Collection RBSC-ARC-1814 - Alan Francis Brooks collection

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Alan Francis Brooks collection

General material designation

  • Textual record
  • Cartographic material
  • Graphic material

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Statement of scale (cartographic)

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

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Physical description area

Physical description

34.2 cm of textual records, graphic material, and cartographic material

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Archival description area

Name of creator

(August 20th, 1917 - November 26th, 2015)

Biographical history

Alan Francis Brooks was born on August 20th, 1917 in London, England and was raised in Montréal, Quebec. He would go on to join the Royal Canadian Armed Forces and serve overseas with the Bomber Command during WWII. After the war, he earned a degree in Chemical Engineering at McGill University in Montréal, which led to a job with mining company Cominco Ltd. (currently known as Teck Resources Ltd.) in Trail, British Columbia. The facility he worked at had a large smelter that used a significant amount of power, causing him to become attentive to cheap power alternatives. As such, Alan was highly interested in hydroelectric projects being undertaken in the Pacific Northwest, especially the Columbia River Treaty and the Columbia Basin Project. In pursuit of the former, he dedicated time outside of work to actively following local news coverage of the treaty and filling twenty-six scrapbooks with newspaper clippings detailing its development.

Alan’s job with Cominco also prompted transfers that would take him to Montréal, Calgary, and Vancouver, where he would eventually settle down and retire. In retirement, he spent his time photographing nature, continuing his lifetime hobby of collecting stamps, and becoming a member of the Golden Agers Hiking Club as well as the philatelic group The 21 Club. He remained in Vancouver until the end of his life at the South Granville Park Lodge retirement facility. Alan passed away on November 26th, 2015 at the age of 98, surrounded by family. He was predeceased by his first wife Audrey Holmes Brooks and his second wife Muriel Floud Brooks and he is survived by his daughters Carolyn and Louise and grandchildren Ryan, Brendan, and Alexa.

Custodial history

Materials were collected and compiled by Alan F. Brooks during his lifetime and passed on to his daughter Louise after his death. Louise then gifted the materials to Robert Toombs, Brooks' friend and fellow engineer, who created an inventory of the items and donated them to UBC.

Scope and content

Collection consists of scrapbooks, newspaper and magazine clippings, pamphlets, reports, correspondence, drawings, booklets, and maps related to Alan F. Brook's interest in hydroelectric engineering projects in the Pacific Northwest of British Columbia and the United States. The scrapbooks compile newspaper and magazine clippings that follow the development of the Columbia River Treaty between Canada and the United States from the mid 1950s-1970s, including information on the resulting Mica, Duncan, Keenleyside (formerly High Arrow), and Libby Dams. The majority of the material in the scrapbooks were taken from articles in The Province (formerly the Vancouver Province) and the Trail Daily Times. The collection also includes ephemera related to the Columbia Basin Project in Washington State.

Notes area

Physical condition

Some of the scrapbooks have loose pages and newspaper clippings in them

Immediate source of acquisition

Donated by Robert Toombs on August 10th, 2019


Language of material

  • English

Script of material

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General note

Most file titles have been supplied

Physical description

34.2 cm of textual records ; 40 pencil and crayon drawings ; and 4 maps

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Finding aid created by Natalie Trapuzzano, September 2019

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Script of description


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