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Archival description
Bennett, W.A.C. (William Andrew Cecil), 1900-1979 Trans-Canada Highway
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[Highway and bridge opening ceremonies, summer and fall 1962]

Compilation. Christina Lake-Kinnaird highway opening (06-Oct-1962); Deas Island Thruway; Deas Tunnel toll removal; Upper Levels Highway. Trans-Canada Highway Motorcade leaving ferry at Swartz Bay; ceremony at B.C. Legislature (Premier Bennett speaking); Trans-Canada Highway ceremony at Mile 0, Victoria, with motorcade car dipping its front wheels in the Pacific. Federal government opening ceremony at Rogers Pass summit; Prime Minister Diefenbaker speaking. Old Alexandra Suspension Bridge; new Alexandra Bridge under construction, and opening ceremony (23/24-Oct-1962). Also includes aerial footage of highway construction.

John Diefenbaker interview : [Mitchell, 1978]

SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Recollections of W.A.C. Bennett and B.C. politics PERIOD COVERED: 1948-1963 RECORDED: Ottawa (Ont.), 1978-03-09 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: In an interview with David Mitchell, former Prime Minister John Diefenbaker recalls coming to British Columbia in 1948 to help W.A.C. Bennett's campaign in the Yale by-election; general impressions of W.A.C. Bennett as Premier of British Columbia. Diefenbaker discusses the fact that he regarded Bennett and the Socreds as essentially conservatives. He also discusses the Columbia River Treaty, Davie Fulton and his 1963 challenge to W.A.C. Bennett, the opening of the Trans-Canada highway and federal-provincial relations. [TRACK 2: blank; end of interview.];

Men, mountains and the challenge

The item is a videocassette copy of a documentary film from ca. 1957. It shows highway construction in BC. Includes planning and surveys; opening of contractors' bids by Highways Minister Gaglardi; clearing of route by heavy equipment; culvert assembly; drilling and blasting rock; road bed preparation; paving. Also: traffic control; overpass construction. Sections of Highways 1 and 1A are shown, and Premier W.A.C. Bennett presides at an official opening.

Men, mountains and the challenge

Documentary. Highway construction in BC. Includes planning and surveys; opening of contractors' bids by Highways Minister Gaglardi; clearing of route by heavy equipment; culvert assembly; drilling and blasting rock; road bed preparation; paving. Also: traffic control; overpass construction. Sections of Highways 1 and 1A are shown, and Premier W.A.C. Bennett presides at an official opening.

Men, mountains and the challenge

Industrial film. Highway construction in BC. Includes planning and surveys; opening of contractors' bids by Highways Minister Gaglardi; clearing of route by heavy equipment; culvert assembly; drilling and blasting rock; road bed preparation; paving. Traffic control and overpass construction are also discussed. Sections of Highways 1 and 1A are shown, and Premier W.A.C. Bennett presides at an official opening.

Men, mountains and the challenge

The item is a composite print of a documentary film made ca. 1957. It shows highway construction in BC. Includes planning and surveys; opening of contractors' bids by Highways Minister Gaglardi; clearing of route by heavy equipment; culvert assembly; drilling and blasting rock; road bed preparation; paving. Traffic control and overpass construction are also discussed. Sections of Highways 1 and 1A are shown, and Premier W.A.C. Bennett presides at an official opening.

Port Mann Bridge

The item is a videocassette copy of an industrial film from ca. 1957 to 1964. It shows the engineering and construction of the Port Mann Bridge -- the last link in BC's portion of the Trans-Canada Highway -- and its official opening on 12 June 1964 by Premier W.A.C. Bennett. Also includes historical footage of 1930s traffic and the opening of Pattullo Bridge in 1937 by Premier T.D. Pattullo.

Port Mann Bridge

Industrial film. The engineering and construction of the Port Mann Bridge -- the last link in BC's portion of the Trans-Canada Highway -- and its official opening on 12 June 1964 by Premier W.A.C. Bennett. Also includes historical footage of 1930s traffic and the opening of Pattullo Bridge in 1937 by Premier T.D. Pattullo.

[Vancouver freeway]

Unedited footage. Includes opening ceremonies (?), introduction of new construction vehicles, first stage construction work, and opening ceremonies at the Chilliwack end of the Trans-Canada Highway. Premier W.A.C. Bennett, Highways Minister Phil Gaglardi, and other dignitaries are shown at the various ceremonies.

W.A.C. Bennett interview : [Mitchell, 1976-1978 : part 3]

