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Archival description
Transportation and utilities With digital objects
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Stephen C. Lunsford collection

  • RBSC-ARC-1788
  • Collection
  • 1858- 1870

This collection consists of materials related to early British Columbia history in the years when BC was still a British colony, prior to joining Canada in 1871. The collection consists of colonial government documents (proclamations, messages, acts, and rules and regulations) effecting the daily life of British Columbians. These include real estate titles, road works, railways, local, legal and financial matters, labour, and infrastructure. The collection includes proclamations by James Douglas, who was the first governor of BC and served from 1858-1864.

British Columbia historical postcard and photograph albums collection

  • RBSC-ARC-1059
  • Fonds
  • [ca. 1860-1939], predominant [ca. 1900]-1921

The collection consists of ninety-one albums of postcards and photographs pertaining to views and scenes mainly in British Columbia, but also including Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and the Yukon as well as Europe. The views of British Columbia include views of the Rocky Mountains, Vancouver, Victoria, Mayne Island, and Buttle Lake (pre-1911) as well as those of logging (Capilano Timber Co., 1917-1920), mining (Granby Consolidated Mining, Smelting and Power Co. and Consolidated Cariboo Hydraulic Mining Co.) railways (Canadian Pacific Railway, Grand Trunk Pacific Railway, Esquimalt and Nanaimo Railway, and Great Northern Railway) and shipping. In addition, there are postcards and photographs of the Hudson's Bay Company Kamchatka Venture, 1921, U.S. Civil War portraits and New Zealand shipping.

John Cooper Robinson collection

  • RBSC-ARC-1757
  • Collection
  • [1870] – [1955]

Fonds consists of over 4,600 photographic prints, negatives, glass lantern slides, and postcards, the majority of which were either taken or collected by Robinson. Many of the photographs relate to Robinson’s work as an Anglican missionary in Japan in the 1890’s through the 1920’s. These photographs document a unique time in the Japan’s history: the Meiji-Taisho period when the country was transitioning away from being a feudal society and beginning to open up to the West. This collection is one of the few comprehensive records of this time period. Subject matter of the photographs includes everyday life, work, and scenery in Japan, as well as the lives and works of missionaries.

Also included in the collection are photographs from Canada and the Robinson family’s travels around the world, as well as reproductions of missionary and religious texts or graphics.

While many of the photographs were taken by Robinson, others were taken by his children, professional photographers, or unidentified individuals.

Robinson, John Cooper

Lilian Bland fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1792
  • Fonds
  • ca. 1875 - 1935

The fonds consists of 1,398 glass plate negatives, glass lantern slides, celluloid prints and celluloid negatives, the majority of which were taken by Lilian Bland. The photographs reflect the varied and unique life of Lilian Bland and her family. The fonds includes several photographs of the Mayfly, the bi-plane Lilian famously designed, constructed, and flew. Other photographic subjects include horse-riding and horse-racing, Lilian's fathers' artwork, her husbands' travels in China, family photographs, birds and bird-watching, her travels in Europe, California, and British Columbia, and photographs documenting her years spent as a settler living on the Quatsino Sound in Vancouver Island and in California with her family.
Other record types in the fonds include Lilian Bland’s unpublished memoir, and the original enclosures for the photographs including boxes, envelopes, and box lists.
The finding aid for the fonds, attached as a PDF, includes a spreadsheet of images as they were received upon donation to Rare Books and Special Collections. A brief description created by the donor is available for each image in the finding aid.

Bland, Lilian Emily

Thomas Norris fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1407
  • Fonds
  • [1906 - 1976]

The Norris fonds documents the legal and judicial career of the Honourable Mr. Justice Thomas G. Norris. The papers date between 1906 and 1976, with the bulk of records dating between 1930 and 1975 documenting his law practice and his years on the Supreme and Appeal Courts of British Columbia.
Part I of the fonds consists largely of correspondence and printed material, including scrapbooks relating to the Industrial Commission as well as case notes and legal papers relating to other cases, 1947 - 71, (2 meters). Owing to a previous donation of annotated transcripts of the hearings of the "Industrial Commission as to Shipping in the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River System" in 1963, other material relating to the investigation of the activities of Harold Banks was donated in December, 1989. The 108 volumes and index to the hearings are catalogued (SP HE 769 A25).
Part II of the fonds consists of professional files, judicial subject files, case files, personal papers, miscellaneous papers and photographs (7 meters).
Part III of the fonds consists of professional correspondence donated by Jerry Vanson of Kelowna in 2011, as well as personal correspondence, scrapbooks, and photographs donated by Norris’ grandson, also named Thomas Norris, in 2014.

