordination between the Ministry of the Attorney General and the Ministry of Education on the New Denver school project. The role of magistrate William Evans. The formation of a special police force, the D Squad, to handle Doukhobor problems. Comments on the effect of criticism and press reports on the government's handling of the Doukhobor situation.

T0244:0010: Robert Bonner: the Sommers affair. 1955-1960
TRACK 1: Robert Bonner discusses the background to the Sommers Affair. Personal evaluation of Robert Sommers. Reaction to Gordon Gibson's allegations of irregularities in the issuing of forest management licenses. Appointment of the Lord Commission. Charges by C.W. Eversfield and David Sturdy concerning Robert Sommers. Bonner's investigations to determine whether or not Sommers was guilty of any wrongdoing. Eversfield's subsequent disappearance and Sturdy's previous request for an appointment to the Bench. Reasons for Sommers' civil suit against Sturdy. Sommers' resignation from the cabinet; if Sommers had not resigned, Bonner would have. Comments on the Butler Report. Bonner never saw the Butler Report as recalls that it was not conclusive in its findings. Bonner's advice to Sommers and his attorney about the purpose of criminal prosecutions. Comments on police reports. The issue of delays during the course of the Sommers case. Comments on the prosecution of Robert Sommers. The 1956 provincial election and discussion of the charges against Sommers. TRACK 2: Robert Sommers' re-election in the 1956 provincial election. The issue of proceeding with the civil suit against Sturdy or, alternately, pursuing a criminal persecution. Sommers' self-exile in Seattle and being visited by Waldo Skillings. Sommers later meets with Skillings in Victoria and attempts to secure an agreement whereby he would be charged alone. Reasons why Sommers was not charged alone. Sommers received permission to be absent from the pre-trial hearing to take his seat in the House for the legislative session; of 1958; this permission was appealed. Dissatisfaction among backbench government members with the handling of the Sommers case. Reaction to the outcome of the case. Bonner was surprised at convictions. The issue of appealing the court sentence for a harsher verdict. The question of bribery with no visible benefits of preferential treatment. Final comments and reflections on the Sommers Affair.

T0244:0011: Robert Bonner: background to the Columbia River Treaty. 1956-1964
TRACK 1: Robert Bonner discusses government interventionism. The genesis of the B.C. Ferry system. The takeover of the B.C. Electric Company. The Social Credit government's policy of no concessions to; prospective business ventures in British Columbia. The background to the Columbia River Treaty. The American demand for electrical power. The B.C. government's attitude toward the development of the Canadian portion of the Columbia River. Criticism of the Treaty. Discussion of his role in the Treaty. Coining the term "Two River Policy". Reasons for the Canadian bias against exporting power to the; United States. Features of the original treaty and the issue of power being returned to Canada. The relationship between the plans to develop the Peace River and the Columbia negotiations. Modifications and protocol to the treaty, 1964, and the issue of downstream benefits. Points of contention with the federal government. Comments on the Diefenbaker government's stance on the Columbia agreement.; TRACK 2: Bonner discusses the reasons why British Columbia was able to force both the Canadian and American governments to accept its position on the Columbia River Treaty. The contribution of technical personnel. Comments on committees and the decision-making machinery that contributed to the Columbia agreement. Comments on the relationship between the provincial and federal governments in Canada during the negotiations over the Columbia. Anti-Americanism in the Diefenbaker administration. Reasons why B.C. did not proceed unilaterally on the Columbia agreement. General McNaughton and his plan for the development of the Canadian portion of the Columbia River watershed. Comments on the Kaiser Dam proposal. The appeal and problems of private development of this proposal. Objection to the federal government's Water Rights Bill. The genesis of the Wenner-Gren plan to develop the Peace River. Reasons for the failure of the Wenner-Gren proposal and its effects on later developments.;

