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Canada Law and justice
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Betty Krawczyk fonds

  • MsC 148
  • Fonds
  • 1970-2013

Fonds consists of the personal records of Betty Krawczyk, an environmentalist and active community member in British Columbia’s Lower Mainland. Spanning from 1970 to 2013, the fonds documents Krawczyk’s court cases, time spent in prison and participation in local community activism groups. The fonds predominately contains correspondence and legal records associated with Krawczyk’s court cases and prison sentences. Other records include certificates, notes, flyers, flags, mission statements, newspaper clippings, envelopes, financial papers, and Krawczyk’s published materials. The fonds has been arranged into eight series: Community activism records, Personal correspondence and related materials, Education, Legal records and related materials, Newspaper clippings and media coverage, Publications, Photographs and related materials, and Diaries.

Krawczyk, Betty Shiver

Legal records and related materials

Series consists of legal reports, court statements, affidavits, legal notices, court speeches, financial papers, request forms, behavioral reports, and government correspondence with Betty Krawczyk. Series also contains research Krawczyk performed while preparing for her court cases. There are numerous copies of diverse legal acts and other court case examples from throughout North America.

Newspaper clippings and media coverage

Series consists of newspaper clippings, articles from magazines, print-outs of online articles, flyers for the Burnaby Correctional Institute for Women Library, pamphlets, newsletters, associated correspondence, and press releases related to Betty Krawczyk’s environmental activities, prison sentence, and court case. Reviews of Betty’s published works are included in the series. Series also contains print copies of Betty’s blog posts. There is coverage of various community activism groups, including aboriginal issues in British Columbia. Some of the records are photocopies and photographs.

Photographs and related materials

Series consists of various photographs collected by Betty Krawczyk. Series includes photographic prints of various sizes that document Krawczyk’s activities in community organizations, protests, prison, and her family. Some photographs have corresponding handwritten notes attached to them.

[British Columbia Security Commission correspondence]

File consists of correspondence and related records of R.M. Corning, Assistant Engineer, Engineering and Construction Service, Blue River with the British Columbia Security Commission (B.C.S.C). Some letters are from the B.C.S.C. to A.W. Brereton, also Assistant Engineer at Blue River. The file includes records pertaining to the following camps: Pyramid, Blue River, Thunder River, Lempriere, Red Sands, Black Spur and Pratt, and the movement of Japanese Canadians to and from the housing centres of Kaslo, Sandon, New Denver, Roseberry, Lemon Creek, Slocan and Greenwood.

Records in the file relate to the administration of road camps and the management of camp workers, and relevant policies, procedures and legislation.

A significant portion of the correspondence and related records concerns requests from camp workers to be transferred to other projects, areas or occupations, including men requesting to be reunited with their wives or other family members; requests from sawmills to hire workers; and the policies surrounding the granting or rejection of these requests. Among these records are a couple of letters in which road camp workers describe their lives and occupations previous to evacuation. A December 1, 1942 document prepared by Corning lists camp workers to be transferred from Black Spur, Thunder River and Red Sands to the housing centres of Slocan, New Denver, and Greenwood, B.C., and includes information such as surname, given name (initial), registration number, locations transferred to and from, as well as the protocol for travel and escort. A January 15, 1943 letter from the B.C.S.C. discusses Ottawa’s opposition to any further hiring of Japanese Canadians for employment in the B.C. lumber industry. Also included in the file are records pertaining to the transfer of Japanese Canadian camp workers from Pyramid camp to Alberta logging camps, the use of “propaganda” to encourage camp workers to go to logging camps in Ontario, and the refusal of some workers to go to logging camps.

Other correspondence and related documents deal with the policies and procedures for granting camp workers leave permits and perceived inefficiencies around the granting of such permits. A January 9, 1943 document lists men in Pyramid Camp seeking fourteen day leave, and includes information such as name, registration number, desired destination, and their relationship to the individuals that they will visit. Several letters discuss the attitudes of particular communities towards Japanese Canadians.

The file also contains correspondence and other documents concerning reportedly unsatisfactory or unruly camp workers. This includes several lists of ‘ineffectives’ to be transferred out of various camps. The lists include information such as name, registration number, age, marital status and destination (eg. Old Man’s Home, hospital, other camps), as well as details regarding the reason for being removed or transferred from camp, such as old age, suspected physical or mental health issues, or refusal to work.

Other records in the file pertain to food supplies, the censorship of Japanese Canadian mail, Workmen’s (Workers’) Compensation Board benefits, workers’ assignment payments, and attempts to get monies owed to Japanese Canadian workers from private companies.