Series GR-0501 - Provincial Mental Home (Colquitz) records

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Provincial Mental Home (Colquitz) records

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  • 1919-1953 (Creation)
    Provincial Mental Home, Colquitz, B.C.

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Physical description

2.35 m of textual records

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Biographical history

Colquitz is a mental institution which operated from 1919 to 1964, located on Wilkinson Road in Saanich, B.C. It was originally built as a prison in 1914, known as the Saanich Prison Farm. In 1919, Mental Health Services assumed jurisdiction of the Saanich Prison Farm and it became the Provincial Mental Home, Colquitz, B.C. (or Colquitz Mental Hospital). It was used to house the male “criminally insane” inmates of the provincial mental hospitals. All admissions to Colquitz were transfers from Essondale (later renamed Riverview) in New Westminster. Colquitz accepted its first patients on March 25, 1919, with the transfer of nine patients from Essondale. In the next 15 months the population grew to 99 patients. The supervisor of Colquitz was under the direction of the Medical Superintendent of Essondale. All patient files were returned to Essondale when inmates died or were released. After its closure as a mental hospital in 1964, the facility once more became a prison, first as temporary accommodation for overflow from the Oakalla Prison Farm and then in 1970 as the Vancouver Island Regional Correctional Centre, popularly known as the Wilkinson Road Jail.

The supervisors of the Provincial Mental Home at Colquitz were:
Granby Farrant Supervisor 1919-1933
F.M. Spooner Supervisor 1933-1941
T.A. Morris Supervisor 1941-1947
L.G.C. d'Easum Medical Superintendent 1948-1953
obituary in Mental Hospitals annual report 1933-1934

Custodial history

Scope and content

This series consists of Colquitz Mental Hospital records, 1919-1953, including correspondence of the supervisor and other staff, and a register of inmates. Correspondence of the supervisor with the Medical Superintendent are useful for showing the policies and procedures of the hospital. Records cover a variety of topics relating to the administration of the hospital.

The records are arranged in fairly close congruence with the changes in administrators of the institution. Each sub-series relates to particular supervisor(s) of the Provincial Mental Home at Colquitz:
Series 1 1919-1931 Granby Farrant
Series 2 1931-1941 Granby Farrant & F.M. Spooner
Series 3 1941-1953 T.A. Morris & L.G.C. d'Easum
The material in Series 3 is organized with a new set of files for each year.

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These records are restricted. Please contact the BC Archives for information about access.

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Associated materials

See GR-0645 for additional Colquitz records.

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Accession number(s): GR-0501

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