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Exploration and Surveying in Northern BC

Northern BC Archives has extensive collections on northern expeditions and surveys from 1907 to the 1930s.

Bibliography & Research Guide

Surveyors, Guides, and Explorers of Northern British Columbia

The Bibliography and Research Guide: Surveyors, Guides, and Explorers of Northern British Columbia was created to provide information about what sources may exist and where to look for further information. Many of these records of surveyors, guides, and explorers are not held at the Northern BC Archives, but descriptions of content and links to holdings are provided whenever possible.

This is a bibliography relating to the surveyors, geological explorers, and guides of Northern British Columbia. The majority of these sources relate to the early twentieth century, when much of the geography of Northern British Columbia was only vaguely recorded. The work of these men and women influenced the development of many town sites in Northern British Columbia, and their records often contain information on the history of early settlement of these regions. Their cartographic records also contain a great amount of information on the industrial development and mineral exploration of the area.

Alexander Caulfield Anderson

Alexander Caulfield Anderson (10 March 1814 – 8 May 1884) was a Hudson's Bay Company fur-trader, explorer of British Columbia and civil servant. (from Wikipedia)

Gerry Andrews

Gerry Andrews contributed to his community as a teacher, an engineer, a forester, a land surveyor and a writer. He initiated the use of aerial photography (1931) for mapping and forestry reconnaissance in B.C. Andrews supervised air surveys in Nimkish Forest, Kitimat, Okanagan, the Kootenays and the Rocky Mt. Trench. 


GERRY SMEDLEY ANDREWS FONDS – MS-0289; MS-0901; MS-0929; MS-0930; V1986:60

The Gerry Andrews fonds consists of records from 1955 to 1985. Includes photocopies of correspondence and surveyors reports, land surveying publications, essays prepared for the Provincial Museum survey instruments display, and a text of a speech. Fonds also includes three videotaped cable TV interviews (1982-1985).

Gerry Andrews reference from Jay Sherwood’s Furrows in the Sky: Sherwood, Jay. Interviews with Gerry Smedley Andrews and Art Swannell. December 1986. Audiotape/ CD.

George and Georgiana Ball

The Ball family ran the Diamond B Guest Ranch at Telegraph Creek, B.C. George and Georgiana were also involved in mining and business activities (including hunting and guiding). George Ball also operated as a fur trapper.

BALL FAMILY – MS-2185; MS-2230; T4238; F1985:15; 98602-10

The Ball Family fonds consists of correspondence, clippings, articles and photographs relating to big game hunting in the Cassiar District, principally created by George and Georgiana between 1920 and 1981. Fonds includes home movies of Ball family activities and oral family histories. Includes: 260 photographs, 2 film reels, 3 sound tape reels, and 18 sound cassettes. 


The George Ball fonds consists of account books, mining receipts and fur trade licenses as well as correspondence inward from 1927-1939.

Bob Beattie

Bob Beattie was the head packer of Bedaux’s 1932 hunting trip. 

Possible Sources: Bob Beattie family collection. Fort St. John, BC. 

Charles Bedaux

Charles Eugène Bedaux (10 October 1886 – 18 February 1944) was a French-American millionaireThe Bedaux Canadian Sub-Arctic Expedition was the title Bedaux gave to the expedition he formed to cross the wilderness of Northern British Columbia in 1934. Mostly, the expedition was a publicity stunt, but it was also formed to test the new Citroën half-track cars that were being developed by Bedaux's friend André Citroën. Key points in the trip were filmed by Academy Award winning cinematographer from HollywoodFloyd Crosby. Also along for the trip were several dozen Alberta cowboys and a large film crew. To map the route of the expedition, the Canadian government sent along two geographers, Frank Swannell and Ernest Lemarque. The expedition started off at EdmontonAlberta on 6 July 1934 and their goal was to travel 1500 miles to Telegraph Creek, British Columbia. Much of the trip would have to be made through regions that were relatively uncharted and had no trails. The party failed to reach their destination and the original movie was never made. (from Wikipedia)


The Charles Eugene Bedaux fonds, created 1914-1967, consists of textual records which include personal diaries; expedition diaries; pamphlets and a chart describing the Bedaux efficiency system; clippings describing the arrest and death of Bedaux in 1944; and papers chronicling the Bedaux-Canadian Sub-Arctic Expedition, of June-October 1934, which attempted to traverse northern British Columbia to Telegraph Creek. The fonds contains 2428 photographs and various artwork which document the Sub-Arctic Expedition undertaken by Charles Eugène Bedaux, June-October 1934. Also contained in the fonds is a silent film and out-takes (29 reels) entitled, “La Croisiere Blanche”, which documents the 1934 Expedition; as well as cartographic records and one technical drawing acquired or prepared for the Expedition, 1914-1932. Link: &rec_nbr=98430&rec_nbr_list=98430,190374,109415,109414,3842555,3635345,2870929,2870928,287 0927,2870920


The Lamarque Collection consists of memoirs describing Lamarque's experience in survey work in British Columbia and the Yukon, Canada Pacific Railway surveys in the Rocky Mountains and the Bedaux Expedition of 1934. Also included are comments on mining claims, reports on trails, and surveys for airfields and the Alaska Highway, 1958; the Bedaux Expedition containing a manuscript entitled "Travels and Explorations in Northern British Columbia, 1934". ca. 1937; and reminiscences of Sydney Ells concerning travel in the North in the early 1900's, typed by Ernest Lamarque, 1970. Link: =98092&rec_nbr_list=98092,4117934,3060999,2313827,2313706,2313705,190004,2812865,2812819,3078023


