Ladysmith students on a recent field trip to the Ladysmith’s Maritime Museum

Ladysmith students on a recent field trip to the Ladysmith’s Maritime Museum

Ladysmith & District Historical Society looking to the future

We can digitize anything now and you can have your photos back

Images of Ladysmith’s past are being lost ‘every day’ Ed Nicholson of the Ladysmith & District Historical Society told town council Monday, Feb. 15.

He urged people in the community to bring old family photos, which may contain valuable information about Ladysmith’s past, to the historical society so they can be digitized.

“We can digitize anything now and you can have your photos back,” he said.

He said historical photos are increasingly being lost as older residents of Ladysmith pass away, and as people clean out basements and attics.

That was one of the observations Nicholson made during a Heritage Week presentation to council, in which he outlined the LDHS’s programs and how they are meeting ‘strategic plan goals’ of Ladysmith.

Nicholson listed priorities of the LDHS as:

• Collaboration;

• Using the past to plan for the future;

• Increased use of information technology;

• Development of human and physical resources;

• Networking with schools and First Nations.

“That’s pretty exciting for a former teacher like myself,” he said.

He invited councillors to visit the Historical Society’s newly updated and redesigned web site, located at ladysmithhistoricalsociety.ca as an example of the society’s use of technology.

One of the functions at the site is the ability for visitors to search for and download historical photos. As a test the Chronicle searched for a photo of Nicholson’s grandfather Daniel Nicholson, who was elected the second mayor of the town in 1906.

The photo, titled Mayor Nicholson on First Avenue (above), was looked up on the web site and downloaded in a matter of minutes.

Another LDHS service Nicholson noted was its digitized copies of the Ladysmith Chronicle, which have been collected in the society’s archives, located behind Tim Horton’s, off First Avenue.

Nicholson noted that all the work and services of the LDHS is carried out by volunteers, who have contributed more than 6,000 hours. “That’s all volunteer time that’s done on behalf of the community basically, because these people love their town.”