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British Columbia Historical Association Report and Proceedings 1926

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 a a a
British Columbia Historical Association
Organized October 31. 192,
Affiliated with the Canadian Historical Association
Third Annual
Report and Proceedings m
Help kings that'go:
re the gleaners after time."
For the Year ended
m British Columbia Historical Association
(Organized October 31, 1922)
Affiliated with the Canadian Historical Association
Third Annual
Report and Proceedings
" Help us to save the things that go;
We are the gleaners after time."
—Austin Dobson
For the Year ended November 20,
List of Officers „     5
Introduction.    By the Editor. „.„ _    7
Secretary's   Report.   _   8
Unveiling of Monuments erected by Historic Sites and Monuments Board _ 10
Sir Alexander Mackenzie.   By Judge F. W. Howay  16
Speech at Yale.   By Judge Murphy  19
Annual Presidential Address.   By Judge F. W. Howay _  22
Pacific Station and Esquimalt Navat Establishment.   By Major F. V. Longstaff  29
The Colonial Postal Service of Vancouver Island and British Columbia.
By A.  Stanley  Deaville    45
Notes and Reviews  _ „  59
His Honour Lieutenant-Governor W. C. Nichol.
Hon. President:
The Hon. J. D. MacLean.
Judge F. W. Howay.
First Vice-President: Second Vice-President:
Beaumont Boggs. V. L. Denton.
Secretary-Treasurer: Recording Secretary:
John Forsyth. Alma Russell.
Professor W. N. Sage, University of British Columbia.
Mrs. Bullen. Major F   V. Longstaff.
Mrs. Cree. R. L. Reid, K.C.
Rev. J. C. Goodfellow. Judge Robertson.
B. G. Hamilton. Prof. W. N. Sage.
John Hosie. Dr. M. S. Wade.
C. C. Pemberton.
Standing Committees:
Editorial    Professor W.  N.  Sage,  Convener.
Genealogical  Mrs. E. C. Hart, Convener.
Educational    Mr. V. L. Denton, Convener.
Marine and Shipping  Major F. V. Longstaff, F.R.G.S., Convener.
Indians Major F. V. Longstaff, F.R.G.S., Convener.
Victoria and District Landmarks  Mr. C. C. Pemberton, Convener.
All correspondence should be addressed to the Secretary at the
Provincial Library and Archives, Victoria, B.C. BRITISH   COLUMBIA   HISTORICAL   ASSOCIATION.
Annual Report and Proceedings.
By the Editor.
INT PRESENTING this the Third Annual Report to the members of the British
Columbia Historical Association, it is again a great pleasure to be able to chronicle
a very successful year. Several new members have joined the Association and
interest in the early history of the Province is being steadily stimulated.
Members of the Association were present at the unveiling during the past year of
no less than five monuments erected by the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of-
Canada in the Province of British Columbia. These ceremonies were held at Fort
Langley on May 2; at Prospect Point, Stanley Park, Vancouver, on May 7; at Prince
George, June 13; at Yale on June 27; and at Gonzales Hill, Victoria, on November 19..
In addition, our President, His Honour Judge Howay, as Western representative on
the Historic Sites and Monuments Board, unveiled tablets in Saskatchewan marking
the sites of the battlefields of the North West Rebellion of 1885.
The President and the Editor represented our Society at the annual meeting of
the Canadian Historical Association held at Montreal on May 21 to 23. Several papers
on Western Canadian history were presented, including one by the Editor on "Sir
James Douglas, Fur Trader and Governor." At these meetings it was decided that, if
possible, an arrangement should be made whereby members of the Canadian Historical
Association should be entitled to receive copies of the Canadian Historical Review.
These arrangements have since been completed and it is to be hoped that members of
the British Columbia Historical Association will avail themselves of this opportunity
to join the Canadian Historical Association and to receive the Review.
For the first time in a number of years the Pacific Coast Branch of the American
Historical Association met at Seattle. At these meetings, held on November 27 and 28
at the University of Washington, His Honour Judge Howay and Professors Sage and
Soward were present. Professor Sage read a paper on " Canada on the Pacific." It
is to be hoped that at some future date a meeting of this Association may be held in
British Columbia.
As will be seen from the Secretary's Report, several most interesting papers were
read at the meetings of the Society. It is a matter of great regret that exigencies of
space prevent the inclusion of the full text of these addresses in this Annual Report.
Major Frederick V. Longstaff's able paper on " The Pacific Station and the Esquimalt
Naval Establishment" is reproduced in full, as is also Mr. A. Stanley Deaville's excellent account of " The Colonial Postal Service of Vancouver Island."
Two Memoirs are now in the press and will soon be issued by the Provincial
Archives—one by Mr. R. L. Reid, K.C, on the " Assay Office and the Establishment
of the Mint at New Westminster"; the other by His Honour Judge Howay on the
" Early History of the Fraser River Mines." Our indefatigable Secretary, Mr. J.
Forsyth, is preparing the " Log of the ' Ruby' " for publication as a Memoir. It is
a great pleasure to record these publications as evidence of the activity of the
Archives Department.
The various standing committees of the Association have been diligently performing their duties. The Educational Committee, under the leadership of Mr. V. L.
Denton, is working on a scheme for the teaching of British Columbia history in the
schools of the Province. In the past the great difficulty has been the lack of a suitable
text-book on this subject, but now it is our great pleasure to record that our President, 8 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
Judge Howay, is preparing a short history of British Columbia. Major Longstaff is
as active as ever in his work on " Marine, Shipping, and Indians." Mrs. E. C. Hart
and her Genealogical Committee are busily collecting records. The Pioneers' Association and the Native Sons of British Columbia have given great assistance in gathering
information, and the staff of the Archives Department has been untiring in its efforts
in classification of these important records. The Victoria and District Landmarks
Committee, under the leadership of Mr. C. C. Pemberton, has been investigating sites
in the vicinity of Victoria. Mr. Pemberton from the first advocated the marking of
Gonzales Hill. It is to be hoped that in the future Clover Point and other historic
spots in old Victoria will also be suitably marked.
Mention should be made of the series of historical paintings which are to hang
on the walls of the new buildings of the University of British Columbia at Point
Grey. They are being prepared, under the auspices of the Grand Post of the Native
Sons of British Columbia, by Mr. John Innes, the well-known Canadian artist. These
eight paintings, which are now rapidly approaching completion, depict scenes from the
early history of this country. The Province owes a great debt of gratitude to the
Hudson's Bay Company, whose generosity has rendered this important and stimulating
series possible. It is hoped that reproductions of these paintings will be made available
for the schools of the Province. The Native Sons of British Columbia, and especially
the Grand Factor, Mr. Bruce McKelvie, are to be highly commended for their public
spirit in planning and executing this important work.
In the summer session of the University of British Columbia Professor Sage is
planning to give a short course on British Columbia history. The Normal School
students in both Vancouver and Victoria have been receiving instruction in this subject,
and in Victoria Mr. V. L. Denton has been able to send his students to work in the
Provincial Archives, where they have received every assistance from the Archives
staff. It is gratifying to know that the treasures contained in the Archives of British
Columbia are now being put to greater use by the citizens of the Province.
In conclusion, it is with real pleasure that we record the publication by the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada of a brochure by Captain R. P. Bishop
entitled " Sir Alexander Mackenzie's Rock End of the First Journey Across North
America." The British Columbia Historical Association has a personal interest in
this publication, which was first presented as a paper before the Association in 1923.
The pamphlet is illustrated with photographs taken by Captain Bishop, who has also
supplied an excellent sketch-map, as well as a small map illustrating the exact position
of Mackenzie's Rock. Captain Bishop is to be congratulated on this thorough and
original piece of work, which constitutes a real contribution to British Columbia history. His Honour Judge Howay has provided a fitting introduction to this interesting
little pamphlet.
By John Forsyth.
In submitting this report, on the work of the Association for the past year, I may
state that, although we have not had as many meetings as usual, the Association has
been concerned in various important movements of historical interest throughout the
Following the representation made by our President, His Honour Judge Howay,
the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada have erected three monuments
this year.
On May 2 the dedication ceremony was held at Fort Langley, the first trading-
post of the Hudson's Bay Company north of the Columbia River and the birthplace
of the Colony of British Columbia. The representatives of the Association who took
part in the ceremony were Judge Howay as President and Western representative of
the Historic Sites Board; Professor Sage, Editor, and the Secretary, who also represented the Archives Department. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 9
The Fort Preservation Committee at Langley carried out an elaborate programme,
which included an old-fashioned picnic and a pageant representing the landing of
James MacMillan in 1824 when searching for a suitable place to establish the Fort.
One of the old Fort buildings has been preserved and will be used as a museum
to house relics connected with the old Colony of British Columbia. The Secretary, on
behalf of the Archives, presented a bound transcript of MacMillan's Journal to be
placed in the museum.
On May 7 the Memorial to the " Beaver," the pioneer steamship of the Pacific
Coast, was unveiled at Prospect Point, Vancouver, in the presence of a large gathering
of pioneers. The arrangements for this ceremony were carried out by the Grand Post
of Native Sons of British Columbia. Several members of the Association, including
the President, Secretary, and Editor, attended this ceremony.
On June 27 a monument was unveiled at Yale to mark the end of the Cariboo
Road. The President made all arrangements for the ceremony, the principal speaker
on this occasion being the Honourable Mr. Justice Murphy, a native son of the
Cariboo District.
The monument on Gonzales Hill overlooking the Strait of Juan de Fuca and commemorating the achievements of its early navigators was unveiled on November 19.
The following addresses were delivered at the regular quarterly meetings during
the past year:—
January 9—An illustrated address on " Northern British Columbia and the Yukon
Territory," by Rev. F. L. Stevenson.
April 17—An illustrated address on the " Sea-otter and the Seal-fishing Industry,"
by Mr. C. H. French.
July 17—Address on the " Colonial Postal Service of Vancouver Island and British
Columbia," by Mr. A. Stanley Deaville.
October 9—Major F. V. Longstaff contributed a paper giving a brief history of the
Pacific Station and the Esquimalt Naval Establishment, 1837-1910.
The assistance of the Association has been sought in several important public
questions; among these may be mentioned the preservation of petroglyphs at Sproat
Lake; suggested National Park at Leechtown; financial assistance in renovating the
monument at Revelstoke in memory of Sir James Hector, one of the chief officials
of the Palliser expedition of 1857-60. A grant was made by the Association for this
purpose, also to the War Memorial Committee for the monument in front of the
Parliament Buildings.
The preservation of the old Craigflower School building is at present engaging
the attention of a special committee and it is expected that the Provincial Government
may afford some assistance in this matter.
A very successful gathering of pioneers was held under the auspices of the Grand
Post of Native Sons of British Columbia at Vancouver from May 7 to 9. As this
reunion included many who were not eligible for the Victoria Reunion, the Secretary
attended and distributed pioneer record forms. Most of these have now been completed and returned along with photographs and other data for the. Archives collection.
The pioneer group picture taken during the Victoria gathering was printed along with
a key to the names. These have been freely distributed among pioneers and their
families. The pictures have been a source of much pleasure to their recipients, who
have gratefully acknowledged the courtesy of the Association in presenting them.
At no time has there been such an active interest in historical matters throughout
the Province than the present, but there is a great need for co-ordinating the efforts
of the various societies engaged in this work. The movement of the Native Sons of
British Columbia in Vancouver to establish a " Douglas Day" on November 19 each
year to commemorate the birth of the Colony of British Columbia should receive
whole-hearted support in all parts of the Province. 10 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
The time seems opportune for applying to the Historic Sites and Monuments
Board of Canada to erect a monument at Clover Point, Victoria, the place where Sir
James Douglas landed on March 14, 1843, to establish Fort Victoria.
Another tablet might be placed in close proximity to the Belleville Wharf, so that
the uninitiated upon visiting Victoria may learn something of the early history of
this city.
The year 1925 was marked by the unveiling of five monuments erected by the
Historic Sites and Monuments Board within the boundaries of our Province. Our
President, His Honour Judge Howay, was able to bring to a successful conclusion his
plans for marking the most important historic sites in British Columbia. The places
chosen were deemed by the members of the Board to be of national importance. They
marked events destined to have a real influence in the development of the Dominion
of Canada, or else they were selected as typical of some phase of the social and
economic life of the country. Of the five sites, two were intimately associated with
the discovery and exploration of the Province. These were the monument at Gonzales
Hill, Victoria, commemorating the discovery and exploration of the Strait of Juan
de Fuca, and the cairn erected at Prince George as a memorial to Sir Alexander
Mackenzie, the first white man to reach the Pacific, north of Mexico. The other three
typified the early economic life of the country. Fort Langley was chosen since it was
the first fur-trading fort erected by the Hudson's Bay Company on what is now the
lower mainland of British Columbia in order to wrest from the American vessels the
trade of the coast. It was at this post that salmon-fishing first was raised to the
dignity of an industry and potatoes were grown in sufficient quantities for export.
The monument to the " Beaver " at Prospect Point, Stanley Park, Vancouver, records
the half-century of activity of the pioneer steamship of the North-west Pacific Coast,
and that at Yale the building of the well-known Cariboo Road.
The first of these celebrations was held at Fort Langley on May 2. It was a
glorious afternoon and the ceremony was one which will long be remembered by the
people of the lower mainland. From far and near the crowds had gathered, and when
Mr. Jason Allard, who was born in the old fort in 1848, unveiled the memorial cairn
there must have been more than two thousand persons assembled on the site of the
fur-trading post. An historical pageant was enacted illustrating the landing of James
MacMillan in 1824 when he was looking for a suitable site for the post, the arrival
of Sir George Simpson at Fort Langley in 1828 during his celebrated canoe voyage
from York Factory on Hudson Bay to Fort Vancouver on the Columbia, the coming
of the miners to the Fraser in 1858, and finally the gold-seekers on their way to
Cariboo.   One ancient steed bore on his back the legend " Cariboo or bust!"
The speakers at the unveiling ceremony were His Honour Judge Howay, who
told of MacMillan's expedition in 1824, of his founding of the fort in 1827, and of the
early days of the fur-trading post; Professor Sage, who spoke of the middle years of
Fort Langley from 1830 to 1858, dealing with the fire of 1840 and the rebuilding of
the fort in that year on its present site, two miles from its previous location; and Mr.
J. Forsyth, who dealt with the period of the gold-rush and recounted the story of
the foundation of British Columbia at Fort Langley on November 19, 1858. Mr. B.
A. McKelvie, Historian of the Native Sons of British Columbia, told of the old days
at the fort. Mr. C. H. French, of the Hudson's Bay Company, brought greetings from
the Governor and Company. Since his short and most interesting speech contained
information not readily accessible elsewhere, it is purposed, with his kind permission,
to reproduce it in full:—
" It is a great pleasure to be with you to-day as the representative of the glorious
old Company of Adventurers of England.
" Langley is a name that is destined to be handed down in history from generation
to generation, carrying with it that spirit of adventure that goes with miners, fur- THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 11
traders, trappers, and Empire-builders. It was here that the fur-trader on the coast,
first shook hands with the trappers. It was here that the fur-trader grasped the hands
of the miners from California, and we cannot overlook the fact that the fur-trader
opened up the country, pacified the native, and ensured British rule; the miner had a
Targe share in effecting developments that would have taken many more years to
achieve had  he not arrived.
" What wonderful men were these old fur-traders! The more one knows about
them, the more one wonders how it was possible to gather such picked men together
at these remote spots. It took years to get supplies, and for many years one mail each
year was as much as could be expected. Ordinary wages would not do it. They had
to subsist on the natural resources of the country, and on that account one can readily
understand why such feverish haste was made to establish farms where potatoes,
cereals, beef, butter, etc., could be raised to supply not only Langley, but other posts
farther inland.
" Langley, then, became a food depot of no mean size where a large number of
servants was employed; a depot for storing furs while they were being gathered for
transportation to London. It was considered the only safe place on the coast from
Russian molestation during the Crimean War, 1854-56.
" In the development of new countries changes become necessary from time to
time, and"while Langley was the mother of all British Columbia Coast posts up to
1842, it was then found necessary, owing to the Oregon boundary question, to build a
new centre at Victoria. This new centre was not able to deprive Langley of its place
in the sun. She was yet the spot where almost all industries of the Province had their
being, and in spite of being burned down in 1840, she rose from her ashes to renewed
active life.
" Langley was the original exporter of salt salmon. She exported hemp to England to be made into rope. Langley was the first to make and export barrels.
She sent large consignments of cranberries to San Francisco during the fifties.
Langley made milk-pans from birch-bark, brooms from birch-sticks pounded into
strips at one end; also horse-collars, wedges, axe-handles, mall-handles, toboggans,
etc., from birch. Langley ground flour from wheat with crude stones. Her blacksmiths made locks, hinges, axes, and many other articles required in the trade and
for the use of the posts.
" This glorious spot where East met West for so many years, where most industries
of the Province first had their being, has just as many possibilities as ever. Therefore,
I again say that I am glad to be here and that the object of the gathering is such a
worthy one.
" On behalf of the Governor and Committee of the Hudson's Bay Company, let me
extend to you greetings. These gentlemen, who guide the Company's destinies from
London, are delighted to find that by such actions as you are to-day taking they are
encouraged to make further efforts to keep fully alive the golden rule, which policy
was set by their predecessors. The Hudson's Bay Company are to-day operating on a
larger scale than ever in their history; that fact alone is ample evidence that the policy
and sterling worth of those early builders of empires is the only one that is worth
while and lasting.
" Mr. H. T. Lockyer, the Company's General Manager in Vancouver, extends his
greetings, and I can assure you that his absence here to-day is much regretted. It is
only great pressure of business that has kept him away."
After the speeches were concluded a programme of sports followed. Tugs of war
took place between the Indians of Chilliwack, Squamish, and Fort Langley, and between the Native Sons of Vancouver, New Westminster, and Langley. The native
sons of British Columbia, redskins and palefaces, enjoyed themselves to the full. The
May Queens of New Westminster and Langley, with their respective courts, added a
further touch of pageantry to the occasion.
One of the most interesting features of this memorable day was the exhibition in
the sole remaining building of the old fort of a model of Fort Langley as it appeared
in 1840.  This model was constructed, under the direction of Mr. Jason Allard, by Mr. 12 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION-
John Worrall, of Fort Langley, B.C. The area enclosed within the palisade of the
old fort was approximately 630 by 240 feet. A palisade surrounded the fort. At each
corner was a bastion about 20 feet square, each bastion mounting two 9-pounder guns.
There were twenty buildings within the enclosure, the largest being the officers' residence. It was in the reception-room on the lower floor of this residence building that
Governor Douglas was sworn in by Judge Begbie on November 19, 1858. Great credit
is due to Mr. Allard and Mr. Worrall for the preparation of this model. The old
historic building in which the model is preserved is now used as a museum. On behalf
of the Archives Department, Mr. John Forsyth presented to this museum a bound
transcript of MacMillan's journal.