T0244:0012 Robert Bonner : the development of hydro-electric power in British Columbia 1960-[?]
TRACK 1: Robert Bonner discusses aspects of the Two River Policy. Reasons for the development of the Peace and Columbia Rivers simultaneously. Advantages in developing the hydro-electric power potential of the rivers publicly, rather than by privately-owned means. The Briggs affair. Reflections on the 1960 provincial election. The issue of the takeover of the B.C. Electric Company. Background to the government's decision to take over the company. The special session of 1961 which was called to pass the legislation nationalizing the B.C. Electric Company. Drafting the legislation for the special session. Reaction to the takeover. Criticism of the government action in the business community. Difference between the boardroom reaction and the public response to the takeover of the B.C. Electric Company. TRACK 2: Robert Bonner discusses the maintenance of party discipline during the course of the takeover of the B.C. Electric Company. The formation of B.C. Hydro and Power Authority, 1962. The role and purpose of a public authority, or Crown Corporation. Aspects of financing B.C. Hydro. The question of pension fund socialism. The return of a Liberal administration in Ottawa in 1963 and its effect on the Columbia River Treaty negotiations. Davie Fulton and the 1963 provincial election. Comments on the 1963 election. Evaluation of the roles played by Bonner, Williston and the Premier in the Columbia River Treaty negotiations. Final comments on the Columbia River Treaty and responses to criticisms of it. The future of the Treaty.;

T0244:0013 Robert Bonner : federal-provincial relations. 1952-1968
TRACK 1: Robert Bonner discusses federal-provincial relations during the years he served in government. Competitive versus cooperative federalism. Problems related to the port of Vancouver. Comments on federal-provincial conferences. B.C. delegations to federal-provincial conferences were invariably smaller than other provinces. The genesis of the Roberts Bank superport. The development of Roberts; Bank. The issues of equalization payments. The B.C. government's objections to federally-administered equalization payments. The question of a guaranteed annual income. The issue of B.C. separatism. Arguments in favour of B.C. remaining a partner in Canadian Confederation. TRACK 2: The genesis of the B.C. government's proposal for a Bank of British Columbia. Recollection of the Senate Bank Committee hearings which reviewed the B.C. government's bank proposal, 1964. Objections to the B.C. government proposal. The process of constitutional review and the search for an amending formula for the Canadian Constitution. Constitutional reform was not a high priority for the B.C. government. The issues of bilingualism and biculturalism. Incident when W.A.C. Bennett brought Mayor Peter Wing to a federal-provincial conference. Reasons why British Columbians were reluctant to admit voting for Social Credit. Involvement in party politics. The mechanics of running an election campaign. Annual Social Credit conventions.; T0244:0014 Robert Bonner : aspects of Social Credit politics in British Columbia 1952-1968 TRACK 1: Robert Bonner discusses the funding of election campaigns. Comments on Social Credit national politics in Canada. Description of the 1957 federal election campaign which Bonner helped organize; for the Social Credit Party. Relations between the British Columbia and Alberta wings of the Social Credit Party. British Columbia's support of Real Caouette. Comments on the possibility of W.A.C. Bennett running federally. Reasons for the failure of the Social Credit Party on a federal level in Canada. The role of an MLA. Problems in being a Vancouver-area MLA. Rural versus urban conflicts in British Columbia politics. Comments on multiple-member ridings. [TRACK 2: blank?]

T0244:0015: Robert Bonner: reflections on politics, British Columbia and resigning from public life. 1952-1969
TRACK 1: Robert Bonner discusses the effect of politics on his private life. Reasons why legislative reform was not a high priority during the years he served in government. Attitude toward legislative debate.. Orders-in-council and the provincial government. Government by regulation. Anecdote about Motor Vehicle Branch regulations. Comments about the changes which took place in British Columbia during the years he served in government. The lack of secondary industry in British Columbia. The comparative advantages of British Columbia's economy. General comments on the financial policies of the; first Social Credit government. The distinction between financing government operations and those of crown corporations. Direct versus contingent liabilities. TRACK 2: Comments on the investment of pension funds in Hydro bonds and other provincial government accounts. W.A.C. Bennett as Minister of Finance. Parity bonds. Reduction and elimination of the public debt of the province. The Kelowna bond-fire, 1959. Comments on public relations and government. Public relations men who worked for the government. Relationship between the press and government. Reasons why Bonner was considered to be the heir-apparent to the leadership of W.A.C. Bennett's character: "the Anthony Eden complex". The 1966 provincial election. Bonner's defeat in Point Grey. Re-election in Cariboo by-election. The formation of the NDP. Comments on electioneering. Reflection on his resignation from the cabinet, 1968, and retirement from politics, 1969.

