The Creative Culture Guide
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Cortes Museum & Archives Society

Local sustainable and enlightened history keeping organization.

The Cortes Island Museum & Archives is a place to reflect on the rich social and natural history of Cortes Island.

The Cortes Island Museum building began life in 1946 as a family store at the head of Manson’s Landing dock. A nearby mill in the lagoon supplied the lumber. When this area became a provincial park in 1974, the store was allowed to continue operating until 1991.

May Ellingsen, a granddaughter of Mike Manson, dreamed of having a museum on Cortes and in the late 1920s she began diligently collecting photographs, stories and papers from early homesteader families.

Wheels were placed under the old store to move it up the hill and volunteers constructed a foundation, renovated inside the building and created a porch and new entrance. A fenced garden of heritage plants was begun around two sides of the building.

In 1998 the Museum hosted the first exhibit in recognition of the International Year of the Oceans