Another $10,000 toward photo archives at The Reach

Abbotsford gallery/museum receives funding from Irving K. Barber Learning Centre

Among the thousands of images in The Reach archives is this photo taken in January 1979 of Frosty the Snowman at the Leyen residence at 1921 Keats St.

UBC’s Irving K. Barber Learning Centre has awarded another $10,000 to the Reach Gallery Museum Abbotsford to assist in its work in adding historic images to its online archives.

This is the seventh year that the centre has financially supported the project, which has involved thousands of hours of hands-on digitization work on specialized computer technology by a co-ordinator and student at The Reach’s archives.

To date, more than 31,000 images depicting early life, commerce, development and events in Abbotsford have been added to the website.

The latest funding will result in another 5,000 images being added and made publicly accessible.

The images in the archives were obtained from the Abbotsford News’ photograph collection, dating back 90 years.

The News does not maintain its own image archive. It has instead entrusted The Reach to conserve and share these images with the public.

The Reach archives is the only source of these images and the only online photo archives in Abbotsford.

The photographs have been used by the community for such projects as the newly launched Voices of the Valley museum exhibition sponsored by Columbia Kitchen Cabinets at The Reach (located at 32388 Veterans Way).

The online photo archives provides extensive visual primary source material in support of the exhibition and education opportunities that are designed to accompany it.

Many of the digitized historical images have also been used by local authors, for collector car show awards, the Downtown Abbotsford street banners and, more recently, in the new Cabela’s store in Abbotsford.

The archives can be accessed at

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