T0244:0016: Robert Bonner: 1972 election and a recollection of W.A.C. Bennett. 1969-1975
TRACK 1: Robert Bonner discusses the reasons why he resigned from politics. Reaction to general criticisms which were levelled at the first Social Credit government in British Columbia. Comments on the polarization of British Columbia politics. The representative nature of the parliamentary system. Serving as MLA for Cariboo and vice president with MacMillan Bloedel simultaneously. Comments on events leading up to the defeat of the Social Credit government, 1972. Reasons for the defeat of the government. General comments on the leadership abilities of W.A.C. Bennett. W.A.C. Bennett as an original thinker. [TRACK 2: blank?]

Leslie Peterson interview

CALL NUMBER: T3330:0001 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Background, education and military service of Les Peterson PERIOD COVERED: 1923-1946 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-09-25 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: Leslie Peterson discusses his personal and family background: growing up in rural Alberta; religious influences and early political interests. Recollections of political figures prominent in ;Alberta in the 1930s. Peterson's education: Alice Hill School, Viking, Alberta -- the proverbial single-room schoolhouse; high school in Viking; Camrose Lutheran College, Camrose Alberta. Extracurricu;lar activities and first working experience. TRACK 2: Leslie Peterson recounts his experience working for the CN Express in Edmonton as a young man. Working for the railroad in Terrace, B.C., and enl;isting in the army at Prince Rupert. Recollections of service in the army: training and service in the Coast Artillery at Prince Rupert; attendance at McGill University in the Army Service course and ;memories of Montreal and friendships made there; service overseas in England and travels on the continent. Peterson was in Europe on Armistice Day. Before returning to Canada in 1946 he attended the U;niversity of London for a year. Return to Canada, discharge from army and decision to enroll in law school at the University of British Columbia.; CALL NUMBER: T3330:0002 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Legal and political training PERIOD COVERED: 1946-1956 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-09-25 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: Leslie Peterson discusses his first impressions of Vancouver and the University of British Columbia. Comments on the experience of a war veteran attending university after World War Two. Reco;llections of three years at U.B.C. law school. Peterson was called to the bar in 1949 and begun his own practice in Vancouver. Discussion of the nature of his law practice. Marriage to Agnes Rose Hine; in 1950 and comments on Peterson's family. Comments on politics in B.C. during the Coalition era. TRACK 2: Peterson explains how he became interested in and involved with the Social Credit movement.; Reaction to the 1952 provincial election. During the 1953 provincial election, Peterson served as campaign manager for North Vancouver Socred candidate George Tomlinson. Peterson was the unsuccessful; Social Credit candidate in the 1953 federal election in the Vancouver-Centre constituency. Impressions and recollections of W.A.C. Bennett. Peterson became involved in politics more by accident than ;by design. Discussion of how he came to be elected in the 1956 by-election in Vancouver-Centre. First impressions as a Social Credit MLA.; CALL NUMBER: T3330:0003 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): From MLA to Minister of Education PERIOD COVERED: 1956-1960 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-10-04 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: Leslie Peterson discusses his first impressions as an MLA and his recollections of the Social Credit caucus. Comments on the leadership style of W.A.C. Bennett. The problems of representing a;n urban constituency in B.C. and Peterson's theory of democratic representation. Comments on the 1956 provincial election campaign. The problems of co-ordinating an election campaign in a dual-member ;constituency. The efficacy of the Socred campaign slogan: "Progress not Politics". Free enterprise versus socialism as a recurring fundamental issue in B.C. elections. TRACK 2: Leslie Peterson remark;s upon the possibility of supporting the Conservatives or Liberals as free enterprise alternatives. The polarization of politics in B.C. The results of the 1956 provincial election and Peterson's succ;ess in Vancouver-Centre. Reaction to appointment as Minister of Education, 1956. Description of duties and functions of Minister of Education. Peterson served as Minister of Education during a period ;of great growth. Comments on the administration of the Education portfolio, 1956-68. The Department of Education was administered by a small group of able men in a very personal style. The problem of ;delegation of authority.; CALL NUMBER: T3330:0004 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Aspects of the administration of the Department of Education, 1956-68 PERIOD COVERED: 1956-1968 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-10-04 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: Leslie Peterson discusses further aspects of the administration of the Education portfolio. The relationship between the formulation and execution of government policy in the Department of Ed;ucation. The problem of teacher shortages in British Columbia in the '50s and '60s. Relations with the B.C. Teachers Federation. Discussion of the increasing cost of education in British Columbia, 195;6-68. The financial policies of the Social Credit government and the goal of debt reduction. Financing of school construction under the Social Credit government. Comments on the issues of centralizati;on and decentralization of British Columbia's educational system. TRACK 2: Further comments on the policy of debt-reduction. Recollections of coming before the Treasury Board as Minister of Education;. The process of producing a departmental budget. Peterson describes the experience of coming before Treasury Board as a fairly informal affair. Discussion of the operation of cabinet under the leader;ship of W.A.C. Bennett. The Premier was intolerant on questions of morality, otherwise he was quite flexible on matters of policy. Attitude toward cabinet committees. Important consultation on policy ;matters often took place outside of cabinet. The Social Credit government was operated by a relatively small group of elected and non-elected officials. Changing impressions of W.A.C. Bennett.; CALL NUMBER: T3330:0005 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Further aspects of education in British Columbia PERIOD COVERED: 1958-1968 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-11-02 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: Leslie Peterson discusses the Chant Report of 1958 which called for less frills in education. The Doukhobor problem in British Columbia and the Department of Education. Discussion of trip to; Europe in 1959 to examine various European school