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BC Historical Books

BC Historical Books

Catalogue of the Vancouver contribution, with a short account of Vancouver Island and British Columbia 1862

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London, June, 1862. International Exhibition Commission
it for 1862.
Honorary President.
His Excellency James Douglas, C.B., Governor and Commander-in-
Chief of Vancouver and British Columbia.
Executive Committee in Victoria.
Alfred Waddington, Esq
Mr. Burnaby.
Dr. Wood, R.N.
Mr. Trutch.
Major Foster.
Dr. Tolmie.
Mr. Pidwell.
Rev. Dr. Evans.
Mr. De Cosmos.
J. T. PiDWELii, Esq.
Commissioners appointed in London.
Dr. Lindley, F.R.S.
Captain Mayne, R.N.
A. J. Langley, Esq., M.L.C. P lb m M)
m a
A lofty spar, several tons of coals, large sections of trees
and other bulky contibutions, arising from detention of
the vessel, have not arrived in time for exhibition, the
.specimens exhibited were forwarded by steamship via
Panama. A sample of the Douglas Fir may be seen at
Kew Gardens where it forms a flag-staff 150ft. in height
—a section from one which was 309ffc. in height is in the
British Columbian Court.
Small Samples of Woods.
1—White Pine {Pinus monticola) slab and plank from the mill of E.
Stamp and Co., Alberni.
2—Oak {Quercus g arty ana).    See 59 to 63.
3—A walking cane of the same.
4—Douglas Pine {Abies Douglasii) slab, joist, and flooring from the
mill of E. Stamp and Co., Alberni.
5—Yew {Taxus baccata).
6—Siver Fir {Abies alba glauca).
7—Spruce {Abies alba).
8—Yellow Cypress {Thuja gigantea)*
9—Ditto        ditto        a slab of.
10—Ditto       ditto       a box made of.
11—Ditto        ditto        a polished section of, in frame of yew—[see
also 18, 19].
12—Red Cedar.    See 20.
13—Hemlock {Abies Canadensis).
14—Maple {Acer macrophyllum).
15—Dogwood {Cornus alba)—[superior for gunpowder charcoal].
17—Arbutus {Arbutus procera).
18—Cones and seeds of Thuja gigantea.    See 8 to 11.
19—Bark and twigs of ditto.
20—Cones and seeds of Red Cedar, a tree abundant on the N. Pacific
coast—larger^sections are exhibited by B. Columbia. Gold.
21—A case containing specimens from Frazer River and its tributaries.
A great variety of B. Columbian gold is exhibited by
that colony.
22—A "case containing 4 samples of Wheat, 3 of Barley, 2 of Oats,
2 of Field Peas, and 1 of Timothy seed from farms in
the vicinity of Victoria.
23—A case containing 52 varieties of Kitchen Garden Seeds from the
garden of Mr. Henley, at Clover Point, on the coast,
two miles from Victoria.
Ship Building.
24—Model of a stern wheel steam boat for Frazer River.
25—Model of a side wheel steam boat for ditto.
26—Model of a centre board Schooner for coasting:.
27—Whale oil.
28—Seal oil.
30—Oolachan oil.
29—Dog-fish oil.
Articles made of Native Oak, to shew quality of Wood and
31, 32, 33—Three small kegs. 34, 35—A claret jug and cup.
36—Copper ore from the outcropping of a vein at Barclay Sound.
37, 38—Copper ore from Cowitchin district.
39—Copper ore from Queen Charlotte's Island.
40—Magnetic Iron ore from the north of Vancouver containing 70
per cent, of Iron and a little copper.
41—Coal from the Douglas seam at Nanaimo, 6ft. thick, dip 1ft. in
5ft., 60ft. from the surface.
vi 6
42—Coal from the Newcastle seam at Nanaimo, 6ft. thick, dip 1ft. in
43—Cement stone.
44—Granite (only found in detached boulders).
46—Sand-stone (good for building).
47—Water rounded pebbles of coal from the Douglas seam
48 to 51—Jaspar.