The inscription on the tablet unveiled on this occasion reads as follows:—
" The first trading-post on the Pacific Coast of Canada, built in
1827 by the Hudson's Bay Company; destroyed by fire and rebuilt in
1840. The scene of the first agriculture and the first fisheries in
British Columbia; the birthplace of the Colony of British Columbia,
19th Day of November, 1858."
The second unveiling ceremony took place on May 7, 1925, at Prospect Point,
Stanley Park, Vancouver. The historic S.S. " Beaver" was wrecked off this point on
July 26, 1888, and it was eminently fitting that the memorial to the pioneer steamship
of the North-west Pacific Coast should be erected on the top of the cliff at the foot
of which the old vessel la3' until the wild waves claimed her for their own.
Arrangements for this ceremony were in the hands of the Grand Post of the
Native Sons of British Columbia, which was then holding its annual meeting in Vancouver. His Honour Judge Howay was present as Western representative of the
Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, and there was a large attendance
of the pioneers of British Columbia, who were then taking part in their annual reunion.   Several members of our Association witnessed the unveiling of the tablet.
In a short speech of great historic interest Judge Howay told the story of the
" Beaver " and then called upon Mr. H. T. Lockyer, as representing the Hudson's Bay
Company, to draw aside the Union Jack which covered the cairn and tablet. Mrs.
Lukin Johnston recited Mrs. Alice Lefevre's poem, " Hail and Farewell!" written to
commemorate the passing of the palatial transpacific liner " Empress of China" by
the wreck of the old " Beaver " as she was lying on the rocks below Prospect Point.
Captain George Marchant, who was in command of the " Beaver " when she was
wrecked in 1888, and Mr. John Fullerton, of Victoria, who was one of the engineers
of the old steamboat, were honoured guests on this occasion. This is believed to have
.been the last public appearance of Captain Marchant, whose death occurred a few
months later. Mr. Charles Mclntyre, who in the old days worked as a carpenter and
helped demolish the " Beaver " as she lay off Prospect Point, presented to His Honour
Judge Howay a wand made from the timbers of the old vessel and to Post No. 2 of
the Native Sons of British Columbia a gavel fashioned from the same material. Mr.
Percy Hamilton Bole, son of the late Judge Bole, of New Westminster, received the
gavel as representing the order.
On behalf of the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Judge Howay
gave over the custody of the cairn and tablet to the Vancouver Parks Board. Mr. E.
G. Baynes, Parks Commissioner, accepted the gift in a fitting speech.
At the conclusion of the ceremony at Prospect Point the pioneers and Native Sons
proceeded to the park gates, where, at the foot of the Oppenheimer Memorial, the
Pioneers' Appreciation Medal, which is annually donated by the Hudson's Bay Company, was presented by Captain W. F. Stewart, President of the Pioneers' Association,
to Mrs. Agnes Fraser. Mrs. Fraser has been a resident of this Province ever since
1873. A pleasing feature of this ceremony was the presence of the seven daughters
The inscription on the tablet erected to the historic S.S. " Beaver" reads as
" Here, on 26th July, 1888, the steamer ' Beaver' was wrecked.
This historic vessel was built for the Hudson's Bay Company at
Blackwall, England, in 1835, sailed for this coast immediately, and was
the pioneer steamship of the Pacific Coast. The story of the ' Beaver'
is the story of the early development of the western coast of Canada."
At Prince George on June 13 the historic journey to the Pacific of Sir Alexander
Mackenzie was commemorated by the unveiling by His Honour Judge Howay of a
tablet and cairn. The inhabitants of the northern city and its vicinity turned out en
masse on this occasion to do honour to the intrepid explorer, the first white man to
pass by the site of Prince George. It was fitting that this memorial to Mackenzie was
placed close to the original location of the old fur-trading post of Mackenzie's own
North West Company. Fort George, at the confluence of the Nechako and Fraser
Rivers, was a key position in the days of the fur trade. To be sure, it never could
rival Fort St. James, on Stuart Lake, the recognized depot for New Caledonia, as a
metropolis of the fur trade, but it served a purpose of its own. It commanded the
Upper Fraser, and it was probably from this post that Simon Fraser in 1808 set out
on his famous descent of the river.
The tablet erected at Prince George bears the following inscription :—
" Sir Alexander Mackenzie, the first white man to cross the Rocky
Mountains and reach the Pacific Coast, passed this spot, westward-
bound, in his canoe, with his nine companions, on the 19th of June,
Judge Howay delivered a most interesting address on the subject of Sir Alexander
Mackenzie and his explorations. The full text of this address will be found on a subsequent page of this report.
The next unveiling ceremony took place on June 27 at Yale. The chief speaker at
this celebration was the Honourable Mr. Justice Murphy, of the Supreme Court of
British Columbia. Judge Murphy was born at 141-Mile House on the old Cariboo
Road, and it was thus eminently fitting that he should be selected to deliver the oration
on the occasion of this celebration at Yale, the official marking of the starting-point
of the " Appian Way of British Columbia." In a speech of remarkable eloquence
Judge Murphy sketched the story of the construction of the road, recounted its great
days, and dealt with the period of its decline. He imagined the old road speaking in
propria persona and made his audience feel the joys and sorrows, the humour and
pathos of the great highway. He contrasted the light-hearted prospectors who disembarked from the river-steamers at Yale and took their places on the old stagecoaches, with the broken men who returned on foot from the diggings of Cariboo,
all hope for ever lost and the future desperate. He sketched the picture of the first
arrival of the Royal Engineers at Fort Yale when they were commencing the building
of the road, and paid tribute to Governor Douglas, the " king of roads." He carried
the story down to the advent of the railway, when the mule-train and stage-coach gave
place to the iron horse. Not could this eloquent speech have been delivered in more
suitable surroundings. For once old Yale seemed to live over again her brief days
of glory and one could almost see the Royal Engineers marking out the road.
The Cariboo Road played such a vital part in the development of British Columbia,
for it is common knowledge that it was the gold of Cariboo which gave our Province
its start economically, that it is fitting that the Historic Sites and Monuments Board
of Canada should mark Yale with a suitable memorial.    And it would be difficult to Ceremony of unveiling the Cairn at Gonzales Hill on November 19, 1925, to commemorate the exploration of the Straits of Juan de Puca, 1787-1792.
Mr. J. W. Dolby, Vice-Consul to Spain, addressing the audience. Other persons present on the platform include the Hon. Lieutenant-Governor,
W. C. Nichol; H. J. Muskett, Secretary to the Lieutenant-Governor ; Judge F. \V. Howay, President of B.C. Historical Association ; Captain Kobert Barkley ;
Commander P. H. Brabant, K.N.; H. Anscomb, Reeve of Oak Bay; Beaumont Boggs, Vice-President of B.C. Historical Association; Mrs. R. McMicking,
Kegent of the Lady Douglas Chapter of the I.O.D.E. ; C. C. Pemberton, Convener of local Sites Committee of B.C. Historical Association ; J. Forsyth,
Honorary Secretary of B.C. Historical Association. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 15
express more simply or more effectively the story of the Cariboo Wagon Road than
in the following sentences, which are cast in bronze upon the tablet at Yale:—
" Here began the Cariboo Wagon Road, which extended four
hundred miles northward to the gold mines of Cariboo Built in
" In the golden days of Cariboo, over this great highway, passed
thousands of miners and millions of treasure."
The full text of Judge Murphy's address will be found on a subsequent page of
this report.
Gonzales Hill.
The last of these celebrations was held at Gonzales Hill, Victoria, on the afternoon of November 19. This cairn and tablet mark the discovery and exploration of the
Strait of Juan de Fuca, the end of the historic search for the mysterious " Strait of
Anian," which was supposed to connect the eastern and western oceans.
The guests of honour on this occasion were the members of the pioneer families.
The speakers included His Honour Walter Cameron Nichol, Lieutenant-Governor of
British Columbia; His Honour Judge F. W. Howay; Mr. John W. Dolby, Vice-Consul
for Spain at Seattle; and Captain Robert E. Barkley, great-grandson of the discoverer
of the strait. In his introductory remarks Judge Howay pointed out the two motives
which had led to the erection of the monument on Gonzales Hill; the first to call
attention to the adventures that had made possible our settled life to-day, the other
to use the quickly awakened interest in local history as a means of promoting a wider
interest in history in general.
His Honour the Lieutenant-Governor then gave a brief address, " laying before
the audience a clear and vital picture of the adventures which make these shores,
islands, and surrounding waters rich with traditions little realized by the average
citizen." His Honour then introduced Captain Barkley, who told of his arrival on
Vancouver Island thirty-five years before, exactly one hundred years after his greatgrandfather in the " Imperial Eagle " discovered the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
At the blast of the bugle the red, white, and blue flag of Britain and the crimson
and gold of Spain fell away. All heads were bared in honour of the heroic explorers of
Spain and Great Britain. The mists of time seemed to roll back and one could picture
Barkley sailing southward past the strait and the Spanish Sub-Lieutenant, Manuel
Quimper, sighting Gonzales Point.
The Spanish Vice-Consul received an ovation when he came forward to speak.
" It is indeed kind," he said, " that you, in commemorating an event of this nature,
have not forgotten the part played by another country in the early history of yours,
and I feel highly honoured that I have been invited as a representative of Spain upon
this occasion. But when were Englishmen not generous? There is a deep significance
in the mingling of Spain's flag with Britain's upon that monument. It seems to me
to be a tribute to the progress of the world that two countries which once worked in
rivalry should so far have forgotten old prejudices that they should twine their flags
The inscription on this monument runs as follows:—
" Official landmark commemorating exploration of Straits of Juan
de Fuca, 1787-1792.
" Fur Trade Exploration.
" Charles William Barkley discovered Straits, 1787; Commander.
John Meares, R.N., entered Straits, 1788; Robert Gray entered Straits,
" Official Exploration.
"Spanish Navy: Sub-Lieutenant Manuel Quimper reached and
named Gonzales Point, 1790; Lieutenant Francisco Elisa partly explored Gulf of Georgia, 1791.
" British Navy: Captain George Vancouver, R.N., proved nonexistence of a reputed Northwest Passage in these latitudes, also made
first circumnavigation of, named, and proved insular character of
Vancouver Island.
" Spanish Navy: Commanders Dionisio Alcala Galiano and
Cayateno Valdez met and followed Vancouver, 1792."
In this way, then, the discoverers and explorers of our country are being fittingly
honoured. It is a pleasure to record these recent achievements of the Historic Sites
and Monuments Board of Canada. Canadians have every reason to be proud of the
history of their country. Too often in the past they have been unacquainted with our
national story. With these cairns and tablets occupying prominent positions in our
cities and on our highways and waterways, ignorance of our great national heritage
will be well-nigh inexcusable.
(Speech by Judge F. W. Howay at Unveiling of Monument at Prince George,
June 13, 1925.)
In the story of British Columbia there is a glorious trinity of explorers — Mackenzie, Fraser, and Thompson; all of them belonging to that energetic company, the
North West Company of Montreal.
In 1908, the centenary of his daring voyage down the Fraser River, the City of
New Westminster erected a monument, surmounted by his bust, to the memory of
Simon Fraser; in 1922 the Canadian Pacific Railway Company and the Hudson's Bay
Company built on Lake Windermere a memorial fort as a tribute to the work of David
Thompson; now, in 1925, Mackenzie, the first of the trinity but the last to be so honoured,
is commemorated by this cairn and tablet of the Historic Sites and Monuments Board
of Canada. Thus that Board has transformed into a reality the wish of Janey Canuck
in her " Seeds of Pine ": " Honour to Alexander Mackenzie, Esq., of Inverness, say
I! Some day, when Messrs. the Publishers give me fuller royalties, I shall surely
build a cairn to him on the height of land ere it falls away to the Western Sea."
We remember Mackenzie for his two great exploratory voyages — to the Arctic
Ocean and to the Pacific Ocean. Here we see him in the bright light; his precedent
and subsequent life are in an umbra; but his earliest days are in deep shadow — there
the commonest facts are in doubt. Where was Mackenzie born? The Encyclopcedia
Britannica says Inverness; so does Bancroft; and Janey Canuck, as already quoted.
But they are wrong. We now know that he was born at Stornoway in the island of
Lewis. And I shall have the pleasure of handing to the City Council a photograph
of a drawing of the house where he was born and a copy of a resolution of the
Stornoway Town Council expressing its thanks for the recognition of the work of
its great son. I owe both of these to the kind and thoughtful interest of ex-Provost
J. N. Anderson, now of Portobello, Scotland. Next: when was he born ? The
Britannica says 1755; Dr. Bryce and those who follow him say 1763. The people of
Stornoway insist upon the former date. When did he leave Scotland? Practically
every one agrees that he emigrated at the age of 16; but as they do not agree on the
year of his birth this may mean in the year 1771 or in 1779. In my opinion, because,
amongst other things, of the letter to be mentioned, I incline to the 1771 date.
It seems that he and his father came to New York and resided for some time
with John Mclver, his maternal uncle, who was a prominent merchant in that city.
How long did he stay in New York, or when did he come to Canada? Again, we do
not know.    Most writers say at the age of 16, or in the year 1779.   But there is in .   THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 17
existence a letter  from him to his brother  Colin dated  from " Canada, 6th  June,
1778," and from its contents it may be surmised that he was in Canada in 1777.
Mackenzie appears to have entered into the fur trade as soon as he arrived in
Montreal. According to Burpee, he had spent five years in the counting-house and one
year at Detroit before he left for the Grand Portage, the great meeting-spot of the
fur-traders in 1785.
Having been in the employment of Gregory, he naturally is found with Gregory,
McLeod & Co., the opponent of the North West Company. Already in 1786 he is one
of the proprietors of Gregory, McLeod & Co. and in charge of the department of
English River. These two concerns — Gregory, McLeod & Co. and the North West
Company — were united in July, 1787. Owing to the stigma upon Peter Pond by
reason of his having murdered an opposition trader named Ross, Mackenzie was
placed in charge of his district—the Athabaska. Thus we see him gradually drifting
nearer to the scenes with which his name is now inseparably connected.
As early as January, 1788, he had confided to his cousin Roderick his intention to
reach the northern ocean by the river which discharged the waters of Slave Lake;
but he requested that this purpose be kept secret lest its divulgence might be prejudicial
to him and because it might never be put into execution.
Then in the summer of 1788, having determined to carry out his project, he
insisted that his cousin Roderick take charge in his absence. Though the latter had
intended to quit les pays d'en haut, he yielded to the explorer's solicitations, thus leaving him free to undertake the exploration with an easy mind regarding his work in
It is no part of my purpose to deal with this voyage down the Mackenzie to the
Arctic Ocean. Its outlines are to be found in every history of Canada and those who
wish the finer details may readily consult the explorer's own volume, of which there
are numerous editions. The journe}' occupied 102 days, from 3rd June to 12th September, 1789.
In the following spring he attended the meeting at the Grand Portage. Writing to
his cousin he says: " My expedition was hardly spoken of, but that is what I
However, though others paid little attention, Mackenzie resolved to continue along
the path of discovery. To fit himself more fully for the exploration to the Pacific
Ocean — a plan that seems even then to have been forming in his mind — he crossed
the ocean and spent some time in perfecting his scientific knowledge. His mother
and an unmarried sister (Sybella) were then residing at Ayr with a married sister
(Margaret), Mrs. James Dowie. According to ex-Provost Anderson, Mackenzie
visited his relatives at this place so well known to readers of Burns. Upon his return,
he hastened to Fort Chipewyan, intent upon solving the mystery that had lured
La Verendrye, but which that intrepid Frenchman had been compelled to leave
unsolved—the mystery that lay beyond the barrier range of the snow-capped Rockies.
In October, 1792, leaving his cousin once more in charge of his district, he set
out—this time towards the setting sun. He spent the winter of 1792 on the Peace
River, carrying on the fur trade. For we must never forget that Mackenzie, Fraser,
and Thompson were all, first and foremost, fur-traders and that their explorations
were carried on as a part of that work, without the aid or support of Government,
without the prestige that such connection naturally gives, and without any blare of
trumpets. The duty was to be done and they did it; perhaps sometimes not fully
realizing the full significance of what they were accomplishing.
In May, 1793, having dispatched six canoes to Fort Chipewyan with the proceeds
of the winter's trade, Mackenzie resumed his journey into the unknown, towards the
mysterious " River of the West." Accompanying him were Alexander Mackay (afterwards lost on the "Tonquin"), six French*Canadians, and two Indians. He and his
nine companions with their outfit and supplies embarked in a new, specially-built
birch-bark canoe 25 feet in length, but so light that at the outset two men could carry
it on a good road 3 or 4 miles without resting. In about a month, by reason! of accidents and constant repairs and " gumming," that light canoe had been transformed
into a stodgy thing so heavy and unwieldy that the men were willing to face almost
any dangerous rapid rather than attempt to carry it over a portage. Of the tedious
struggle up the freshet-swollen Peace River, of the heavy work at the portages, of
the difficulties with the Indians and the manner in which they were overcome—of all
the dangers and trials .of that pioneer journey I say nothing, leaving it to those who
are interested to read for themselves the " round, unvarnished tale" as given in the
explorer's own account. On 12th June, 1793, Mackenzie reached "the headwaters of
the Parsnip, the southern branch of the Peace River; 817 paces took him across the
divide separating the streams that flow into the Pacific from those that discharge
into the Arctic. We can see this brave Scot as he stands upon this great watershed,
the first to cross the continental divide of the North America; the first white man
to peer beyond the Rockies into the region where was supposed to flow the " Great
River of the West."
After many accidents and much tribulation, after numerous injuries to his canoe
and the loss of a great part of its ladjng—a loss which might well have disheartened
a man less firm in resolve—Mackenzie on 17th June reached the North Fork of the
Fraser River. "At length," he says, "we enjoyed, after all our toil and anxiety, the
inexpressible satisfaction of finding ourselves on the bank of a navigable river, on
the west side of the first great range of mountains."
Some time, probably, as the tablet says, early on the morning of 19th June,
Mackenzie passed the mouth of the Nechako, the spot on which we stand to-day.
That morning was foggy and the party started at 3 o'clock. Unless we
assume that Mackenzie denominates the Nechako as " a small river" (which is
not likely) it would appear that in the fog and following the other shore he did not
see it. Fraser, who followed him twelve years later, finds fault with Mackenzie in
this respect; he says: " This river is not mentioned by Sir Alexander Mackenzie,
which surprises me not a little, it being full in sight and a fine large river."
Descending as far as Alexandria, he, on the advice of the Indians, retraced his •
course and made his way by the Blackwater and the Bella Coola to Bentinck Arm,
and thence to the celebrated rock, which has lately been identified, near the mouth of
Elcho Inlet, where he inscribed with a mixture of vermilion and grease the words
so well known to every school-boy in the land: " Alexander Mackenzie, from Canada,
by land, the twenty-second of July, one thousand seven hundred and ninety-three."