systems. Medical problems during Peterson's career. Assumption of the responsibilities for the education of the mentally retarded in British Columbi;a, 1960. The issue of federal assistance for education in British Columbia. Education and federal-provincial relations. Problems serving in a dual cabinet portfolio, Education and Labour. TRACK 2: Co;ordination of Labour and Education departments. Political oratory and attitudes towards parliamentary institutions. Relations with the University of British Columbia and explanation of the system of g;rants to universities. Comments on charges of anti-intellectualism which were levelled against the Social Credit government. The Macdonald plan for the growth of higher education in B.C. and the subse;quent development of universities and regional colleges in the province. The building of Simon Fraser University. The role of W.A.C. Bennett in the expansion of educational opportunities in B.C. All-n;ight sittings and the issue of "legislation by exhaustion".; CALL NUMBER: T3330:0006 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Aspects of government in B.C. and appointment as Minister of Labour, 1960 PERIOD COVERED: 1960-1960 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-11-02 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: Leslie Peterson discusses the issue of all-night sittings in the B.C. legislature. The absence of question period and Hansard in the House during the years of the first Social Credit governme;nt. Recollections of the Sommers affair and its effect on the government. The timing of the 1960 provincial election. Recollections of the 1960 election campaign. The take-over of B.C. Electric Co. an;d reaction in government circles. TRACK 2: The background to Peterson's appointment as Minister of Labour, 1960. Reasons for serving in a dual portfolio. Administration of the Department of Labour. D;uties and functions of the Minister of Labour. Comments on the distinctiveness of the labour movement in B.C. Views on labour-management relations. The effect of being branded an "anti-labour governme;nt". The relationship between organized labour and the NDP in B.C. and its effects on Peterson as Minister of Labour. The role and function of labour unions. Speculation as to why British Columbians h;ave been reluctant to admit voting for Social Credit.; CALL NUMBER: T3330:0007 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Labour law disputes and labour relations in B.C., 1960-1971 PERIOD COVERED: 1960-1971 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-11-03 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: Leslie Peterson discusses the effects of labour legislation which he passed through the B.C. Legislature as Minister of Labour. Bill 42, 1961, and the relationship between organized labour an;d the NDP. The issue of union payroll deductions being used for political purposes. The Mediation Commission Act, 1968 (Bill 33) and the issue of compulsory arbitration. Use of the power of binding ar;bitration. Relationship with leaders of organized labour in British Columbia. Comments on the growth and development of the labour movement in B.C. during the years Peterson served as Minister of Labo;ur. Premier W.A.C. Bennett's role in labour matters. TRACK 2: The Premier's attitude towards labour-management relations may have been harsher and more direct than Peterson's. The importance of timin;g in government interventions in labour-management relations.. The occasion when Peterson and Bennett visited the home of J.V. Clyne in an effort to assist in the settling of a labour dispute which wa;s crippling the coast forest industry. The 1971 BCFL-sponsored demonstration at the opening of the legislative session. The amount of labour legislation increased significantly in B.C. during Peterson;'s tenure as Minister of Labour. Peterson's legacy to labour-management relations in B.C.; CALL NUMBER: T3330:0008 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Conventions, elections and Social Credit policies PERIOD COVERED: 1952-1972 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-11-03 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: Leslie Peterson discusses his role and involvement within the Social Credit party. The relationship between the party executive and the government. Comments on the differences between using t;he phrases "movement", "league" or "party" in describing Social Credit in B.C. The roles of the Women's Auxiliary and the Young Socreds. The relationship between the B.C. and Alberta Social Credit par;ties. The relationship between the B.C. Social Credit Party and the national party. The 1962 national Social Credit leadership convention at which Robert Thompson was made leader. Reasons for supporti;ng Real Caouette over Robert Thompson. TRACK 2: W.A.C. Bennett and national Social Credit politics. The question of possible irregularities at the 1962 national Socred convention. Reasons for the lac;k of success of the national Social Credit Party in Canada. Recollections of the 1963 election campaign. Evaluation of the challenge by the Conservatives under the leadership of Davie Fulton. Reasons ;for the failure of third party challenges in British Columbia. The 1966 provincial election and Peterson's switch to the riding of Vancouver-Little Mountain. Comments on dual-member riding. Election f;unding and the B.C. Free Enterprise Educational Fund. Peterson's interest and involvement in promoting the Bank of British Columbia. Relations with Vancouver municipal politicians.; CALL NUMBER: T3330:0009 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Life as Attorney-General and the defeat of the Socreds, 1972 PERIOD COVERED: 1968-1975 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-11-03 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: Leslie Peterson discusses the effect of the resignation of Robert Bonner in 1968. The following cabinet shuffle and Peterson's assumption of the portfolio of Attorney-General. The duties and ;functions of the Attorney-General. Administration of the department of the Attorney-General. Relationship with Deputy Attorney-General. Federal-provincial relations, the process of constitutional revi;ew and the failure of the Victoria Charter, 1971. The development and advocacy of the five-regions idea. The 1969 constitutional conference in Ottawa. The 1969 provincial election. Evaluation of the l;eadership of the NDP under Strachan and Berger. The liquor ad ban, 1971, and its effect on the demise of the government. Moral issues in politics. TRACK 2: Peterson's defence of W.A.C. Bennett after ;he was referred to as a bigot by Prime Minister Trudeau. Contributing factors to the defeat of the Social Credit government in 1972. Anecdote about meeting the Premier at the PNE during the election ;campaign and warning him that things were not going well. The effect of losing in his own riding, Vancouver-Little Mountain. Comments on the question of succeeding W.A.C. Bennett as leader of the Soci;al Credit Party. Comments on Bill Bennett and his entry into B.C. politics. The threat of the Majority Movement to the revival of the Social Credit Party in B.C.. (End of interview);