52—Slate, much used by Indians for carving dishes, pipes, figures,
&c. &c.
53—Stems of the weed, Hemp nettle (TJrtica cannabinaj.
54—Leaves of ditto.
55, 56—Indian made hemp from ditto.
57—A net—the string and net made by Indians from ditto.
58—Rope from the nettle hemp.
59—Labrador or Jame's Tea, (the leaves of Ledum Latifolium), used
as a beverage and for smoking—it possesses narcotic
60—Bark of the Yellow Cypress.
61—Rope made of ditto.
62—Mantle made of ditto.
63—Indian hats.
64—Ditto baskets.
65—Indian mats.
66—Ditto Whaling Harpoon.
67 —Distended seal-skin buoy attached by rope to the harpoon when
used in whale killing.
68—Halibut and other Indian fish hooks.
69—Antlers of the Wapiti Deer.
70—A stuffed Buck. 7
71—Indian carved Slate.
72—A case of Vancouver Birds.
73—A Bunch of Barley raised from one grain.
74—Bunch of Timothy grass 5ft. 8in. in height.
75—Kelp, partly prepared by Indians for rope making.
76—A very peculiar Rock Crab, presented by G. Nias, Esq., Victoria.
77—Cypress cones and twigs.
78—White pine ditto.
79—Bricks of Victoria clay.
80—A case containing a sample of wool.
81—Masks worn by the natives at their festivals.
82—Salt from the saline spring at Nanaimo.
83—A map shewing the various routes.
84—A map of Vancouver and B. Columbia. (The most correct map
of Vancouver and southern part of B. Columbia, drawn
by E. J. Powell, Hydrographic Office, Admiralty, is
exhibited in the B. Columbian department.
84a—A design for a building in Yates Street, by Messrs. Wright and
'Sanders, Architects, Victoria.
85—Portrait of His Excellency, Gov. James Douglas, C.B.
86—Portrait of W. A. G. Young, R.N., Acting Colonial Secretary.
87—Enlarged and untouched portrait of a lady.
88, 89—Portraits of Indians.
90—Panoramic View of Victoria from Hospital Point.
91—Shops in Victoria.
92—A Suburban Residence of the most popular  description—cost,
about £400,
3&jj*»&gft£™£i&£ti&k» <i.2J^**'*^±£K3i-*.?-i*ste *£*;
■mmmm* 8
93—Portraits and Views on patent leather. [On this material they
are finished in a few minutes after exposure to the
94—A Fire-engine House.
95—The Town Prison.
96—Hudson Bay Company's Old Warehouses [now removed].
97, 98, 99—Frames containing nine faithful water colour sketches-of
Victoria and its vicinity.
100—A frame containing preserved wild flowers and fern leaves from
Fernwood (about three miles from Victoria^.
101—Beef.     102—Pork,     103—Venison.    104—Concentrated Soup.
105—Sardines.        106—Anchovies.
107—Apples. 108—Cherries. 109—Peas. - 110—Cranberries.
111—Cranberry Jam.
112—Carrots. 113—Peas. 114—Turnips. 115—Tomatoes.
116—Mushrooms. 117—Red Cabbage. 118—French
Beans. 119—White Beans. 120—Gherkins.
122—Smoked Salmon.        123—Halibut. VANCOUVER,
Is an Island situate off the north-west coast of North America,
between 48<> and 51° N. Lat., and 123° and 129° W. Long.
Length, 275 miles—Breadth, 25 to 75 miles.
Superficial area, about 16,000 square miles.
Harbours numerous—that of Esquimalt the most important, and is
a magnificent one in all respects—no good harbour for 800 miles south
of Vancouver.
MOUNTAINS, a chain near the coast and covered with pine forests
through its whole length, highest about 2000 feet.
Interior, varied with fertile plains, lakes and streams (generally
small), grass or fern covered plains, rocky ground, and park-like oak-
Rivers—none navigable, but deep arms of the sea indent the coast,
these vary from 50 to 120 miles in length, and are from 1 to 5 miles
wide.    Roads to the interior have been commenced this year.
