Together we can make a difference

Heritage Abbotsford Society leads various programs and activities aimed to engage and promote the City’s history and heritage to visitors and local residents of all ages, including the young and the young at heart.

Heritage Abbotsford Society and Trethewey House Heritage Site are OPEN to the public during our regular hours. We require visitors to observe the following:

  • Masks are required for entry into Trethewey House, the Heritage Gallery, or the Heritage Abbotsford office space.
  • For the safety of our staff and the general public we request that our visitors be fully vaccinated before visiting.
  • Practice physical distancing and good hand hygiene.
  • Anyone displaying symptoms of COVID-19, such as a persistent cough and/or fever, will not be permitted on the premises. If you or any of your household are sick please stay home.
  • Visitors who have travelled outside of Canada must observe a minimum 14-day self-isolation period before being permitted to the heritage site.
  • Failure to observe the above risks the closure of our facility. Those who fail to do so will be asked to leave the premises.

Our new permanent exhibit,

"The River People and the Land: Living within S’ólh Téméxw"

is now open for drop-in visits at our Heritage Gallery at Trethewey House. 

“We are Stó:lō. We are the river people. We have lived with this land for as long as we can remember. The land that you call the Fraser Valley, the Lower Mainland, the Fraser Canyon, we call home. We moved freely across this land, from mountain to mountain, and from river to river. For thousands of years, this land was our family; this land was our home.”

The Stó:lō people live along the Fraser River and have a rich history with the land. The River People and the Land: Living within S’ólh Téméxw exhibit showcases the relationship between people, the land, and what is essential for the survival of human beings. But what would you do without your land, your home?

The exhibit details about how the Stó:lō have been impacted by European colonization. The loss of land by way of the reservation system has negatively affected the Stó:lō. Within this exhibit, contemporary Stó:lō members are looking to move forward and reclaim what is rightfully theirs.

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The Trethewey House Virtual Tour is now online!

Heritage Abbotsford Society

The mission of the Heritage Abbotsford Society is to collect, record, preserve and share the stories of Abbotsford.

Browse our website to learn about local history and what happens at Trethewey House Heritage Site.

We are a registered non-profit society that depends on government grants, private donations and fund-raising efforts to provide its services to the people of Abbotsford.

 

Take a trip through time and experience Abbotsford's history through our cities Heritage Sites, Walking Tours and Education Programs

Trethewey House tours
Walking tours of Mill Lake and Matsqui Village
Storytime on the Porch speaker series
Curator Talks
Various special events for adults, children and families

Our News & Events

The Heritage Abbotsford Society hosts events year round. We invite you to reserve your tickets and join us as we create memories.

Faded image of the brown and yellow craftsman-style Trethewey House with the words "We're Hiring!" over top in Heritage Abbotsford Red
Hiring
HAS Communications

Research Assistant (SASET)

Position Title: Virtual Program Facilitator
Reports to: Collections Manager
Position Type: 7 hours/day, 5 days/week
Duration of Position: May 24th through August 20th, 2021.
Salary: $17.60/hr

Read More »
Press Releases
HAS Communications

Call for Candidates: HERITAGE ABBOTSFORD SOCIETY Board of Directors and Committee/Members at Large

Heritage Abbotsford is a charitable organization whose mission is to collect, record, preserve and share the stories of Abbotsford. Our Heritage Interpretive Program creates a lasting impression on several thousand individuals each year. As the Society’s programs enters its 54th year of delivery, the Board of Directors are hoping to recruit individuals to join the Board of Directors or join a Committee as a Member at Large.

Read More »
Faded image of Trethewey House with "Heritage Abbotsford AGM 2022".
Press Releases
HAS Communications

Notice of AGM

The Annual General Meeting of the Heritage Abbotsford Society will be held on Wednesday, March 16th, 2022 at 6:30 PM via Zoom.