Charles Bedaux was born in France and became a successful businessman in America in the 1920’s and 1930’s. He was captivated with the country surrounding Hudson’s Hope after embarking on a hunting trip in 1932. His attempt, two years later, to take five motorized vehicles across the northern wilderness of British Columbia is known throughout the world. This "Champagne Safari" gave much needed employment to local cowboys during the Depression. During 1934 Charles Bedaux, decided to take his wife, companion, and five Citroën cars across Alberta and BC from Edmonton to Telegraph Creek. While the cars only made it to Telegraph Creek the events and the experience was well documented, by the crew that was hired on. Cowboys, surveyors, guide, outfitters, cameramen, trail blazers, and photographers were all paid twice the going rate for their services. The Hudson’s Hope Museum retained records of the journey and these are deposited in this repository. Though, it should be noted that many of these records are from other institutions, including the Jasper-Yellowhead Museum and Archives, Glenbow Museum, Library and Archives Canada, Fort St. John Museum, and the Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies. This fonds is arranged into ten series: Charles Bedaux series, Fern Bedaux series, Cecil Pickell series, Ernest Lamarque series, Jack Bocock series, Willard Freer series, Frank Swannell series, Bill Blackman series, Joseph Weiss series, and F.D. Crosby series. Contains 139 photographs, 3 DVDs, and 14.5 cm of textual records. Link:;rad


Series in the “Our Hudson’s Hope Cowboys: Packers along the trail, 75th anniversary of 1934 Charles Bedaux Expedition Fonds” include information on Jay Sherwood’s research into the Bedaux Expedition, as well as the development and research towards the event. Of special note is the “donor material” section, which includes interviews with local residents. Link:;rad 

Samuel Black

Samuel Black (May 3, 1780 – February 8, 1841) British fur trader and explorer, Clerk in the New North Nest Company (XYC) and Wintering Partner in the North West Company (NWC), and later Clerk, Chief Trader, and Chief factor in the Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) for the Columbia District. In 1824, he explored the Finlay River and its tributaries in present-day north-central British Columbia, including the MuskwaOmineca and Stikine for the HBC, his journals later published by the Hudson's Bay Record Society in 1955. (from Wikipedia)

An account of Black's expedition and a modern partial re-tracing of his route is to be found in R.M. Patterson's Finlay's River, originally published in 1968. A new edition has been published by TouchWood Editions (ISBN 0-920663-25-7).

A description of the Samuel Black Range from the Canadian Mountain Encyclopedia.

Biography at the Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online

Jack Bocock

Jack Bocock was a packer in Bedaux’s 1934 Sub-Arctic Expedition.

JACK BOCOCK SERIES – HHMA2010.03.01-.10-HHMA2010.03.05



Includes an interview with Robin Philips, the daughter of Jack Bocock. Interview by Jay Sherwood, 2008 8 Link:;rad 

Walter Halcro Boyd

Walter Halcro (Bill) Boyd (1878-1960) was born in Toronto 31 January 1878; attended Upper Canada College and the University of Toronto, where he developed his skills as a mapmaker. Mr. Boyd joined the Geological Survey of Canada in 1900, and was appointed Chief of the Topographic Division in 1908, serving in that role until 1936. He was appointed on 23 November 1909 to the Geographic Board of Canada, as a representative from the Geological Survey, and served continuously until 1 May 1940. He was elected as GBC Chair 2 February 1932. From 1936, when four departments [merged as] Department of Mines and Resources, until his retirement in 1940 he was the Chief Topographic Engineer. He died in Toronto on 10 January 1960.


Collection consists of one geological survey map of Atlin Mining District, B.C. dated 1902; a dinner sheet of the Cross Wire Club, compiled by the New Russell House in Ottawa, dated 1911; the inscribed address presented at the retirement of Walter Halcro Boyd on 13 April 1940 by the Geological Survey of Canada; and a protractor used for surveying by Boyd. Item #1 includes annotations of distances between various locations within the mining district. Acquisition documentation file also contains a selection of photographs relating primarily to land surveying, letters of goodwill, and a copy of the speech given on the occasion of Mr. Boyd's retirement. Original maps are described in AMICUS No.9659888. Link: 8&rec_nbr_list=196539,1558,1484889


Link: 4889&rec_nbr_list=196539,1558,1484889

Fred Brewster

Frederick Archibald Brewster (1883-1969) was an outfitter and guide at Jasper, Alberta, Canada. Brewster was born in Kildonan, Manitoba and in 1888 moved with his family to Banff, where he received his education. He subsequently attended St. John's College, Winnipeg, Manitoba and Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, obtaining a B.Sc. in Mining Engineering. Brewster worked briefly as a prospector and in 1910 embarked upon a long career as an outfitter and guide, first with Brewster and Moore. S. Prescott Fay, Robert Cross and Fred Brewster conducted a formal exploratory and surveying expedition of Tumbler Ridge in 1914. Brewster would continue on to do work in Banff and Jasper national parks.


The Fred Brewster fonds contains personal papers from 1897 to 1967 pertaining to family, education, military service, etc. Also includes professional and business papers from 1908 to 1957 regarding the Consolidated Mining and Smelting Co. of Canada, private mining ventures, Brewster and Moore outfitting, Brewster Transfer Co., and Brewster Trading Co., Samuel Prescott Fay, Lovat Scouts, Jasper, etc. Includes scrapbook titled "Mt. Sir Alexander," 1912-1967, attributed to Fred Brewster, consisting of clippings, articles and maps re the discovery, naming, ascents, etc. of Mount Sir Alexander, also text of speech delivered by Brewster at the opening of the Banff-Jasper Highway. Also includes Samuel Prescott Fay journal from 1914 hunting trip, photocopy. Additionally, includes news clippings and magazines, 1930-1969; a book entitled "Lord of the Lakes and Forest" by Augustus Moore; and photographs, ca.1887-ca.1967, pertaining to Fred Brewster outfitting operations, associates, clients, camps, lodges and facilities, Brewster family and friends, and Fred Brewster college and university associates. Records for Brewster also exist at Library and Archives Canada and Jasper Yellowhead Museum and Archives, but they appear to relate largely to his work with Jasper National Park.



