The British Columbia Historical Federation (BCHF) has named Michelle Willard, formerly of the Cumberland Museum and Archives, and Kevin McPhedran of the Village of Cumberland as recipients of a 2019 Award of Merit.
The Cumberland Museum and Archives partnered with the Village of Cumberland to create interpretive signage to commemorate the once vibrant and significant Japanese-Canadian community in Cumberland who were forcibly removed from the West Coast during internment in the Second World War.
Research was undertaken over a three-year period and engaged past residents and descendants of the Japanese-Canadian community in Cumberland. The interpretive panels also highlight photos and artifacts from the Cumberland Museum and Archives.
The British Columbia Historical Federation’s Award of Merit is given to groups or individuals who have made a significant contribution to the study or promotion of British Columbia history. The award may be for an individual project or for an activity over time.
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 health situation, however, the BCHF annual conference schedule for June 2020, including the awards gala, has been cancelled. Thus, the prizes are being announced early and plans are in the works for ways to honour winners during the BCHF conference in 2021, with details to be announced.
The British Columbia Historical Federation (BCHF) encourages interest in the history of British Columbia through research, presentation, and support in its role as an umbrella organization for provincial historical societies. Established in 1922, the Federation currently provides a collective voice for over 100 member societies and 24,000 individuals in the provincial not-for-profit historical sector.