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Nelson: Book reading and slideshow — Jay Sherwood, Surveying Southern British Columbia

October 2, 2014 @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

SSBC COVER ARJoin Jay Sherwood for this engaging talk and slideshow.

Surveying Southern British Columbia, Jay Sherwood’s fourth and final book about prominent BC surveyor Frank Swannell, covers the years from 1901 to 1907, before Swannell began surveying for the BC government. Gore & McGregor, one of the leading surveying companies in the province, hired Swannell to work on projects throughout southern British Columbia from the Rocky Mountains to the west coast of Vancouver Island, and from the international boundary as far north as Quesnel in the Cariboo and Bella Coola on the BC coast.

Swannell’s work had a significant impact on events that shaped our province’s history including the search for oil, the Pacific cable survey, the early timber licence surveys for the pulp and paper mill at Ocean Falls and the controversial CPR land grants through southern BC. Yet Swannell was more than a surveyor—he was an accomplished and talented photographer, documenting the development of our province through his compass, his measurements and his lens. Surveying Southern British Columbia contains 150 stunning photographs that portray human settlement and untamed wilderness in what were the most remote areas of our young province. Sherwood also includes Swannell’s courtship letters to Ada Driver, which provide delightful details about the life of a surveyor in the field.

Sherwood’s meticulous research portrays the life and career of a young Swannell as he perfects his skills and profits from his mistakes, while helping to shape BC as we know it today. Surveying Southern British Columbia makes a significant contribution to the history of our province and is a well-crafted conclusion to this important series.


October 2, 2014
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
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Touchstones Nelson, Museum of Art and History
502 Vernon St
Nelson, BC V1L 4E7 Canada
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