The Fred Brewster fonds, dated 1824-1985, consists of correspondence and topical files (originals and copies), as well as blueprints, brochures, newspaper clippings, magazines and copies of articles relevant to Fred, the Brewster family, the Jasper area, the Jasper-Yellowhead Historical Society, skiing, trail riding, hunting and guiding and other subjects relevant to the history of Jasper. There are field and notebooks from university days and WWI as well as from various expeditions, pamphlets, photographs, maps and a number of books and artifacts. Also included in the fonds are photographs of the Brewster family and home; the Brewster stable and some of the cowboys and guests; and the Jasper rodeo.


Robert Campbell

Robert Campbell (21 February 1808 – 9 May 1894) was a Hudson's Bay Company fur trader and explorer. He explored a large part of the southern Yukon and northern British Columbia. He established the short-lived Dease Lake Post, and in 1838 he was the first European to reach the Stikine River overland.[1] He established Fort Frances, Yukon on Frances Lake in the Liard River basin. In 1840 he crossed from Frances Lake to the Pelly River becoming the first European to explore the upper Yukon River Basin. He established Fort Selkirk, Yukon at the juncture of the Yukon River and the Pelly River. (from Wikipedia)

Charles Camsell

Charles Camsell (February 8, 1876–1958) was a Canadian geologist and Commissioner of the Northwest Territories from December 3, 1936 to December 3, 1946. The son of a Hudson’s Bay Company Factor, Camsell became a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and was a member of the National Research Council from 1921-1936.


Item is a Geological Survey map from 1910, created in part by Charles Camsell, that shows geological structures and relief in the Hedley-Nickel Plate Mountain area.



Item is a Geological Survey map from 1910, created in part by Charles Camsell, that shows Nickel Plate Mountain.



The Charles Camsell Fonds consists of correspondence including letters received and letters sent. Among the chief subjects are mining, geology and surveying the North West Territories, hydroelectric development, and the 1913 Canadian Arctic Expedition, 1920-1958, 40 cm; four letters regarding the Government Placer Mining Training Camp at Choate, British Columbia, 1937; diaries and notebooks including a field notebook, 1897-1899, kept by A.F. Camsell of the Hudson's Bay Company on a trip in the Mackenzie district, 1897-1942, 10 cm; manuscripts including drafts of speeches, articles, and his autobiography, Son of the North, 1904-1954, 10 cm; scrapbooks, and printed material including pamphlets, articles, diplomas and other papers relating to Dr. Camsell's various activities and to professional associations, 1903-1958. The fonds also contains photographs, 1874-1955, documenting the career of Dr. Charles Camsell with the Geological Society of Canada and as Deputy Minister of Mines. The fonds also contains drawings by Dr. Charles Camsell and relate to his career with the Geological Survey of Canada. Also included are films shot in connection with Camsell [ca. 1930-1940]. The fonds contain a map illustrating the travels of Charles Camsell, 1884-1948, annotated according to the method of travel.

Link: 18&rec_nbr_list=98118 

Eric Collier

Eric Collier (1903 - 1966) was a trapper and conservationist in Northern BC. He reintroduced beavers and other wildlife back to the area west of the Fraser River in Canada. Collier told his story in a book published in New York in 1959, Three Against the Wilderness.

LILLIAN COLLIER INTERVIEWS – T0366:0001 – 0002 Part of the Imbert Orchard Collection.

Summary of recording: Mrs. Collier tells the story of the meeting her husband, the writer Eric Collier. She offers details about the operation of Becher House, social life there, how she was married there in 1928, Eric Collier's literary ambitions, how the Collier's started guiding in 1938, and the story of how Eric Collier came to write "Three Against The Wilderness". Mrs. Collier offers details about the publishing of "Three Against The Wilderness" and outlines part of the story. She discusses Eric Collier's childhood and youth, Eric Collier as a writer, her own role in Eric's writing, more on Mr. Collier as a writer and a person, and the Collier family 11 in the 1950s. Mrs. Collier continues with more discussion of the book, reviews and reactions to the book, Eric Collier's ill health in the 1950s, a discussion of the book's title, translations of the book into Spanish, German, French and Polish, editions of the book and the consequences of being well-known. Credits: Speaker: Lillian Collier; interviewer: Imbert Orchard; sound recording: Ian Stephen.


Robert Cross

Robert Cross, S. Prescott Fay & Fred Brewster conducted a formal exploratory and surveying expedition of Tumbler Ridge in 1914. 

Carl Davidson

Carl Davidson was a packer on the Bedaux expedition and is mentioned in Bob White’s Bannock and Beans


Includes an oral history interview conducted by Helen Mustard with Carl Davidson.


George M. Dawson

George Mercer Dawson (1849-1901), was hired as a geologist by the Geological Survey of Canada in 1875. Undeterred by a frail physique, Dawson worked as a field geologist and explorer in British Columbia for most of his career. He became the Survey's Director in 1895 and remained at that post until his death in 1901.


Includes original correspondence inward from 1898-1939 to the Dept of Mines, Provincial Mineralogist.



Includes original correspondence from 1897-1902, 1917, 1938-1941, and 1956 inward to the Minister of Mines: includes 1898 report from Gold Commissioner, Telegraph Creek; correspondence with George M. Dawson, Geological Survey of Canada, 1899; a 1900 report on the collection of mineral statistics; correspondence relating to radioactive ores, the B.C. War Metals Research Board, and the B.C. Research Council, 1942-1945, etc.; 12 correspondence with Federal Minister of Transport relating to the establishment of airports in B.C., 1939; notes on 1942 Dominion Provincial conference regarding wartime agreement on Peace River oil rights.



Sub-sub-series consists of the geological field notebooks kept by G.M. Dawson while on field trips in various parts of Canada. They cover the years 1875 to 1900, and are approximately 110 in number. Included among the notebooks are those prepared by geologists who were assistants to Dawson on the various field trips. These notebooks are listed under the name of the assistant; for example, Amos Bowman, D.B. Dowling, R.G. McConnell, James McEvoy, J.B. Tyrrel and James White. Unfortunately there are several volumes missing. All of which are clearly indicated in the finding aid. A concerted effort was made by the Geological Survey to locate these volumes through contacting former geologists as well as those currently surveying in the same area. The notebooks contain some anthropological notations, but the entries are essentially of a technical nature. It would appear that Dawson separated his geological and anthropological notebooks, many of the letters appearing in his personal papers which are located at the McGill University Library in Montreal.



