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Archival description
Only top-level descriptions British Columbia. Dept. of the Provincial Secretary Social service--British Columbia
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Provincial Secretary executive records

  • GR-0496
  • Series
  • 1929-1947

This series consists of executive records of the Provincial Secretary, covering a wide variety of topics. The Provincial Secretary's department was responsible for a broad range of legislation and activities - including the civil service, provincial elections and (until 1946) health and welfare services. These records comprise part of the former Provincial Secretary's Central Registry. This registry consisted of general correspondence, policy directives, branch reports, inter-departmental memoranda, circulars, grant applications, and a host of miscellaneous documents.

The finding aid consists of two parts. Part I is a box/file list showing the original order and arrangement of the records. The records fall into six categories or subseries:

A. General correspondence: correspondence inward (with replies), reports, circulars, etc.
B. Appointments: correspondence, commissions, oaths of allegiance of coroners, magistrates, and other appointed officials.
C. Resident Physicians: correspondence re: grants paid to physicians in isolated communities
D. Grants: correspondence and reports pertaining to grants paid to various community groups and charitable organizations, service clubs, etc.
E. Workmen's Compensation Board: circulars, etc.
F. Contemporary card indexes: alphabetical subject index cards. Part II: Subject Index

Part II of this finding aid consists of a subject index compiled by the Provincial Archives of BC. The index indicates the main topics or subject areas - e.g. Provincial Infirmary, Elections, Industrial Schools, etc. which are documented in GR-0496. The index does not claim to be comprehensive or exhaustive, but it should help researchers to locate documents which concern particular institutions or activities.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Provincial Secretary

Deputy Provincial Secretary records

  • GR-0497
  • Series
  • 1930-1946

This series consists of the personal files of the Deputy Provincial Secretary, Paschal de Noe Walker, 1930-1946. Records deal with health and welfare facilities (hospitals, industrial schools, etc.), social services, elections, libraries, museums and a variety of other programmes and services administered by the Provincial Secretary's department.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Provincial Secretary

Provincial Secretary correspondence

  • GR-0157
  • Series
  • 1913-1916

The series consists of correspondence, 1913-1916, that was originally a part of the Provincial Secretary's Central Registry. The records include grant applications from charitable organizations (e.g. Salvation Army Rescue and Maternity Home, Vancouver); petitions from various citizens groups and trades organizations (e.g. re: Pacific Great Eastern railway, prohibition, and Weekly Half Holiday Act); plus files on diverse topics such as the Belgian Relief Fund (which was administered by the Provincial Secretary), the Progress Club of Vancouver, the provincial coat-of-arms, prohibition, half-day closing, the Provincial Archives and W.W. Walkem's "Stories of Early British Columbia".

British Columbia. Dept. of the Provincial Secretary

Records pertaining to care of indigents and destitute persons

  • GR-0150
  • Series
  • 1911-1925

The series contains records pertaining to the care of indigents and destitute persons created by the Dept. of the Provincial Secretary between 1911 and 1925. Files consist of applications for relief, supporting documents from police constables and government agents, case files, administrative reports, and general correspondence. Reports on unemployment in specific communities in British Columbia, ca. 1911-1918 are also included.

Records created prior to 1923 were filed numerically and constituted a separate records series within the Provincial Secretary's office. Records created after 1923 were kept alphabetically, by name of applicant. Regrettably, contemporary registers and indices for these records have not survived.

Although it was "the duty of every city and district municipality to make suitable provision for its poor" [Municipal Act, RSBC 1911, c.170 s.526], the Department of the Provincial Secretary was largely responsible for the care of indigents and other destitute people in British Columbia. In fact, prior to the creation of the Department of Health and Welfare in 1946, the Provincial Secretary's office was often the only source of support for deserted wives and children, indigent widows and elderly persons, disabled workers and others in need of public welfare. The Provincial Secretary administered funds to such groups through charitable accounts, the Workmen's Compensation Board, the Provincial Board of Health, and other agencies. At the local level, relief payments were often distributed by Provincial Police constables or Government Agents.

British Columbia. Dept. of the Provincial Secretary