Thomas Loh Dance on the afternoon of the Grand Opening, Oct. 14, 2006. Touchstones Nelson Collection

Programming & Events at Touchstones

Online Portal

Friday, September 25th, 2015

On Friday, September 25th Touchstones Nelson launched an online portal into the Society's permanent collection. Providing unprecedented public access to the collection, the online portal can be used by anyone to research more than 5000 artifacts and artworks currently posted online. 

"The online collection portal represents our commitment to making the collection more accessible to the public and to highlight the quality and scope of this significant community asset," commented Touchstones Nelson Executive Director, Leah Best.

Viewable records include an object photograph, a brief description, the date, and the history of the object when available. Portal users can send feedback on individual records to museum staff. "In effect," explained Archivist and Collections Manager, Laura Fortier, "the online portal allows us to open source the information we have on the collection. We understand there's room for improvement and we hope the public will help us in that process."

To access the online portal go to:

The online portal project was made possible with support from the Department of Canadian Heritage Museums Assistance Program and the Columbia Basin Trust.


Captured Power - Hydroelectric Projects from the Stevens Studio Collection Virtual Exhibition Launch

Saturday, September 25 at 1pm

Touchstones Nelson is pleased to announce the launch of its newest online exhibit Captured Power - Hydroelectric Projects from the Stevens Studio Collection.

Captured Power features over 300 never before seen black and white and colour photographs of dams in the Columbia Basin. The images depict the construction, opening ceremonies, and ongoing operations of various West Kootenay power plants and hydroelectric dams, including the Duncan Dam, the Lower Bonnington Dam, the Keenleyside Dam, and the Kootenay Canal.

The Stevens Studio Collection is made up of thousands of photographs in several formats including: negatives, prints, slides, and film. Photographs selected for this project are related to the dams in the West Kootenay region during a period of significant development of hydroelectric infrastructures.

The creation of the site was funded in part by the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre, University of British Columbia, British Columbia History Digitization Program. The exhibit is available the day of the launch at

Please join us for the launch party on September 26th at 1 o'clock to view the digitized images and mark another successful milestone in Touchstones Nelson's photo digitization efforts. 


Family Fair & Fruit Festival

Sunday Sept.27, 12-3pm

By donation

Come celebrate harvest season with us! Inspired by our new exhibition Lost Orchards: A History of Fruit Farming in the West Kootenays, we will be reveling in all things fruit! Harvest rescue will be on site making unpasturized juice. As always, we will have kids art activities happening throughout the gallery spaces. Inspired by the new exhibition Pendulum/Pendula by John Hall and Alexandra Haeseker, children will make mixed media collages. The event is by donations, and half will go to the Food Cupboard.

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