One of the most integral members of the B.C. Historical Society, Anne Yandle, a pillar of the B.C. community for more than fifty years, died of cancer at the Marion Hospice in Vancouver on December 12, 2006. "With her passing,"; says Basil Stuart-Stubbs, former Head UBC Librarian, "even those who knew her best are beginning to discover the astonishing breadth of Anne's interests and activities, and the extent of her contributions to our book community locally, provincially and nationally. Friend and mentor to a multitude, unique and irreplaceable, she was a gem with a thousand facets.";

She was predeceased in 1978 by Philip Yandle who had served as the founding editor of the B.C. Historical News. In 2004, Anne Yandle provided a brief history of the BC Historical Federation's publication, in preparation for its name change to British Columbia History, typically opting not to acknowledge her own extensive role. Anne Yandle remained very active in BC Historical News for almost forty years and served as the book reviews editor until the year in which she died. Her extensive private collection of books has been donated to the University of British Columbia. In 2007, the BC Historical Federation renamed its Best Article Award (of the year) Award in honour of Anne and Philip Yandle, co-founders of the B.C. Historical News.

Anne McMaster (Carson) Yandle was born as Anne Carson near Ballymoney, Northern Ireland, on December 29, 1930. Growing up on a family farm with her two brothers, she learned to read at age four on the knee of her grandfather Carson. After she attended Alexandra College, Dublin and then Trinity College, where she graduated with BA and BCom degrees, she worked in Belfast until 1957. She and a school friend immigrated to Winnipeg, then she continued west to Vancouver. She worked as a library assistant for the Vancouver Public Library before leaving to attend McGill University's School of Library Science in 1960. Following her graduation with a BLS degree in 1961, she and three of her classmates were hired by the University of British Columbia Library. She married Philip A. Yandle in 1965.

According to Frances Woodward, "Anne Yandle worked in the Special Collections Division, where Basil Stuart-Stubbs confidently left her in charge when he became University Librarian. She became responsible for the development of its many fine collections, including British Columbia and Canadian history, early children's literature, and for encouraging her colleagues to build the manuscript collections, University Archives, and the historical maps and cartographic archives. She was one of the first librarians to see the value of ephemera and alternative literature while establishing ongoing working relationships with leading book dealers around the world, as well as antiquarian and new book dealers in British Columbia.

"On her sabbatical year, she spent six months working with dealers in England, and six months at the Alexander Turnbull Library in Wellington, New Zealand. She was one of the founding members of the Special Collections Interest Group of the Canadian Library Association, and served as President of the Council of the Bibliographical Society of Canada. Well-known in the Irish community in Vancouver, she frequently provided a home-away-from-home for visitors and new residents. When it became known that a special reproduction of the Book of Kells was to be undertaken, the Irish in Vancouver gathered money to buy a copy for Special Collections, and had a special stand built to display the book.

"When she took early retirement in December, 1991, many people from the Library, SLAIS, the Irish community in Vancouver, book dealers and others from off-campus were in attendance. She was active in her retirement in the Alcuin Society, the Bibliographical Society of Canada, the Historical Federation of British Columbia and the Friends of Simon Fraser University Library.";

Anne Yandle also operated her own antiquarian and travel book business, Marco Polo Books, which she co-founded in 1989. She maintained an extensive inventory of both common and hard-to-find titles in the basement of her home. For many years she worked on compiling an extensive list of all fiction from British Columbia, a largely thankless task, and was hoping to see it published for public benefit. "What a loss her death is for BC libraries,"; said Paul Whitney, head of the Vancouver Public Library. "She was a genius at ferreting out valuable B.C. local histories which exist outside the mainstream of book distribution. Academic and public library collections are more inclusive and richer as a result of her efforts. I am also reminded that she made an excellent marmalade.";

-- With thanks to Frances Woodward

Alan Twigg [BCBW 2007] "Publishing"