Series GR-3276 - Water rights photographs

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Water rights photographs

General material designation

  • graphic material

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

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Series

Reference code

GR-3276

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Edition statement of responsibility

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area

Date(s)

  • [ca. 1915-1982] (Creation)
    Creator
    British Columbia. Water Rights Branch

Physical description area

Physical description

3.8 m of graphic material (ca. 11,356 photographs)

Publisher's series area

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Archival description area

Name of creator

(1909-1979)

Biographical history

The Water Rights Branch was established in 1909. Its name was changed to Water Management Branch in 1979.

The Water Rights Branch reported to the following departments and ministries: Dept. of Lands (1909-1945), Dept. of Lands and Forests (1945-1962), Dept. of Lands, Forests and Water Resources (1962-1975), Dept of Environment (1975-1976), Ministry of the Environment (1976-1978) and Ministry of Municipal Affairs (1978-1979).

The Dept. of Lands was established in 1908 (Department of Lands Act, SBC 1908, c. 31). Before 1908 the agencies responsible for the functions of the Dept. of Lands: (1) the Dept. of Lands and Works (Crown lands management, sales, pre-emptions and leases, lands surveying and mapping, timber inspection, forest protection and log scaling), and (2) the Dept. of Mines (water rights in regards to mining operations).

The Dept. of Lands, headed by the Chief Commissioner of Lands, was given responsibility for public lands and water rights, and all matters connected therewith. (SBC 1908, c. 31, s. 5). These responsibilities included: (1) the management of all public lands, as per the Land Act, (RSBC 1897, c. 113); (2) administration of water rights, as per the Water Clauses Consolidation Act, (RSBC 1897, c. 191) [in 1892 by means of the Water Privileges Act (SBC 1892, c. 47), the government had reserved to itself the right to manage all water resources in the province that were unreserved and un-appropriated as of April 23, 1892]; and (3) land settlement programs for returned soldiers.

In 1909, the enactment of the Water Act (SBC 1909, c. 48) resulted in the creation of the Water Rights Branch of the Dept. of Lands, under the management of the Chief Water Commissioner (re-named Comptroller of Water Rights in 1912). This legislation also resulted in the creation of Water Districts under the management of District Engineers, who would be responsible for management in the field of the Branch’s responsibilities.

In 1945, the Dept. of Lands was renamed the Dept. of Lands and Forests (Department of Lands Act Amendment Act, SBC 1945, c. 45).

Custodial history

Scope and content

Series consists of photographs taken, acquired or annotated by the Water Rights Branch ca. 1915-1982. The photographs in this series were taken or acquired by staff of the Water Rights Branch in British Columbia to document their activities. These activities included water and snow surveys, which anticipated the amount of run off expected in spring that could be used for power, irrigation and domestic supply; water resources surveys which investigated future sites that could be used to increase power; documentation and inspection of water ways, power plants, reservoirs and dams; inspections of irrigation systems including both dyking and drainage; and evidence of flood control and water damage. The majority of the photographs consist of black and white negatives and many of their corresponding prints. They are arranged numerically by a photo file number. They have been indexed by area and subject using a card file system (see related series). In addition there are panoramic photographs, large negatives and glass plate negatives, filed separately because of their size. Most of these records are also indexed by the same card file system. The series also includes several albums and miscellaneous prints and negatives, both loose and in rolls, as well as a 16mm film reel and a number of lists, indexes and other miscellaneous accompanying material.

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

Transferred from British Columbia. Ministry of Environment. Water Management Branch in 1989.

Arrangement

Language of material

Script of material

Location of originals

Availability of other formats

Restrictions on access

There are no access restrictions.
Conservation restriction: material in cool or cold storage is inaccessible.

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Copyright belongs to the Government of British Columbia.

Associated materials

Related series include: Index to water rights photographs GR-3275

Related materials

Accruals

No further accruals expected.

General note

Accession number(s): 199305-007

Conservation

Graphic material may be in cool or cold storage. Contact staff for specific details.

Physical description

Includes ca. 3962 photographs : b&w, ca. 7200 photographs : b&w negatives, 148 photographs : glass plate negatives and lantern slides, 46 transparencies : col. and b&w, and 1 16mm film reel.

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Physical storage

  • Box: 001285-0003
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