Series consists of records created and/or maintained by the Geological Survey of Canada and its predecessors. Includes records of the Office of the Director; George M. Dawson was director of the Geological Survey of Canada from 1895 to 1901.

Link: =136841 


The George Mercer Dawson papers comprise professional, scientific and family correspondence, some scientific manuscripts, drawings and photographs of Western exploration, juvenalia, student materials, and poetry. His scientific correspondence spans 1872 to the early 1880's. The letters, and his occasional draft replies, document the political and administrative fortunes of the Geological Survey, the North American Boundary Commission, and various learned societies. As well, they report on field research, particularly on mineral deposits, arrangements for equipment and assistants for expeditions, and the exchange of specimens. The correspondents include other members of the Survey, government officials, and business concerns, especially railways and mines. Dawson's scientific manuscripts fall into two groups: notes and reports on Western exploration, geology, mining, and Indians, 1870-1875, and 5 cm of general lectures on physical geography delivered to the Montreal Ladies' Educational Association, 1880. Closely allied to his scientific and exploratory work are an album of photographs 13 taken in western Canada in 1894-95 (c.70), and about 10 cm of pencil sketches, sepias and water colours of landscapes, many produced during exploratory trips in 1873-1874, and 1881 (c.59). Link:


The fonds consists of diaries of observations while on the International Boundary survey and working for the Geological Survey of Canada. Includes observations about Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, British Columbia, and the Queen Charlotte Islands; and notes about native languages. Microfilmed 1967 (originally created 1873-1881). Link: (search for ="Dawson George M" in Names field)

Cliff Duke

Cliff Duke was a hunting guide. He worked with Fred Brewster in the 1920s.


Part of the Kreg D. Skye fonds. Summary of recording: Came west for harvesting in 1923. Timekeeping for Fred Brewster operation in Jasper, 1923 to 1927. Operated dairy in Jasper, 1927-28. Homesteading near Beaverlodge, 1929-1940. Monkman Pass (highway) work. Fred Brewster's operation: building Jasper golf course with 52 teams of horses, relocating CNR round house, tourist chalets and tours, "Pocahontas" (Miette) hot springs. Daily charges for hunting and dude trips. George and Jack Brewster. The Neighbors. Otto brothers. Jack Hargreaves. First Jasper winter carnival in 1924: setting ski trail with Pete Withers, ski race, costume contest. Railroad surveys in Monkman Pass area. Kelly Sunderman. Monkman Pass highway trail work. Henry Hobic, trapper. Alex Monkman, early trader, and origin of pass name. Monkman expedition: organization, work logistics, route description. Trapping area. Pack for Gulf Oil surveys, late 1940s. Onion Lake fossils. Gas seep. Volcano (sinkhole) near Jarvis Lakes. Description of Kakwa Lake area. Some cold sulphur springs. 1932 prospecting trip. Carl Brooks died in a plane crash at Kakwa Lake in 1945. Tom Wilde. Met Hersh Neighbor during his pack move (1954) from Tete Jaune Cache. Credits: Speaker: Cliff Duke; interviewer: Kreg O. Sky. Link:

Clifford Eagle

Clifford Eagle was a guide in the Lac La Hache and Crooked Lake area.


Part of the Kreg D. Skye fonds. Summary of recording: Childhood spent around Dog Creek, Alkali Lake, and 150 Mile House. Made money "chasing" coyotes with horses. Ranched and trapped in the Lac La Hache area. Noted for 14 "man-hunting" skills. Details of tracking for lost and dead men. Guided for Ted Ogden and Percy Hamilton. His two guiding areas were Lac La Hache and Crooked Lake. Advertising. Cougar dogs. Moose populations. "Reading bear" story. Good cooking an important aspect. Operational aspects. Used Indian guides. Wolves and [bounty?]. Other outfitters: Buster Hamilton, Herbie McNeil. Ceased guiding in 1969 or 1970. Credits: Speaker: Clifford B. Eagle; interviewer: Kreg O. Sky.


Al Elsey

Al ElseyAl Elsey arrived in the Bella Coola region in 1951. An avid fisherman and hunter, he was drawn to the excitement of the teaming wildlife and the fierceness of the steelhead. Elsey guided clients to the now famous Dean River to fish for steelhead salmon. He acquired a Bolex camera in the early 1960s and began filming around the Bella Coola, Dean River and Chilcotin regions with his guiding outfit.

Samuel Prescott Fay

Samuel Prescott Fay (1884-1971) was a Harvard graduate and sport hunter from Boston who travelled twelve hundred kilometers through the northern Rockies from Jasper to Hudson’s Hope. He travelled with Fred Brewster, a popular packer in the region, and took the first photographs of Kinuseo Falls, which he also named. 


U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Field Reports collection consists of reports, notes, and biological data submitted to the Fish and Wildlife Service of the Department of Interior and its predecessor, the Bureau of Biological Survey of the Department of Agriculture, by naturalists conducting field research throughout the greater part of the Western Hemisphere. Folder 29, Box 117. Fay, S. Prescott. Expedition Between Yellowhead Pass and Peace River, 1914. Includes photographs.




Consists of a journal of a 1914 expedition hunting sheep and other big game between the Yellowhead Pass and the Peace River; Fay Islands exhibit; Photographs and letters on the discovery and naming of the Fay Islands by Vilhjalmur Stefansson.