The bulk of the records in the fonds are located in Part II in the Professional Files, Judicial Subject Files, Case Files, and Personal Papers series.

The Professional Files series, including materials newly processed in 2019, consists mostly of case files generated by Norris during his years as a lawyer in Kelowna and Vancouver. Also included in this series are subject files with additional information about areas of interest. For example, Norris created several files with documentation on the Associated Fruit Growers Ltd. and other marketing boards (1927 - 49). Other interesting subjects include the Kelowna Police Inquiry (1929-30), the Japanese claim Commission (1950), Rex v. Ducharme - murder case (1950), and politics (1932-35). The ''Politics" files provide a great deal of information about Norris' Conservative party interests and the process behind the appointment of a lawyer to Queen's counsel. Additional professional files created while Norris was practicing law in Kelowna (file#663-1109) were discovered and donated in August, 1990. The file list for these materials is now located on pages 34-39 of this finding aid.
The Judicial Subject Files series in Part II documents Norris' career on the Bench and his subject interests. The files include correspondence surrounding his appointment to various levels of the judiciary, files created during his judicial career and other judicial matters. For example, files often contain judgements, cases considered, clippings and other related materials. The case of Regina vs Bob & White documents the various issues considered before a decision was handed down on aboriginal hunting and fishing rights in B.C. Also included in this series are documents relating to the St. Lawrence Seaway Inquiry. Other files include subjects of the law such as divorce, Native Indians and Legal Aid. Files also included records created about the Admiralty Court, the Supreme and Appeal Courts of British Columbia and the Yukon Territorial Courts.
The Case Files series in Part II includes court documents and notes drafted by Norris. These case files were separated from other case files by Norris probably because of personal interests and the volume of materials. Each subseries of records document a case: Buttle Lake, in Strathona Park (1951), the Vancouver Policy Inquiry (1955), B.C. Telephone's Application for rate increases (1950), Royal Commission on Energy (1958) and Gordon Wismer v. MacLean Hunter (1954). The Buttle Lake files include transcripts of hearings conducted in Courtenay and Victoria, notes and some materials related to submissions presented to the Water Comptroller. Norris represented several groups opposed to the construction of the dam at Buttle Lake. The Wismer v. MacLean-Hunter files include examinations for discovery of Blair Fraser and Gordon S. Wismer, briefs and other materials used by Norris as he represented the Attorney General of B.C., Gordon S. Wismer against MacLean-Hunter magazine in a slander and libel suit.
The Personal Papers series in Part II reflects Norris’ personal interests, and also contains business or legal materials. For example, in this series are files and correspondence relating to the Law Society of B.C., the Law Society & Yale Bar Association meeting in 1958 and arrangements for the 1952 Judge Advocate luncheon. Other files reflect upon friendships with individuals such as Hugh Keenlyside and Leon Koerner. Materials newly added to this series in 2019 contain items such as travel souvenirs, birthday messages from Norris’ friends and family, and information related to Norris’ retirement. The Army Papers subseries contains records related to the time Norris spent serving in the Canadian military in World War II. These records range from 1939 to 1959, with the bulk of the records dating between 1941 and 1945.
Further information about each of the series in Parts I, II, and III can be found in the Series Descriptions on pages 8-13 of the PDF finding aid.