Of his return journey I say nothing; and as to his later life a few words must
suffice. He set himself at once to the task of preparing his voyages for publication;
a task which, according to one of his letters to his cousin, he found much more difficult than he had anticipated. He remained actively in the fur trade in the North-west
until 1794, when he returned to Montreal. For the next five years he attended regularly the meetings of the North West Company at the Grand Portage. One company
could hardly contain two such commanding men as Mackenzie and Simon McTavish;
and in 1799 Mackenzie led the rebellion which separated the Nor'westers into two
factions—the North West Company and the XY Company, sometimes called Alexander
Mackenzie and Company.
In order to publish his " voyages " and, perhaps, also to assist his new company,
he, in 1799, returned to England, where his volume appeared in 1801. Its simple story
of dangers firmly faced and overcome and its plain account of the country, the fur
trade, and his explorations soon won recognition; in 1802 he was knighted for his
services in the interest of geography. Crowned with these successes he, soon afterwards, revisited Canada, and was elected to represent the County of Huntingdon in
the Legislative Assembly. After the death of Simon McTavish the two warring
factions were reunited in 1804; in the following year he returned once more to
England. a
When the Duke of Kent decided to visit Canada Sir Alexander Mackenzie was
selected to accompany His Royal Highness. In 1812 he married a Miss Mackenzie
and, having purchased the estate of Avoch in the Black Isla, Ross-shire, settled down
to enjoy a well-earned rest.   Of that marriage were bom two sons and one daughter. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 19
He was suddenly taken ill while returning from Edinburgh to Avoch and died on
12th March, 1820, at Mulnain, near Dunkeld.
In honouring the name of Sir Alexander Mackenzie the Historic Sites and
Monuments Board of Canada do so not only as the first man to travel across Canada,
but also as the first man to cross the Continent of North America. That is the great
fact. Let us not forget it. Many who ought to know better think that Lewis and
Clark were the first to cross the continent and it is often so stated. But their voyage
was in 1804-1806; Mackenzie preceded them by ten years and more. His "voyages"
had been published three years before they left the Mississippi. Professor Shafer, of
Wisconsin, is of the opinion that they had Mackenzie's book with them on their
voyage. At any rate, let us always remember that the fact is, as the tablet records,
that Alexander Mackenzie was the first white man to cross the Rocky Mountains and
reach the Pacific Coast.
Speech by the Hon. Denis Murphy at Unveiling of Monument at Yale,
June 27, 1925.
Three score and three years ago these towering mountains that encompass us
round about to-day gazed down on a scene of unusual activity in the then four-year-old
mining town of Yale. The stern-wheel steamboat from New Westminster had just
docked at the landing-place down there by the river. Grouped round it was almost
the entire population of the town, composed of pioneer souls that had blazed their
paths where highways had never run. Now aid was at hand and they had come to
see. The gang-plank was run out and across it marched a body of men in military
array, but equipped not with the weapons of war but with the tools and implements of
road-building. They were a section of the famous Royal Engineers sent out from
England in 1858, partly to keep the peace, but chiefly to assist in the opening-up of
Britain's newest Colony. Their mission was the construction of the most difficult portion of the Cariboo Road, the Appian Way of British Columbia. When the miners
in the great rush of 1858 arrived at Yale they found their further progress up the
river obstructed by the pouring canyon we see off there to our right:—
" Where the mountain pass is narrow
And the torrent white and strong."
But well they knew and full often before had they acted oh the knowledge that:—
" He is not worthy of the honeycomb
That shuns the hives because the bees have stings."
So on they pressed over that fearsome Indian trail which Simon Fraser describes
to us in his journal narrating his descent of the river in 1808.  Up the sides of perpendicular precipices they went by means of ladders made of poles, across which at
intervals  rungs  were  tied  with  twigs—ladders  which  as  the  miners  climbed  them
swayed outward with the wind over the yawning chasms beneath; along the face of
the sheer cliffs on slender poles set horizontally end to end and fastened by thongs to
rocks above, the sky-line only visible overhead, the swirling Fraser hundreds of feet
below.   On and ever on up the river to the Quesnelle, on and ever on up this stream
to the golden gravels of Horsefly, and at last early in 1861  over the top of Bald
Mountain where:—
" They met the sun's bravado
And saw below them fold on fold,
Grey to pearl and pearl to gold,
Cariboo like a land of old,
The land of Eldorado."
There they found it, the golden treasure of their long quest, in such quantities
that the news of the discovery soon ringed the earth. And with this news came an
insistent  demand   for  quicker  and   better   means   of   transportation.   The   Douglas- 20 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
Lillooet route, with its vexatious delays and frequent transhipment from pack-train to
boat and from boat to pack-train, could no longer serve the wants of the eager throng
that poured into the golden Cariboo. Governor Douglas determined upon a task that,
the surrounding circumstances considered, might well have appalled the stoutest heart.
He would build a wagon-road from Yale, the head of navigation, to William Creek,
the heart of the goldfields. Through the miles on miles of rock-ribbed Fraser canyons
would he drive it, here skirting the river's brink, there perched hundreds of feet
above on some jutting cliff where scarcely could an eagle build its nest; round the
fearsome Nicaragua rock would he blast it; over the tremendous ascent of Jackass
Mountain would he carry it; then along the sun-baked plains of the Thompson where
the bunch-grass stood the height of a man's waist, through the hush valley of the
Bonaparte to Clinton, then called the junction, up and up the steep Clinton hill to the
Green timber, and straight through this by means of miles of corduroy, down into
the smiling Lac la Hache Valley and along it to and over Carpenters Mountain, with
its awful beds of miry clay, the terror of all who used the road when built; then
down, down the swift descent of Soda Creek hill to the Fraser once again. From
there steamboats would serve to Quesnel. Thence east would he build his highway
once more, rising ever upwards from the river-level to Cottonwood and then on
through the Devil's Canyon to Barkerville. And now in 1862 the giant task was fairly
begun. The sappers and miners were at work on the first six miles out from Yale.
From there to Spuzzum, where the river must be bridged, Thomas Spence was busy
on a contract. From Spuzzum to Boston Bar Joseph W. Trutch had undertaken the
work. From Boston Bar to Lytton Spence had a further contract. Charles Oppen-
heimer and Walter Moberly were to build from Lytton to Cook's Ferry, now Spence's
Bridge, where the Thompson was to be crossed. But men were almost impossible to
retain on road-work, when each week brought news of rich and more rich strikes in
Cariboo. Recourse was had by Oppenheimer and Moberly to Indians and Chinese,
but the virulent smallpox epidemic of 1862 largely cut off this source of labour supply.
The Government were  forced to take over their contract and complete it.
Gus Wright in August, 1862, began the construction of the road from Clinton to
Alexandria. In 1863 Joseph Trutch built the suspension bridge known as the Alexandra Bridge at Spuzzum. The Royal Engineers constructed the first nine miles out
from Cook's Ferry and William Hood closed the gap between their work and the
beginning of Gus Wright's contract at Clinton. By the fall of 1863 the road was
completed to Alexandria, but the Thompson had still to be crossed by ferry. In 1864
Thomas Spence built the structure so well known to old-timers as Spence's Bridge.
The steamer " Enterprise," operated by Gus Wright, connected Alexandria with
Quesnel. In 1864 this same Gus Wright built the road from Quesnel to Cottonwood.
Finally, in 1865 Munro carried the great highway into Barkerville. It was 385 miles
long and 18 feet wide throughout its length. There in less than three years, at a cost
of some $2,000,000, the matchless deed was achieved, determined, dared, and done.
And if the old road could speak, what tales it would have to tell! We would hear of
the stalwart miner clad in red-flannel shirt and corduroy trousers, his feet encased
in top-boots reaching to his knees, his blankets neatly corded and slung upon his back
by straps passing over his shoulders. Off he starts on his long, long tramp over that
385 miles, down the dim vista of which he sees in his mind's eye the many-coloured
rainbow of hope with the fabled crock of gold at its end. Then we would be told of
the mighty caravans that creaked their weary way on to Cariboo—great covered
wagons, similar in appearence but much heavier than the prairie schooners sometimes seen now in moving pictures, strung two and sometimes three together, drawn
by from ten to twelve yoke of oxen, or it might be by ten or twelve span of mules,
their driver riding one of the wheelers and guiding the distant leaders around the
dangerous curves with a single jerk-line, whilst chimes of bells fastened to the harness
on these same leaders notified oncomers of their approach. Or we would be reminded
of the mule pack-trains with the white bell-mare in the lead, the mules followed in
single file to the number of fifty or sixty aperajoes on their backs, fastened to which
by the celebrated diamond hitch would be a cargo of from 300 to 400 lb. of mer- THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 21
chandise neatly protected from the weather by tarpaulin covers. Our eyes would open
in wonder to hear the old road narrate, had it the gift of speech, that upon its bosom
met in early days the beasts of transportation of the Patriarchs of old and the precursor of the modern automobile. Camels like those of Arabia were utilized to carry
freight to Barkerville and attempts were made to do so with traction-engines, but
neither proved a success. The climax of the story, however, would be the tale of the
Concord stage-coaches. What a brave sight they were, their bright-red latticed bodies
picked out with artistic curving lines in white, the deep black-leather boot in front
with its iron safe for conveying treasure from the mines, whilst back of the driver
rose the canvas-covered framework that protected the passengers from the weather,
the whole rocking to and fro on the leathern thorobraces, the running-gear and wheels
a brilliant yellow streaked with black. Four to six horses bowled this equipage over
the road at an average rate of 8 miles an hour. Every 12 to 15 miles along the way
were stations where fresh teams were secured. Barnard's Express would take you
from Yale to Barkerville in four days. Many a youthful bride was a passenger in
the early sixties, her heart beating high with the expectation that in a few years at
most she and her young husband would return laden with yellow gold to the hedgerows of England, the glens of Scotland, the emerald hills of Ireland, the smiling
fields of Ontario, or the busy towns of the United States. Alas for the futility of
human hopes! For the most part now they lie, their travels for ever ended, beside
their good men in one of the quiet cemeteries that here and there dot the hillsides of
Cariboo. And as if in keeping with this thought a note of sadness would soon creep into
the old road's story. We would hear of the falling-off of traffic. Where there had
been hundreds of teams a season there would now not be twenty. The stage-coaches
would still run, it is true, but usually empty of passengers, their only burden a few
half-filled mail-sacks. And then we would be told of the hoarse screech of the locomotive sounding the death-knell of the famous highway. Tons of dynamite blasted its
road-bed into the face of Heaven that the way might be clear for the iron horse.
Early in the eighties the Cariboo wagon-road was shorn of its chief glory—its pathway through the Fraser canyons. The Canadian Pacific Railway, it is true, destroyed
but little of this as it followed the right-hand bank of the river whilst the road followed the left, but the railroad took away the livelihood of all roads—the traffic—and
so the canyon section fell into disuse. The coming of the Canadian Northern Railway
in 1911 and 1912 down the left bank completed its ruin. But now the wheel has come
full circle. Almost from where we stand can be heard the crash of falling trees and
the reverberations of mighty blasts, for men are busy rebuilding the old road. Soon
once again will it stretch in a long white ribbon from Yale to Cariboo. But for us
who would have the old-time remembrance it will not be the Cariboo Road. Fallen
from its high estate it will be but one link in a tourist road stretching in the not-distant future across the continent. And so we are gathered here to-day to dedicate this
monument of enduring granite to the memory of the old road and to the memory of
the men of strong hands and stout hearts that built it, for had they not raised the
stone we had not found the jewel. We would confer on them such immortality as we
can. So long as stands this massive cairn so long will passers-by inquire its purpose.
The old story when told in reply must needs provoke a look of wonder, almost of
awe, at the frowning canyon yonder and compel the tribute:—
" They were giants in those days."
Yes, indeed, they were giants in those days. God grant that we who reap in
comfort where they sowed in hardship may in our daily tasks quit ourselves as men
By Judge F. W. Howay.
The search for the North-west Passage is an example of the way in which a myth
becoming a settled tenet of belief persists even though there is no evidence of its
existence, and in face of the further fact that what evidence there is leads to the
belief that it does not exist.
From the day when the Turk closed the road by the desert of Gobi the Western
world, with tastes for Oriental goods and fancies well established, dreamed of a
waterway to that Land of Heart's Desire. When Columbus sailed it was an island-
studded ocean that lay beyond the Pillars of Hercules. Further discoveries showed
land along the Atlantic Coast, but beyond the limit of land lay the open sea that led
to Cathay. Then when the progress of discovery showed land also in that vicinity
the sea dwindled down to a strait, but as a strait it persisted.
Geographical exploration consistently carried on soon showed that no strait debouched upon the Atlantic side. That, however, meant nothing. The strait must exist
—that was fundamental. If, therefore, it didn't find an exit upon the Atlantic direct
it must find it by way of Hudson's Bay. This was the condition of knowledge about
the 1700's.
In 1579 Sir Francis Drake, the freebooter, had traced the North-west Coast of
America to 43° or 48° in search of the Strait of Anian. None was found. Thereafter beyond Drake's limit was Terra Incognita. There was the fairy realm of the
Romancers; there they would plan ideal states like Atlantis; lands of wonder like
Brobdingnag; and navigable waterways connecting the two great oceans.
The alleged voyage of that time which most interests us of to-day is that of Juan
de Fuca. Other voyages were almost from the outset deemed fictitious; strangely
enough, de Fuca has found supporters and believers up to the present day.
The whole basis is Michael Lok's account of what he says de Fuca told him when
in 1596 he met him in Venice. Without giving Lok's quaint language, it is sufficient
to say that de Fuca was a Greek whose real name was Apostolos Valerianos and
claimed to have been a pilot in the service of Spain; to have been on the " Santa
Anna" when in 1587 that Spanish galleon was captured and looted by the buccaneer
Cavendish off Cape St. Lucas, California; to have lost at that time 60,000 ducats; to
have sailed shortly afterwards with three vessels in an unsuccessful search for the
North-west Passage; and to have sailed in 1592 in command of an expedition from
Mexico in the same search. On that voyage he alleged that in the latitude of 47°
the coast began to trend north and north-east; that there he found a broad arm of
the sea, 30 or 40 leagues wide; that he entered and sailed therein for more than
twenty days, the course of the strait being north-west and north-east and north and
east and south-east, with many islands and constantly widening; that in the end he
reached the North Sea, and, having thus proved the existence of the passage, returned by
the way he had come. Of course he embellished the story with a fruitful land, rich
in pearls and gold, whose inhabitants were clad in the skins of beasts.
Whatever may be said in justification of a belief in this story at the time it was
published, it is difficult to understand how any one could, after the geography of the
region became known, believe in it. Plainly there is no such passage. De Fuca's
supporters therefore must practise exegetics; but, as the French say, " qui s'excuse
And when one begins to explain that a master mariner or a pilot who could make
his way from Mexico northward to Cape Flattery had entered the Strait of Fuca as
we know it, and sailed therein for twenty days and believed he had reached the north
sea, while in reality circling around in the Strait of Georgia, the listener is to be excused if he regards the explanation as " a little thin." In that whole distance the
navigator is never out of sight of land; nowhere is the strait 30 to 40 leagues wide—
it is not that many miles wide—but before the twenty days or the one-half of them
were sailed out the strait instead of widening would narrow to less than half a mile. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS 23
No one who had ever seen the Straits of Fuca and of Georgia could describe them
in such language—even a landsman can tell the difference between 2 or 12 miles and
30 or 40 leagues. The pilot had his cross-staff, for he found latitude 47°—surely a.
similar observation would show him that his supposed north sea was in reality only
a day's sail from the strait's entrance. How and when could any real navigator spend
those twenty days between Cape Flattery and Seymour Narrows? His daily observations should show exactly the progress. In two months Captain Vancouver had explored the whole continental side of the straits from Flattery to Cape Mudge and
examined every least last bit of a waterway. At the entrance to his strait de Fuca-
said there was " on the north-west coast thereof a great headland or Island with an
exceeding high Pinnacle or spired Rock like a pillar thereupon." No such headland
or island with its wondrous pinnacled rock has been found. No eye but Fuca's ever
saw that rock. Geographically, therefore, one may say that the story is false—that
is, that no such voyage was made; for giving every allowance for exaggeration the
description is still so wide of the mark as to be clearly only a guess.
Then as to the alleged voyages in 1592 and the earlier year: the Spanish records
have been searched and nothing has been found. Any one familiar with Spanish ways
will realize how many reports and duplications of reports must have been made before
such a voyage could be undertaken and how many reams must have been covered
with words after its return; and this would have occurred in each voyage. Yet not
one scrap has been found. Then de Fuca tells of his constant applications for reward
for his discovery. Strangely enough, all of these have disappeared from the archives
also. There must be some conspiracy against de Fuca where all this evidence which
would have supported him and which exists in all other cases has mysteriously disappeared.
So, too, as regards de Fuca's having been on the " Santa Anna " and his loss of
his 60,000 ducats. Navarrete, in his " Viages Apocrifos," says that there are two
sworn statements of the losses of those on the " Santa Anna," one made by the captain
and the other by a passenger, and though they condescend to particulars of losses
much smaller, they do not mention Juan de Fuca or Apostolos Valerianos at all. Can
we say that the conspiracy against de Fuca began before he made his discovery?
Not only has Spain conspired against de Fuca, but England also; for Cavendish
makes no mention of a Greek pilot's being on the " Santa Anna," though he does
mention a Spanish pilot and a Portuguese one. De Fuca cannot be the Spanish pilot
because Cavendish hanged him at Manila.
And is it not more than strange that, of all the men who were on the voyage of
1592 in the pinnace and the caravel with him, not a single one except de Fuca spoke
of or left any record of this discovery for which the world was seeking?
All this leads to the belief that de Fuca never made any such voyage—not merely
that he made a voyage and magnified its results.
But, further, we must remember that in 1596, when de Fuca told this story to
Lok, the belief in the existence of a North-west Passage was a fundamental tenet of
geography; that less than twenty years before Sir Francis Drake had endeavoured to
sail home to England by such a passage and had found no passage south of 43° or 48°.
De Fuca puts his passage just at a short distance beyond Drake's limit, for it would
end his story if he put a strait where Drake had said none was. And if it be suggested that there is a strait near the location named by de Fuca, and that therefore
he may have made such a voyage—to the extent of seeing the strait—the answer is,
nevertheless, it was by a fortunate guess, and does not rank any higher than de Fonte's
lucky guess that an archipelago existed (as it does) in latitude 52° ; yet all the world
agrees that de Fonte is false in toto.
Why did de Fuca invent this story? May we suggest that the English people
were then known to be reaching anxiously for that strait, and a suggestion that Spain
had found it and was keeping the secret would fire English desire as nothing else
could or would. But in the shadow behind de Fuca lurks the demon of the " dirty
dollar."    He  would  be  reimbursed  the  money taken   from  him  by  Cavendish—his 24 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
60,000 ducats—i.e., say, $150,000; though, as has been said, he was not there and did
riot lose one cent. It seems like the original form of that perennial fraud—the
Spanish prisoner's fortune.
