Main hall of the BC Farm Museum in Fort Langley.

VIDEO: BC Farm Museum turns 50

Fort Langley institution started with the donation of a single plow



The B.C. Farm Museum in Fort Langley was the result of the donation of a single high-cut walking hand plow 63 years ago to the University of British Columbia (UBC).

It needed a home, and the thought was it should be an agricultural museum, at UBC.

After the British Columbia Farm Machinery Association was formed to raise funds for the project, the location was switched to Fort Langley.

It would not be the first time plans were made and changed.

The first choice for a Fort Langley site ended up with a road running through it when the federal government decided to restore the historic fur trading post.

A 33-foot lot on King Street was then donated to the museum by the council of the day, on condition the association would pay for buying another 66 foot lot next to it, which it did.

Nine years after the deal was done, the first of two buildings officially opened on Nov 19, 1966.

On Saturday, the impending 50th anniversary of that opening was celebrated with an open house at the museum and a birthday cake and dinner at the Fort Langley Community Hall.

The event was attended by the many volunteers whose hard work has kept the facility going, and dignitaries including B.C. Lieutenant Governor Judith Guichon, MPs John Aldag and Mark Warawa as well as deputy premier Langley MLA Rich Coleman.

Grace Muller, chair of the museum 50th anniversary committee, told The Times reading 50 years of museum directors meeting minutes shows the same four issues have dominated discussions since the beginning; lack of funding, lack of space, acquisition and de-accession (removing items from the collection) policies and the occasional leaky roof.

“All of those continue to be issues at one point or another,” Muller said.

Since federal funding dried up in 1990, the museum has operated as an all-volunteer facility, functioning because of long hours of unpaid work put in by supporters.

Over the years, the collection has expanded to include more than 5,000 historical artifacts and over 10,000 books, pamphlets and manuals of historical information, a valuable resource for researchers.

“It has manuals on every vintage vehicle out there,” Muller said.

This year, the museum  obtained funding for new murals inside and outside and is going high-tech with interactive terminals.

The downstairs workshop area is undergoing extensive renovations that include moving walls, adding a new heat source and other enhancements.

Just Posted

Surrey filmmaker creates ‘Monster’ movie about gang life in the city

Fleetwood resident Inderveer Sodhi wrote, directed and stars in his coming-of-age fictional drama

Surrey author wants to create awareness of colourism with latest book

The Desirable Sister is Taslim Burkowicz’s second book

Surrey drunk driver gets 32 months in prison for killing grandma, injuring girl

Shavin Reynold Singh, 31, is also prohibited from driving for four years

Surrey ‘foam-free Vaisakhi’ initiative inspires ‘Sweet Takeaways’ business

KPU students launch business selling sugarcane takeout containers as alternative to foam, single-use items

Driver escaped uninjured as car burst into flames on Nordel Way

It happened at about 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in North Delta, just west of Scott Road

John Mann, singer and songwriter of group Spirit of the West dead at 57

Mann died peacefully in Vancouver on Wednesday from early onset Alzheimer’s

VIDEO: B.C. high school’s turf closed indefinitely as plastic blades pollute waterway

Greater Victoria resident stumbles on plastic contamination from Oak Bay High

B.C. mayor urges premier to tweak road speeds in an ‘epidemic of road crash fatalities’

Haynes cites ICBC and provincial documents in letter to John Horgan

South Cariboo Driver hits four cows due to fog

The RCMP’s investigation is ongoing

B.C. won’t appeal decision protecting ICBC court experts

Change to evidence rules next to save money, David Eby says

1898 Yukon gold rush photo featuring Greta Thunberg look-alike sends internet into tailspin

Jokes erupted this week after a 120-year-old photo taken by Eric A. Hegg surfaced from archives

BC Ferries’ two new hybrid vessels set sail for B.C. from Romania

Two Island Class ferries to be in use by 2020

Distracted driving tickets not for ICBC revenue, B.C. minister says

Minister Mike Farnworth calls SenseBC analysis ‘nonsense’

Most Read