Proximate population—
White Males     5000
White Females            700
Coloured People           500
Indians 10,000 to 15,000
The Aborigines are submissive, peaceable and useful—they fish, trap,
carry, boat and work for the Whites, when so incline^. They are
divided into small tribes jealous of each other, and their villages are
on the coast, fish and potatoes being their staple food.
Soil—rich in places but generally light, the latter is productive
of fair crops.
CLIMATE—very similar to that of England, a little warmer in
the summer, and a little wetter in the winter—much less fog—exceedingly salubrious—usual length of winter, from two to three months,
snow seldom remains a week. Thermometer rarely above 80° in summer—the nights are always cool—5 degrees above zero has been
known, but the mercury seldom falls below 15 degrees above zero
during the five or ten cold days of winter. On the whole, the climate
is more salubrious, invigorating and agi*eeable than that of England.
DISEASES—None peculiar to the country—epidemics, seldom and
mild—small-pox has been confined to Indians.
AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTS—all such cereals, fruits, vegetables and roots  as thrive in England.    Wheat sown in October,
:£fc e"'M^Li? ',.. W&6-'t'A,i.a/-i>\ (    2    )
February and March yields 36 bushels to the acre, average weight
64 lbs. Barley, Oats and Peas apwn in February and March—Barley,
56 bush., weight, 54 lbs.—Oats, 50 bush., weight, 40 lbs. Harvest in
July and August. Potatoes very superior—have been known to yield
600 bush., and Oats, 72 bush, an acre. A Fruit Orchard matures in
three years. Turnips of 50 lbs., Cabbages of 60 lbs,, Pumpkins of
150 lbs weight, and other vegetables proportionally large are produced ;
Tomatoes, Melons, Cucumbers and Maize come to perfection in the
open air.
MINERALS—interior but slightly explored—found, gold, silver
with arsenic, rich copper and iron ore, coal abundant near the surface,
excellent sand stone, plumbago, lime stone, marble white and black in
blocks of any size, cement stone and roofing slate. The coal of Na-
naimo is similar to New castle. Extensively used for steam, house and
gas purposes; it is the best found on that coast, and its deposit is
considered inexhaustible. The coal seams of Nanaimo are the only
ones worked, and they rudely. A little sand stone and lime stone are
used for local buildings. Copper Mining Companies are being formed.
Magnetic Iron ore containing 60 to 70 per cent, of metal, with a small
quantity of copper is abundant, and near water, coal and wood—it is
not worked. All iron is imported from England and the States. No
iron has been found on the North Pacific coast but in Vancouver.
Three or four feet of soil around Victoria covers clay suitable for
bricks, below this are beds of white and blue clay equal to any in
England, 20 to 60 feet thick, suitable for the finest crockery; the brick
clay only is worked, from want of capital and skilled labour.
TREES—Douglas, pine, spruce and white pine, silver fir, oak of
three kinds, maple, yellow cypress, willow, hemlock, crab, dogwood,
poplar, alder, yew, juniper, arbutus, cedar, &c. The Douglas pine is
very superior for masts, and the cypress for boats, cabinet and joinery
work, close in grain, light and elastic.
There are but two or three saw-mUls in the colony; to clear the
land, bonfires are made of the magnificent Douglas pine, and the
principal use for the cypress is to burn the Indian dead. Great Britain
annually imports some 20,000,000 cubic feet of pine from Canada. A
small specimen of the Douglas pine may be seen at Kew Gardens, it
forms a flagstaff 150 feet high; 175 to 200 feet is a common height.
The French Government engineer at Cherbourg, M. Serres, says this
wood is superior for its almost complete absence of knots, its resistance
is nearly equal to, and its weight a little less than the best in use, and (    3    )
owing  to its great  size  there is some gain in  weight  and  much
saving of material and cost.
Raspberries, strawberries, gooseberries, elder, myrtle, hawthorn
and roses are indigenous—also several varieties of agreeable berries
and flowering shurbs not generally known in the United Kingdom.