Taking it, then, that de Fuca's alleged discovery is false, an interval of nearly two
hundred years elapses. On March 22, 1778, Captain James Cook sees Cape Flattery,
which, being the northernmost land in sight, he named because the appearance of the
intervening region " flattered us with the hopes of finding an harbour." He fixed its
latitude 48° 15'. While Flattery was still to the northward, and remembering that de
Fuca had placed his strait north of 47° or between 47° and 48°, Cook wrote: "It is in
this very latitude where we now are, that geographies have placed the pretended strait
of Juan de Fuca. We saw nothing like it; nor is there the least probability that ever
such thing existed." Some who are not familiar with de Fuca's story have in their
ignorance criticized Captain Cook for this statement. It must be remembered that
Cape Flattery was still to the northward when, towards evening, the weather increasing, Cook stood to the southward and when he saw land again he was at Nootka
And, furthermore, it must not be forgotten that Cook's instructions required him
not to touch at any Spanish possessions unless from stern necessity, and after making
a port for wood and water to lose no time in exploring rivers or waterways, but set
his face fairly towards latitude 65° and then begin a meticulous search for a passage
to Hudson Bay or Baffin Bay.f
Who was the first person to see the strait? Who discovered it? These questions
bring us into an examination of the claim made by Don Estevan Jose Martinez that
he while pilot on Juan Perez expedition in 1774 saw the strait of Fuca. In his manuscript diary Martinez says: " I have recalled that in the year '74 when I was in this
harbor on my return to the Department, while sailing close to the coast, I had sighted
in this sound in latitude 48° 20', though at a distance, an opening of considerable size
extending inland. At that time I was not able to reconnoitre it, since I was under
the orders of the first pilot and frigate's ensign Don Juan Perez who did not wish to
approach the coast. Fearing that my sight had deceived me I determined not to mention it in my diary since I could not certify to its existence—not being able actually
to make sure of it. (I pause here to ask: " Doesn't this seem rather weak to you? ")
Considering now, according to the reckoning which I made then, that the opening
must be some forty leagues, a little more or less, distant from this port I determined
to carry out the reconnaisance." On the 20th he writes: " We have also completed the
supplying of the schooner with provisions and other necessaries for her voyage to
reconnoitre the entrance which I sighted along the coast in the year 1774 between
48° 20' and 48° 30' north latitude. This must, I am persuaded be the strait of Juan
de Fuca, the existence of which the European nations, and particularly the English,
have denied."
Accordingly the schooner " Gertrudis," which in reality was Meares's " North West
America," sailed on this errand. She might have saved herself the trouble, for Captain
Barkley had discovered the straits in 1787; Captain Duncan had drawn a map of this
entrance in 1788; Meares's longboat had been there in 1788; and in March, 1789,
Captain Gray in the " Washington" had examined the southern shore as far as
Clallam Bay and the northern to a point midway between San Juan and Sooke
The schooner was absent fifteen days; on her return Martinez enters in his diary
under date July 5, 1789, some details concerning the strait. Its middle point is 48° 30'
north latitude and 19° 28' west of San Bias; the distance from shore to shore 21
miles, and " with almost the same width it extends inland further than one can see,
and at the horizon its channel leads E.S.E." Later he goes on to say that " There
is ground for believing that this strait forms a connection with the Mississippi River
in an E.S.E. direction, although, according to report, it divides into two arms. One
I have mentioned; the other lies to W.N.W.  in such a  fashion that according to
* Vol. 2, p. 263.    Dublin ed. 1784. t P. xxxiv. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 25
stories I have heard and what I could myself determine, it communicates with the
strait of Admiral Fonte in latitude 52° N."
This claim that Martinez had in 1774 seen or thought that he had seen the Strait
of Fuca is repeated in the " Viage hecho por las goletas Sutil y Mexicana "; in Campos,
" Espana en California," p. 4; and in Humboldt's " Essai Politique sur le royaume
de la Nouvelle Espagne," Vol. 2, p. 489.
It is somewhat striking that in his " Breve Discurso de los descubrimientos de
America" Martinez says that he saw in his voyage of 1774 with Juan Perez a wide
entrance about 48° 30' which he considered to be either the Strait of Juan de Fuca
or of Martin d'Aguilar, which ought in his opinion to connect with Hudson's Bay.
It is rather a commentary upon geographical conclusion that the same man should
be found committed to two radically different propositions—that from the Strait of
Fuca a channel would be found connecting with Hudson Bay, and that from that
strait a channel would be found connecting with the Mississippi River. This, it will
be remembered, is in the year 1789.
But to return from this digression and take the discoverer and explorers of the
Strait of Fuca in their chronological order.
First, then, as to the discoverer. It is to me, and I trust to you, a matter of interest and pride that the discovery of the strait should be linked with a romance of
the seas. Captain Charles William Barkley, the discoverer of the strait, is never
thought of without his charming young wife—the first white woman to visit the coast
of British Columbia; nor do we think of her without thankfulness in remembering
that she was thoughtful enough to set down many things on paper for us. But for
that it is likely that we would be crediting that unreliable and untrustworthy fellow,
Meares, with its discovery in 1788. Mrs. Barkley in her dairy says, under date July,
1'787: " In the afternoon to our great astonishment, we arrived off a large opening
extending to the eastward the entrance of which appeared to be about four leagues
wide and remained about that width as far as the eye could see, with a clear easterly
horizon, which my husband immediately recognized as the long lost strait of Juan de
Fuca, and to which he gave the name of the original discoverer, my husband placing
it on his chart."
Of course, the entrance being found within 60 miles or so of its location by
Captain Barkley—a difference purely negligible in view of the crude instruments then
in use—he and his wife naturally conclude that it is de Fuca's strait. Had her captain
navigated it, and ascertained the facts as we know them, there is little doubt but that
they would have condemned de Fuca's whole story.
The next person to see the strait was John Meares. On 29th June, 1788, in the
" Felice," Meares sailing along the Vancouver Island shore in latitude 48° 39r north.
" At which time," he says, " we had a complete view of an inlet, whose entrance: appeared very extensive, bearing Flast South East distant about six leagues We endeavored to keep in with the shore as much as possible, in order to have a perfect
view of the land. This was an object of particular anxiety, as the part of the coast
along which we were now sailing, had not been seen by Captain Cook; and we knew
of no other navigator said to have been this way, except Maurelle; and his chart
which we now had on board convinced us either that he had never seen this part of
the coast, or that he had purposely misrepresented it." And in the heading to this
chapter Meares says: " Discovered the Straits of John de Fuca."
There is only one good old Anglo-Saxon word to apply to these statements. They
are untrue. Meares had at the time Captain Barkley's chart in his possession and he
knew of Barkley's discovery. The proof will be found on p. lv. of the introduction,
where he acknowledges that Barkley " discovered the extraordinary straits of John
de Fuca." Surely this verifies the adage that a liar needs a good memory. Yet farther
on Meares, after saying that the strait is 12 or 14 leagues wide—in truth it is only
about that many miles wide—adds: " The strongest curiosity impelled me to enter
this strait, which we shall call by the name of its original discoverer—John de Fuca."
It was so marked on Barkley's chart then in his possession. 26 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION
About a fortnight later the " Felice" returned to Barkley Sound and on 13th
July the longboat was sent to explore the Strait of Fuca. Into Meares's account we-
shall not enter. The whole story is probably as exaggerated as his statement that: the
longboat had sailed up the straits for 30 leagues, that there it was 15 leagues wide,
and there was a clear horizon for 15 leagues more. He concludes that the straits
terminated near Hudson Bay. No wonder that Dixon spoke of all this as misrepresentation, "not to call it by a harder name"; and adds: "Be so good, Mr. Meares,
as to inform me how you reconcile this difference between the master of the boat's
Journal and your own account, for I am free to confess, I cannot possibly do it."
Nor can any one else, for the longboat had only reached Port San Juan, which
instead of being 30 leagues within the straits is barely within them. Meares's mendacity
has become almost proverbial—at the same time one cannot but admire the rouge's
In the same year, 1788, Captain Charles Duncan, in command of the 50-ton sloop
" Princess Royal," manned with a crew of fifteen seamen, spent two days—15th to
17th August—at anchor at the village of Classett, about 2 miles east of Cape Flattery.
Duncan would have remained longer, but as he says: " I had an appointment to meet
the 'Prince of Wales' (her consort) on a certain day at the Sandwich Islands in
order to go in company together to China."
The really valuable service that Duncan rendered to the cause of history was
that he prepared a chart of the entrance of the Strait of Fuca, which was published
on January 14, 1790, by Alex. Dalrymple. This chart shows the strait from Flattery
and Beale to a point near Jordan River, and it gives the location of Pachena Bay,
Carmanah Point, Port San Juan, Neah Bay, and Clallam Bay. The width of the
strait is given as about 14 miles. Perhaps the most illuminating matter is, however,
the legend thereon, which runs in this wise: " The Indians of Claasit said that they
knew not of any land to the Eastward; but that it was A'ass toopulse, which signifies
a great sea. They pointed that the sea ran a great way up to the Northward; and
down to the Southward; on the East side they likewise said that at a great distance
to the Southward I should find men who had guns, as well as I had; whether they
meant that to frighten me or not I can not tell, for all along the coast I never found
any that wished to part with us or indeed wished us to trade with another nation,
telling us that they were the only people that had anything or were worth trading
with."    He adds that they are expert whalers.
In March, 1789, the American sloop " Washington," the consort of the " Columbia,"
after having spent the winter in Nootka Sound, sailed to the southward on a trading
voyage. At midday on the 28th March, 1789, Cape Flattery was seen bearing S.E. by E.,
but to the eastward, no land. " As we proceeded E. by S. as the coast trended," says
Haswell, " I fully concluded we were in the Straits of Juan de Fuca." Continuing
along the northern shore past Clo-oose, the " Washington" sailed easterly, but later
in the afternoon, as it began to blow hard and the weather looked disagreeable,
Captain Gray ran into Poverty Cove—the Port San Juan of to-day. Haswell says:
" These people have seen vessels before, as they are acquainted with the effects of
firearms, but they all say they never saw a vessel like ours, and I believe we are
the first vessel that ever was in this port." Doubtless the explanation is that Meares's
longboat had been in that bay in the preceding July and in the altercation the natives
had learned by sad experience the effects of firearms.
On the morning of the 31st March the "Washington" sailed from Port San Juan,
crossed to the southern shore of the strait, and followed it eastward for some twelve
miles to a point near Clallam Bay. This marks Gray's most easterly point on that
shore; then he turned and tacked across to the northern. Haswell says: " To have
run further up these straits at this boisterous season of the year without any knowledge of where we were going or what difficulties we might meet in this unknown sea,
would have been the height of imprudence, especially as the wind was situated so we
could not return at pleasure. The straits appeared to extend their breadth a little way
above our present situation and formed a large sea stretching to the east and no land
as far as the eye could reach." THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 27
Though the " Washington " remained for three days in the strait sailing backward
and forward between Port San Juan and Neah Bay and trading with the; Indians, no
further attempt to proceed eastward occurred—the Americans being informed that no
sea-otter skins were to be obtained in that vicinity. On 3rd April the " Washington "
rounded Cape Flattery and bore away to the southward. However, she encountered
a heavy gale and about a week later was back at Clayoquot Sound. Agairi she headed
for Juan de Fuca Strait and spent a week or more trading near Cape Flattery; but no
attempt was made to enter and explore the strait. No sea-otter skins; no explorations. And it was out of this small mohehill of fact that Meares builded that wonderful story of the circumnavigation of Vancouver Island by the " Washington " in
1789. But this was to have been expected from the man who in April, 1790, could
make a claim of $653,433, and in September, 1790, could increase it to i469,865 (i.e.,
quadruple it), and yet in February, 1793, could accept $210,000, being one-third of first
claim and one-twelfth of the increased one.
Now let us glance for a few moments at the Spanish exploration of the Strait
of Fuca.
Mention has already been made of the examination undertaken by Martinez in
1789 to verify his thought that he had seen in 1774 a strait in the latitude of 48° 30'.
Martinez, if one may judge from his diary entries and from his conduct, seems to
have been the style of man of whom Shakespeare speaks:—
" But man, proud man!
Drest in a brief authority:
Most ignorant of what he's most assured,
His glassy essence,—like an angry ape,
Plays such fantastic tricks before high heaven,
As make the angels weep."*
However it may have been with those celestial beings, he made much trouble for
Spain during his short regime at Nootka in the summer of 1789. His conduct brought
to the touchstone Spain's claims of sovereignty of this western land and of her
ownership of the commerce, fishing, and navigation of the Pacific.
Flores, the. Viceroy- of Mexico, recalled him in the fall of 1789. Just why, or
how, does not seem quite clear. At any rate, nothing can be found in his diary which
throws any light on the point. Certainly his recall was in no way connected with all
the trouble he had set in motion by seizing Meares's vessels; for the captured ships
only reached Mexico at the same time as he did and no word had been sent before.
fai 1790 the Spanish Viceroy, Revilla Gigedo, who had succeeded Flores, re-established the settlement of Nootka, and having, it would appear, before him the report
of Martinez's examination in the preceding year, ordered the new commandante Elisa
to cause a minute survey of the entrance of de Fuca to be made. Manuel Quimper
in the sloop " Princessa Real" undertook the investigation. Of course the " Princessa
Real" is none other than Meares's sloop, the " Princess Royal," which Martinez had
seized the preceding year.
Sailing from Nootka on 31st May, 1790, Quimper examined Clayoquot Sound, and
then having reached the mysterious strait began his exploration. As his first mate he
had a man who was no stranger to the coast—Gonzales Lopez de Haro. This man
had been in command of the " San Carlos " in 1789. He is frequently referred' to by
Meares and Kendrick, both of whom persist in giving an English equi-sonant and
hiding his identity under the name of " Captain Arrow." Haro, by the way, has been
about as well treated in the matter of name as he could ask for or deserve. His captain, Quimper, in 1790 named after him Ponta de San Gonzalo and Canal de Lopez
de Haro. These two having become shortened into Gonzales Point and Haro Strait,
Captain Kellett in 1847 observed that Lopez had not been attached to anything. Hence
he affixed it to one of the islands of the San Juan group.
Quimper's map shows that he landed and took possession at the western entrance
to Esquimalt Harbour, at Neah Bay, and near New Dungeness.   We know that he
* Measure for Measure, Act 2, sec. 2. 28 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION
entered Sooke Harbour and examined Esquimalt. He not only explored the strait,
but also the widened portion, which he called Seno de Santa Rosa. Having examined
the northern shore to the San Juan archipelago, he, on 18th July, turned across to
the southern shore and made his way leisurely westward. After taking possession at
Neah Bay on 1st August, 1790, he sailed for Nootka. Headwinds and boisterous
weather so obstructed him that on 13th August he turned the " Princessa Real" towards the southward and reached Monterey on 2nd September.
A copy of his map is to be found in the " Papers relating to San Juan Difficulty,"
Berlin Arbitration. Though he scattered names bountifully, Gonzales Point and Haro
Strait are practically the only ones that have remained. While Quimper was sailing
southward in the " Princessa" her old captain, Colnett, was headed northward to
obtain her.  They passed each other in transit.
In the following year Elisa received orders from Mexico to complete the discoveries made by Quimper. It might be, said geographers, that some of the numerous
channels whose mouths Quimper had seen, might lead to the Arctic Ocean—might
lead to the strait so long and so vainly sought—the North-west Passage. The com-
mandante, following the adage of Miles Standish: " If you want a thing well done do
it yourself, don't leave it to others," determined to take charge of the expedition. He
had two vessels—the " San Carlos" under his own immediate command and the
schooner " Horcasites" alias the " Saturnina," of which Narvaaez, who had made
Martinez's expedition of 1789, was master.
Sailing from Nootka on 5th May, 1791, the " San Carlos" on the 29th entered
Esquimalt, which Quimper in the preceding year had named Cordoba. The schooner,
which had delayed to make some exploration of Barkley Sound, arrived on 16th June.
The " San Carlos " had before that date dispatched a boat to explore Haro Strait,
but the natives manifested hostility and the Spaniards were compelled to fire upon
them. Now, after the " Saturnina " arrived, she' " had to fire upon the canoes of the
inhabitants to defend the launch of the San Carlos which came to her company
and of which they obstinately endeavoured to gain possession."
Thereafter the two vessels sailed in company through Haro Strait, rounding
Saturna Island—which is Saturnina in its original form—and discovering the Strait of
Georgia, which they named Le Gran Canal de Nuestra Senora del Rosario la Marinera.
Elisa's map, which is reproduced in the " Papers relating to San Juan," shows that he
gave the greater part of his attention to the examination of the northern waterway.
He saw Point Roberts, Point Grey, Point Atkinson, Howe Sound, Thormanby Island,
Texada, Lasqueti, and Cape Lazo. Scurvy, that scourge of the sea, whose terrors
Captain Cook removed, caused him at that point to abandon the further prosecution
of the undertaking.
It would seem that he was back at Nootka by August. Elisa had seen so many
openings at almost every point of the compass—not one of which had he traced or
followed—that one can well believe his feelings to be as he wrote them in his report
to the Viceroy of New Spain (Mexico) ; "Assuring Your Excellency that the passage
to the ocean which foreign nations seek for so eagerly on this coast, if there be one,
will not be found as it appears to me, elsewhere than in this great channel."
In the following year came the end of the Spanish effort—the voyage of the " Sutil"
and the " Mexicana," of which a full account is given in the authoritative Government"
report, and the definitive voyage of Vancouver, which completely satisfied by showing
that all the various inlets that emptied into the Strait of Georgia had been examined
and followed to their ends and that no North-west Passage existed in this latitude.
Thus discovered by an Englishman, Barkley; entered first by an Englishman,
Meares; charted first by an Englishman, Duncan; though Spaniards and Americans
continued to follow its ramifications and leave only doubts; it remained for an Englishman, Vancouver, to trace it and all its subsidiary waters to their ends and to show
to the world that no North-west Passage existed in this latitude. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 29
By Major F. V. Longstaff.
After the settlement in 1795 of the Nootka Island dispute between Spain and
Great Britain there was no cause for British frigates to proceed to the north-west
coast until 1844, when Doctor John McLoughlin, commanding the forces of the Hudson's Bay Company in the Pacific department, appealed to the British Government for
protection against the increasing stream of United States emigrants. This action of
the Doctor forms part of what is commonly known as the northern Oregon boundary
The exploring sloop " Blossom" was on the coast in 1818, 1826, and 1827, while
H.M. barque " Sulphur " and H.M. cutter " Starling" were there in 1837, and these
were under the British Admiralty.
The United States exploring expedition under Commodore Charles Wilkes, U.S.N.,
was in the Strait of Fuca from 30th April until 3rd June, 1841. It consisted of the
" Vincennes," " Peacock," " Porpoise," " Sea-Gull," and " Flying-Fish," but not all entered the strait, some remaining up the Columbia River.
