Every picture tells a story at Yukon Archives

C. late 1960, L-R: Marnie Smith (Lucy Jones' daughter), Norman James, William Atlin, Winnie Atlin, ?,?, Patrick Jones. Yukon Archives, Whitehorse Star Ltd. fonds, 82/563, f25, #96

The Yukon Archives First Nations photo identification project aims to improve the identification and description of Indigenous people, places, geographical features, activities and events in images held at Yukon Archives.

Archives staff will hold identification sessions throughout the summer, inviting members of the public to recall their memories, share their knowledge and engage in the identification of hundreds of photographs from Yukon Archives’ collections. Currently, sessions are scheduled to be held at the 2018 Adäka Cultural Festival (June 29 – July 5, 2018) and the Moosehide Gathering (July 26 – 29, 2018). Additional sessions will be announced as they are finalized.

Photographs selected as priorities for identification are highly significant in terms of First Nations content, providing images of people, events and cultural objects. Many of these photographs come from the Whitehorse Star collection and were donated to the Yukon Archives in the 1980s. The 39,799 photos in this collection cover the years 1959-1979. This was a time of tremendous change in Yukon society and these photographs provide an ongoing perspective on the rapid developments taking place at that time.

These photographs present a picture of the many social, economic and political developments involving Yukon First Nations people through the 1950s–1970s. They are used by many writers, film makers, students, residential school researchers and the general public. We all contribute to Yukon’s history, and this project helps to ensure our archival heritage reflects Yukon’s people and communities.

Minister of Tourism and Culture Jeanie Dendys

We view this project as an important part of Yukon Indigenous people validating and bringing recognition to their own historical imagery with their traditional knowledge and stories as the guiding light.

Yukon First Nations Culture and Tourism Association president Marilyn Jensen

Quick Facts 
  • Yukon Archives hopes that members of the public will participate in this project by sharing their knowledge and stories.

  • Information provided will be added to the records in Yukon Archives’ database and made available to the public.

  • The photographs in these collections, including from the Whitehorse Star, comprise a wide variety of newsworthy events in Whitehorse, and in Yukon generally.


Sunny Patch
Cabinet Communications

Linnea Blum
Communications, Tourism and Culture

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