FISH—whales, porpoise, dogfish, salmon, salmon-trout, mountain-
trout, sturgeon, halibut, cod, smelt, haddock, lamprey, herring, rock-
cod, carp, mullet, oolachan, clams, cockles, muscles, periwinkles,
whelks, limpets, cray-fish, crab, prawns, shrimps, oysters.
OILS—The Indians extract hundreds of gallons of oil annually from
the whale, porpoise and dogfish. They master the whale with a harpoon
attached to a distended sealskin. The quantity of salmon is most enormous ; the cod and halibut are abundant; the herring during its season
can be scooped into boats with rakes. The oolachan is a fish very similar
to smelt, it comes in myriads, is excellent food either fresh or preserved,
a gentle heat extracts an oil abundantly, which is far more palatable
and possesses all the medicinal properties of Qod-liver oil; the Indian
use it as butter, and could not live without it, its collection and use
are entirely confined to the natives, arising from its virtues being
unknown to the civilized world. Since the discovery of gold, curing
of fish for export has been neglected. Italian fishermen supply the
daily wants of the Victoria market.
GAME—elk, deer, grouse, snipe, ducks, cranes, partridges, pigeons,
swans, geese, and a variety of wild fowl.
There is a great variety of the feathered tribe, from eagles to
humming-birds, beautiful plumage but little song. Bees have been
introduced and they thrive well.
PRINCIPAL TOWN—Victoria (not incorporated), it is the largest
town north of San Francisco; populatiou, 4000 to 5000, or about
four-fifths of the entire population of the colony. Four years ago it
was a trading post of the Hudson Bay Company, and contained about
250 people.
It would be difficult to over-estimate the service which the presence
of Her Mjesty's vessels has rendered in fostering this now prosperous
town; the Admiral's advice has been most valuable to the local
government, and the officers have been distinguished for their courtesy
and abilities. Judicious employment of the vessels has surveyed the
neighbouring waters:, prevented serious outbreaks of the natives, and
established a perfect moral supremacy of the whites over them; at the
close of 1858 and during 1859, when the greatest gloom prevailed in Vic-
^^^^^^^^^~^~^^^-—^—~^—-^^- (    4    )
toria, hope was buoyed up by their presence, and supplying the wants
of their numerous crews sustained a great number of its tradesmen.
COST OF LIVING—at Hotels, 30s. to 50s. a-week; self-found
and occupying a room or a shanty, 12s. a-week.
PROVISIONS — cheaper on the average than in England. Such
dinners as are given in Paris for 5 francs may be had in Victoria for
4s. 2d.; the ordinary eating houses give soup, fish, a cut from the
joint, vegetables, bread, and pudding or pie, for 2s.
Wholesale prices in February, 1862 — Flour, £2 for 200 lbs ;
Brown Sugar, 5d. to 9d.; Coffee, Is. 2d; Bacon, 8d.; Beans, 4d.;
Potatoes, Id. to l|d.;  Onions, 2^d. per lb.
Horses—Native Scrubs, small and hardy, £10 to £30—Superior
American, £30 to £100,
Oxen, £20 to £30 a yoke. Cows, £6 to £8. Sheep, 16s. to 20s.
Hogs on foot, 2|d. to 4d. per lb.
WAGES—Mechanics, 12s. to 20s. a-day; Labourers, £10 per
month; FemaleDomestics (much wanted) £4 to £6 per month and found.
Advertisements for 1800 men to work on new. roads, are in the
Victoria papers of April 1862.
RENT—from £l to £10 per month, for shanties of two rooms to
cottages of 6 or 8 rooms, with detached kitchens and gardens.
RENT OF SHOPS — from £3 to £30 a month, according to
quality, size and location.
GOVERNMENT PRICE OF LAND is 4s. 2d. per acre payable
in three yearly instalments. If not surveyed it can be pre-empted and
paid for on its survey—244 pre-emptions recorded up to March 1862.
VEGETABLE MARKET—good—not sufficient produced at present
to supply it, much imported.