Norris, Thomas Grantham

World War I British press photograph collection

  • RBSC-ARC-1636
  • Fonds
  • 1914-1918

The collection consists of photography of every aspect of World War I - from cadet training to soldiers' graves. Every theatre of war is represented, but the majority of prints were taken in Europe, particularly on the battlefields of France and Belgium. In Britain, there are prints of Gibson Girls welding ships or carting coal. There are prints of royalty and military commanders, including Greek, Belgian and Japanese aristocracy. The technology of war is illustrated in the numerous prints of planes, ships, tanks and guns of all kinds. The collection is strong in portraying the average "Tommy" and his role in the war.

Jerry Houle fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1108
  • Fonds
  • 1959-1988, predominant 1981-1984

The fonds consists of records relating to the railroad transportation industry and the role of the Canadian Shopcraft Union and railway workers. The correspondence, legal records, union data, reports, newsletters, and other printed material focuses upon the labour movement and the divergent paths between Canadian and American organized labour in the 1980's.

Houle, Jerry

British Columbia Railway Commission research collection

  • RBSC-ARC-1069
  • Fonds
  • 1977-1978

The collection consists of subject files including photocopied and manuscript notes and sources, correspondence, research data, computer printout and input material, reports, financial records, and photographs relalting to the Royal Commission on B.C. Railway (1977).

Centre for Transportation Studies

Western Branch of the Canadian Merchant Service Guild fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1105
  • Fonds
  • 1918-1977

The fonds consists of records reflecting the activities of the Guild as representative of seamen working on the west coast, hiring agency, collective bargaining body, and lobby group. The fonds includes minutes of Guild meetings, an extensive group of subject files, business records, and personal office files of Guild officers reflect the organization's active involvement in marine education, safety regulation development, marine standards, and open representation.

Canadian Merchant Service Guild. Western Branch

National Association of Marine Engineers fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1393
  • Fonds
  • 1902-1966

The fonds consists of minutes of Council No. 7 (1902-1921, 1938-1951), minutes of Council No. 4 (n.d.), financial records, agreements, membership and attendance records, towboat grievances, printed material, credit union material, all relating to the NAME. Also included are Ladies' Auxiliary records and L.H. Charlton's correspondence.

National Association of Marine Engineers

Amalgamated Transit Union fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1006
  • Fonds
  • 1898-1979

The fonds includes minutes of regular meetings (1898-1976), executive committee minutes (1907-1974), membership and dues ledgers (1901-1966), records books [working conditions affecting members of Division 134] (1931-1947), and Sick Benefit Association (1913-1919, 1950-1954). The fonds also contains office subject files such as general correspondence (1908-1970), correspondence with B.C. Hydro and Power Authority (1962), meeting attendance records (1957-1961), political education committee records (1957-1961), and minute books, correspondence and attendance books relating to Pacific Stage Lines (1935-1979).

Amalgamated Transit Union. Division 101-134 (Vancouver, B.C.)

Thomas McDonald fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1362
  • Fonds
  • 1950-1973

The fonds consists of records reflecting McDonald's career with the Greater Vancouver Regional Planning Board. It includes subject files, press clippings, and printed material. The fonds also includes records relating to planning the development of Kitimat, B.C. and in the province, in general.

McDonald, Thomas

Harold Thayer fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1553
  • Fonds
  • 1944-1984

The fonds consists of correspondence and subject files pertaining to various locals of the International Association of Machinists. Also included is material from the B.C. Federation of Labour, Canadian Congress of Labour (1970-1984), Ontario Federation of Labour (1972- 1977), the provincial and federal CCF and NDP, as well as other material pertaining to labour and politics. There are also tapes of radio broadcasts and material relating to Thayer's personal interests.

Thayer, Harold, 1918-

W.R. Menchions fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1372
  • Fonds
  • 1914-1935

The fonds consists of plans of fishing vessels built by W.R. Menchions for various companies and individuals including a seine patrol and towboat (1914-1915), cannery tender (1924-1926), seine boat (1925), and specifications and contracts for gasoline boats, seine boats and fishing boats (1914-1935). The fonds also includes one photograph of the vessel Frieda of the Kakiak Fishing Co.

Menchions, W.R.

