The Legislative Library
The Legislative Library occupies its own wing of the Parliament Buildings. It was an addition to the original design that was
completed in 1915.
The first Legislative Library was founded in 1863 to serve the Legislative Council of the
Colony of Vancouver Island. The early collection included material related to the history of British Columbia that later became the British Columbia Archives. By 1893, R.E. Gosnell had been appointed the first permanent librarian.
The one room previously used for the Legislative Library in the early Parliament Buildings was vastly inadequate for an institution intended to both serve the Legislative Assembly and all British Columbians and to house the many valuable historical documents and artifacts of the province.
Duke of Connaught, the Governor General of Canada, laid the foundation stone for the Legislative Library's wing in 1912, a time of relative economic prosperity in B.C. It was praised as the first “modern” building designed specifically to house a library in any of the provinces of Canada.
The Legislative Library continues to provide reference and research services to the MLAs, their research staff, and Assembly staff. It no longer houses the British Columbia Archives, which moved to its own building in 1970.
The Legislative Library maintains a core collection of materials on political science, parliamentary procedure, law, public administration, economics, and Canadian history. It also serves as the official depository for British Columbia government publications and has extensive holdings of Canadian federal and provincial publications.
For more information on the services offered by the Legislative Library, visit the
Legislative Library website.