Agriculture is in a very backward condition from want of settlers;
the floating population is large, but it is composed of foreigners who
return with their earnings to their own countries. Cattle, sheep,
butter, flour, barley, oats, hay, eggs, fruit, poultry, and almost everything eaten, drank, worn or used is imported.
CHURCHES—Church-of-England, Wesleyan Methodist, Catholic,
Congregational, Presbyterian, Hebrew—all self-supporting.
SCHOOLS—excellent, numerous—charges very moderate, some aU
but free ;  from ^l^ffi^ntary to highest branches taught.
{n Victoria t&er^ aj& G$a% ^orks, an Iron Foundry, Machine shops, I    5    )
a public library and reading room, two newspapers, two fire companies, a St. Andrew's society, a Freemasons' lodge, a horticultural
society, a philharmonic society, a gymnasium, billiard rooms, bowling
alley, a jockey club, theatre, and a rifle corps is being formed.
VICTORIA IS A FREE PORT—Vessels of 16 ft. displacement
can enter its harbour, those of greater, discharge at Esquimault. Imports in twelve months, ending July 31st, 1861, were £463,935.
Entered, in six months ending June 30, 1861, 550 vessels, tonnage
53,443, crews 3,523.
Cleared 609 vessels, tonnage 57,398, crews 3,725.
Gold export in 1861, about £500,000—this was the product   of
British Columbia—very little gold has been obtained on Vancouver.
Other exports than to British Columbia, coal, timber, dried fish, furs
and assorted merchandise, probably £75,000 to £100,000.
Imports in nine months ending Sept. 30, 1861, £293,502, of which
£5-3,285 were from England. About five-eighths of the imports would
be provisions, &c, most advantageously supplied by the neighbouring
continent until raised on the island.
Imports during March 1862, were £52,350.
Revenue derived from sale of public lands, a tax on real estate,
licenses to trade, harbour dues, supreme court and police, &c.—
revenue in 1861,  £25,291;   expenditure, £22,912.
A reciprocity treaty with the United States would be a great benefit %
to the people of Vancouver and the continent—the island gives all she
has to offer, and asks for some return from her populous neighbour.
A line of economically worked auxiliary screw steam vessels, of
about 500 tons, to ply between San Francisco and Victoria, likely to
be well supported and subsidized by the colonial government.
Were the Royal Mail Steam Packet Company's boats connected
with a line of north Pacific boats, it would tend much to increase the
business of merchants at home with the colony.
Younsr men beginning life with a small capital may feel as sure of
attaining independence in this colony as at home they are certain to
have a hard struggle merely | to make both ends meet." It must be
evident that either in coal, copper or iron mining, in farming, fish
curing, lumbering, the manufacture of crockery, brewing, or in other
branches of industry, Vancouver offers an almost certain reward. Its
climate is unsurpassed for invigorating qualities, it possesses a highly
productive soil, and  what some may  deem considerations,  it has
r-- "•-"':
fflWfrf'-f (    6    )
most picturesque scenery, and the lakes, streams and woods abound in
sport for the angler or shot. The explorer may ramble without dread
of wild beasts, nor is he annoyed by mosquetoes, those pests of most
new countries.
The Indians can be and are, with a little management, used as
labourers at comparatively low wages—that they are ingenious may be
seen by their works on exhibition. As the colony is at present too
poor to pay the passages of labourers from home (a thing it would
gladly do if able), the natives will occupy their place in a measure.
Other sources of probably great profits not yet examined, the collection
of turpentine which exudes freely from the Douglas pine—obtaining
of sait from numerous strongly impregnated saline springs. Hops grow
luxuriantly, but they are not cultivated, all those consumed are imported from California. Manufacture of iodine from unlimited quantities, of kelp on the coast. The manufacture of hemp from the abundant hemp nettle, its quality is superior to Russian. There is no
tannery, the leather is all imported and the hides exported—as is also
the wool, for there is no loom although the consumption of blankets* is
Cost of reaching Victoria by steam from Southampton or Liverpool, 451., 75?. and 100/.—length of passage, 45 days. By ordinary
sailing vessel, 26 guineas; length of passage, about 150 days.