Warden's diaries

  • GR-0002
  • Series
  • 1893-1899

The series consists of three volumes of Victoria Gaol Warden's diaries dated 1893, 1896 and 1899.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

Superintendent of Provincial Police correspondence inward

  • GR-0063
  • Series
  • 1898-1912

The series consists of correspondence from the Dept. of the Attorney-General to the Superintendent of Police between October 1898 and August 1912.

British Columbia. Superintendent of Police

Superintendent of Provincial Police correspondence outward

  • GR-0064
  • Series
  • 1898-1918

The series consists of 12 volumes of correspondence from the Superintendent of Provincial Police outward to Attorney General. The records were created between December 1898 and April 1918 and are letterpress copies. There are subject indexes at the start of each volume.

British Columbia. Superintendent of Police

Telegrams to Superintendent of Provincial Police

  • GR-0065
  • Series
  • 1896-1906

The series consists of three volumes of telegrams to the Superintendent of Police, from 1896-1897, and 1900-1906. They are arranged alphabetically within chronological groupings.

British Columbia. Superintendent of Police


  • GR-0113
  • Series
  • 1872-2009

The series consists of orders-in-council arranged numerically by year and then by OIC number. The series also includes some maps and text attachments which were transferred in 1974 from the Dept. of the Provincial Secretary. The records were created between 1872 and 2009. Orders-in-council can be issued for a variety of reasons, including creating simple legislation and granting political appointments. OICs are issued in the name of the Lieutenant-Governor.

Containers 941119-0002, 941119-0004, and 941119-0006 contain proclamations. These ledgers include a copy of the order-in-council relating to the proclamation, and a copy of the proclamation. Each book contains an index listing both the OIC number and the subject of the proclamation.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

Records pertaining to Indian lands

  • GR-0200
  • Series
  • 1763; 1859-1870 [photocopied 1976]

The series consists of certified copies of records pertaining to Indian lands obtained by the Dept. of the Attorney-General in 1976 from the Public Record Office, London.