CALL NUMBER: T1675:0030 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): The 'Five-Regions' idea and Canada's future RECORDED: [location unknown], 1977-11-06 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: W.A.C. Bennett discusses the origin and background of the five-regions concept. Recollection of the federal-provincial conference on the constitution, 1969, when Bennett first publicly advocated the idea. Reaction to the five-regions idea. Comments on how each region of Canada would benefit if Canada was restructured according to Bennett's plan. The Canadian north and the five-regions plan. The five-regions idea and the decentralization of the Canadian federal system. TRACK 2: Comments on Brian Brown's book, "The New Confederation". Bennett's views on British Columbia's place within Canadian confederation and the trend towards North American continentalism. Political alliances versus economic common markets. Bennett values Canadian independence and British political institutions. Anecdote about Rene Levesque asking Bennett to lead British Columbia out of Canadian confederation. CALL NUMBER: T1675:0031 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): British Columbia politics and the BCR (part 1) RECORDED: [location unknown], 1977-11-14 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: W.A.C. Bennett discusses his involvement with service clubs. His fierce patriotism for British Columbia. Cooperation with the federal government on several projects. Medicare. Construction of; the Trans-Canada Highway in B.C. The genesis of Roberts Bank. Cost-sharing with the federal government. Bennett's submission to the Royal Commission investigating the British Columbia Railway (BCR). Criticism of the post-1972 administration of BCR. TRACK 2: The BCR as a political railway. Reasons for changing its name from PGE to BCR. The intention to sell the PGE by some early B.C. Socreds. The railway should be operated as a public enterprise for the benefit of private businesses in the province. The railway should be run like a business. The role of Joe Broadbent, the manager of the BCR. The role of the president and board of directors of the railway. The issue of under-estimating construction costs on the Dease Lake extension of the BCR. Reasons for the extension of the BCR into the Canadian north and through to Alaska. Bennett's attitude towards environmentalism. CALL NUMBER: T1675:0032 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): British Columbia politics and the BCR (part 2) RECORDED: [location unknown], 1977-11-14 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: W.A.C. Bennett discusses the future of the BCR. The current plight of the railway is due to mismanagement by the NDP during the years it formed the provincial government. Bennett describes how, in his view, it would be possible to rejuvenate the BCR and prepare it for great future development. [TRACK 2: blank.] CALL NUMBER: T1675:0033 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Government pension funds and labour policies, 1952-1972 PERIOD COVERED: 1952-1972 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1977-11-15 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: W.A.C. Bennett discusses his government's use of public service pension funds. The issue of pension fund shortfalls. Bennett's method of securing the future value of pension funds. The indexing of pensions. The problem of inflation and its effect on pension funds. The issue of pension fund socialism. TRACK 2: W.A.C. Bennett discusses the labour policies of his government, 1952-1972. The role of organized labour in the B.C. economy. Theory of labour-management relations. The character of the labour movement in B.C. The effect of government policies in labour-management relations. The NDP and organized labour. The issue of strikes in essential services. Evaluation of Bennett's Ministers of Labour: Lyle Wicks, Leslie Peterson, James Chabot. The government as referee in labour-manage;ment relations. CALL NUMBER: T1675:0034 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Personal nicknames and Saltspring Island hideaway RECORDED: [location unknown], 1977-11-25 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: W.A.C. Bennett discusses his relationship with close personal friends. Commencement of the use of the initials W.A.C. after moving to Kelowna, 1930. Origin of the nickname "Wacky". Bennett's hideaway on Saltspring Island. Spending weekends on Saltspring Island while Premier. Description of Saltspring cottage. [TRACK 2: blank.] CALL NUMBER: T1675:0035 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): The budgetary process, treasury board and cabinet PERIOD COVERED: 1952-1972 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-02-04 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: W.A.C. Bennett discusses playing cards with friends and the importance of relaxation. Anecdote about a story told at a Christmas family occasion by Bennett's son R.J. Description of the budgetary processes of Bennett's government. TRACK 2: The role and function of little treasury board. The process of treasury board. Bennett's role as Chairman of the treasury board. The effect of Bennett's style of budgeting on his government's policies. The budget as an instrument of government policy. Serving simultaneously as Premier and Minister of Finance. The operation of Bennett's cabinet. The; virtual absence of cabinet committees. Travelling cabinet meetings. Plebiscites. CALL NUMBER: T1675:0036 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Wenner-Gren and plans for the development of British Columbia PERIOD COVERED: 1952-1978 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-02-11 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: W.A.C. Bennett discusses maintenance of the legislative precinct during the period he was Premier. British Columbia's development and the growing world economy during the years of his government. The background to the Wenner-Gren plan to develop the interior of the province. Bennett's meeting in London, England, with Sir Andrew McTaggart and Dal Grauer which presaged the takeover of the B.C. Electric Company. TRACK 2: The genesis of the two rivers policy. The development of hydro-electric power on the Peace River and its effect on negotiations for the Columbia River Treaty. The effect of the Wenner-Gren plan. The memorandum of intent which was signed between the government and the Wenner-Gren B.C. Development Corporation. The aborted plans for the Pacific Northern Railway. The role of Einar Gunderson in the Wenner-Gren plan. Bennett responds to charges that BCR losses were hidden during the years of his government. CALL NUMBER: T1675:0037 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Education policies of the Social Credit government, 1952-1972 PERIOD COVERED: 1952-1972 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-02-14 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: W.A.C. Bennett discusses his attitudes towards higher education. Anecdote about persuading his son, Bill, to consider going to university. Construction of Simon Fraser University and the University of Victoria. Relations with UBC. Relations with the academic community in general. Government funding for education. TRACK 2: Bennett recalls addressing a large student audience at UBC at which the university president, Norman McKenzie, was heckled. Evaluation of Bennett's successive Ministers of Education: Tilly Rolston, Robert Bonner, Ray Williston, Leslie Peterson, Donald Brothers. Dual cabinet portfolios. The role of the teachers in the defeat of the Social Credit government, 1972. Anecdote about Bert Price voting against the Socred minority government, 1953. CALL NUMBER: T1675:0038 SUPPLIED TITLE OF TAPE(S): Relationship with John Diefenbaker and the federal Conservative Party PERIOD COVERED: 1948-1963 RECORDED: [location unknown], 1978-03-04 SUMMARY: TRACK 1: W.A.C. Bennett recalls the days when he was a Conservative in British Columbia and memories of John Diefenbaker. The 1948 Yale by-election. Reasons for lack of success in the by-election. Efforts by the federal Conservatives to have Social Credit join their party. Relationship with the Diefenbaker government. The Columbia River Treaty. Meeting President Kennedy at a banquet in Seattle. The 1963 provincial election campaign and Davie Fulton's challenge in British Columbia. TRACK 2: Reasons for Fulton's challenge to Social Credit in British Columbia. Factors contributing to Fulton's failure in the 1963 election. Diefenbaker and the opening of the Trans-Canada highway in British Columbia. W.A.C. Bennett as a British Columbia nationalist.