The " Pacific" Station was evolved in 1837 from the " South East Coast of
America," and by 1844 the northerly limit of the flagship's beat was northern Mexico.-
It was from this part of the coast that most of the gold and silver for Europe was
shipped for safety in British men-of-war. This unofficial traffic was most lucrative
to the captains and crews of the ships, and took place as each ship neared the end of
her commission and so became due for return to Great Britain round South America.
"The South East Coast of America" Station was a later name for the "Brazils"
Station. Though the name of the Commander-in-Chief, Pacific, is given in the Navy
Lists for 1843 and 1844, yet until the list for 1845 appeared no names of ships are
shown as being on that station, all the names appear as detailed to the " South East
Coast of America"  Station.
The " Brazils" Station was formed as the consequence of the transfer of the
Portuguese Royal Family, in 1807, from Portugal to Brazil. A squadron consisting of
the British men-of-war "London," "Marlborough," "Bedford," and "Monarch,"
under Commodore Graham Moore, escorted them out. It left Lisbon on the 2nd December, 1807, and arrived at Bahia on 19th January, 1808.
Valparaiso Harbour was the earliest rendezvous and headquarters for the men-of-
war of the " Pacific " Station. The old frigate " Nereus " came out in 1843 as a store
depot under a Master-Commander and was moored in Valparaiso Harbour until about
1878, when she was superseded by another old frigate, the " Liffey." The latter was,
however, moored in the harbour of Coquimbo, which is farther north than Valparaiso.
In addition, a third old frigate, the " Naiad," was moored as a store depot in Callao
Harbour from 1851 until about 1865.
Esquimalt Harbour first saw a British man-of-war in 1848, when H.M. frigate
" Constance," Captain G. W. C. Courtenay in command, anchored there in July of that
year. Up to that time the British men-of-war had followed Captain Vancouver's usage
and frequented Port Discovery, on the south side of the strait, between New Dunge-
ness and Port Townsend. The frigate " Fisgard " during 1846 was at anchor outside
Port Camosun from 5th to 8th May and on 11th and 12th October.
The Strait of Fuca and Esquimalt Harbour first saw the flag of a British Admiral
in 1851, and this was flying on the fourth-rate ship-of-war " Portland," of 52 guns,
launched at Plymouth in 1822. The Commander-in-Chief who thus had to see after
British interests on the spot was Rear-Admiral Fairfax Moresby, who had been appointed to this station on 21st August, 1850.
From 1837 and onwards there were demands for commerce protection in the
Pacific Ocean, where then no force was maintained. There were repeated calls from"
our Consuls in Mexico, at Valparaiso, and in Peru for means to safeguard life,
property, and trade interests in times of internal disturbance in the unsettled States
The United States were at war with Mexico from 1845 to 1848, and the Spanish
flag at Yerba Buena (San Francisco) gave place to the Stars and Stripes on 9th July,
At this time the Pacific Station was a very large one in area, and stretched from
Cape Horn along South America and Central America, and was soon to extend up
north to Vancouver Island and to Russian Alaska. Thus the station became the largest
in the world, and we find Rear-Admiral Sir G. F. Seymour, on H.M.S. " Collingwood "
at San Bias, writing to the Secretary of the Admiralty on 7th April, 1846: "Having
addressed their Lordships on the necessity of an increase to the force on this station,
in the last month, I need not further recur to a subject of which I am confident their
Lordships will see the importance under present circumstances."
In 1844, just before the United States war with Mexico opened, Rear-Admiral Sir
G. F. Seymour instructed Commander Thomas Baillie, commanding H.M. corvette
" Modeste," to proceed on exploration duty to the Columbia River and afterwards up
the Strait of Fuca to Fort Nisqually, at the head of Puget Sound.
In 1845 the Provisional Government of the Oregon Country attempted to extend
its jurisdiction to the north of the Columbia River. The Provisional Government drew
its authority from the Convention of 20th October, 1818, between Great Britain and
the f.hiited States, the third article of which was continued by the Convention of 6th
August, 1827, between the same two parties.   The third article referred to reads: —
" It is agreed that any country that may be claimed by either party on the northwest coast of America, westward of the Stony Mountains, Shall together with its
harbours, bays, and creeks, and the navigation of all rivers within the same, be free
and open, for the term of ten years from date of the signature of the present convention, to the vessels, citizens, and subjects of the two Powers: it being well understood,
that this agreement is not to be construed to the prejudice of any claim, which either
of the two high contracting parties may have to any part of the said country, nor shall
it be taken to affect the claims of any other Power or State to any part of the said
country; the only object of the high contracting parties, in that respect, being to prevent disputes and differences amongst themselves."
Under the Conventions of 1818 and 1827, there was a joint occupancy by Great
Britain and the United States, the Oregon Country being without any laws of its
own. Most of the United States citizens in Oregon were in favour of forming, by
popular vote, a Provisional Government. On the other hand, most of the British subjects in Oregon were opposed to the formation of a Provisional Government, as it
might interfere with their allegiance to Great Britain. On February 17th and 18th,
1841, an indecisive meeting was held at the Methodist Mission. In 1843 another effort
was made to form a Provisional Governing Body. On 2nd May in that year a successful meeting was held at Champoeg, when, by a vote of 52 in favour and 50
against, the Provisional Government of Oregon was authorized. An Executive Committee of three was elected to act in place of a Governor. This Provisional Government continued until it was succeeded by a Territorial Government in March, 1849,
when General Joseph Lane arrived in the country and became the first Governor.
The American people were certainly reaching out to possess the land. The United
States Congress was constantly hearing discussions upon some bill or report concerning Oregon, and was taking care that thousands of copies of the speeches and reports
were circulated through the country. In August, 1842, Senator Linn stated that there
were already between 1,500 and 2,000 United States citizens located in Oregon, and he
desired to assure them, and the many on the road to that region, that although it was
upon the fringe of the Republic, the Government of the F/nited States would not
abandon them to any foreign power.
The cumulative result of this propaganda was the United States cry of " 54^-40 or
fight," and in Great Britain this was taken very seriously.
Holman states that McLoughlin appealed to the Directors of the Hudson's Bay
Company (in London, probably by way of Panama) for additional force to protect
their property and servants in the Oregon Country.    Holman further states that the THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 31
Doctor, in June, 1844, received a reply from the Directors that no protection could be
obtained from the British Government.
On the other hand, Commander Thomas Baillie, R.N., writing to the Commander-
in-Chief of the Pacific Station, dated on board H.M. sloop-of-war " Modeste," off
Fort Vancouver, Columbia River, 4th August, 1844, states that he reached the Fort
on 11th July of that year. Hence We find that a British sloop-of-war anchored off
Fort Vancouver about one month after McLoughlin received the letter refusing help,
which is mentioned by Holman.
On 15th August, 1845, Doctor McLoughlin and all his officers of the Pacific Department of the H.B. Company in the Oregon Country became parties to the Oregon
Provisional Government. " The oath of office required each man to swear that he
would support the organic laws of the Provisional Government of Oregon so far as
said laws are consistent with his duties as a citizen of the United States, or a subject
of Great Britain." The Doctor was severely criticized by the Directors of the Company for his action in recognizing the Provisional Government. Unknown to the
Doctor, there were even then some frigates and corvettes coming up from Mexican
waters to protect British interests on the Columbia River.
A few days after McLoughlin had recognized the Provisional Government, he was
surprised by the arrival, via Puget Sound, of Lieutenant William Peel, R.N., and
Captain Henry W. Parks, of the Royal Marines, with a letter from Captain the Hon.
John Gordon, R.N., of H.M. frigate " America." They also carried a letter from
Rear-Admiral Sir G. F. Seymour, the Commander-in-Chief of the Pacific Station,
saying that "firm protection would be given to British subjects in Oregon."
After the Rear-Admiral had received Captain Gordon's report, he sent the
" Modeste" again up the Columbia River to Fort Vancouver, where she remained
until the Boundary Treaty of 1846 was completed.
In consequence of orders from the Home Government during 1845, the Commander-in-Chief ordered Captain the Hon. John Gordon, R.N., commanding H.M.
frigate " America," to proceed to the Strait of Juan de Fuca and along Puget Sound
to Fort Nisqually, from whence a shore party was to proceed to Fort Vancouver, on
the Columbia River. The real object of the visit of the "America" is clearly indicated in part of the letter to the Secretary of the Admiralty, dated 14th July, 1845,
H.M. ship " Collingwood," at Callao. It is from Rear-Admiral Sir G. F. Seymour, who
wrote: " I have in my letter of the 8th February, apprised their Lordships that I had
ordered the Honourable Captain Gordon to proceed in execution of the instructions
of the 5th September and unless circumstances have retarded him on the coasts of
Mexico, or California, it is probable that the ' America' may be in the strait of Juan
de Fuca at about this period; and I hope that the party for the purpose of reaching Fort
Vancouver, from Puget Sound, may have arrived and shewn, the British part of the
population on the banks of the Columbia, that our government is well inclined to
afford them protection.
" My directions to Captain Gordon were to take up an anchorage, which will be,
I have no doubt, in Port Discovery, as there is no good anchorage for a ship-of-war
at the new settlement of Fort Victoria, and request the officers of the H.B. Company
in charge of that station to procure him the assistance of the Company's small steam
vessel, by which to establish a communication by Nisqually at the head of Puget's
sound, and thence overland to Fort Vancouver; and if he detached officers to make
the enquiries directed by their Lordships' Instructions of September last, he was to
select those of prudence and intelligence, and to cause them to be accompanied by a
sufficient party to secure them against the attacks of predatory Indians or other ill-
disposed persons, but to avoid any military display.
" I have had much conversation with Commander Baillie, relative to his visit to
the Columbia and Juan de Fuca, "1844. From the information he derived from the
officers of the H.B. Company it appears there is a difficulty in getting up Puget's
sound, and that in the ' Modeste' he could not expect to reach the Head in less than
a fortnight, during the summer." 32 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
For the previous twenty years or so there has been a legend in Victoria that either
the "America" or the " Fisgard " was the first British man-of-war to anchor in the
harbour of Esquimalt. Recent research in the logs of the above ships in the Public
Record Office, London, has proved the legend to be false.
The log of the frigate " America " has been searched, and it is found that though
she was inside the Strait of Juan de Fuca from 28th August until about the 1st
October, 1845, yet no entry can be found of her having entered Esquimalt Harbour.
On the contrary, it is recorded that she used Port Discovery, formerly under the
British flag, but now in the State of Washington, which Captain Vancouver used and
surveyed in  1792.
The log of the frigate " Fisgard " has been searched and it is found that she1 was
inside the Strait of Juan de Fuca from 30th April until about 13th October, 1846,
but no record has yet been found of her having entered Esquimalt Harbour.
The Admiralty having given special permission, the files of " In Letters" to the
Secretary of the Admiralty from the Commander-in-Chief, Pacific Station, from 1844
till 1848 have been searched and a bountiful harvest of data obtained.
The frigate " Fisgard," Captain John Alexander Duntz, was the third sailing
man-of-war to be sent through the Strait of Juan de Fuca and up to the head of
Puget Sound to Fort Nisqually from under the Commander-in-Chief's eye at Valparaiso. Here is a part of the Captain Duntz's instructions by Sir G. F. Seymour,
dated on board H.M.S. " Collingwood," at Valparaiso, 14th January, 1846: "You are
hereby directed to put to sea in Her Majesty's ship under your command, on Thursday 15th inst. and make the best of your way to San Bias in Mexico, where you are
to report your arrival to the Honourable Captain Gordon of the America,   .    .    .
" In the event of Captain Gordon not being within reach, you are to communicate
with Her Majesty's Consul at Tepic, and inform yourself from him of the state of
things in Mexico, and the countries to the north;    .    .    .
"You will, however, keep in view that the principal object for which you are
detached is to afford protection to Her Majesty's subjects in Oregon and the northwest coast early in the approaching spring, and in the event of no urgent cause appearing for your postponing the execution of that important service, you are to
proceed to the straits of Juan de Fuca, timing your arrival as early as possible in the
month of April.
"You will endeavour, on your arrival, to communicate with Fort Victoria, a
settlement of the Hudson's Bay Company, on the south side of Vancouver's or Quadra
island, in the above straits. There you will probably be able to gain intelligence of
the state of affairs in Oregon, and to procure the assistance of a pilot, or the steam
vessel of the Company to facilitate your entry into Puget's sound, to which you will
" From Fort Nisqually at the upper part of that inlet, or other convenient anchorage, you will place yourself in communication, by way of the settlement on the
Cowlitz, with Fort Vancouver on the Columbia, employing for that purpose officers"
whose prudence and intelligence may be relied upon."
During this period there were two paddle-steamers under the British flag in the
waters of the north-west, the H.B. Company's "Beaver" being the first on the coast
and the steam-vessel " Cormorant" second. The " Beaver," 109 tons, was launched
in 1835 and arrived at Fort Vancouver in 1836? on 18th March. The " Cormorant"
was the seventh of that name-in the Navy. She was built in 1842, was 1,057 tons,
had engines of 300 horse-power, carried 6 guns and a crew of 143 men. The " Cormorant " had a wider field of action than the " Beaver," as she had to cruise from
Callao to northern Mexico, across to the Sandwich Islands and in Vancouver Island
waters. She was commanded by Captain George T. Gordon, and is mentioned in the
logs of British men-of-war as working inside the Strait of Juan de Fuca and along
Puget Sound during the summers of 1846, 1847, and 1848. The seventh " Cormorant"
was broken up at Deptford in 1853.
In 1848 the new 50-gun frigate " Constance " (the second of that name, launched
at Pembroke in 1846), Captain G. W. C. Courtenay, entered the Strait of Juan de THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 33
Fuca and anchored in Esquimalt Harbour on the 25th of July, having sailed from
Honolulu on the 28th June. She sailed for San Francisco on the 4th of September,
1848. This information has been obtained both from her log for that year and from
the log of H.M. surveying brig " Pandora " of the same year. The entry in the latter
log for Thursday, 10th of August, 1848, says: "At 4 p.m. found H.M.S. 'Constance'
at Esquimalt and the Hon. H.B Coy. schooner ' Cadboro' in the inner harbour." As
.this is the earliest mention of a man-of-war in Esquimalt Harbour found in a naval
log-book, it is therefore obvious that the " Constance" was the first vessel of the
British Navy to anchor in Esquimalt Harbour.
In 1849 another man-of-war, H.M. frigate " Inconstant," Captain John Shepherd,
entered the strait on the 11th of May and anchored outside Esquimalt Harbour the
same day. At 8.40 a.m. the next day she weighed anchor and sailed into Esquimalt
Harbour, anchoring at 9.45 a.m. Her visit terminated on Saturday, 2nd of June,
when at 5 a.m. she was towed out by her own boats and anchored, probably in Royal
Roads, at 8 a.m. On the afternoon of Sunday, the 3rd, one seaman and two boys
were discharged into the British barque " Harpooner," in lieu of three seamen received
on board the frigate at the request of the master. On the afternoon of the following
day sail was made and the frigate began to work out of the strait. On Tuesday, 5th
June, she had passed Cape Flattery, bound south.
It is interesting to note that Rear-Admiral R. C. Mayne mentions in his book,
published in 1862, that he was in the " Inconstant" during 1849 when she visited
Esquimalt, so that he, like Vancouver, made his first visit to Vancouver Island when
a midshipman, thus preparing for the more responsible work during the second period
of service in the Island waters.
During these early years of white race settlement in what was then known as
Oregon Territory, the Chief Hydrographer of the Navy did not overlook these un-
-charted waters. In 1845 Captain Henry Kellet, C.B., hoisted his pennant on H.M.
surveying sloop-of-war " Herald," of 25 guns, commissioning her at Sheerness on the
8th of February.
' Captain Kellett sailed from England on 26th of June of the same year, and after
making the first surveys of different parts of the Chilian and Peruvian coasts he commenced the survey of the coast of Columbia, between Guayquil and Panama, till then
only known from the accounts of Dampier and other older authors. This survey was
completed with the aid of Lieutenant James Wood, R.N.    During the summer  of
1846 he surveyed the Strait of Juan de Fuca, returning to Central America afterwards. From the above survey he produced two new charts, " Strait of Fuca, 1846,"
and " Haro and Rosario Straits, 1846." These two charts are engraved with the year
1847, but the work was really done in the former year.    During the whole of the year
1847 Captain Kellett was surveying the coast of Central and South America. In 1848
the " Herald " was made into a relief-ship to search for Sir John Franklin; and this
was continued for three seasons in all.
The " Herald " left the harbour of Callao about 18th December, 1845, and arrived
in the strait on Thursday, 25th June, 1846, of course making several calls for water,
orders, and food, on the way north. The ship's log on 25th June states: " Entered
Straits of Fuca under sail on afternoon of 25th. The next day at 8.30 a.m. met H.M.
Steam Vessel ' Cormorant.' Sounded and got 60 fathoms. 11 a.m. took in studding
sails. 11.30 a.m. taken in tow by ' Cormorant.' 7.15 p.m. Cast off, and anchored in a
bay in Vancouver Island in 20 fathoms with small bower, cable veered to 48 fathoms.
Hoisted out whale boats." Captain Kellett had completed all work possible by the
end of August. The log says: " On the 3rd September the ' Herald' was in Sooke
bay, and on the 5th of the same month anchored in Neah bay, and she arrived in
San Francisco bay on the 18th September, 1846, at 8 a.m."
During the year 1847 Captain Kellett was surveying the coasts of Central and
South America.  To be precise, he was to the south of Panama from 26th January,
1847, until 1st January, 1848.  Towards the end of April, 1848, Captain Kellett received
orders to proceed through Behring's Strait, in order to co-operate with Commander
T. E. L. Moore, R.N., of H.M. discovery brig " Plover," in searching the north-western
extremity of America and the Arctic Sea for traces of Sir John Franklin. Towed by
H.M. steam-vessel " Sampson," the " Herald," accompanied by H.M. survey brig
" Pandora," left the Bay of Panama on the 9th of May, and on the 11th she parted
company with the " Pandora," which was to communicate at Oahu with the " Plover "
and thence proceed to the Strait of Juan de Fuca to carry on the survey. The " Pandora" anchored at Port Victoria on Thursday, 10th August, when she found H.M.
frigate " Constance" in Esquimalt Harbour and the H.B. Company's schooner " Cad-
boro " in the inner harbour. The " Pandora " sailed from Port Victoria on 7th September and passed outside Cape Flattery on the evening of 13th September proceeding
south, thus spending just over a month inside the strait.
