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Saturday, 20 July 2013

500,000 Photographs of Barnardos Children Up For Grabs

One of the oldest, most significant photographic collections in the shaping of Canada is up for grabs - those of the children who came to Canada as Dr Barnados Little Immigrants.  

Barnardo began photographing the children that came into his care at his first home in Stepney in 1875. 

Over half a million photographs are being digitized in Manchester. Once the digitization process has been completed, the original images are to be destroyed, all in the name of freeing up storage space.  

Not only were the British Home Children dispensable as people, now their images are also apparently dispensable.  Barnardos is willing to hand the collection of originals over to an interested organization, archive or group of individuals. Ideally, in Canada, this would be to Library and Archives Canada, however, we already know the state that organization is in and it is highly unlikely that they will do anything to pursue these precious memories of some of our early nation builders. The importance of these photographs to the national memory and social history of Canada cannot be underestimated.

If you know of an organization that would be willing to protect and preserve these images, you are asked to contact the head archivist at:
martine.king@barnardos.org.uk

1 comment:

  1. I'm being only slightly facetious, but if all the photos of the children with the surname "Harper" were to be enclosed in a proposal to the appropriate Canadian Minister, there might be a positive response. And a change in favour of culture and history by the "ruling party". Also, genealogy groups in the Ottawa-Hull area might seek volunteers to assist Archives Canada in the actual scanning tasks.

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