Fonds 25 - Anthony Carter fonds

Native children: Steve Robinson's daughter at Klemtu Paul Hopkins, Kynoc [Nuxalk] Paul Hopkins, Kynoc [Nuxalk] Paul Hopkins, Kynoc [Nuxalk] Tom Brown, Kitisug Freeman, Kynoc & Bella Bella [Heiltsuk] North Coast: Klemtu; Seine Mendine [scuba diver] North Coast: Klemtu; Seine Mendine [fishing boat] North Coast: Klemtu; Seine Mendine [fishing boat] North Coast: [scenery], Tom Brown's cannon, Nowish Cove, Finlayson Channel, Klemtu, Myers Pa... North Coast: [scenery], Tom Brown's cannon, Nowish Cove, Finlayson Channel, Klemtu, Myers Pa... North Coast: [scenery], Tom Brown's cannon, Nowish Cove, Finlayson Channel, Klemtu, Myers Pa... North Coast: [scenery], Tom Brown's cannon, Nowish Cove, Finlayson Channel, Klemtu, Myers Pa... North Coast: [scenery], Tom Brown's cannon, Nowish Cove, Finlayson Channel, Klemtu, Myers Pa... North Coast: [scenery], Tom Brown's cannon, Nowish Cove, Finlayson Channel, Klemtu, Myers Pa... North Coast: [scenery], Tom Brown's cannon, Nowish Cove, Finlayson Channel, Klemtu, Myers Pa... North Coast [secenery], Tom Brown's cannon North Coast: [scenery], Tom Brown's cannon North Coast: [scenery], Tom Brown's cannon North Coast: [scenery], Tom Brown's cannon, Nowish Cove, Finlayson Channel, Klemtu, Myers Pa...
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Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Anthony Carter fonds

General material designation

  • Graphic material

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Title statements of responsibility

Title notes

  • Source of title proper: Title is based on the provenance of the fonds.

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Edition area

Edition statement

Edition statement of responsibility

Class of material specific details area

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area


  • [194-]-[197-], predominant 1966-1979 (Creation)
    Anthony Carter

Physical description area

Physical description

716 photographs : col. transparencies ; 10 x 13 cm or smaller
82 photographs : col. negatives ; 10 x 13 cm or smaller
875 photographs : b&w negatives ; 13 x 18 cm or smaller
85 photographs : col. slides ; 6 x 6 cm or smaller
27 prints : col. ; 13 x 13 or smaller
97 prints : b&w ; 10 x 13 or smaller

Publisher's series area

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Archival description area

Name of creator

(1920 - 1992)

Biographical history

Anthony Lawrence Carter, the late author, publisher and photo-journalist, was born on October 22, 1920 in Somerset, England. He and his family emigrated to Wallaceburg, Saskatchewan in 1926 and later moved to Goodsoil, Saskatchewan . The Carter family leased an acre on Lac des Isles where they farmed for a living. In 1938, Carter purchased his first camera and learned how to develop his own pictures using an old developer and instructions from a Kodak booklet. In 1939, he applied to the Royal Canadian Air Force and was accepted a year later. He continued with the RCAF and the British Institute of Sciences and Engineering until he was discharged in 1945. Following his time in the Air Force, Carter held his first public exhibit in Ontario of images he had taken across Canada. He also spent time at the First Nations village in Fort Rupert where he began building a collection of his own photographs of the community. In 1948, Carter began working for MacKenzie Barge & Derrick as a shipwright where he took his first commercial photograph and began selling prints widely. In 1951, he decided to go into child photography, which he did exclusively for three years. Carter was also an active photo-journalist in the marine and logging fields, which led to his contributions to journals such as Western Fisheries, Canadian Truck Logger and The British Motor Journal.

While photography was Carter’s main source of income during the 1950s, he also spent his summers fishing to make a living. Around 1960, Carter purchased a 60 foot fish packer, the Wamega. He was based in Klemtu at this time and collected the history and legends of the Kynoc and Kit-is-tu people, which appeared in his first book. Carter’s publications, which include This is Haida (1969), Somewhere Between (1968), Wamega (1960s), and Abundant Rivers (1972), were directly inspired by First Nations people and their culture. Carter was a poet and accompanied his photos with his own text. Additionally, he undertook all aspects of designing his books for publication. Carter also worked with the National Museum of Ethnology in Osaka, Japan to develop its Northwest Coast collection, and was a consultant to the Museum of Anthropology in Vancouver, B.C.

Custodial history

Between the time of Carter's death in 1992 and when the fonds was transferred to the archives in 1993 Minn Sjolseth, Carter's widow, was the custodian of the materials. It is possible there were additional custodians, suggested by divergent handwriting on the material.

Scope and content

The fonds consists of photographs, transparencies, negatives, prints and slides. Contents of the fonds primarily reflect First Nations cultures in British Columbia between 1960 and 1980, including the Haida, Coast Salish (formerly Burrard Reserve), Kwakiutl (Kwakwaka'wakw), Gitsegukla and Ans'pa yaxw (Kispiox) nations. Notable First Nations personalities and artists documented include Chief Dan George, Gerry Marks, Henry Hunt and Norman Tait. Contents also include: B.C. landscapes such as Gwayasdums (Gilford Island), Klemtu, Mamalilikulla and Uchucklesaht; First Nations children; First Nations exhibits, totem poles and installations at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver and for the National Museum of Ethnology in Osaka, Japan. The materials are arranged in series according to Carter's published works which focus on specific localities, communities, individuals and subject matter.

Notes area

Physical condition

Some transparencies and negatives are exhibiting signs of fading and/or deterioration

Immediate source of acquisition

Donated by Minn Sjolseth, Anthony Carter's widow, 1993


At the time of accessioning, the arrangement of the fonds was generally indiscernible; it is possible there were multiple intervening hands prior to its arrival at the archives. Thus, the archivist has imposed a new order which better reflects the functions of the creator.

The contents arrived in seven binders which were rehoused in archival holdings at the time of accessioning. Photographs had been generally grouped according to subject matter (e.g., location, community members, event), with a Xeroxed copy of the original housing (e.g., envelope, folder) stapled to each grouping. The new (intellectual and physical) order imposed by the archivist primarily follows these groupings and chronology.

The original order of the fonds was documented and can be found along with the finding aid in both physical and electronic formats.

Language of material

Script of material

Location of originals

Physical locations are listed in each item record, in the format of Box-File-Group.

Availability of other formats

A disc of 5 scanned images from this fonds is available in temp CD storage. Images are of Chief Dan George (1971), Mary Peters (Mely) (1967), Mt. Currie (1971), R. Davidson pole raising (1969), and Dominic Charlie (1967).

Restrictions on access

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Records in the fonds can be reproduced for educational purposes only. Consult Archivist for details.

Finding aids

Inventory with file list and documentation of original order available

Associated materials

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No further accruals are expected

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Dates of creation, revision and deletion

July-August 2015, Description created and revised by Alison Weck

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