To return to Vancouver Island and its change from government by the Hudson's
Bay Company to that by a Governor under the Colonial Office:—
" Under the provisions of the Hudson's Bay Company's grant, charter and licence
to trade, Vancouver Island and Its Dependencies were separated from the Indian
.Territories (the name which was generally given to the portions of British North
America south-west and north-west of Rupert's Land), and a charter of grant of
Vancouver Island was made to the Hudson's Bay Company on January 13th, 1849,
with the express intent and object that the Governor and Company should within five
years from that date, establish on the said Island settlements of resident colonists,
British subjects, and dispose of the land to them at a reasonable price, to be applied
as therein mentioned, towards the colonization and improvement of the Island—under
penalty of forfeiture."
The charter of the grant of Vancouver Island to the Hudson's Bay Company was
made on the 13th January, 1849, and became the groundwork of a new political
departure in the Far West of a new British possession.
In July, 1849, Richard Blanshard, Esquire, was " appointed Governor and Commander-in-Chief in and over the Island of Vancouver and Its Dependencies," by a Commission under the Great Seal of the United Kingdom. Governor Richard Blanshard,
proceeding to the north-west coast, arrived at Fort Victoria on 10th March, 1850, in
H.M. steam-vessel " Driver," under Captain Charles R. Johnson. (As there, was no
Government House, H.M. " Driver " became the Governor's residence during its short
stay in the new colony.) The following day the Governor read his Commission, after
which it could be said that the Common Law of England became effective in the •
infant colony. The " Driver " was a vessel of 1,056 tons, with engines of 280 horsepower, carried 6 guns, and had been launched at Portsmouth in 1841.
On 22nd September, 1850, H.M. corvette " Daedalus," Captain George Greville
Wellesley, arrived in Esquimalt Harbour, having been commissioned at Devonport in
July, 1849. Governor Blanshard at once proceeded on the corvette himself to Fort
Rupert, at the northern end of Vancouver Island, where the Indians had killed three
white sailors. On the 11th October Doctor S. Helmcken, the magistrate at Fort
Rupert, visited the Newitty village on Hope Island and demanded by name the murderers for trial. The whole tribe took up arms, and, while acknowledging the crime,
they refused to give up the guilty members. They offered furs as an amend. At the
•same time they threatened the lives of the magistrate and his party, pointing their
guns at them.
On learning this at Fort Rupert, the Governor applied to Captain Wellesley for
assistance. The latter dispatched the boats of the " Daedalus " on the 12th October
to arrest the murderers. The Indian village was found deserted, it was burnt, and
the boats returned without any prisoners.
The first detailed charts of parts of Vancouver Island were published at the
Hydrographic Office, London, during 1848; " Sheet Number 1901" of Esquimalt Harbour was published on 8th of September, while "Sheet Number 1897" of Victoria
Harbour -was published on the 15th of September. The first general chart, " Number
1911," of the whole Strait of Fuca up to Discovery Island was published on 18th
The year 1851 was important from the fact that for the first time in history the
Commander-in-Chief of the Pacific Station visited Esquimalt Harbour. This officer
was Rear-Admiral Fairfax Moresby, C.B., who flew his flag on the 52-gun ship
" Portland," a comparatively new vessel, as she had only been launched in 1822 at
Plymouth. His flag-captain was Henry Chads, Esquire, and his flag-lieutenant was
his eldest son, Fairfax. (His eldest son was lost in 1858 when in command of H.M.S.
" Sappho" in Bass's Strait. His second son, John, was gunnery-mate on H.M.S.
" Thetis.")
According to a letter from James Douglas dated 28th June, 1851, to W. F. Tolmie,
at Nisqually, Admiral Fairfax Moresby intended to make reprisals on the Fort Rupert
Indians unless they gave up the murderers of the three seamen slain by them the
previous summer. In addition, the centre of gravity of the Pacific Coast of America
had moved from Panama to San Francisco, the population of the latter having jumped
from 900 to 20,000 during the latter half of 1848. The Oregon boundary had been
decided on during 1846, and the years immediately following were occupied with the
readjustment necessary on the moving of the administration and part of the population.
The frigate " Thetis?" Captain Augustus Kuper, C.B., was sent north to the
Strait of Fuca for the summer of 1852. Amongst her officers was John Moresby,
gunnery-mate, afterwards an admiral, and author of a book of travel and exploration.
Admiral John Moresby says in his book: " We were bound for Esquimalt, which already had commended itself as the best harbour near Fort Victoria, the recently
established trading station of the Hudson Bay Company. The difficulty was to find it,
for, incredible as it may seem, we had only a written description by a former visitor.
Moreover, we wished to know if H.M.S. ' Amphitrite' was there. . . . Rounding
a wooded point, the beautiful harbour of Esquimalt came into sight, and the plunge
of our anchor sent the echoes flying through the surrounding forests—no sound else,
not a creature stirring, as we looked at the lonely place that was to be our home for
some months."
The frigate " Amphitrite" mentioned above was commanded by Captain Charles
Frederick, who commissioned her in 1850. She carried 24 guns, and during the second
year of the Russian war became senior officer's ship, in the Pacific, for a few months.
A.fter some stay at Port Esquimalt the " Thetis" was ordered to Fort Rupert.
Admiral Moresby proceeds to relate: " On 7th June we left Fort Rupert for Queen
Charlotte Islands, 130 miles distant. A gale and fog met us in the narrow Narwitti
channel . . . three days later we sighted Queen Charlotte's Islands. For a considerable time the hunters of the Hudson's Bay Company had frequented these islands,
seeking bear, sea-otter, and other peltry. Quite recently gold had been found. A
Yankee schooner was reported there, and hence our visit, the first made by a man-
" By the aid of the Hudson's Bay Company's pilot we found the fiord we were
seeking, and entered the narrow channel, with pine and cedar clad mountains rising
1,000 feet above our mast-heads on either side, whilst underneath the lead found
no bottom at JO fathoms. For miles farther up the fiord slanted sharply to the east;
the wind followed; and three miles farther the fiord ended, where a rushing torrent
plunged from a mountain gorge. Here we found bottom with 36 fathoms, and secured
the ship with hawsers to the trees on either side."
Moresby was much impressed by the fine-looking Skittaget Indians, their graceful
canoes and boldly carved totem-poles. He says: " Our business was to report on the
gold prospects, and there it was, running in quartz veins through the granite rocks
overhanging the deep inlet."
Farther on the Admiral says: " At the end of January, 1853, our stay of eight
months at Vancouver (Island) came to an end. We left for San Francisco, taking
With us some immense spars to be sold there for the benefit of the ship's fund."
Again he remarks: "A month later saw us at Mazatlan, on the northwest coast of
Mexico, to take our turn in collecting a freight of gold and silver specie for transmission to England." H.M.S. " Pique " on the Pacific Station about 1856. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 37
In the summer of 1853 the paddle sloop-of-war " Virago," under Captain J. C.
Prevost, arrived at Esquimalt from Valparaiso. This naval steamer was of 1,060 tons,
carried 6 guns, her engines developed 300 horse-power, and she was launched at
Chatham in 1842. Mr. Archibald Bain was her chief engineer, being appointed to
her on 20th March, 1850. There is a picture of her in "The Navy and Army Illustrated" of the 25th June, 1897, page 58. In this she is shown with two masts, but
yards only on the foremast. She was the third British naval steam-vessel to enter
Juan de Fuca Strait.
After a short stay in Esquimalt Harbour the " Virago " proceeded north to Queen
Charlotte Island waters, thus continuing the work of the " Thetis " of the previous
year. Her master, Mr. G. H. Inskip, made a running survey of Virago Sound and
Naden Harbour. It was during this survey that it was discovered that the Queen
Charlotte group consisted chiefly of two large islands.
In the spring of 1853 the frigate " Trincomalee," of 24 guns. Captain Wallace
Houston, arrived at Esquimalt from Valparaiso. She had only arrived at the latter
port on the 12th November, 1852, from England. She. was not a very old ship, having
been launched at Bombay in 1819, being built on the lines of the French frigate
" Leda." According to Walbran, the "Trincomalee" in 1856 carried a company of
Colonial Militia, under the command of Captain (the late Senator) Macdonald and
Governor Douglas, to Cowichan Bay to arrest an Indian who had shot a white man.
The " Trincomalee" carried provisions for the Arctic Relief vessels during the
Russian war and, therefore, under special agreement, was, together with the other
vessels engaged in the same work, exempt from attack. The London Times of 8th
November, 1854, says: " H.M.S. ' Trincomalee' arrived at San Francisco on 18th
September from Port Clarence, where she communicated with H.M. vessel ' Discovery,'
and the ships ' Rattlesnake' and ' Plover.' The ' Trincomalee' remained at Honolulu
from 19th May to 1st June, while the (Russian) frigate ' Diana' was in port. Entire
good feeling existed between the British and Russian officers." A later dispatch to the
Times of the 10th says: "' Trincomalee' left the Sandwich Isles 1st June, with provisions for the Discovery ships in the North (Arctic) Sea. On second day out she
passed Russian frigate ' Aurora,' which had all guns shotted. She was waiting for
' Diana' to hear about declaration of war."
On the 27th March, 1854, Great Britain and France declared war against Russia.
At the same time there was a mutual understanding to respect the stations of all the
fur-trading companies on the north-west coast.
On the 17th of May Rear-Admiral David Price, in H.M. frigate " President," with
H.M. steam-vessel " Virago," left Callao for the Marquesas Islands, together with the
French men-of-war " La Forte" and " Obligado." The chief town of the islands,
Nukahiva, was reached on 8th June. The combined force remained there until 3rd
July, when it sailed for Honolulu in quest of the enemy.
In those days Nukahiva was a French naval base of a sort; there was always a
French ship-of-war at anchor there, as well as a small fort with three guns and a
garrison of about 150 soldiers.
The British force on arrival at Honolulu consisted of the " President," 50 guns;
" Amphitrite," 25 guns; " Pique," 36 guns; and " Virago," 6 guns; while the French
had " La Forte," 60 guns; " Eurydice," 30 guns ; " Artenise," 30 guns; and " Obligado," 16 guns.
Shortly after leaving Honolulu the British frigate "Amphitrite," Captain Charles
Frederick, and the French corvette " L'Artemise," Commander Charles L'Eveque,
were detached to protect the trade off the coast of California.
The Times correspondent, writing from San Francisco on 15th October. 1854, says:
" I think it likely that by this time you will have heard of the attack by the Allied
squadrons on Petropaulovski. . . . The affair has really been a sad one. The intelligence was brought to San Francisco by the French squadron which arrived here
on 3rd October, under Admiral Des Ponte. The English squadron went to Vancouver's
Island and is expected here daily.    It is rumoured that the 'Amphitrite' has gone to 38~ BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION. .
Sandwich Islands. Her commander, Captain Frederick, being the Senior Officer in
the Squadron, is now the Commodore by the death of Admiral David Price."
The paddle steamer-of-war " Virago" arrived at San Francisco on 28th October
after a passage of six days from Victoria, Vancouver's Island; and the frigate
" Pique " on the same day arrived at Sauselito, in California.
The new Commander-in-Chief, Rear-Admiral W. H. Bruce, was appointed on the
25th November, 1854. The line-of-battle ship "Monarch," of 84 guns, was commissioned on 28th December by Captain G. E. Patey at Sheerness, and later she relieved the flagship " President."
In February, 1855, Rear-Admiral Bruce, writing from on board the " Monarch "
in Valparaiso Harbour to Governor Douglas at Victoria, says: " In all probability an
opportunity will be afforded me of visiting the Island in the month of July next, in
my flagship the ' Monarch' and bringing with me other ships-of-war. Your Excellency will probably be able to provide a building . . . that may serve as a temporary hospital for the sick and wounded (resulting from a second visit to Saint Peter
and Paul), the want of which was so seriously felt last year."
During the summer of 1855 the second attack was made against the Russian forces
in Kamschatka by the Allied forces, when the defences of Saint Peter and Paul were
found to be deserted. The flagship " Monarch" arrived at Esquimalt on 28th August
of that year, but with no wounded to be treated at the hut hospital prepared by the
Governor as requested. The construction of these huts marks the first attempt on the
British Columbia Coast of establishing accommodation on shore for naval officers and
In 1856 the United States Government appointed a Commission to settle the disputed line of boundary after it reached the sea-coast, as well as to determine the
course which the parallel of 49° took across the continent.
The British Government in their turn appointed Commissioners for the like purpose. Captain James Charles Prevost was the first, and in the autumn of 1856 was
ordered to commission H.M. corvette " Satellite," of 21 guns, and to proceed to Vancouver Island. It was then discovered that no accurate chart of the channels in dispute existed; that the position and area of the group of islands among them were very
imperfectly known; while the relative value of the channels themselves could only be
arrived at from such meagre information as the masters of the two or three Hudson's
Bay Company's trading-vessels were able to give. It was therefore determined that a
surveying-vessel also should be dispatched—in the first place to make a complete survey of the disputed waters, and afterwards to continue it along the coast of Vancouver Island and the mainland of the British territory. For this purpose Captain
George Henry Richards was selected, and on 10th December, 1856, commissioned H.M.
screw steam surveying-vessel " Plumper," of 484 tons, at Portsmouth. Among her
officers we find names which have left their mark in British Columbia to this day.
These are Mayne, Bull, Forbes, Hankin, Bedwell, and Pender.
The " Plumper " arrived at Esquimalt Harbour on 9th November, 1857, when her
officers at once began the survey of the area in dispute. By 1859 she had proved too
small and had also become defective, so that H.M. paddle-sloop " Hecate," 860 tons,
was sent from England to replace her, and arrived on 23rd December, 1860. Most
of the officers transferred to the "Hecate" from the "Plumper," which then returned home.
The survey of these waters was continued by Captain Richards in the " Hecate "
until 1863, when he took her home, leaving Mr. Daniel Pender to carry on the work
of reconnaissance chart-making in the old hired steamer " Beaver." Mr. Pender, who
was a Master, R.N., continued the survey from the north end of Vancouver Island to
the Skeena River until November, 1870, when it was stopped and the shore office at
Esquimalt closed. This termination of the reconnaissance survey of the northern
coast of the mainland was brought about by the transference of the Crown Colony to
the Dominion of Canada in 1871, when the responsibility for making charts passed
from the Home Government to that of the Dominion. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 39
The first separate " Sailing Directions of Vancouver Island" was issued in 1864r
by the Hydrographic Department of the Admiralty, being the work of Captain
Richards, 1858-1862, and Mr. E. P. Bedwell, Master, R.N., 1862-1864.
We will now go back about thirty years and connect up with the protection given
to British trade on the South East Coast of America Station. In 1842, upon the outbreak of hostilities between Buenos Ayres and Montevideo, a " Senior Naval Officer,
Brazils," was established as a separate command, Commodore John B. Purvis being
appointed on 1st March, 1842. Purvis was relieved by Rear-Admiral Samuel Inglefield
on 5th March, 1845, who assumed the title of Commander-in-Chief, South East Coast
of America; and from that time to the date of the Russian war the two stations
existed separately, there being a Rear-Admiral Commander-in-Chief, South East Coasl
of America, and a Rear-Admiral Commander-in-Chief, Pacific.
Up to 1864 Chinese waters were within the limits of the East Indies Station; the
employment of H.M. ships in these seas being in support of and to safeguard the
trade of the Honourable East India Company. The China Station became a separate
command in 1864, and the East Indies Station were then joined to the Cape of Good
Hope Station.
The operations undertaken by Rear-Admiral Bruce, Commander-in-Chief of the
Pacific Station, in the last year of the Russian war were of a special nature, being
more than 2,000 miles outside his station. They were strictly inside the area of the
East Indies Station.
The year 1860 saw the arrival of the two screw gunboats—" Forward," 2 guns,
233 tons, and " Grappler," 2 guns, 270 tons—which were the first vessels of their kind
to arrive in British Columbia waters. Up to this year all the naval vessels had merely
visited these waters, but these two gunboats came to serve all their time in British
Columbia waters and they were recommissioned at Esquimalt. These two small vessels were escorted hither by the steam-frigate "Termagant," 24 guns, which arrived
on 12th August, 1860. On the 30th of August H.M. screw-corvette "Satellite" left
for home; she had been nearly four years in commission, three of which had been
spent with the Boundary Commission. Admiral Mayne, writing of the " Satellite,"
says: " Her departure could scarcely fail to remind us of the change that had taken
place since she entered Esquimalt Harbour three years back. It was the first time
that its waters had been disturbed by a steamship of such size; and now, as she
steamed out from the changed and busy port, homeward bound, she gave back the
hearty cheers of two of Her Majesty's frigates, two sloops, and as many gunboats."
During the period of the San Juan Island trouble and dispute the Commander-in-
Chief had to be in British Columbia waters so much that a " Senior Officer on the
Southern Division of the Station" was necessary. The first one was Commodore the
Hon. J. W. S. Spencer, appointed 11th June, 1859, with his pennant on the screw-
frigate " Topaze." He was succeeded on 23rd May, 1863, by Commodore Thomas
Harvey of the screw-frigate " Leander," who in turn was relieved on 23rd June, 1866,
by Commodore R. A. Powell, C.B. On the completion of Powell's period of command the office lapsed, as no successor was appointed.
We will now return to the first huts on Duntze Head at the entrance to Esquimalt
Harbour. On the receipt of Rear-Admiral Bruce's letter of February, 1855, Governor
Douglas had three wooden buildings erected on what is known as Duntze Head, at
the cost of £932, the land set apart for this purpose consisting of a 7-acre lot. This
is shown on the early chart of Esquimalt Harbour made by Lieutenant James Wood,
R.N., during 1846 and published in October, 1848, which shows also the. huts of the
■ Royal Engineers (on the Boundary Survey) in Skinner's Cove, where the large dry-
dock is now being constructed (1925).
After much delay, owing to the high cost, the buildings were eventually taken over
on behalf of the Admiralty on 21st August, 1857. The date of erection is erroneously
given on the building as 1854, a year earlier than was the fact.
About 1856 one hut was used as a hospital for officers and for ratings, and a
second one was a store and a provision room. At the latter end of 1858 the third hut
was divided in two, one half being fitted as a drawing office for the surveying officers 40 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
under Captain Richards, while the other half was fitted up as a residence for Doctor
Samuel Campbell, R.N., the medical officer in charge of the hospital. On Doctor
Campbell's appointment to this shore position the store building was converted into
a second hospital ward. In July, 1860, a supply of medical stores was sent out by
the Admiralty, to be kept on shore in reserve.
In November, 1858, Rear-Admiral Sir Robert L. Baynes, C.B., K.R.G., writes to
the Admiralty that: " The ground on which the naval hospital stands is well suited in
every respect for the purposes, but should it be their Lordships' intention at any
future time to erect storehouses or form a naval establishment, then the space would
be found very limited."
The Governor then received orders dated January, 1859, from England to reserve
17 acres on Duntze Head for the use of the Navy, which was accordingly done
An immense amount of correspondence passed between the successive Commanders-in-Chief here and the Admiralty as to making Esquimalt a permanent establishment, and in his reply to an order calling for a general report on the subject, we
find Rear-Admiral Baynes, in May, 1859, writing to the Admiralty a letter most
favourable to the place. Again, in November, 1863, Rear-Admiral John Kingcome
urged most strongly the necessity for a naval hospital being permanently established
at Esquimalt.