John Stanton fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1524
  • Fonds
  • 1936-1985

The fonds consists of materials pertaining to Stanton's career as a lawyer representing a broad spectrum of industrial unions such as the International Longshoremen's and Warehousemen's Union, International Union of Mine, Mill and Smelter Workers (Canada), International Woodworkers of America and the Marine Workers and Boilermakers Industrial Union as well as individual cases relating to the workplace. There are also articles relating to the foundation and activities of various unions, the ILWU in particular, as well as copies of union constitutions and by-laws. There are case records of the ILWU vs. Nissho and Pacific Coast Hydrocarbons, and correspondence pertaining to Harold Pritchett, in particular dealing with his entry into the United States and documents relating to the "Greenhill Park" disaster of 1945. There are also files created by Stanton in representing his clients that formed the basis for his published autobiography "Never Say Die".

Stanton, John

William Douglas Powell fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1445
  • Fonds
  • 1949-2002

The fonds consists of drafts of a long version and a short version of an unpublished manuscript, "Running Scared", as well as notebooks and subject files dealing with the consequences of dieselization of the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) in the Revelstoke Division betweek 1957 and 1984. Powell collected extensive documentation from the relevant unions, Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen and Enginemen and the United Transportation Union, in response to this event and it is included in the fonds.

Powell, William Douglas

John Crosse fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1150
  • Fonds
  • 1985-2006

Fonds consists of Crosse's research notes, journals and annotated photocopies regarding the marine history of British Columbia. This material was primarily generated by Crosse in the course of his research activities from 1985-2006, but the fonds also contains annotated reproductions of numerous rare maps created in the late 1700s. The textual and photographic records have been arranged by Crosse primarily according to the subjects of his research. There are three series of cartographic material which are roughly arranged according to geographical area.
The first accrual relates to Crosse's research into early explorations of British Columbia’s coast. Accrual contains research notes, maps, photographs and correspondence. Two series are accruals to series in the first accession: they are the Manby research material series and the Narvaez research material series. Accrual also contains the Research papers and archival material series, the Miscellaneous research maps and oversized items series and the Panoramic photographs series.
Second and third accruals relate to the late eighteenth century exploration of the coast of British Columbia and the Northwestern United States, as well as information on Imperial Spain, the British Empire, and sailing ships in general. Records incorporated into Narvaez research materials series and research papers and archival material series. New series created include Alaska series, Nootka series, Columbia river exploration series, and correspondence series. Records include photocopies of primary source maps, charts, illustrations, letters, logs, and journals. Materials also include book chapters from secondary source materials, photographs of sailing trips that followed the course of the Narvaez expedition, correspondence with other researchers or persons relevant to Crosse's areas of interest, and charts produced between 1980 and 2000.

Crosse, John

Georgia Straight fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1211
  • Fonds
  • [ca. 1960]-1979

The fonds consists of photographs and negatives from the Georgia Straight newspaper photograph files, depicting demonstrations, conflicts, picnics, concerts, musicians, celebrities and other events and individuals.

Georgia Straight

Gerald McGeer fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1364
  • Fonds
  • 1912-1945

The fonds consists of records relating to McGeer's career as a lawyer and politician. It includes correspondence, speeches and subject files (1931-1945). The fonds also includes material pertaining to the Western Freight Rates case.

McGeer, Gerald Grattan

Tom McGrath fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1365
  • Fonds
  • 1948-1996

The fonds consists of textual material (subject files, correspondence, minutes, financial statements, and printed material) relating to Tom McGrath's activities with the following unions: International Association of Bridge, Structural and Ornamental Ironworkers, Vancouver Local 97, 1955-1964; Canadian Ironworkers Local No. 1, 1960-1968; Wood, Wine and Metal Lather's International Union, 1960-1973; Canadian Brotherhood of Railway, Transport and General Workers, Seamen's Section, Local 400, 1968-1982; and the Canadian Merchant Navy Association, 1990-1995. The fonds also includes interviews with various individuals including Frank Kennedy, Art Kube, Cliff Anstein, and Jess Succamore, involved in solidarity and union issues, his political campaign on behalf of the New Democratic Party in the Vancouver-Little Mountain provincial riding, and photographs of the Second Narrows Bridge.