It includes selected page copies of proclamations (PC 2/110), correspondence, and despatches (C.O.5/65, C.O.42/24 and C.O.398) from successive Secretaries of State to the Governor of British Columbia pertaining to Indian lands and Crown lands in North America as well as British Columbia.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

Correspondence and petition re Vancouver liquor traffic

  • GR-0273
  • Series
  • 1909

The file consists of Attorney-General correspondence file 12/09. It contains a file of signatures on a petition to Messrs. Hon. Bowser, J.F. Ford, A.H. MeGowan, G.A. McGuire, J.F. Garden and Hon. R.G. Tatlow, Members of the British Columbia Legislative Assembly for the Electoral District of Vancouver City, 14-26 January 1909. The petition concerns the idea of including with the balloting at municipal elections "a local option system to determine whether or not the traffic in intoxicating liquors shall be permitted or prohibited." The petition was received by the Attorney General's office 28 January 1909.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

Victoria Gaol employment registers

  • GR-0305
  • Series
  • 1861-1914

This series contains employment registers from the Victoria Gaol, 1861-1914. These volumes contain daily reports showing the prisoner's name, with or without labour, how/where employed and sometimes "remarks". The following Volumes are missing : 1 May 1900 - 16 Sep 1901 and 1 Feb 1903 - 14 Jun 1904. The final volume contains a notes that prisoners were transferred to Saanich Prison Farm on 12 Sep 1914.

Victoria Gaol

Saanich Prison Farm records

  • GR-0306
  • Series
  • 1914-1917

This series consists of records documenting the admission and discharge of prisoners, their daily activities and medical needs; account books for the running of the gaol; time books for the guards and gaolers; and a letterpress book of correspondence outward from the warden, J. Munro. Volumes 1-5 are statements showing the Employment of Prisoners in Saanich Prison Farm. This is a daily record which shows the date, number and name of prisoner, all are male, all do hard labour, most are under sentence and a few are under capital sentence.

Saanich Prison Farm

Victoria Gaol records

  • GR-0308
  • Series
  • 1859-1914

This series consists of the records of the Victoria Gaol, 1859-1914. The 107 volumes include lists of prisoners, descriptions of prisoners, sentence books, work records, charge books, employment registers, registers of clothing issued, reports of prisoners' conduct, punishment books, gaolers' reports, duty rosters and daily diaries, ration books, food account books, stores and provisions account books, financial records, doctors' record books, medical order books, receipts and 1875 correspondence from the Superintendent of Police.

Records have been grouped by subject matter, then arranged chronologically when possible. The groupings are as follows: Volumes 1 to 6, Lists of prisoners in Victoria gaol; Volumes 7 to 13, Description lists; Volumes 14 to 17, Sentence books; Volumes 18 to 22, Work records; Volumes 23 to 35, Charge books; Volumes 36 to 40, Prisoners conduct records; Volumes 41 to 107, Gaolers' records.

Victoria Gaol

New Westminster Gaol records

  • GR-0309
  • Series
  • 1875-1917

This series consists of records of the New Westminster Goal, including prisoner description books, monthly lists of prisoners, and prisoners' effects books, 1875-1917.

Description books are a record and description list of all prisoners received into New Westminster Gaol, showing date, name, occupation, age, height, hair, eyes, complexion, religion, nationality, proportions, weight, peculiar marks, read and write, married or single, temperate or intemperate, offence, sentence number of convictions and remarks.

Return of Prisoners confined in New Westminster Gaol are lists arranged by month showing prisoner number and name, offence or charge, date of trial, when received in gaol, where and by whom tried, sentence, religion, nationality, whether can read or write, date of discharge, conduct, occupation in gaol, and remarks.

Prisoners' effects books show date, name, property, officer, remarks, charge and sentence.

Records are arranged chronologically by type of record.

New Westminster Gaol

Nanaimo Gaol records

  • GR-0310
  • Series
  • 1893-1914

This series consists of records of the Provincial Gaol at Nanaimo mostly between 1911 and 1914. Volumes include a list of prisoners, 1893-1911, charge and sentence book, 1911-1914, prisoners' sentence book, prisoners' description book, prisoners' employment book, prisoners' effects book, list of provisions and stores, Gaoler's testimonials at Nanaimo Gaol, 1911-1914 and at the Saanich Prison Farm 1914-1917, punishment book, prisoners' keep account book, gaoler's diary 1911, food account books, an indexed letterpress book of correspondence outward from the Warden J. Munro and a daily minute book of admissions, discharges, calls, visitors, church services, etc.