In the early part of 1862 the work of the International Boundary Commission,
under Lieutenant-Colonel John Summerfield Hawkins, R.E., begun in 1858, was
brought to a close. In May of the same year the barracks of the Royal Engineers in
Skinner's Cove were transferred to the Navy for a hospital, together with 10 acres
of land. The new hospital was then used without interruption until August, 1869,
and after 1872 brick buildings gradually took the place of the original huts.
After the evacuation by the hospital staff of the huts on Duntze Head they became available for the much-talked-of Depot for Naval Stores and Provisions, which
change was accordingly carried out to the great satisfaction of the officers of the men-
of-war. However, this change was not officially sanctioned until 29th June, 1865,
when an Order in Council was issued by Her Majestry creating the Royal Naval
Establishment of Esquimalt..
Up to this time the officer in charge of stores at Esquimalt was shown in the
Navy List as on the books of the flagship for the time being. The earliest entry found
so far is in 1863, when we find Assistant Paymaster John Bremner on H.M. screw-
frigate " Sutlej," bearing the date of 12th June. On the other hand, the victualling
officers were not shown on the books of any ship. The first of these officers at
Esquimalt was Mr. Sidney J. Spark, appointed on 11th May, 1865, and he continued
at this station until 1873, when Mr. James H. Innes was appointed Naval and Victualling Storekeeper and Accountant, to date from 20th January, 1894. On 16th July
Mr. W. H. Lobb was appointed to succeed Mr. Innes.
From 1865 onward the permanent Naval Establishment continued to increase in
accommodation for all spheres of activity in connection with the wants of the ships
and vessels of the Pacific Station. Wooden buildings for various purposes were
gradually erected until about 1890, when heavy repairs to ships began to be carried
out, and brick buildings were erected by degrees for this and other purposes, some
even being in progress at the time of closing the establishment in March, 1905. At
this time the yard was very well equipped with repairing machinery, moulding, foundry,
fitting, and boat-building shops, as well as large houses for stores of all kinds.
On the general introduction of steam into the Navy the want of a coal-store was
felt here, and early in 1860 two large wooden sheds capable of holding 1,500 tons were
built on Thetis Island. This island was officially reserved for naval purposes in 1859,
when its area was about half an acre. From 1880 to 1886, while building the first
dry-dock, the material excavated was deposited in the space between Thetis Island
and the shore of Vancouver Island, eventually obliterating all trace of the little island.
The present large iron coal-store, capable of holding 10,000 tons, was gradually built
between 1899 and 1903. Right up to August, 1914, only the best Welsh coal was to
be found in the store. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 41
From the first the safety of its coal-supply was essential for the offensive power
of the men-of-war on the station; hence, from 1860, the defence of Esquimalt Harbour
became in reality the protection of the coaling-station.
In the spring of 1878 Britain nearly went to war with Russia over Turkey; Indian
troops were hurriedly taken to Malta and the Reserves were called out. One of the
results of this scare was the realization in the colonies that not only were they unprepared for war, but there was no central body in existence to guide them as to the
principles of Empire defence. Hurried and ineffectual measures were at once taken
in all parts of the Empire. On the coast of British Columbia guns protected by earth-
Works were considered the ideal method of protection against a Russian squadron.
On Wednesday, 12th June, 1878, eighteen labourers were started excavating earthworks on Finlayson Point, near Beacon Hill, this site having been selected by Lieutenant-Colonel de la C. T. Irwin, Instructor of Artillery in the Dominion Service.
The earthworks were armed with two 64-pounder muzzle-loading guns. Batteries
were erected also at Macaulay's Point, Victoria Point, and Brother's Island.
On Monday, 21st May, 1878, Lieutenant-Colonel C. F. Houghton, Assistant Adjutant-General for British Columbia, attested thirty-one recruits, who formed the first
company of Militia Artillery on Vancouver Island, and they were put under the command of Captain C. T. Dupont. Three days later the company had increased to forty
strong and the militiamen attended parades for training in the management of the
heavy guns.
On 9th of December, 1884, Commander F. Edwards, R.N., of H.M. sloop-of-war
" Mutine," sent a " Report of the Defences of Victoria and Esquimalt" to Rear-
Admiral J. K. E. Baird, who was flying his flag on H.M. third-class battleship
" Swiftsure." A part of the manuscript report is interesting and we find the author
stating: " The whole of the batteries require repair to both earth and woodwork,
especially the platforms. The magazines and storerooms did not appear to me at all
weatherproof and require repair." The report also states that the only armed force was
the Militia, which " consists of 140 artillery and 45 infantry," and that a Dominion
law has been passed to provide a battery of Permanent Canadian Artillery to be
stationed on the Pacific Coast, to consist of five officers and 100 non-commissioned
officers and gunners.
During March and April, 1885, a fresh scare arose out of the action of Russia
at Penjdeh (situated on the Murghab River in Russia, near where Persia meets
Afghanistan), and alarm was felt throughout the Empire. Danger to seaports,
rather than maritime risk, suggested itself to the imagination. A " Colonial Defence
Committee," composed of representatives of the Admiralty, War Office, and Colonial
Office, was established, which during the period of scare made direct recommendations
to the Imperial Cabinet.
After 1885 the coaling-stations selected by Lord Carnarvon's 1878 Commission
began to have defences prepared, and both at home and abroad much fortification
was slowly carried out. On 31st July of the same year H.M. cruiser "Satellite" arrived at Esquimalt, having in tow two new first-class torpedo-boats, one of which,
the " Swift," was 150 feet long. These were to be stationed there for the local defence
of the coaling-station.
In 1886 Lieutenant-Colonel E. D. C. O'Brien, of the Royal Engineers, with three
non-commissioned officers of the corps, arrived on 29th July from Halifax by way of
the Canadian Pacific Railway to select sites for permanent fortifications The Imperial
Government already regarded the Canadian Pacific Railway as the great new highway
for troops and stores between Great Britain and China and India. In about a year
Colonel O'Brien had completed his report, which was sent to the War Office for the
consideration of the Committee of Colonial Defence. The Colonel was relieved in
1887 by Lieutenant John Irving Lang, R.E., who then made a survey of the Esquimalt
district, from which a map in six sheets was engraved and printed in England by the
Sappers. The scale was 6 inches to the mile and this map was and is the only Ordnance
Survey of any part of Vancouver's Island. 42 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
In November, 1887, the long-promised " C" Battery of the Royal Canadian
Artillery, which had just been raised at Kingston under Major James Peters, crossed
the continent by the Canadian Pacific Railway to the newly incorporated, young city
of Vancouver, formerly Granville. There the battery boarded the paddle-steamer
" Princess Louise " of the Canadian Pacific Navigation Company, which brought it to
Victoria. This, however, was not reached until 11 p.m. on the same day—the 11th of
November. The unit was first housed in the buildings of the Agricultural Show
grounds on Beacon Hill. Thus the law passed at Ottawa in 1883 was carried out
after a delay of only four years!
The dry-dock question dates back to about 1860. An editorial in the Colonist for
7th September, 1861, says: " Within the last year or so, no less than three accidents
have occurred to H.M. ships in our waters which have made it necessary for them to
go to San Francisco for repairs." The names of these vessels are the " Plumper," of
484 tons; the steam-frigate "Termagant"; and the paddle-sloop "Hecate," of 860 tons.
In 1887, after more than twenty years of political controversy both inside and
outside of the Provincial Chamber, as well as through a succession of Governments,
Imperial, Dominion, and Provincial, the first Esquimalt dry-dock was completed on the
1st April, when the water was let in for the first time.
The site was selected in 1875 and was then owned by Messrs. Finlayson and
Tolmie, who received $15,275 for it. The dimensions of the dry-dock, as arranged
with the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, were to be such as would accommodate first-class armoured cruisers of the " Nelson " and " Northampton " class. These
two cruisers were built on the Clyde in 1876, both of 7,630 tons, 280 feet in length,
and, though barque-rigged, could steam over 5,000 miles at 10 knots. Though the dock
was designed in 1875 to take these huge cruisers of 7,630 tons, yet neither of them
was ever ordered to the Pacific Station. In 1871 the " Nelson " was sent to Australia
and stationed at Melbourne for colonial defence purposes.
The dock was officially opened on the 20th of July, 1887, by H.M. single-screw
composite sloop "Cormorant" (the tenth), of 1,130 tons, built in 1877. The tenth "Cormorant" is now flagship at Gibraltar. This dry-dock was the first visible contribution
by the Dominion Government towards the efficient maintenance of the British men-
of-war on the Pacific Station since British Columbia had entered the Confederation
in 1871.
It is interesting to note that on 20th July, 1871, Rear-Admiral Arthur Farquhar
was at Esquimalt in command of the Pacific Station, with his flag on the armoured
cruiser " Zealous"; and that the " Flying Squadron" also was there under Rear-
Admiral G. T. Phipps-Hornby, with his flag on H.M. screw-frigate " Liverpool."
On 1st October, 1889, a Dominion Order in Council was made reserving Constance
Cove for the use of war-vessels, the rest of Esquimalt Harbour being left free to
merchant vessels.
In 1890 the first barracks were built at Work Point, on Victoria Harbour, and
" C" Battery moved in during that year. The buildings were in the midst of a
primeval forest, which was cleared and levelled by the labour of the officers, noncommissioned officers, and gunners of the battery.
In 1893 the Imperial Government took charge of the defences of the coaling-
station and Naval Establishment, probably as a result of the decision of the Committee
of Colonial Defence meeting in London. In consequence of this "C" Battery went
east to the Fortress of Quebec, its personnel then becoming No. 2 Company, Royal
Canadian Garrison Artillery. The battery was relieved by a detachment of officers,
non-commissioned officers, and gunners of the Royal Marine Artillery, which was sent
out for this purpose from England, and the names were borne on the books of the
flagship, the armoured cruiser " Imperieuse," of 8,400 tons. The officers were Brevet
Lieutenant-Colonel G. A. L. Rawstorne, Captain G. E. Barnes (now Colonel, retired
and residing at Crofton, B.C.), and Lieutenant G. R. Poole.
In 1895 the rebuilding and arming of Fort Macaulay had been completed. Thus
was a start made in applying the new scheme of forts for the defence of the naval
coaling-station, as decided by the Committee of Colonial Defence. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 43
During 1896 No. 19 Company, Western Division of the Royal Garrison Artillery,
under Major J. C. E. Wynne, relieved the Marine Artillery at Work Point Barracks.
The new forts required a small force of Royal Engineers, so the second half company
of No. 44 Company (Fortress) was sent from Hong Kong. The scheme of local
defence included submarine observation mines worked through cables; to that the
48th Company (Submarine Miners), Royal Engineers, was sent out under Major A.
Grant to Esquimalt. It was about this time that proper stores and a wharf for the
submarine mines were built just under Signal Hill.
In 1902 the All Red British Pacific Cable Line was a reality, the first message
being sent over it from Ottawa round the world on 31st October of that year. As
long ago as 1879 the subject of an All British Cable across the Pacific was discussed
in writing between Mr. Sanford Fleming and Mr. F. N. Gisborne. Again, in 1887,
at the Colonial Conference the subject was brought forward, but little progress was
made. But in July, 1894, at the Ottawa Conference, in consequence of a resolution
moved by Mr. Thynne and seconded by Sir H. Wrixon and carried, the Honourable
Mackenzie Bowell, Minister of Trade and Commerce, advertised on 6th August in the
daily papers: " The Government of Canada invites cable manufacturing contractors
and others to state the terms upon which they will be prepared to lay and maintain,
in efficient condition, a submarine electric cable across the Pacific, from Canada to
the Australasian Colonies." The Imperial Cable Committee met and was constituted
in June, 1896, in London. The very valuable report of this Committee was signed on
5th January, 1897. The section of the cable from Banfield Creek to Fanning Island,
a total of 3,458 miles, was begun on 18th September and finished on 6th October, 1902.
On 15th October, 1903, the Pacific Station was reduced to a Commodore's Command, with one first- and two second-class cruisers and one sloop and two torpedo-
boat destroyers.
On the 1st January, 1905, the station was abolished altogether on the occasion of
the grouping of the Australian, East Indian, and China Squadrons to form the Pacific
Fleet. After this change two Imperial sloops were still based on Esquimalt to see
to the carrying-out of the Sealing Treaty.
In May, 1906, on the Dominion taking over the Esquimalt Local Defences, the
strength of the Royal Canadian Garrison Artillery was increased by one company,
to be stationed at Work Point barracks. Lieutenant P. Elliston and forty non-commissioned officers and gunners were transferred from No. 58 Company, Royal Garrison Artillery, on organization of No. 5 Company, Royal Canadian Garrison Artillery,
on 7th May, and so remained on Vancouver Island.
The organization of Empire Defence was to the fore again in 1909. Naval defence
was discussed at the meetings of the Imperial Conference held at the Foreign Office
in August. The Admiralty memorandum, which had been circulated to the Dominion
representatives, formed the basis of the preliminary conferences: " The alternative
methods which might be adopted by Dominion Governments in co-operating in Imperial Naval Defence were discussed. New Zealand preferred to adhere to her
present policy of contribution; Canada and Australia preferred to lay the foundation
of Fleets of their own. It was recognized that in building up a fleet it would be
necessary to conform with a number of conditions. The Fleet must be of a certain
size, in order to offer a permanent career to the officers and men engaged in the
service. The personnel should be trained and disciplined under regulations similar to
those established in the Royal Navy, in order to allow of both interchange and union
between the British and the Dominion Services; and with the same object the standard
of vessels and armaments should be uniform."
In order to make a start in the training of the new naval personnel for Canada,
two old cruisers were sent out thither to act as training-ships. On Tuesday, 8th
November, 1910, H.M. Canadian second-class cruiser " Rainbow," built in 1891 and
of 3,600 tons, under Commander J. D. D. Stewart, arrived in Esquimalt to act as
the Pacific Coast training-ship. The Naval Establishment and coaling-station were
formally transferred to the care of the Dominion of Canada on Wednesday, 9th
November, of the same year. Government Street, Victoria, In I860, showing Bastion at eastern angle of the H.B. Co.'s Fort.    The tirst
house to the right of the Bastion was the Post Office and Customs limine. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 45
By A Stanley Deaville.
The story of the origin and development of the Postal Service on the Pacific
seaboard of British North America is a subject worthy of the serious attention of
students of British history, for it forms a chapter of unusual and perhaps unique
interest in the absorbing narrative of postal affairs in the British Empire. The details
are not easy of elucidation, but such difficulties serve only to make the subject one of
more than ordinary fascination for the original researcher; and the romantic high-
-lights of the fur-trading period and the lurid glare of the gold-rush days light up the
story here and there with vivid touches of the picturesque.
The task of sifting the mass of unpublished postal material which exists in the
Provincial Archives and in the records of the Post Office Department is by no means
a slight one. The following paper, which should be regarded as merely a preliminary
essay in the work of preparing a definitive and authoritative account, contains but a
brief summary of the principal developments, with the slenderest possible connecting-
links of political history to bind the story together. To the enthusiast monographs of
this nature are most interesting when most detailed, and it is hoped that the information now imparted may serve to stimulate interest in the subject and prepare
the way for the more complete account which will be published in the near future.
Some of the statements now made may be at variance with others, already in print,
but they can be fully substantiated by incontrovertible official documents.
The provision of safe and quick channels of postal communication forms a problem which usually faces all Governments in the very first stages of civil administration,
for it is inseparably entwined with the most vital aspects of modern civilization. Yet
it is a strange fact that, although Vancouver Island was thrown open for colonization
in 1849, no serious effort was made to provide governmental protection for the
transmission of the public correspondence until nearly sixteen years later. Lack of
public revenue and the fact that more or less adequate postal facilities were provided
by private enterprise brought about this strange and anomalous state of affairs. The
Hudson's Bay Company afforded suitable postal accommodation during its period of
control and the express companies catered to the requirements of the miners during
the gold excitements. In 1865 Governor Kennedy proposed a Postal Ordinance for
Vancouver Island, but the contemplated law did not pass. Indeed, at no time during
its chequered history had the Colony of Vancouver Island any postal legislation of
any kind upon its Ordinance Books, and its Post Office Department can hardly be said
to have had an actual official existence, as it was not properly legislated into being by
either the Imperial or the Colonial authorities. The sister Colony of British Columbia,
which was created by the sudden influx of gold-seekers in 1858, had for several years
merely a perfunctory official postal service confined chiefly to the collection of revenue
on letters which were actually carried by the express companies.
There is a strong temptation to dwell upon the romantic phases of the pre-Colonial
period, when the fur-trader held undisputed sway over the country to the west of the
Rocky Mountains, from the mouth of the mighty Columbia to the borders of Alaska.
In the days when Fort St. James was the metropolis of the Northern Interior—before
Victoria and New Westminster were dreamed of—there was a regular and elaborate
system of communication maintained by the great fur-trading corporations. During
that period the only means of correspondence with the remote territory of " New
Caledonia " were the annual " brigades " and occasional " expresses " from the distant
East, which the Hudson's Bay and North West Companies kept in operation for the
transmission of goods and dispatches. But this period does not fall within the scope
of the present paper.
In the early 'forties the shrewd directors of the Hudson's Bay Company, anticipating the final outcome of the negotiations anent the Oregon Boundary Dispute,
whereby the territory south of the 49th parallel was ultimately recognized as belong- 46 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
ing to the United States, decreed that a new establishment was to be formed at a point
which should be well within the limits of British jurisdiction, so that they might
remove their Western headquarters to the new location if necessary.
The story of the selection of the site and the founding of Fort Victoria has been
often told and need not be repeated here; but one or two points of strict postal interest should be examined in some detail. First with regard to the name given to
the new establishment; for the Victoria B.C. postmark is now known to philatelists
and others the world over—indeed, British Columbians may fairly claim that of all
the cities and towns bearing the name of our great Queen and the ancient goddess
of Victory it is the best known to-day—and it is desirable to know when the name was
first used officially in connection with the Capital City of our Province.
In ordering the construction of the new fort the Council of Rupert's Land decreed
that the " New Establishment to be formed on the Straits of De Fuca" was to be
named " Fort Victoria" in honour of the beloved young Queen who had ascended
the throne six years before. From such rulings there could be no departure, and
woe to the Company's official who dared to disregard them in any way! But the
student of British Columbian history finds in the chief published authorities a persistent story to the effect that the place was first known as " Fort Camosun," then as
" Fort Albert," and finally as " Fort Victoria."
The basis of this story of the change of names appears to be the statement of
Roderick Finlayson, in his manuscript "History of Vancouver Island" (page 73),
as follows:—
" In the year 1845 the name of Camosun previously given to the fort was changed
to Fort Albert by order from England, and the succeeding year to that of Victoria."
