Archives & Library

The Archives and Library of the Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies was established in 1966 to serve the unique mountain regions of western Canada, the area bounded by the 49th Parallel on the south, the Peace River on the north, the Front Ranges on the east and the Columbia Mountains on the west.

Major focuses of the collection include: family and personal life; exploration, discovery and travel; sport, recreation and leisure; tourism; arts and culture; corporate and organizational history; and community life. Holdings include textual records, photographs, moving images and sound recordings in over 670 fonds and collections as well as library materials incorporating 4,400 books, 2,300 pamphlets, 125 journal collections, 1,000 maps, newspaper clippings, microforms and various audiovisual and electronic resources.

The Archives and Library is also custodian of the Luxton Family fonds which is maintained on behalf of the Eleanor Luxton Historical Foundation.

While the Archives and Library ceased to be custodian of the Alpine Club of Canada’s Library in 2010, a subset of approximately 400 volumes remains at the Whyte Museum on a temporary basis until further notice. The Alpine Club of Canada archival fonds is not affected by the custodial change, and continues to be part of the Whyte Museum’s archival collections.

Reference Service

Basic reference service is provided to clients who live outside of the Banff area (up to a maximum ½ hour). Research beyond this time limit requires that you visit the archives in person. Alternatively, reference staff can provide you with a listing of local independent researchers who can provide this service for a fee.

Please include your full postal address and telephone number with your reference request. To ensure that your e-mail is not discarded as spam, please include a subject line that is specific to your request.

Telephone: 403-762-2291 ext. 335
Fax: 403-762-2339
Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies Archives and Library
Box 160, Banff, AB Canada T1L 1A3

Fonds and Collections:

The archival term “fonds” is the whole of the records accumulated by an individual, institution, or organization in the course of that creator’s activities or functions. A “collection” is an artificial accumulation of records brought together on the basis of some common characteristic.