Nanaimo Gaol

Provincial Gaol punishment book

  • GR-0349
  • Series
  • 1914-1917

Punishment book showing "punishments awarded for breaches of prison discipline in Provincial Gaol". The volume indicates the date, prisoner's name, nature of the offence, by whom reported, sentence, date of sentence and the signature of the warden, J. Munro.

Saanich Prison Farm

Attorney General document series

  • GR-0419
  • Series
  • 1857-1966

The Attorney-General Document series consists mainly of transcripts of depositions and preliminary hearings and trials, forwarded to the Attorney-General and numbered consecutively by year they were filed. Registers and indexes (volumes 879 to 885) are available on microfilm reel B00395.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

Attorney General correspondence

  • GR-0429
  • Series
  • 1872-1950

This series contains selected inward correspondence from 1872 to 1950, although most of the items date from 1872 to 1937. The Attorney General's Department used several numbering and filling systems during this time period. From 1872 to 1911 letters were assigned a number as they were received, and then filed in numerical order by year. From 1911 to 1917 a subject file drawer system was used, and thereafter correspondence was coded and filed according to the Act which applied to the issue under discussion in the correspondence.

By 1934 the B.C. Archives had acquired legal custody of a selection of the correspondence from 1872 to 1911. It is not clear whether the selection was made by the Archives or the Attorney-General's Department; the original folio listing for Boxes 1 to 18 was also created at that time. In 2005 the folio listing was expanded and revised prior to the microfilming of the records.

GR-0429 contains most of the extant inward correspondence for the Department between 1872 and 1911. A separate accession, GR-0996, also contains inward correspondence from 1883-1888. The bulk of inward correspondence from 1911-1937 may be found in GR-1323. There is no contemporary index for letters inward prior to 1911.

Although the items of correspondence from 1872 to 1911 were assigned numbers sequentially, the original order was not always maintained while the records were in the Attorney-General's Department. This means that the items are no longer in strict numerical order within a year, and items relating to a single topic may sometimes be found together, regardless of the date when they were first received. Unfortunately, almost all of the Department's letterbooks for 1872-1917 were destroyed by fire in 1939. Some correspondence was also destroyed by flooding. As a result it is not possible to locate departmental replies to most of the correspondence in GR-0429. Most of the inquests from this series were extracted and may now be found in GR-1327, although the covering correspondence may remain in GR-0429. Similarly, depositions and preliminary trial transcripts were separated and may be found in GR-0419. Oversize original items remain in their original containers and files but were filmed on Reel B09325.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

Coroner's inquiries/inquests

  • GR-0431
  • Series
  • 1865-1937

Inquisitions/inquests conducted by coroners in British Columbia and selected by archives staff for retention in their original formats. Most, if not all, of these Inquests also occur in GR-1327 and GR-1328.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

Registers and indexes to coroner's inquiries/inquests

  • GR-0432
  • Series
  • 1874-1937

This series consists of registers and indexes to coroners' inquiries and inquests, 1874-1937. In the registers (1889-1937), names are listed chronologically by year. In the indexes (1879-1937), names are arranged alphabetically by year.

Coroners' inquiries and inquests that are registered and indexed in this accession are held in GR-1327 and GR-1323.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

Provincial Game Warden records

  • GR-0446
  • Series
  • 1905-1922

This collection is comprised of records relating to the development, implementation and administration of game management policies in British Columbia, 1905-1922. It includes correspondence, reports, vouchers and licences, as well as information regarding firearms regulation and prosecutions under game laws.

Researchers will find these records particularly useful for tracking the development and implementation of early provincial game management policies. General correspondence and reports from Deputy Game Wardens throughout the province contain information regarding the status of game in various areas over time. Difficulties in enforcing policies such as regulation of trophy hunters and the need for firearms licences are documented in these materials. Development of the game base as an economic resource through payment of licence fees, and international promotion of the province as a sportsperson's centre, were key components of A. Bryan Williams' approach to game management and the results of this can also be studied in these records. Conflicts between the provincial approach to the game resource and that taken by some Indigenous peoples can be studied in this collection. Many of the Deputy Game Wardens saw military service abroad during World War I and the records include some relevant correspondence.

This collection was compiled from several sets of Provincial Game Warden records that were transferred to the Provincial Archives of B.C. at various times.