A book, partially written by Fay, is held in Special Collections, UNBC Geoffrey R. Weller Library, entitled “The Forgotten Explorer: Samuel Prescott Fay’s 1914 Expedition to the Northern Rockies” (Rocky Mountain Books, 2010). Call number: FC219 .F39 2009

Prentiss Gray

2000.19.1.55 - Prentiss Gray standing with rifle in hand in front of a teepeePrentiss Nathaniel Gray, (1884-1935) of Oakland California, was the archetypical model of a heroic hunter of big game. After receiving accreditation for outstanding military service during WWI, he embarked upon a highly successful career as an international banker for J. Henry Shroder Banking Corporation. In exchange for securing the bank’s first $100,000 profit, Gray was granted unlimited vacation time which he effectively used to travel the world in search of big game. This thirst for adventure was combined with Gray’s penchant for documenting his expeditions in writings, illustrations, and photographs, which ultimately were the basis for two Boone and Crockett Club publications, one of which entitled From the Peace to the Fraser: Newly Discovered North American Hunting and Exploration Journals, 1900 to 1930 document his expeditions in Alberta (1926) and BC (1927 & 1928). During Gray’s 1928 big game expedition to the Barbara Lakes in B.C., he was accompanied by H.G. Dimsdale, an Edmonton civil engineer; together they undertook a feasibility assessment for a railroad route along the BCAlberta border. Gray also developed the official measurement and scoring system for trophy animals and served as the first editor of the Boone and Crockett Club’s Records of North American Big Game.


2000.19.1.1 - Campsite in a snowy forest

Collection consists of 760+ images in 3 photo albums depicting Gray's travels throughout Northern BC and Alberta and 6 computer discs consisting of digital copies of these photographs. Also includes a videotape copy of Prentiss Gray’s 1927 expedition; digital copies of Gray's maps; and a digital copy of Frederick Vreeland's photos/maps.

2000.19.1.1 - Campsite in a snowy forest


The Boone and Crockett Club Collection consists of the records of the Boone and Crockett Club which was founded in 1887 by Theodore Roosevelt and George Bird Grinnell and remains active today. Since its inception the Club has championed conservation causes and legislation, hunter ethics, and North American big game records keeping. Includes 125.5 linear feet of records from 1888 to 2009.


Northern BC Archives has acquired digital copies from the Mansfield Library from the Boone & Crockett Club Collection, including correspondence, a publication by Prentiss Gray, news clippings regarding Prentiss Gray’s expeditions and textual items related to Prentiss Gray’s death. Consult an archivist regarding Accession #2013.19. 

Cover ArtFrom the Peace to the Fraser: newly discovered North American hunting and exploration journals, 1900 to 1930 by Prentiss N. Gray; Theodore J. Holsten (Editor); Susan C. Reneau (Editor) 

Call Number: FC3205.3 .G688 1994
ISBN: 0940864215
Publication Date: 1994


Other artifacts and books relating to Prentiss Gray and the Boone and Crockett club can be found at the Sagamore Hill, National Historic Site.

J.C. Gwillim

J.C. Gwillim and Edmund Spieker surveyed Tumbler Ridge in 1919 and 1920, respectively. Gwillim later surveyed the Atlin mining area. “In 1919 and 1920, BC’s Department of Lands sent John Gwillim and Edmund Spieker respectively to explore the region’s petroleum potential. Both expeditions were unsuccessful, but led to increasing knowledge of the area and better maps. Gwillim’s map used the words “Tumbler Range”, and Spieker used “Tumbler Ridge” for the first time for the feature northwest of the current townsite.” (Tumbler Ridge History and Heritage Project).

Hargreaves Family

The Hargreaves family came to Jasper in 1913 and built a homestead and guest ranch at Mount Robson. All five brothers guided and outfitted in the area.


Part of the Kreg D. Skye fonds. Summary of recording: TRACK 1: Hargreaves family came to Jasper in 1913. Homestead and guest ranch at Mount Robson. 1923 built and operation CNR cabins at Berg Lake. Ray Hargreaves built the chalet later. All five brothers guided and outfitted. Some guides and packers: Art and Ken Allen, Harvey Crate, Dean Swift, Ted Shive, Stan Carr, Chuck Chesser, Don and Dave McMurtry. Trap lines. Ray Hargreaves and Chuck Chesser partnership, 1931. Other workers; Bud Traver, Les Templeman, Bill Blackman, George Korsvik. George Hargreaves death in 1936. Work record stone sheep (Chadwick Ram). Graves in the wilderness. Big name hunters mentioned. Isaac Plante, Deome Findlay. Joachim family. Eddie Moberly. TRACK 2: Eddie Moberly (continued). Murray Cochrane's involvement from 1934. Describing Roy Hargreaves. Boating down Upper Smoky River. Hargreaves' daughter's involvement. Old geographic names in region. Horse fords on Smokey River. Geological Surveys. Credits: Speaker: Ishbel Cochrane; speaker: Murray Cochrane; speaker: Buster Duncan; speaker: Margie Duncan; interviewer: Kreg O. Sky.


Mary Henry

Mary Gibson Henry (1884-1967) was born August 15, 1884 in Jenkintown, Pennsylvania. Henry conducted over 200 botanical expeditions, often bringing her family along. In the 1930s, Henry made four exploratory trips into British Columbia with topographer K.F. McCusker. In 1931, the Department of Lands of British Columbia named a mountain in her honor, Mount Mary Henry. Her 1935 expedition in British Columbia formed the basis for the planning of the Alcan Highway. 

Some photocopies of holdings related to Mary Henry exist at the Northern BC Archives found in the Knox McCusker Collection Accession 2008.27 Link:;rad


Documentary showing an expedition through northeastern British Columbia by Mary Gibson Henry, Pennsylvania botanist and plants woman. Mrs. Henry was interested in the legendary "Tropical Valley" of northern B.C., where the warmth of hot springs supposedly fostered vegetation not otherwise found in the region. The film was shot in the summer of 1931, during the first of four such journeys she made in the period 1931-1935. Mrs. Henry was accompanied by her husband, Dr. J. Norman Henry; four of her children; topographer Knox McCusker (of the Dominion Topographical Surveys Branch); Dr. B.H. Chandler, a surgeon friend; and outfitter S. Clark, as well as various wranglers. The second and third reels of this three-reel film show the party of 16 travelling by pack-train, crossing rivers, caching food, and fishing, as well as some camp scenes. At an encampment of "Grand Lake Indians" on the Tetsa River, they engage Charlie Macdonald, the chief's son, to guide them to Toad Hot Springs on the Toad River, but they do not proceed north to Liard Hot Springs. On the return trip south, stops include St. Paul's Lake, Henry River, and Lake Mary and Lake Josephine [named after the Henry's daughters]; these place names do not seem to have become official. Following the Peace River, they arrive at Hudson's Hope (having travelled 800 miles in 79 days), and continue down river to Taylor Flats.



