If you attended the fourth Lynn Valley Elementary in 1990’s through its retirement in 2004 the North Vancouver Museum and Archives is looking for your stories and those of anyone who worked or went to the school during its first century.
100 years of history
The North Vancouver Museum and Archives is putting together a new project: “A landmark transformed – 100 years of serving the community” showcasing the community history associated with it’s home at 3203 Institute Road – the former home of Lynn Valley Elementary.
“This was the 4th Lynn Valley Elementary school which was built September 7th, 1920 and this September is its 100th anniversary,” said Archivist Jessica Bushey. “It was an incredibly important place because it was the place of education for all the children of Lynn Valley and then in 2004 it ceased being a school and underwent two years of restoration and adaptation to become the home of the archives of North Vancouver. The archives is going to celebrate that with a number of online events and community engagement programs.”
Today sitting in the shadow of the current Lynn Valley Elementary, the facility has environmental controls, archival storage and an art vault. It will remain as the archives as the museum transitions to its new home this fall in the Shipyards.
The staff is working to collect oral histories and archival materials from the buildings past. They have many stories from the early history from its collections as people typically pass on materials that are 50 years or older.
“We already have several wonderful oral histories we have collected over the years of the leaders of the area, past students and past staff,” said Bushey. “But we noticed we have a gap in the oral histories we have of the school and the area from about 1990 to 2004. We are looking for students, teachers or principals who might have been going there or working there.”
The organization would also be interest in more records from the 1960s-80s. One goal of the information gathering is to create a HistoryPin project.
“We hope it will show how Lynn Valley evolves and grows and transforms and what the importance of the school and education was over the course of those many decades,” she said. “We are always interested in archival materials from the community but what we are looking for are the stories connected to the photograph – if you are sending a photo make sure you know the names of all the people.”
It is pretty simple to participate in the project. Participants can submit materials and related information or have a more extensive interview.
“We have two really good volunteer interviews who have experience gathering oral histories,” said Bushey. “Because of Covid we are doing them remotely over the phone or on Zoom.”
Early fall will mark the kick off to celebrate this 100 years in Lynn Valley.
“We would love to do an exposition at the archives but we have to limit that because of Covid,” said Bushey. “We are planning to start at the end of September to mark the start of BC Culture month. We are going to start with the online exposition, then the HistoryPin project will go live. We are also planning a Geocache adventure that will talk about the building and the history of the area and we will be celebrating home movie day in October.”
If you would like to participate you can contact the North Vancouver Museum and Archives for more information by email at [email protected] or by telephone: 604-990-3700-8012 for Daien Ide, Reference Historian or 604-990-3700-8011 for Jessica Bushey, Archivist.
Images courtesy of the North Vancouver Museum and Archives.