Welcome to the Quesnel & District Museum and Archives

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The Quesnel Museum


There is always plenty to discover at the Quesnel Museum. Learn the secrets of "Mandy, the Haunted Doll." Listen to the stories of Chinese and First Nations Elders or visit a Sikh temple through interactive video installations. Meet the residents of early twentieth century Quesnel through the remarkable photographs of C.D. Hoy and C.S. Wing. Dress up in the children's activity centre or participate in a scavenger hunt. Click here to view our upcoming special events and programs.

Favourite exhibits include the Titanic, Footprints in Stone, dedicated to local First Nations culture, and vignettes recreating Quesnel's pioneer homes and businesses. From rare Chinese artifacts used during the gold rush era, to ephemera that will evoke childhood memories, the extensive collections are sure to appeal to all ages and interests. Come and see why the Quesnel Museum has been proclaimed one of BC's top 10 community museums.

Special Projects

Restoration of Quesnel’s Cornish Water Wheel

The Cornish waterwheel was erected on Front Street, beside the Fraser River Bridge in 1930 as a memorial to the Pioneer Miners of the Cariboo. Repaired and rebuilt a number of times in the intervening years, when the Friends of the Quesnel Museum commissioned conservator, Carl Schlicting to prepare a conservation plan for all the large industrial artifacts located along the Riverfront Trail in 2014, he concluded that a plan should be developed to rebuild the wheel.  The original metal elements (the axel and crank arm)  were reused and the rebuild incorporated conservation measures to extend the life of the new wood timbers. The project was initiated in 2015 to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the completion of the Cariboo Wagon Road.   

The Quesnel Museum wishes to acknowledge the workmanship of the team from C2000 ( Dave & Angela Lakeman, Rina Hofer and Doug Aspinal) and WestFraser Mills for supplying  suitable air dried Douglas Fir. We gratefully acknowledge all those who contributed financially to this project:

La roue d’eau a été restauré pour célébrer le 150e anniversaire de la complétion du Cariboo Wagon Road en 1865.

Featured Photo of the month

Remembering the Centennial

Did you have a Centennial Costume?  Did you watch the Canada Day Parade in Quesnel in 1967?

The Quesnel Museum is collecting memories of the Centennial Celebrations (not just on Canada Day but of events that happened throughout the year).  If you have stories to share, please come to the gathering at the Museum on Wednesday February 22 from 7 – 9 pm.   In this photo from the Cariboo  Observer collection  a family in “period” costume gathers beside the number 13 Cariboo Express stage coach.  We know from other photos in the museum collection that Mayor Alex Fraser rode in this coach during the Canada Day Parade in 1967 and that the group assembled in front of the new Museum/Visitor Centre in Lebourdais Park.

If you can identify anyone in this image please contact the museum at ehunter@quesnel.ca or 250-992-9580 and please contact us to share your own memories of the 100th anniversary of Canada.