This collection contains biographical information about Mary Gibson Henry, noted field botanist and plantswoman. The majority of the collection consists of articles Mary Gibson Henry wrote related to her botanical studies. Most of the articles contained herein are reprinted versions of those which originally appeared in notable botanical journals and magazines. One photograph of the botanist is also included.


John M. Holzworth

John M. HolzworthJohn M. Holzworth was a lawyer, outdoor writer, hunter, conservationist, lecturer, and explorer. In 1919, he began a series of expeditions for the U.S. Biological Survey and the Smithsonian (then known as the U.S. National Museum), collecting specimens of large game mammals for study. His 1923 expedition ventured to Northeastern British Columbia, which resulted in a report to the U.S. Biological Survey. He also published a number of books, including "The Wild Grizzlies of Alaska" (1930). A brochure containing his full biography is available by clicking the image at left.

Title page of field reportWith the assistance of an anonymous donor, the Northern BC Archives funded the digitization a 1923 report by John M. Holzworth and has made it available online with the permission of the Smithsonian Archives.

The John H. Holzworth Field Report, 1923 is entitled "Report on Trip Taken in August, September and October 1923 by John M. Holzworth in Northeastern British Columbia in the Interests of the United States Biological Survey on the Subject of Mountain Sheep and Caribou Distribution."

Data includes detailed descriptions of the specimens caught, land and water transportation routes taken in the Peace River region, weather observations, and commentary on communities and peoples encountered during the expedition to hunt and collect bighorn sheep and caribou specimens in the area. Also provides documentation of the Beaver First Nation camps and images of early 20th century homesteaders near present day Tumbler Ridge.

George Korsvik

George Korsvik came to Canada from Norway in 1927 and trapped and guided out of Valemount from 1929 to 1936. 


Part of the Kreg D. Skye fonds. Summary of recording: Came to Canada from Norway in 1927. Trapped and guided out of Valemount from 1929 to 1936. Trap line with Ollie Lebeck, Wood River/Athabasca Pass. Historic Athabasca Trail. Oswald Svendsen. Fortress Lake, 1930. Darryl Zanuck hunting trip on Canoe and Columbia Rivers in 1932 or 1933. Ed Garrett, river guide. Hunters' death. Hunters' names. Guides Art Allen, Chuck Chesser, Oliver Travers, and Ted Abrams, cooks, Eric Swanson. Berg Lake dude rides. Hargreaves brothers. Stan Carr and Mount Robson area. Topographic surveys, Kinbasket Lake/Canoe River 1936. Frank Swannell. Survey work on Vancouver Island and in the Rockies in 1939. Canadian Army. Relocation to Valemount. Hunting by boat in Canoe River area. Road along Canoe River. Trapping and guiding logistics. Al Huble. Curly Phillip's river boat. Canoe River hot springs. Credits: Speaker: George E. Korsvik; interviewer: Kreg O. Sky.


Ernest C.W. Lamarque

Ernest C. W. Lamarque, 1879-1970, was a surveyor, map maker, writer and artist at Vancouver and Oyama, British Columbia. Lamarque was born in Kent, England and emigrated to the United States in 1896, travelling to Winnipeg in 1897. He worked for the Hudson's Bay Company as a fur trader at Isle a la Crosse, Fort Simpson, Fort McKay and Fort Chipewyan before entering the surveying field in 1907. His survey work took him throughout British Columbia, Alberta and the Yukon. In 1933-1934, he was in charge of the advance party reconnaissance for the Bedaux Subarctic Expedition. He was also involved in Alaska Highway, Royal Canadian Air Force and Whitehorn Mountain ski lift surveys.


Collection consists of memoirs describing Lamarque's experience in survey work in British Columbia and the Yukon, Canada Pacific Railway surveys in the Rocky Mountains and the Bedaux Expedition of 1934. Also included are comments on mining claims, reports on trails, and surveys for airfields and the Alaska Highway, 1958; the Bedaux Expedition containing a manuscript entitled "Travels and Explorations in Northern British Columbia, 1934". ca. 1937; and reminiscences of Sydney Ells concerning travel in the North in the early 1900's, typed by Ernest Lamarque, 1970. The collection contains a grey watercolour by Ernest Lamarque titled "Canyon on Muskwa River", 1952; a watercolour of "Old Fort Wrigley", 1903; a greeting card featuring a reproduction of Lamarque's work "Old Fort Wrigley"; and a Christmas card depicting his work "The Pass and the Valley", 1964.

Link: =98092&rec_nbr_list=99055,98309,98092,200525,191721,189471,188918,157954,3682370,183624




Textual records mainly consist of Lamarque's manuscripts, including two large works: "Memoirs of Ernest C. Lamarque, 1958" and "Travels and exploration in northern British Columbia, 1934," and short fiction and nonfiction works based upon his career in British Columbia and Alberta. Material pertains mainly to the Mackenzie, Peace, Liard, Finlay, and Athabasca River districts, the Bella Coola and Cariboo districts, Rocky and Selkirk Mountains, the Columbia River, and the Bedaux Expedition, with regards to surveying, exploration, prospecting, flora and fauna. Textual records also include a diary and maps from the Bedaux Subarctic Expedition reconnaissance, 1934, and the British Columbia-Alaska highway reconnaissance, 1939. Photographs pertain to the Bedaux expedition, Hudson's Bay Company work in northwestern Canada, and survey work in northern Alberta and British Columbia, 1897-1939. Albums are annotated and include maps and sketches.


