A Tale of Two Families highlights themes of inclusion and resilience in new Pocket Gallery exhibition


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VICTORIA, BC–At a time when British Columbians face myriad social and economic challenges, a new exhibition in the Royal BC Museum’s Pocket Gallery highlights themes of inclusion and resilience through A Tale of Two Families: Generations of Intercultural Communities and Family Lessons.

Beginning August 5, the free exhibition will reveal the stories of two families—one Chinese Canadian, the other French Canadian—who built lasting legacies in BC from the time of the gold rush era, which began in 1858.

Developed by Dr. Tzu-I Chung, Royal BC Museum Curator of History, the powerful display follows the generational narrative of the Louie-Seto and Guichon families through times of great adversity, including the Great Depression and the Chinese exclusion era, to reveal the transformative power of education, community bonds, hard work, and human kindness.

“This inspired exhibition fills a significant gap in our province’s historical accounts,” says Royal BC Museum CEO Prof. Jack Lohman. “Due to historical exclusion and colonial record-keeping practices, few non-Indigenous families from minority groups can trace their family histories across multiple generations. The exhibition offers a rare record of generational continuity from the gold rush to present day, along with lessons for cultivating diverse and resilient communities.”

Many BC residents are familiar with the name Guichon, as the Hon. Judith Guichon, from BC’s ranching community, served as the 29th Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, from 2012 to 2018. The Louie family is renowned for operating several significant businesses in western Canada, including IGA supermarkets and London Drugs.

A Tale of Two Families, which closes Nov. 2, 2020, perfectly complements the recently launched pop-up exhibition in Victoria’s Fan Tan Alley: Peering into the Past: Celebrating Canada’s Oldest Chinatown. A partnership between the Royal BC Museum, the Victoria Chinatown Museum Society and the Salient Group, the display showcases the extraordinary impact of BC’s Chinese community on local history and beyond.

Access to the Royal BC Museum’s Pocket Gallery, located in Clifford Carl Hall on the main floor, is always free. However, attendance is currently limited by new Covid-19 health and safety requirements such as timed ticketing and physical distancing. Visit https://royalbcmuseum.bc.ca/we-woolly-missed-you for full details.

Helijet is a proud sponsor of the Royal BC Museum Pocket Gallery.


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