Read More »
View of the drained lake bed that is now Sumas Prairie
Education
HAS Communications

Sumas Lake: A Quick Look at a Long History

Sumas Lake was and is very important to the Stó:lō peoples, especially the Semá:th. For them, the lake was a source of food, a place to live, a watery highway, and a place which featured in oral histories. Fish and waterfowl were abundant and provided an easy and varied source of food. The lake was large, approximately 10,000 acres, but during the spring freshet (May to July), it often expanded to three times that size.

Read More »

small efforts make big change

Capturing Our History

Our Collection Of Historical Artifacts and Photos

Trethewey House Heritage Site

Trethewey House was built in 1919 for B.C. lumber baron Joseph Ogle “J.O.” Trethewey. President of the Abbotsford Lumber Company, J.O. was responsible for leadership of the company during the company’s boom years in the 1920s.

The House is built in an “arts and crafts” style and is constructed using primarily local materials, making it distinct from other buildings of similar age within the City of Abbotsford. Trethewey House contains old-growth Abbotsford fir lumber (processed at the Trethewey mill on Mill Lake), and bricks and tile crafted from clay mined on Sumas Mountain (processed at Clayburn Village, B.C.’s first company town), representing two of Abbotsford’s most important early industries.

Trethewey House has undergone extensive restoration work and has been restored to circa 1925 by the Heritage Abbotsford Society, with the help of local families and assistance from the Province of British Columbia through British Columbia Arts Council and Direct Access Gaming. Trethewey House was designated a municipal heritage site in 1983.

To Make A Long Story Short

Built Heritage - A Brief History of the Turner House

To find out about the history of Turner House and its builder, George Turner, the reader must take a step back in time to the mid-1850s. At the beginning of that decade, what we now know as British Columbia was still not under formal colonial authority, but on August 2, 1858, the Colonial Office finally established the Colony of British Columbia as a Crown Colony. The Colonial Office, under Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton, wanted to establish British rule and order in the new colony, and sent Richard Clement Moody, the head of the Royal Engineers, Columbia Detachment, to accomplish this goal. When Moody arrived in BC, in December of 1858, he was sworn in as the first Lieutenant-Governor of British Columbia and appointed Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works for British Columbia.

more information

To learn more about our location, hours of operations, booking a tour and special events, please review our FAQ down below. 

2313 Ware Street, Abbotsford, BC V2S3C6. Parking can be accessed at the side of the Heritage Site off of Alta Avenue.

604-853-0313

Office (Closed between 12 – 1 PM for lunch)
Monday: 9 – 5 pm
Tuesday: 9 – 5 pm
Wednesday: 9 – 5 pm
Thursday: 9 – 5 pm
Friday: 9 – 5 pm
Saturday & Sunday: Closed

Drop in tours (Trethewey House and Heritage Gallery)

Monday: 1 – 4 pm
Tuesday: 1 – 4 pm
Wednesday: 1 – 4 pm
Thursday: 1 – 4 pm
Friday: 1 – 4 pm
Saturday & Sunday: Closed

*Interested in taking a tour with a group of 5+ individuals? For more information about tours, please consult our tours page.

Do you have a few hours a week or month you would like to share?

Are you looking for work experience?

Do you want to learn & share Abbotsford’s history?

At Trethewey House Heritage Site, volunteers are the backbone of what we do. As a small local non-profit, we rely heavily on the support of the community to help with programming, special events, and museum operations. Learn more about getting started on our volunteer application.

Join the Heritage Abbotsford Society and become an active force in the preservation and perpetuation of Abbotsford’s history, heritage, and culture. Your membership and financial support is crucial to the activities of the Society and goes directly to educating and connecting individuals with the history of the City.

You can learn more about our membership on our membership page.

Field trips to Trethewey House Heritage Site are approximately 90 minutes long and consists of two 45-minute programs (please note: the Trainwhistles and Schoolbells Outreach Program is not offered on site and is not available during field trips).

Looking for additional information about our school programs or how your program will work at Trethewey House Heritage Site? Visit Trethewey House’s tours and programs page.

To learn more about the Heritage Abbotsford Walking Tours, visit our outreach, education, & tours page.

Still have questions? Please contact our Programs Manager at communications@heritageabbotsford.ca.