McGrath, Tom

Social Planning and Research Council of British Columbia fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1511
  • Fonds
  • 1966-1984

The fonds consists of Executive Board minutes and general office files as well as correspondence, reports, speeches, questionnaires, minutes and agendas, printed material, and subject files relating to the following program committees of SPARC Committees on Aging, Coalition on Children, Youth, and the Law, Health Committee, Panel on Handicapped, and Transportation Committee. Other records relate to various topics such as financial resources, housing, patient's rights, long term care, and organizational skills.

Social Planning and Research Council of British Columbia

John A. Munro fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1387
  • Fonds
  • 1907-1997

The fonds consists of records created and collected by John A. Munro in the course of his research and writing on the careers of Gordon Churchill, John George Diefenbaker, Jack Horner, Carl Nickle, Lester B. Pearson, H.H. Stevens, David J. Walker, W.A.C. Bennett, Derrick Humphreys, Gordon Wilson, a holocaust survivor, Michel Mielnicki, and the Edelweiss Credit Union. It also includes Munro's works on Canadian External Relations, 1936-1939, the Atherton railway accident case, the Alaska Boundary Dispute, "Tai Tai", the China experiences of Dr. and Mrs. Ralph Outerbridge (includes diaries, 1938-1950 and manuscripts), material relating to the publication of "Beyond the Moongate", research on British Columbia and Confederation, and a biography on Senator David A. Croll. Fonds includes a notebook of Lester B. Pearson and a letter to Pearson from Norman Hiller regarding the Riddell incident and material relating to screenplays, including "Blue Ribbon".

Munro, John A., 1938-

Alfred Taylor fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1548
  • Fonds
  • 1915-1920

The fonds consists of maps pertaining to the development of the Dolly Varden Mine and related projects in the Alice Arm area.

Taylor, Alfred James Towle

Westcoast Energy Inc. fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1608
  • Fonds
  • 1897-2002, predominant 1949-2002

The fonds consists of records created or accumulated by Wescoast Energy Inc. its predecessor company Westcoast Transmission Company, Limited, and their subsidy companies. Records relate to the activities of these companies and the gas and energy industry in British Columbia and North America, and have been arranged into the following eleven series: legal and financial records (1950-1996); record books and minute books (1949-1980); subject files (1949-2000); corporate publications (1950-2002); publications relating to Westcoast Energy Inc. and its subsidiary companies (1957-2002); books, articles and other publications relating to the energy industry in British Columbia and North America (1897-1996); executive speeches and addresses (1957-1997); photographs and slides (1950s-1994); video recordings (1978-1995); scrapbook (1957); and maps and plans (1945-1994).

Westcoast Energy Inc.

British Columbia Electric Railway Company fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1054
  • Fonds
  • 1896-1961

The fonds consists principally of bound and filed correspondence of the Company (1896-1914), early minute books and accounting records of the BCER and related companies, as well as scrapbooks and clippings on microfilm which reflect the growth and diversity of the Company. Also included is a valuable collection of maps, diagrams, and engineering and architectural plans.

British Columbia Electric Railway Company

Transportation Employees Canadian Union fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1559
  • Fonds
  • 1929-1981

The fonds consists of copies of constitutions, financial records, minute books, note books, correspondence and maps pertaining to the formation and subsequent activities of the Union. Lists of members, names of executives, dues statements, labour legislation, benefit plans, membership applications, applications to represent groups of workers and to void agreements, manuals, pamphlets, newsletters, agreements, etc. are included among the material.

Transportation Employees Canadian Union

United Transportation Union, Local 422 fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1571
  • Fonds
  • 1919-1986

The fonds consists of handwritten notes, printed material and subject files made or created in the course of practial activities by the UTU, Local 422. In addition, the fonds consists of the records of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen and Enginemen (.27 m, 1942-1968), the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen (5.25 m, 1919-1969), the Vancouver Joint Council of Railway Unions (.55 m, 1971-1984), and the Vancouver Rail Task Force, (1 m, mainly 1977-1982).

