About the Archives

The archival holdings of the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre contain materials donated by local survivors and families of victims and eyewitnesses of the Holocaust, as well as the institutional records of the VHEC. Types of material that may be found in the archives include identification documents, correspondence, travel documents, education materials and certificates, photographs, memorabilia, ephemera, newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, exhibition and events records and other items that document pre- and post-Holocaust life, immigration and settlement experiences, internment and the Holocaust.

Photo identification must be presented and registration is required prior to accessing materials in the archives. No food, drink, pens or indelible pencils are permitted when accessing collections materials. Researchers may be required to wear non-latex or cotton gloves when handling artefacts or fragile documents. Paper and pencils are available on site. Researchers may bring their own laptop computers and those wishing to use digital cameras (or camera equipped mobile phones) are asked to consult the collections staff on duty prior to use. Digital copies of materials may be available. Collections staff will be available to answer research questions and help users navigate the online collections database. 

The archives include textual and visual records relating to the experiences of survivors, victims, and their families, before, during and after the Holocaust. These records may contain content pertaining to Nazism, racism and genocide that may be upsetting or triggering. Please allow time for reflection and take breaks when needed. 

The archives are temporarily closed to in-person visits. Researchers can contact 604-264-0499 or email collections@vhec.org with any questions.
 

WHAT'S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE MUSEUM COLLECTION AND THE ARCHIVES?

The major difference between the museum collection and the archives is the way that information is organized. In the museum collection, each object is treated individually and described as a single unit. In the archival collection, materials are arranged and described in aggregates organized by provenance; the original order and context of the records is maintained where possible.

Three-dimensional objects or artworks may be part of an archival collection or fonds depending on how the material was collected and maintained by the creator and/or donor and how the VHEC acquired the material. 

The collections database is designed to highlight relationships between materials in the collection regardless of which department stewards the material. Users are encouraged to browse across collections and related holdings to discover more about each item in the catalogue. 

Learn more about the VHEC's museum collection.