Jun 15

Read the diary of Hector Langevin online

We often tell people that we started the digitization of the Chung Collection in 2008, but strictly speaking, that's not true.  There was actually a very modest start to our digitization activities in 2004, when we digitized the diary of Hector Langevin.

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UBC mathematician Michael Ward has been awarded the premier research prize by the Canadian Applied and Industrial Mathematics Society. The CAIMS Research Prize recognizes innovative and exceptional research contributions in an emerging area of applied or industrial mathematics. The citation recognizes Ward’s significant successful combination of singular perturbation techniques and numerical methods to analyze boundary-value […]

Joy Kirchner, UBC Library’s Scholarly Communications Co-ordinator, has been appointed as a Visiting Program Officer to the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL). The 12-month appointment was made to support the ACRL’s scholarly communications initiatives.

Kirchner remains in her role at UBC Library, but has been granted some release time to assist the ACRL. She will work with members and staff to develop a sustainable model for the Scholarly Communications 101 workshop, support the work of the Scholarly Communications Committee and develop other initiatives to advance ACRL’s work in this area.

“We are very pleased that Joy has been asked to work closely with ACRL to support evolving approaches to scholarly communication,” said Allan Bell, Director of Library Digital Initiatives at UBC. “Joy’s work with ACRL will have a direct connection to our institutional and Library strategic plans. Her work with ACRL will dovetail with UBC’s goals to increase the impact of UBC research by making it widely available in open access digital repositories and promote open access and open source methods and tools.”

You can view the complete announcement here.

It seems appropriate in our blog series about places in British Columbia used as room names in the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre to address researching the origin of place names. There are a number of sources that are useful for researching place names, and one here at UBC is the Norman Ogg Place Name Collection (see the finding aid here).  In 1979-1980, Norman Ogg undertook a study of the origins of place names in Canada (excepting Quebec) and Washington State.  He received many letters from town and city clerks and archivists explaining the origin behind their city’s name, as well as a number of ephemeral items such as brochures.

The place we are examining this week is Keremeos.  Keremeos is located in the Southern Interior of British Columbia and is in the Similkameen Valley.  The aboriginal people of this area, the Sylix, are now part of the Okanagan Nation Alliance. Horticulture and agriculture are the main industries in Keremeos, and the area is also home to Cathedral Provincial Park.  As Norman Ogg learned from the clerk of the Village of Keremeos in 1980, there are two theories behind the name Keremeos: it was believed to be derived from the Aboriginal language of the area to mean either “wind channel in the mountains” or “cut in two by water,” referring to the Similkameen River.

Letter to Norman Ogg from clerk of Village of Keremeos

Letter to Norman Ogg from clerk of Village of Keremeos

(Click on the image of the letter to see a larger version).

Other sources for place names in British Columbia include BC Geographical Names (a free online resource), The encyclopedia of raincoast place names by Andrew Scott and many other books available at UBC Library which can be browsed by subject in the catalogue.

The earliest source for B.C. place names was written by Captain John Walbran, captain of the S.S. Quadra. This photograph is from the Chung Collection, which also contains a copy of Walbran’s book British Columbia Coast Names, and one of his chief officer’s logs.

Captain John Walbran, from the Chung Collection

Captain John Walbran, from the Chung Collection

As described by the Dictionary of Canadian Biography, Walbran’s Coast Names is “an amazing grab-bag of history, biography, and anecdote,” and a “rich mass of anecdotes and digressions.”  It is a well-known and well-used source of British Columbia history.

In the Barber Centre, the Keremeos Lounge is on the second floor, adjacent to Ike’s Cafe on the south side of the building. A great place to have a cup of coffee and read up on B.C. place names!

Keremeos Lounge, adjacent to Ike's Cafe

Keremeos Lounge, adjacent to Ike's Cafe

The B.C. Teachers’ Federation (BCTF) and the B.C. Public School Employers’ Association (BCPSEA) are back at the bargaining table, trying to reach an agreement before June 24, when the union plans to begin a strike vote. From all reports, there’s been little progress. Read Janet Steffenhagen’s full blog post here.

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