Columbian Emigration Society, for assisting the emigration of industrious women—apply, by letter, to the Rev. John Garrett, or to
W. C. Sargeaunt, Esq., 54, Charing Cross.
Its comparative shortness is the principal advantage of the Panama
route; as gold mining in the richest districts is only carried on from
June to October, the emigrant should endeavour to arrive during the
spring or early summer.—First class clipper ships are likely to make
the passage in 100 days.
Superficial area about 200,000 square miles, 500 miles long and
400 miles wide (that of England and Wales is 58,320 square miles).
Johnstone Strait, separating on the south west this colony from
Vancouver, resembles a fine river studded with islands which are
covered with trees.
Interior—extremely mountainous, but there are hundreds of thousands of acres   suitable for agriculture  and  grazing—vast forests	
numerous lakes, rapid streams and swamps. (   7   )
Soil—On the prairies, a rich sandy loam. Price of land, 4s. 2d. an
acre, payable when surveyed.
In 1861 the population of Whites was about 6000.
Estimated population during the summer of 1862—
Whites—20,000 men, 500 women.
Chinamen—4000 to 10,000.
Indians—10,000 to 15,000.
There are about 50,000 Chinese in California, who expend about
£2,800,000 per annum in that country—its labouring population are
endeavouring to expel them. The miners of Columbia have been
mostly foreigners who naturally prefer their own country, therefore do
not settle, and this colony has been nearly depopulated every winter,
minus the large amounts of gold obtained by them every summer.
Another great cause for this migration is the scarcity of women—
nothing appears to settle a man so quickly as a wife, and in this
country she is not to be had.
CLIMATE—very salubrious, of various character owing to difference in altitude, latitude, and surrounding peculiarities—mining is
carried on in Cariboo from June to October; when tunneling commences, it may be pursued through the winter ; on the lower Frazer
many places have been worked all through the winter months at
intervals; at Beaver Lake, in Cariboo, last January, mercury in thermometers congealed whilst exposed to the setting sun.
Agricultural products are similar to those of Vancouver, and comr
mand a higher price than in any other country, arising from the
paucity of farmers and the high price of freight, duties, &c..
Prices, at a good farm, 60 miles from Cariboo, in summer of 1861—
Vegetables, 4d.; Hay, 4d.; Barley and Oats, Is. 2d. per lb.—in Cariboo, Vegetables, Is.; Barley, Is. 8d.; Hay, Is.; Oats, 2s.; Butter, 6s.;
Beef, Is. 8d.; Flour and Bacon, 2s. lid. per lb. The nearer to Victoria, the cheaper to live.
Port of entry—New Westminster, 80 miles from Victoria and 15
miles from the mouth of Fraser River—population, 300 to 500—it
contains the custom-house, a bonded warehouse, the mint, treasury,
and a pretty episcopal church; three or four miles higher up the
river there is a village, which is the head quarters of a company of
Royal Engineers under Lieut.-Gov. Col. R. C. Moody, R.E.
A Simple Fact—Gold Digging in this country | a lottery without
blanks and the prizes are indeed splendid.''    Five men in two months
(     8     )
obtained 20,000/. One claim yielded 1,700 oz. (about 5,430/.) in
three days. The average yield of gold to each miner was, last year,
10/. a-week, this far exceeds that of any other gold-mining population.
Extent of the gold fields unknown. It should require but little
consideration to cause any one to believe that want is absent in
these colonies, where labour is so handsomely remunerated, and the
demand for it is almost unlimited, neither does it seem reasonable to
doubt, that with industry and ordinary prudence, a young man may
render himself comparatively independent in a few years.
During the past year there were two routes to Cariboo, both from
New Westminster, distance about 500 miles, and the cost was £8 to
£10, This season there will be two others, each of them apparently
preferable to those used hitherto. One of the new roads commences
at the Bentinck Arm and its length to Alexandria is estimated to be
232 miles—54 river navigation and 178 land travel. On the Be  


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