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Introduction

This is the chronicle of B.C.'s amazing journey to the year 2000 - the story of how ordinary people built an extraordinary province.

In this special millennium series created by Province staff, we've used lively photos and writing to chronicle everyday B.C. We've looked back at life before the Europeans arrived and at the rough-and-tumble world of the 19th century, a time of horses and wagons, of people digging for gold and building communities. And we've provided a decade-by-decade account of the last 100 years.

We spent dozens of hours in archives and searching through Province picture files to find the best, most engaging photographs. We sought out pictures that give a sense of time, a sense of person and place - the enduring, images of everyday history.

It became a shared effort. Province readers sorted family photos and rummaged through dusty attics to send us treasured pictures for this, our community photo album. Our writers researched the history of the province, compiled the important official dates and found the small, telling facts and stories that show us how things really were-from the price of bread to the cost of a Point Grey bungalow in 1925.

The Way We Were was the work of about a dozen talented, hardworking people. The main designer for the series as it appeared in The Province was Frank Myrskog. His format was skillfully adapted for the book by Warren Clark. The chief writer was Damian Inwood, who has written other historical books about B.C. Reporters Mike Roberts, Hardip Johal and Melissa Radler also worked on the project.

Copy editor John Fuller provided indispensable help with the entire package. He had assistance from editors Bill Holden and Will Wigle. Pacific Press Librarian Kate Bird helped us find dozens of terrific photographs from Province files and Debbie Schachter of the Library assisted with our historical research. Province office manager Joan Fader provided help with the photos.

Doug Fischer, a friend and former colleague from the Ottawa Citizen, provided inspiration for the series. We got great co-operation from people at many of the archives in B.C., particularly B.C. Archives, the staff at the Vancouver Public Library Special Collections - City of Vancouver Archives and the Jewish Historical Society of B.C.

Thanks to former Province Editor Michael Cooke who believed in the project enough to give it the money and newspaper space needed to make it work.

The series was enormously successful. We sent almost 340,000 copies of The Province into schools for our Newspaper in Education program. And our readers were delighted with the 11-part series. Many called and asked whether the series could be reproduced in a book. Harbour Publishing agreed to do it and here it is.

We hope you enjoy it.

Ros Guggi
Project Editor, The Province