Preserving history

When living through history, one often reflects on what has come before this moment.

This week's editorial.

When living through history, one often reflects on what has come before this moment.

The COVID-19 pandemic is a moment that, historically, will impact our society and world for years to come in ways we don’t even know yet. Doubtless, in 10 years our children and grandchildren will learn about it all neatly laid out in a history textbook.

That’s the future. For now, though, the 100 Mile Free Press editorial team has a desire to record the history of the South Cariboo for future generations. By writing down the stories and facts of what makes us who we are today we might give our descendants something to look back on to know how 100 Mile House and the surrounding communities came to be.

Looking back through the newspaper archives every week shows just how much the community has changed over the years. Reading old stories both reveals issues long forgotten and others that are still with us to this day. While our collection of old newspapers offers us a gateway into the past, it’s not infallible. When the Free Press’ old office burned to the ground in the 1980s we lost nearly all of our records from the ‘60 and ‘70s.

Plus, we’ve only been active in the community since the 1960s – so our records are short. The recent deaths of two of our Canim Lake Band Elders, whose people have been here for centuries, makes it even more critical to preserve and record our region’s history. While written records are great, getting the information from our Indigenous knowledge keepers, as well as people like the late Al Jones, president of Lone Butte Historical Association, is key to ensure the South Cariboo doesn’t forget its own story.

Over the course of 2021, the Free Press intends to begin writing dedicated stories on the history and people of the South Cariboo in an ongoing historical column.

Any tips or introductions to those who know the history of the area would be welcomed and appreciated, as are any historical photographs or stories. The Free Press’s editorial team can be contacted by calling 250-395-2219 or by emailing

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