Freeman "Friday" Lonsdale

Freeman Lonsdale was a guide in Northern BC between the 1920s-1940s.


Part of the Kreg D. Skye fonds. Summary of recording: Burial of George Hargreaves on Sheep Creek. Description of area and trails near Sheep Pass. Used Alberta guides from Grand Cache. Eating porcupine. Guided for Jim Smith out of Snowshoe (Crescent Spur), 1926. Put in original trail up Morkill River. Trip to Jarvis Lakes via McGregor River. Fossils. Accident curtailed guiding in 1940. Jimmy Smith killed by horse in 19444. Homesteaded in 1924. Indian drying racks. Caribou populations and decline. Came along Continental Divide. Grizzly stalked him. First camp and features on Morkill River and Forget-Me-Not Creek. Mustards worked out of McBride. Hookers from Dome Creek. Account of sixty-five day collecting trip for Peabody Museum, 1931. Specimens, people, taxidermist, areas, 52 horses. Fishing at Kakwa (Porcupine) Falls. Usually at lunch in the saddle. A grizzly prank. Duration of most trips. Almost snowbound on the Divide. Plane wreck at Kakwa Lake. A 32 year old reunion in the wilderness with Archie Clark. Camp equipment and organization described. Handling the horses. Clients and costs. Working on GTP Railway in 1911. Floated upper Fraser River on a scow in 1912 en route to Vancouver. Took stage from Soda Creek. Credits: Speaker: Freeman Lonsdale; interviewer: Kreg O. Sky.


John Macoun

John Macoun (1831-1920) was a teacher, botanist, naturalist, author, and civil servant best known for his geological surveys of the west. In 1872 Macoun had a chance meeting with Sanford Fleming, then chief engineer for the proposed Canadian Pacific Railway. Fleming recruited Macoun to participate in his expedition to the Pacific of 1872, and between 1872-1881, Macoun participated in five separate surveying expeditions in the Northwest. Macoun's assessment contributed much to the final southern routing of the CPR across the prairies. Macoun's reports attracted the notice of Alfred Richard Cecil Selwyn, director of the Geological Survey of Canada, and in 1879, the Government of Canada took the unusual step of officially appointing him "Explorer of the Northwest territories." Eventually, Macoun achieved the Royal Society of Canada for his work as a botanist and a surveyor.


Fonds consists of journals containing notes of a trip from Belleville, Ont. to Lake Superior during the summer of 1869, and descriptions of excursions through the Peace River District, 1872 and 1879, photocopies; and a letter from William J. Hooker, Director of Kew Gardens, concerning the flora of Canada, 1861, 4 pages.

Link: =105976&rec_nbr_list=105976,550056,563375,549968,533402,103110,473063,134075,164117,5816

Richard George McConnell

Richard George McConnell (1857-1942) was geologist and explorer. In 1882 he assisted George Dawson in exploring the southern Alberta Rockies as well as the Waterton Lakes region, St Mary River and Cypress Hills. Five years later, he explored a large portion of northern BC, the Mackenzie Valley and the Yukon Territory. In 1889-90 he conducted an extensive study of the Athabasca tar sands of northeastern Alberta and explored the PeaceAthabasca region. In 1914 he became federal deputy minister of mines, retiring in 1921. He was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 1913.


This is a book, entitled "Portland Canal and Skeena Mining Divisions" includes three maps and plans relating to a geological survey of the Skeena region. Published in Ottawa, 1913. Call Number: Library NW 557.1 C212 no.32

Link: B%2B%2B%2B/1


Collection consists of selected personnel files of former members of the federal civil service judged to be of historical value; these records also include personnel files for some ministers of the Crown. The personnel files for individual civil servants were initially created in the department or agency where the person was employed. Each personnel file provides a summary of an individual's employment with a government department or agency. The files contain information concerning an individual's personal characteristics, citizenship, education, nongovernment employment history, career résumés, promotions and demotions, training and development, periods of employment, classification and superannuation and other benefits along with a variety of other items. The records were created to provide documentation and authorization for government departments on appointments, transfers, promotions, demotions, termination of employment and superannuation on government employees. Link: =184876

Knox McCusker

Knox Freeman McCusker (1890-1955) was a guide and surveyor in Northern BC. In 1909 he joined the staff of the Topographical Surveys Branch in the Federal Department of the Interior; in 1914 he was granted the commission of Dominion Land Surveyor. His work with the Topographical Surveys Branch included initial meridian, baseline and subdivision surveys and exploratory mapping. After being laid off in 1930 as a result of the Great Depression, Mac took up guiding in British Columbia’s Peace River region including the Liard and Dease River areas and up into the Yukon. One of his most famous guiding commissions was with the Henry Expeditions. Due to his specialized topographical knowledge of the area, McCusker was involved with many aspects of the Alaska Highway Construction project: including the coordination of fuel and supply movement into Fort Nelson during the winter of 1941-42; advising on the layout of the highway route; organizing pack outfit support during construction, and supervising the building of construction camps. This knowledge ultimately contributed greatly towards the location and construction of the Northwest Staging air route and the Alaska Highway - both wartime projects of high international priority. In acknowledgement for his wartime efforts, he received the Certificate of Merit from the United States Public Roads Administration.


Collection consists primarily of photocopies of publications written by Mary Henry (1931-1935); annual reports; articles and papers written about Knox McCusker (1935-1997) as well as research materials pertaining to his life; articles and speeches written by Knox McCusker and general correspondence regarding surveying. Also includes original correspondence between McCusker and G.G. Aitken (1934-1938); photographs (ca. 1930-1950); McCusker’s 1909 certificate enabling him to be an Articled Pupil with the Dominion Land Surveyors; and an interview with McCusker conducted by J. Frank Willis (CBC, 1954). Link:;rad

Jack MacDougall

Jack MacDougall was a packer and guide on the trail with Charles Bedaux who was from the Hudson’s Hope region. 