See Table of Contents below for a general sense of the collection organization and finding aid for a detailed file/item list. The contents of some files are listed in a hardcopy index (i.e. an item list) available in the reference room. Please note that not all files are completely itemized.

A. Indexes : Box 1

B. Correspondence : Boxes 2-117
(1) Personal and semi-official correspondence of A. Bryan Williams, Provincial Game Warden : Boxes 2-4
(2) Correspondence out : Box 4
(3) Letterbooks of correspondence out : Boxes 5-11
(4) General correspondence inward and outward : Boxes 12-94
(5) Correspondence re: firearms licences : Boxes 95-117

C. Deputy Game Wardens : Boxes 118-149
(1) Monthly reports Boxes : 118-126
(2) Correspondence Boxes : 127-149

D. Returns re: firearms licences : Boxes 150-158

E. Vouchers : Boxes 159-161

F. Licences : Box 161

G. Prosecutions : Boxes 162-166

H. Miscellaneous : Boxes 166-167

British Columbia. Provincial Game and Forest Warden

Bills and other material

  • GR-0556
  • Series
  • 1867-1868

This series consists of bills, draft ordinances, orders of the day and other working papers for the Legislative Council of the colony of British Columbia.

British Columbia. Legislative Council

Court decisions and exhibits

  • GR-0607
  • Series
  • 1903-1904

This series consists of printed records relating to the following court cases: the Attorney General of the Province of British Columbia versus Theodore Ludgate, and the Attorney General of the Dominion of Canada regarding ownership of Deadman's Island, Burrard Inlet.

Records include Attorney-General vs. Ludgate report by Robert Cassidy to the Attorney General for British Columbia on the appeal of the Dominion of Canada from the 1901 judgment of Martin, J. (Queen's Printer, 1904, 7 p.). The series also includes various exhibits and other records, such as exhibit 6, "Extracts from blue book containing papers relating to the affairs of British Columbia, 1859-1864" (pp. 307-307(81)); "Evidence before Full Court in addition to that taken at trial" and Exhibits V,W,X,Y (pp. 366-430); reasons for judgment of Chief Justice Gordon Hunter, Justice M.W. Tyrwhitt Drake, and Justice P. A. Irving (pp. 431-445); and B.C. Supreme Court decisions (pp. 446-449). Box 2 contains several duplicates of pp. 307-307(81) and pp. 366-450.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

Reports submitted by provincial coroners

  • GR-0627
  • Series
  • 1954

This series consists of reports of inquests, juries of inquiry submitted by provincial coroners as required by the Coroners Act, 1954.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Provincial Secretary

Victoria Gaol charge and sentence book

  • GR-0662
  • Series
  • 1904-1914

This series consists of a charge and sentence book from Victoria Gaol, 1904-1914. Information recorded includes date entered, name, date of sentence, charge, admitting officer, time and date prisoner received, sentence, by whom sentenced, property received, cash received, and receipt for propensity on discharge.

Victoria Gaol

Drafts of proclamations, ordinances, acts, bills

  • GR-0673
  • Series
  • 1858-1910

This series consists of drafts of proclamations, ordinances, acts, and bills, 1858-1910. Records created before 1871 were created by the Attorney-General of the Colony of British Columbia, and possibly by the Attorney-General for the Colony of Vancouver Island. Records created after 1871 were created by the Department of the Attorney-General for the Province in British Columbia.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

Bills, orders and other material

  • GR-0674
  • Series
  • 1868-1872

This series consists of bills, draft bills, orders of the day, notes on debates, estimates, draft legislation, statutes, subject files and other records of the Legislative Council and the Legislative Assembly, 1868-1872.

The first versions or drafts of a bill or act are known as the Blues version, after the blue paper used for the printing. The final version, printed by the Queen’s Printer, is on white paper. All blues versions will be identified as draft. Final versions will be noted at “Statute”.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

Draft bills and other material regarding mining

  • GR-0675
  • Series
  • 1859-1871

This series consists of papers, mainly draft bills, regarding mining, 1859-1871. Records created before 1871 were created in the office of the Attorney-General of the Colony of British Columbia, and possibly the Attorney-General of the Colony of Vancouver Island, if the records relate to Vancouver Island and were created before 1866 when the two colonies merged. Records created in 1871 were created by the Attorney-General for the Province of British Columbia.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Attorney-General

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