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

TransLink reveals new plans for proposed Surrey-Langley SkyTrain

No cost estimates, but the Fraser Highway line is expected to open by 2025

Delta council to hold half its regular meetings in North Delta

Council’s meeting schedule for 2019 includes one public hearing per month

Rally planned to protest ‘postponement’ of Cloverdale ice complex

A Cloverdale arena is one of many projects set to be delayed in the City of Surrey’s draft budget

White Rock business owner solves common problem with new product

Rolf Effertz says the PHLiPBiT is a “Why didn’t I think of that?” creation

South Surrey thrill-seeker riding his way to world stage

Jack Roach, 15, bringing home hardware in motorcycle racing

VIDEO: Highway overpass protest against United Nations ‘compact’ on immigration

Demonstrators say Canada will have less control over who is allowed in the country

5 to start your day

TransLink reveals new plans for proposed Surrey-Langley SkyTrain, 81-year-old woman waits 90 minutes for a taxi in Pitt Meadows and more

Natural gas rates will go up in B.C. on Jan. 1

Regions could pay up to $68 more

Top House Dems raise prospect of impeachment, jail for Trump

It could be an “impeachable offense” if it’s proven that President Donald Trump directed illegal hush-money payments to women during the 2016 campaign.

Macron addresses France amid protests; is it too late?

Paris monuments reopened, cleanup workers cleared debris and shop owners tried to put the city on its feet again Sunday.

CUPE calls off Flair Airlines job action citing job security concerns

The union says it’s going to challenge Flair’s move at the Canada Industrial Relations Board before proceeding with any job action.

Trump looking at several candidates for new chief of staff

Trump’s top pick for the job, Nick Ayers, is out of the running and Trump is now soliciting input on at least four individuals.

Canadian physicist collects Nobel Prize

Canada’s Donna Strickland is one of three winners of this year’s Nobel Prize for Physics.

BCHL players help Team Canada in shootout win over U.S.

Massimo Rizzo scores the shootout winner at World Junior A Challenge

Most Read