Renovations at the Quesnel & District Museum and Archives

The City of Quesnel has begun renovations of the Quesnel & District Museum and Archives. This phase of the renovation includes the installation of additional compressed shelving in the archives to increase the capacity of this storage area and the renovation of the two exterior display areas. The contract for the latter has been awarded to C2000 Construction. They are reinforcing the foundation, constructing walls with large windows and upgrading the lighting. This will provide increased protection for the artifacts on display and will enhance the exhibits.

Some of the artifacts from the exterior display areas have been placed in storage and will be reinstalled once the work is completed. Others have been transferred to the Antique Machinery Park. The model waterwheel will be relocated to the Barkerville campground. This will provide museum staff with the opportunity to refresh the exhibits when the work is completed.

This renovation is supported by the Province of British Columbia/Canada 150, the Department of Canadian Heritage Museum Assistance Program and the City of Quesnel. The Friends of the Museum are sponsoring the installation of a photo mural on the back wall of the Museum in LeBourdais Park, documenting the recreational activities which have taken place here over the past century.



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:

  • Canadian Heritage, who provided support through the Building Communities through Arts and Heritage Program/ Patrimonie candien, qui appuyé par le programme Développement de communautés par le biais des arts et du patrimoine.
  • Heritge BC through the Heritage Legacy Fund of British Columbia
  • City of Quesnel
  • Quesnel Community Foundation
  • Integris Community Foundation
  • Friends of the Quesnel and District Museum and Archives.

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