The Mathew Ko colour films: Victoria’s Chinatown and region, c.1939-c.1950

The amateur films of Mathew Ko date from the late 1930s to early 1950s and are examples of the popular home movie genre. As historical documents, Ko’s films are exceptional: in their record of family and community life in Victoria and the region during this time, for the number of events represented in each film, and for the use of colour film stock. Though they contain no sound tracks, his films vividly document significant social, cultural and political events in Chinatown and other areas of downtown Victoria and surrounding neighborhoods, Vancouver Island, the City of Vancouver and the Lower Mainland. In 2016, UVic Libraries organized the digitization of the films by Preservation Technologies' The Media Preserve. Prior to digitization, the films were assessed for shrinkage and original splices were repaired; the digitized film runs at 18 fps (frames per second). View the films: