Browse Exhibits (2 total)

INFLUENZA: The Spanish Flu in Smithers, 1918


"The Flu was upon us like a summer shower. A new disease which spread rapidly and acted quickly, and a population more inclined to laugh at it than respect it." 

- The Omineca Daily Herald, Hazelton, November 22nd 1918.

Just over a century ago, a deadly virus swept across a world already devastated by the First World War. This virus, known as the “Spanish” Flu, eventually spread to every corner of the earth, infecting over 500 million people.

This virtual exhibit traces the path of the virus to Smithers, British Columbia, Canada. In 1918 this small community had no doctor or hospital of its own; the closest medical practitioner, Dr. Horace Wrinch, was based out of nearby Hazelton. This exhibit examines the impact of the virus on local settler and Indigenous communities, including the resulting push for a permanent doctor and hospital. We aim to showcase both the tragic suffering brought about by the disease, as well as the resilience and humanity demonstrated by the community in the face of this crisis.

INFLUENZA: The Spanish Flu in Smithers is based off the exhibit of the same name which was displayed at the Bulkley Valley Museum from April 2018 to August 2019. It features medical artifacts from the Museum's collection, excerpts from the Smithers Interior News and Hazelton's Omineca Herald, and other documents and photographs relating to the Spanish Flu Pandemic.

Select a link to your right to learn about the Spanish Flu worldwide, in Canada, and in Smithers, or check out our collection of early 20th-century medicines and doctors' equipment.

The Bulkley Valley Through a Lens: A Century of Photography


Main Street.  The Bulkley River.  Lake Kathlyn.  Hudson Bay Mountain. 

If you've ever snapped a picture of one of these landmarks, you've added to over 100 years of photographic history in the Bulkley Valley. The technology that we use has changed dramatically throughout the last century - from glass plate negatives, to polaroids, to smart phones - but our desire to capture the moment remains the same.

The Bulkley Valley Museum holds a collection of several thousand photographs depicting Smithers, the surrounding Valley, and the people and wildlife who call it home. Today these photographs are appreciated for their beauty, for the historical information they provide, and for the reminder of "how things were."

The Bulkley Valley Through a Lens is a virtual experience based off the exhibit 100 Years of Photography in the Valley, which was displayed at the Museum in 2015. It features the works of several of the Valley's most prolific photographers since the early 20th century. Browse the links to your right to learn more about these individuals and to see the Bulkley Valley as they did - through the lens of a camera. What has changed - and what has stayed the same - since these photos were taken?