2018 Nakusp BCHF announces shortlist for 2018 Historical Writing Competition

BCHF announces shortlist for 2018 Historical Writing Competition

The British Columbia Historical Federation is pleased to announce the shortlist for the Annual Historical Writing Competition. Congratulations to all the finalists.

Finalists in Alphabetical Order by Last Name

Bradley, Dr. Ben, British Columbia by the Road: Car Culture and the Making of a Modern Landscape, UBC Press

Ben Bradley takes readers on an unprecedented journey through the history of roads, highways, and motoring in British Columbia’s Interior, a remote landscape composed of plateaus and interlocking valleys, soaring mountains and treacherous passes.


Hayashi, Kotaro; Fumio “Frank” Kanno; Henry Tanaka and Jim Tanaka, Changing Tides: Vanishing Voices of Nikkei Fishermen and the Families, Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre

Changing Tides chronicles more than 30 stories of Japanese Canadian fishermen and their families on the B.C. coast. Stories collected range from before the Second World War to the present day. With conversational recollections to individual reflections, these are stories of hardship, determination and triumph, with personal perspectives on injustices, discrimination and tales of resiliency and perseverance.


Hebda, Richard J., Sheila Greer and Alexander P. Mackie (eds.), Kwädąy Dän Ts’ìnchį: Teachings from Long Ago Person Found, Royal BC Museum

On a late summer day, many years ago, a young man set out on a voyage through the mountains. He never reached his destination. When his remains were discovered by three British Columbia hunters, roughly three hundred years after he was caught by a storm or other accident, his story had faded from even the long memory of the region’s people. First Nations elders decided to call the discovery Kwädąy Dän Ts’ìnchį—Long Ago Person Found.


Marks, Lynne, Infidels and the Damn Church: Irreligion and Religion in Settler British Columbia, UBC Press

British Columbia is at the forefront of a secularizing movement in the English-speaking world. Nearly half its residents claim no religious affiliation, and the province has the highest rate of unbelief or religious indifference in Canada. Infidels and the Damn Churches explores the historical roots of this phenomenon from the 1880s to the First World War.


Norton, Wayne, Fernie at War: 1914-1919, Caitlin Press

Fernie, a small community located in BC’s Kootenay region, entered the First World War in 1914 with optimism and a sense of national pride-it emerged five years later having experienced staggering losses and multiple controversies that threatened to tear their community apart.


Stewart, Howard Macdonald, Views of the Salish Sea: One Hundred and Fifty Years of Change Around the Strait of Georgia, Harbour Publishing

Interweaving geography, biology and resource economics with history, this is a deft examination of the Strait of Georgia from the 1850s to the modern era.


Yip, Liping Wong, From Wah Lee to Chew Keen: The Story of a Pioneer Chinese Family in North Cariboo, Friesen Press

Who was Wah Lee? To the Keen family living in North Cariboo, B.C., Wah Lee was their forefather from China; amongst local historians, Wah Lee is the name for a general store in Quesnel, B.C. This book unravels the mystery of a name, which is also the story of a person, a business, and a family that traverses 150 years of history and crosses the Pacific from China to Canada. What unfolds is not just the history of one family, but a history of the recent past in Canada and China told through the trials and fortunes, hopes and dreams of individual family members.


Awards Presentation

The winners will be announced at the British Columbia Historical Federation Conference Book Awards Gala held in partnership with the Arrow Lakes Historical Society on Saturday, May 26, 2018, 6:00 pm at the Nakusp Arena Auditorium in Nakusp, BC.

The Gala is part of the BCHF’s Annual Conference. Tickets are available through the BCHF website.

About the Competition

The Historical Writing Competition celebrates books that make significant contributions to the historical literature of British Columbia.

The BC Lieutenant-Governor’s Medal for Historical Writing is awarded together with $2,500 to the author whose book makes the most significant contribution to the historical literature of British Columbia. Awards are also presented for second place ($1,500), third place ($500) and Community History. Certificates of Honourable Mention may be awarded to other books as recommended by the judges.

More Information

For more information about the Historical Writing Competition or this year’s nominees, contact:

Maurice Guibord
First Vice President, Chair of Historical Writing, British Columbia Historical Federation