Several photographs in the “Our Hudson’s Hope Cowboys: Packers along the trail, 75th anniversary of 1934 Charles Bedaux Expedition Fonds” relate to Jack MacDougall. Link:;rad 

Roy & Marge McDougall

Roy McDougall (1889-1984) grew up an experienced horseman and as a teenager worked as a Groomsman. Roy travelled to BCs north in the 1920s and started trapping in the Peace Country. He took over the Finlay Forks Trading post and eventually he and his spouse purchased it, running the post until 1964. Roy held several positions at the trading post: as radio dispatch person, weatherman, coroner, and sawmill operator. Martha Margaret (Johnston) McDougall, known as Marge or Granny Boots (1900-1980) was a professional seamstress and owned a dress shop in Prince George in the 1930s, before moving to Finlay Forks. She was Postmistress at the Findlay Forks Post until 1958. Marge began painting in Finlay Forks, sketching people when they came in to the post with their furs. Marge felt compelled to paint the local native people, and as the pending building of the Bennett dam loomed it became a mission to her, to document visually the people of the area and their stories. Marge and Roy were very well known for their hospitality they showed locals, trappers and adventure seekers to the region. Many books written about the Peace country make mention of the McDougall’s including works by Gerry Andrews, Roy Patterson, Bruce Lamb, Ed Strandburg, Mort Tier, journalist Pierre Burton and newspaper woman, Ma Murray.


The Roy and Marge McDougall fonds consists of diaries and journal writings by Marge McDougall; photographs; ledgers related to Findlay Forks Post; and maps of Northern BC. Contact archivist for access.


Includes an oral history interview with Roy and Marge McDougall conducted by Helen Mustard. Link:;rad

Eugene Merrill

Eugene Merrill was a guide and trapper in the Peace River area in the 1930s and 1940s.

Peck Family

Vic Peck arrived in the Peace River country in 1912, farmed in the Rolla area near Dawson Creek, married Kathleen, an English trained nurse in 1916. The next 8 years found them located on a wilderness trap line near present day Tumbler Ridge, where four boys including Don were born and raised. Education needs of the young family prompted a move to Hudson’s Hope in 1924. For the next 30+ years, Vic Peck ran a trap line on the Gething and Carbon tributaries to the Peace River west of Hudson’s Hope, and in the summer ran ferry and river boat services out of Hudson’s Hope. Don Peck and his brothers followed their father to the trap line, and Don later set up guide outfitting and became involved in ranching and rodeo vocations. Don Peck built up a lodge and guide outfitting business at Trutch, Mile 200 of the Alaska Highway. In 1963 the family moved to Fort St John, and over the next few years purchased a number of farmland parcels from the original homesteaders located between Tea and Wilder Creeks (aka Deep Creek) along the north banks of the Peace River, southwest of Fort St John. This farm land served as a base for a grain and livestock operation for the family company, Don Peck Holdings for the next 40+ years. By 1980 the farm along the Peace River consisted of 1280 acres of deeded land, close to a 1000 acres of adjacent leased and permitted grazing land, 500 rented adjoining acres, and a grazing permit on the south side of the Peace River encompassing several square miles, as well as a 100 acre home base near Fort St John. Information obtained from Ross Peck’s online submission to Site C Dam proposal. Ross Peck is a retired guide outfitter, self-employed rancher, land use and wildlife consultant, Associate of professional biologist of BC of Hudson’s Hope, B.C. and President of the Hudson’s Hope Historical Society (Hudson’s Hope Museum and Archives).

Alfred H. Phipps

A.H. Phipps was a surveyor on the Bedaux sub-arctic expedition. He worked with James (Jim) R. Mackenzie. 

Cecil Pickell

Cecil Pickell was a packer on the Bedaux expedition.

Possible Sources: Cecil Pickell family collection. Fort St. John, BC. 

Leo Rutledge

Leo Rutledge was a guide and outfitter in the Northern Rockies between the 1920s and 1960s.

Edmund Spieker

Edmund Spieker surveyed Tumbler Ridge in 1920, sent by BC’s Department of Lands to explore the region’s petroleum potential. The expedition was unsuccessful, but led to increasing knowledge of the area and better maps. Spieker used “Tumbler Ridge” on his maps for the first time for the feature northwest of the current townsite. (Tumbler Ridge History and Heritage Project)

Macdonald "Mac" Squinas

Frank Swannell

Frank Swannell was born in Hamilton, Ontario. He obtained a certificate in assaying after studying mining engineering at the University of Toronto. He was certified as both a Dominion Land Surveyor and B.C. Land Surveyor. He conducted surveys in the Nechako Valley and Stuart Lake area and later worked mapping the upper Nechako River basin. Frank Cyril Swannell was one of the only BC Government employed surveyors who had experience in triangulation surveys, and conducted “exploratory surveys” in large blocks of wilderness. He received his Provincial Land Surveyor’s license (PLS#75) in 1903. The following year he received his DLS (Dominion Land Surveyor’s license) and after 1908 he decided to begin surveying on his own. He particularly enjoyed carrying out the exploration surveys for the BC Government. These surveys were undertaken in remote, rugged conditions, and served to establish Swannell’s reputation as one of the premier surveyors in the province: a provincial reputation that brought him national recognition. The maps produced from his surveys were so accurate and detailed that they were not supplanted until the development of better surveying equipment. 

Thomas A. Walker

Tommy Walker (1904-1989) was born in England and studied brewing and malting at a London brewery. In 1929 he emigrated to Canada, settling in Bella Coola Valley where he helped to build Shire Lodge. He became a professional guide and outfitter, owning saddle and pack horses. In 1948, he established a big game hunting outfit at Cold Fish Lake. In 1972 Walker retired to live in Smithers. Walker was instrumental in the establishment of Tweedsmuir Park and Spatsizi Plateau Wilderness Park.

Bob White

Bob White wrote Bannock and Beans: A Cowboy’s Account of the Bedaux Expedition (Vancouver: Royal British Columbia Museum, 2009). White was a packer for the Bedaux expedition, and privately in the northern regions.