United Transportation Union. Local 422 (Vancouver, B.C.)

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 213 fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1278
  • Fonds
  • 1904-1976

The fonds consists of general and executive board minutes (1904-1976), minutes of unit meetings (1948-1976) and various locals including South Slocan, Local 999 Castlegar, Penticton, Trail, and Kelowna. It also includes trial board records pertaining to the Lenkurt Electric Company dispute (1966-1967).

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. Local 213 (Vancouver, B.C.)

International Longshoremen's and Warehousemen's Union fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1279
  • Fonds
  • 1910-1979

The fonds consists of correspondence, agreements, subject files, work records, press releases, printed material and minutes pertaining to the activities of the union. Minutes of the Prince Rupert local and Great Northern Railway Section of Dock Employees for locals 501 and 507 are included. Subject files contain information on foremen's disputes and other strikes. The tapes consist of Canadian Area convention proceedings and caucus meetings. The cassette tapes were generated by an oral history project carried out by members of the ILWU Local 500 which led to a publication entitled "Man Along the Shore".

International Longshoremen's and Warehousemen's Union (Canada)

Jim Spilsbury fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1517
  • Fonds
  • 1870-1991

The fonds consists of family papers including genealogical findings and legal documents concerning land owned by his family in the New Westminster District (Whonnock), 1870-1910; correspondence and newsclippings; records gathered or kept by Spilsbury on Spilsbury and Hepburn Ltd. and its successors in radio communications, 1940-1985; records of Queen Charlotte Airlines Ltd., 1946-1955; and a large collection of ca. 6000 photographs (including cartes-de-visite and cabinet cards) negatives, and slides, mainly taken by Spilsbury. The photographs consist mainly of images relating to Savary Island, Vancouver Island and other area of B.C.'s coast where Spilsbury lived and carried out his activities. As well as images of early native and logging sites and towns and topography of B.C., they also provide a record of Spilsbury's paintings. Photographs also depict Spilsbury's English relatives (1870-1906), friends and family at New Westminster, Whonnock and Savary Island, logging operations at Theodosia Arm in the 1930s, aircraft and personnel of Queen Charlotte Airlines, and equipment and personnel of Spilsbury and Hepburn.

Spilsbury, Jim, 1905-

Northwest District Council of Carpenters fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1410
  • Fonds
  • 1922-1982

The fonds consists of minute books for Carpenters' Locals 1735 (1922-1977) and 1081 (1953-1972) and the Piledrivers' Local 1549 (1944-1954). The fonds also includes correspondence, subject files, collective agreements and financial records from the union offices in Prince Rupert and Kitimat/Terrace.

Northwest District Council of Carpenters

Office and Technical Employees' Union, Local 378 fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1415
  • Fonds
  • 1921-1982

The fonds consists of B.C. Electric Office Employees' Association minutes (1921-1955) and office files (1929-1962); OEIU, Local 378 minutes (1955-1964); OTEU, Local 378 minutes (1964 -1980) and office files (1952-1978); office files for the various B.C. Electric and B.C. Hydro affiliates (1962-1978) and miscellaneous subject files. The latest accession consists of records relating to labour arbitrations between the Labour Relations Board of B.C. and Union employees.

Office and Technical Employees' Union. Local 378

International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, Lodge 692 fonds

  • RBSC-ARC-1277
  • Fonds
  • 1919-1980

The fonds consists of regular minutes (1919-1970), conciliation reports from various unions (1943-1974), correspondence (1953-1975) and office files from Southern Interior shops (1957-1980). The fonds also includes IAM Grand Lodge correspondence (1953-1973, incomplete), receipts (1919-1961) and records for Lodges 131 (1943-1961), 109 (1949- 1966) and 867 (1951-1964). Major correspondents include companies such as the Schlage Lock Company, Brunette Machine Works, and Bitco Sales and Service as well as the Metal Industries Association. The fonds also includes agreements, negotiations, and correspondence with many companies whose major customers are part of the mining, forestry and fishing sectors of the British Columbia economy.

International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers. Lodge 692