Hubert Howe Bancroft, who had the advantage of prolonged personal intercourse
and correspondence with Roderick Finlayson during the preparation of his " History
of British Columbia" (San Francisco: 1889), deals with the point in characteristic
fashion (pages 117, 118 op. cit.) :—
" For the first two years of its existence . . . the post at the south end of
Vancouver Island was called by the native name of the place, Camosun. It was now
deemed advisable, not to say necessary, to eradicate all traces of nature and the
natural man; it was thought in better taste, with the levelling of forests and the
tearing up of rocks, to blast from memory the sylvan race that once were masters
there. It happened there lived a man named Albert, whom it were well for the Adventurers of England to conciliate; therefore, in the year of grace 1845, orders came
from the London magnates to damn the name Camosun and call the place Fort Albert.
But even then they were not satisfied, for behold, upon this planet there was one
mightier than Albert, even his wife, the Queen; and so before the year had expired
Camosun was called Victoria, each new baptism being celebrated by the usual salutes
and ceremonies."
Such is the fine art of constructing much elaborate rhetoric on a brief documentary
basis. The story has been repeated in good faith by many careful historians and has
come to be generally accepted; but it is called in serious question by certain students
of British Columbian history who contend that there is absolutely no contemporary
evidence to support it. Roderick Finlayson's reminiscence was written, probably from
memory, many years after the events to which it relates. He was, of course, intimately concerned with the very genesis of Fort Victoria and his testimony is by no
means to be lightly regarded. But the complete absence of corroboration is puzzling.
Indeed, all the documentary evidence tends in the opposite direction. There are'letters
extant which were written from the fort in the first few weeks of its' ^existence and
they are all headed as from " Fort Victoria." On the other hand, old billsJ;of lading
and other shipping documents may be found headed " Port Camosun" as late as
1847. It will be recalled that in his first report on the site of the new establishment
Sir James Douglas referred to the place he had selected as being situated on the
"Port or Canal of Camosack," or Camosun; and it would appear that for several
years the harbour and Indian village, as distinct from the fort and white settlement,
were known to mariners and others by their old native name of "Camosun"; al- THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 47
though, according to Mr. J. R. Anderson, even that was incorrect, as he affirms that
the real native name of the place was " Quahl-sn-eela," from the wild cherry-trees
which flourished abundantly in the vicinity and provided the Indians with tough bark-
fibre for binding axe-heads and so forth.
Possibly there was some conflict between the orders sent out from London and
those issued, probably from Fort Garry, by the Council of Rupert's Land; or perhaps
the names " Fort Camosun " and " Fort Albert" were being used unofficially by some
of the inhabitants, and the London authorities, desiring to put an end to such unauthorized procedure, sent out orders for the confirmation of the name " Fort Victoria." An effort is being made to have this question settled by reference to the
Hudson's Bay Company's archives in London; but so far the most careful search
has failed to reveal any documentary evidence of contemporary date to show that
the place was ever known officially by any name other than " Fort Victoria " so far as
the Hudson's Bay Company was concerned, and they were supreme masters there
until 1849.
Then as to the first accommodation for handling the mails in Fort Victoria. This-
was provided in the office of the Company's accountant, Roderick Finlayson, in the
main " store " building inside the fort stockade, approximately on the site now occupied
by the Canadian Bank of Commerce Building at the south-west corner of Government
and Fort Streets. The " post office " consisted of a corner of the office with a counter
where the inhabitants applied for letters and papers. When Fort Victoria became the
headquarters of the Hudson's Bay Company's activities for their Western Department,
in 1849, the correspondence for the Company's outposts was also handled there and
dispatched to destination by first opportunity. From Victoria the letters were taken
along the coast by ship, and to the interior they were forwarded via Fort Langley by
semi-annual brigades. Until 1845 the Company carried all mail, even for strangers,
free of charge; but after that year all persons not in their employ were required to
pay charges on letters carried for them in the territory west of the Rocky Mountains.
The charges thus levied on outsiders were at the rate of $1 for a letter weighing half
an ounce and 25 cents for each additional half-ounce. Possibly these charges also
applied to the letters brought after 1845 by the Company's annual vessels direct from
But the patriarchal rule of the great Company was already doomed to radical curtailment. In an effort, too grasping, to secure for themselves the whole of the country
north of the 49th parallel, the Governor of the Hudson's Bay Company pressed the
Imperial authorities for an exclusive grant of the British territory to the west of the
Rocky Mountains. This application aroused such strenuous opposition that the Crown
ultimately granted the Company only the Island of Vancouver on 13th May, 1848, to
be vested in them strictly for purposes of colonization.
Richard Blanshard was appointed Governor of the new Colony of " Vancouver's
Island." His commission made no specific mention of postal affairs, but gave him
power to enact all necessary laws in connection with such matters. The founding of
the Colony brought about the advent of a few settlers, whose letters were presumably
subject to the high rates applicable to "strangers," but in consideration of their small
numbers and the difficulties encountered in providing channels of postal communication
it was apparent to the Governor that the facilities provided, by the Hudson's Bay
Company sufficed for the existing needs of the Colony.
Deeply humiliated and bitterly disappointed with the conditions as he found them,
Blanshard resigned the Governorship of Vancouver's Island in November, 1850. His
letter of resignation did not reach London until March of the following year, and
Earl Grey's letter of acceptance, written on April 3rd, 1851, was not delivered to
Governor Blanshard until August. A period of ten months was thus occupied in the
transmission of these important documents- a fact which strikingly illustrates the
extreme postal isolation of Vancouver Island at that time.
Sir James Douglas was appointed Governor in November, 1851, and thus became
the representative of Her Majesty as well as of the Hudson's Bay Company—a dual 48 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
capacity in which he frequently found it difficult to reconcile the widely conflicting
interests of the Crown and the Company.
The Minutes of the first Legislative Council of Vancouver's Island contain a wide
variety of laws dealing with many matters, but there is no mention of postal problems.
Evidently the slow and infrequent transmission of letters by the Hudson's Bay Company was considered to be the best arrangement possible under the circumstances, and
as the settlers were hopelessly in the minority the high rates charged to " strangers "
had not seriously agitated the community.
In 1850 a great improvement in the mail service was effected, for in consequence
of the gold-mining activity in California and the subsequent influx of permanent
settlers to the Pacific Coast the United States Government established a mail service
to San Francisco via Panama, which was later extended to serve the growing settlements on the Columbia River and the shores of Puget Sound, where Olympia was the
chief town. Occasional war-ships, Hudson's Bay Company vessels and whaling-ships
still brought letters to Vancouver Island, but after 1854 the hulk of the Colonial mail
commenced to travel via San Francisco by steamer to Olympia, whence it was conveyed
fortnightly to Fort Victoria by means of Indian war-canoes manned by natives or
French-Canadians under the charge of one of the Hudson's Bay Company officials.
J. W. McKay or Wm. McNeill usually discharged this duty. From ten days to two
weeks were required for the return trip.
In 1855 the Colonial Office in London made certain inquiries with regard to postal
conditions on Vancouver's Island, and Governor Douglas reported as follows:—
" I have the honour to inform your Lordship . . . that no general postal arrangements have ever existed in this Colony. The inhabitants being few and living
near to each other, letters are conveyed within the Colony by messengers employed
for the occasion, and letters from Europe and foreign countries are conveyed by the
United States Mail Steam Line, by the way of Panama and California, to Oregon,*
from whence they are brought in Hudson's Bay Express Boats to this place."
Postal matters proceeded fairly smoothly in the Colony of Vancouver's Island
until 1856, when the first House of Assembly was formed and the settlers seized the
opportunity to bring their various grievances to the attention of the Governor through
their elected representatives in the new House. They were not satisfied with the postal
facilities provided for them by the Hudson's Bay Company, which indeed left much
to be desired. But they were still greatly at the mercy of the Company, and in fact
were considerably indebted to them in the matter of postal accommodation. By what
other means could they obtain their letters? Thf* establishment of Colonial postal
services was not within the realm of practical politics, for the financial resources of
the little Colony were almost nil, as sources of revenue were virtually non-existent.
But complaint was rife, and the representatives of the people, in true British constitutional fashion, prepared to do battle for what they believed to be their rights. A committee was appointed to report on the state of the postal arrangements. They reported
" that the General Post Office as at present arranged is carried on within a public
office, and letters are exposed under circumstances which your Committee do not
consider safe. Your Committee are of opinion that the Post Office ought to be
removed to an office more private and more secure."
Suitable representations were made to the Governor, who replied with a proposal
that the House should forthwith provide the necessary means for initiating a proper
postal service. Alas, the members were obliged to admit that they had no means at
their disposal for such a purpose, and to throw themselves on the mercy of the
Hudson's Bay Company, whose past gratuitous services they now admitted gratefully.
Douglas, whilst unable to act in the matter as Governor, gave the inhabitants the benefit
of his powers as chief factor of the Company, and installed the Post Office in a small
cottage inside the fort enclosure which was occupied by Captain James Sangster, the
Collector of Customs, Harbourmaster, and Pilot. Sangster had been appointed to his
numerous duties in 1852.    He was now constituted Postmaster also, and made re-
* Puset Sound, then in the territory called " Oregon." THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 49
sponsible for the custody and handling of the mails; but it does not appear that he
received any additional remuneration for his increased duties.
And now the peaceful settlement around Fort Victoria was about to be rudely
wakened from its slumbers. The discovery of gold in the gravel-beds of the Fraser
River caused a terrific sensation amongst the heterogeneous crowds thronging the
streets of San Francisco in the spring of 1858. Thousands of gold-seekers and adventurers invaded Victoria and many of them passed on to the mainland. A new condition of affairs, demanding enlarged postal facilities, sprang unexpectedly into
Captain Sangster died suddenly at this time, and Alexander C. Anderson, a retired
Hudson's Bay official, was appointed Collector of Customs for Vancouver's Island, with
the superintendence of postal matters, on 7th July, 1858. Peter Tuite, an American
who came to Victoria with the early gold-seekers, was appointed Deputy Postmaster
for the Town of Victoria and performed the actual work of the office, with the
assistance, on occasion, of James R. Anderson*
The influx of people into the territory hitherto known as " New Caledonia"
rendered necessary the establishment of a Crown Colony in that country, and " British
Columbia" came into existence in November, 1858. Sir James Douglas was appointed
'rovernor of both Colonies and severed his connection with the great Company of
Adventurers whom he had served so long and so well.
In August, 1858, the Secretary for the Colonies represented to the British Treasury
that in consequence of the discovery of gold in New Caledonia and the considerable
influx of people to Vancouver Island and the mainland it was desirable to establish
regular means of postal communication between Great Britain and those distant points.
At first the Imperial Government proposed to establish direct communication by means
of British steamers from Southampton via Halifax and Nassau to Colon. From Colon
the mails were to be carried across the Isthmus of Panama by train to Panama and
thence direct to Victoria by British steamers. This scheme had to be abandoned on
account of its prohibitive cost. Eventually the direct line of British steamers operating
between Southampton and Colon was utilized, and from Panama to Victoria the good
offices of the United States Government provided the necessary facilities. In consequence of the increased importance of Victoria after the Fraser River gold discoveries,
the United States mail-steamers plying between San Francisco and Olympia now made
Victoria a regular port of call and the overseas mails were delivered with more or less
regularity; but the service was entirely gratuitous, and the skippers of the vessels,
who felt that the service was provided by them rather than by the United States
Government, which apparently paid them nothing extra for their trouble, were inclined
to regard the Colonial mails emphatically as of secondary importance.
Captain Edward Stamp, of Victoria, submitted to the Home Government a proposal for the establishment of a subsidized line of British steamers between Victoria
and Sart Francisco, but after due consideration it was deemed undesirable to grant
any subsidy for the service, as the promoters of the trans-Canada route represented
that such an arrangement would impede the success of their scheme, and the Canadian
Government was known to be opposed, for similar reasons, to subsidies along
■American lines of communication. Thus the last stage of the long sea-journey between
Southampton and Victoria remained for some years the least satisfactory portion of
the route, until the Colonial administrations were able to grant small annual subsidies
to maintain the service in a more or less satisfactory manner.
After 1859 many of the letters for Vancouver Island and British Columbia were
transmitted overland across the United States by train to St. Louis and thence to San
Francisco by express, and a few years later this overland service was extended to
Portland and Olympia; but for various reasons this route was not as satisfactory as
the water service, though much more speedy. The wild Indian still ranged the plains
and occasionally made off with the mail-bags of the palefaces.   As late as 1864 the
* We have in Mr. Anderson a remarkable link with the Colonial Post Office in its early
days, and his advice has been of the greatest value in preparing this portion of this paper. 50 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
British Consul at San Francisco reported the loss of certain letter-bags in this way.
Thefts and damage to the mails en route were not uncommon. Consequently a large
portion of the letters and papers continued to travel by way of Panama until the completion of the railway to San Francisco.
Lines of communication with the outside world having been established, it was
imperative that the postal arrangements within the Colonies of Vancouver's Island and
British Columbia should be placed on a revenue-producing and more or less permanent
basis. But the throngs which filled the streets of Victoria and passed on to the gold-
fields were essentially transient. There was no guarantee that the inflated conditions
which prevailed at the moment would continue for any great length of time, and the
Governor and his counsellors wisely felt that they must move with caution in establishing permanent postal services.
The first onrush of the miners brought with it the excellent facilities of the express companies which had catered so admirably to their postal requirements in California and had virtually superseded the Government mail service there, and eventually
the curious postal situation which had developed in California was to a large extent
duplicated in Vancouver Island and British Columbia.
In July, 1858, the famous American express firm of Wells, Fargo & Company
published their first advertisement in Victoria. Since 1852 this company had enjoyed
a practical monopoly in the transmission of mail, express, and gold shipments throughout the Californian gold-mining country. In order to keep within the United States
postal laws they invariably made use of Government stamped envelopes, on which they
impressed their own franks, indicating payment of their charges. They charged the
public much higher rates than the Post Office, but their service was so superior that
they acquired nearly all the business. The very efficient facilities of this company
and other similar concerns were now made available between Victoria and San Francisco and the gold-mines on the mainland.
Prominent amongst the express operators on the mainland were W. T. Ballou,
F. J. Barnard, and Messrs. Deitz and Nelson. There were many others, and the story
of their activities is an interesting chapter in the history of British Columbia, but it
cannot be dealt with here excepting in so far as it relates directly to the postal service.
In November, 1858, Governor Douglas arranged a postal system on a small scale
whereby letters could be transmitted between Victoria and Fort Langley, Fort Hope
and Fort Yale at a uniform rate of 5 cents, to be prepaid. But the miners did not
take kindly to this service, which did not extend sufficiently far afield to be of real
service to them. They preferred to entrust their letters to the express companies,
whose agents were everywhere and whose service followed them at' every turn. Sir
James Douglas was obliged to consider the question of levying revenue from the
letters thus handled by private enterprise. By an Act of the Imperial Parliament
passed in 1849 Colonial Legislatures had the power to fix rates of postage and had
vested in their Postmasters-General the sole privilege of conveying the public correspondence. The Governor decided to sanction an arrangement similar to that
obtaining in California. In May, 1859, Mr. A. C. Anderson, in the capacity of " Postmaster-General of Vancouver's Island," issued an announcement to the effect that the
conveyance of letters by private expresses within and between the Colonies of Vancouver's Island and British Columbia had been sanctioned, provided that upon every
such letter was prepaid the sum of 5 cents to cover the Colonial postage rate. By
this means the Governor hoped to provide the revenue necessary to establish regular
mail services and post offices, and gradually supersede the express companies in the
handling of mail-matter. The new arrangement necessitated the provision of some
means of indicating the prepayment of postage, and as no stamps were available the
use of brass and wooden stamp hand franks was resorted to.
Notwithstanding the fact that the great majority of the letters and papers were
carried by the express companies, the demands upon the Victoria Post Office steadily
increased and it was found necessary to provide larger quarters for the office. A one-
story frame building was constructed on the west side of Government Street, about THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 51
midway between Yates and Bastion Streets, and the Customs and Postal duties were
conducted from that point by Mr. Anderson and his assistants.
In January Colonel R. C. Moody, of the Royal Engineers, who had been sent out
from England to take part in the establishment of the Colony of British Columbia,
reported on his selection of a site for the new Capital of the mainland Colony. He"
suggested the name " Queenborough," but W. A. G. Young, the Colonial Secretary,
objected to this as too close a paraphrase of " Victoria." As a compromise the name
" Queensborough " was adopted, but the point was finally decided by Queen Victoria,
who selected the name " New Westminster."
In June, 1859, Mr. Anderson retired from the public service and the supervision
of the Post Office in both Colonies was entrusted to Captain W. Driscoll Gosset,
F.R.S.E. Captain Gosset had been sent out from England with a detachment of the
Royal Engineers and occupied the position of Colonial Treasurer. He lost no time
in submitting to Governor Douglas suggestions of a fairly elaborate nature for placing
on a more permanent basis the postal arrangements of the two Colonies, but his
proposals were regarded as premature. The Governor felt that the express companies
served a useful purpose in catering to the postal needs of the floating population of
miners and fortune-hunters, who at best formed a doubtful foundation on which to
build permanent institutions. In Victoria Peter Tuite was giving satisfaction as the
Town Postmaster. There was no other regularly appointed Postmaster on Vancouver
Island, but Cornelius Bryant, the public-school teacher of Nanaimo, was handling the
mails gratuitously at that place, where the discovery of coal had brough't'into,,exTstence
a small but prosperous community. At New Westminster Mr. Henry Holbrook, with
commendable public spirit, was acting as Postmaster without salary. At various points
in the mining districts Government officials and other trustworthy persons were«taking
care of the mails without remuneration for their services. On the whole the postal
service might be regarded as fairly satisfactory; and the revenue derived from the
postage rates paid by the express companies on letters which they handled, together
with the postage on the letters carried by the Post Office itself, nearly sufficed to pay
the expenses of operating the Colonial postal service.
In December, 1859, Peter Tuite left Victoria and John D'Ewes was appointed in
his place as Town Postmaster for Victoria. D'Ewes was an amiable character who
gained much popularity during his term of office. In a letter to the Governor
acknowledging the intimation of his appointment he emphasized his gratitude and
expressed determination to study to perform the duties of his hew position to the
best of his ability. No doubt he was capable enough, but he seems to have lacked
industry and method, and, as the sequel shows, he had a still more serious shortcoming.
Early in 1860 the first issue of Colonial postage-stamps arrived in Victoria. We
can allude but briefly to philatelic matters, as that phase of our subject is a study in
itself. The design of the first stamp was sketched out in the Colony, and it is probable
that Captain Gosset had a hand in the work. The stamp was rose-coloured, with the
Queen's head in profile in the centre, and the legend: " British Columbia and Vancouver Island. Postage Two Pence Half-penny." Thomas De La Rue & Company,
of London, supplied 235,440 of these stamps at a cost of il04, which was paid by the
Treasury of British Columbia.
Although bearing the names of both Colonies, these first stamps were actually
the sole property of the British Columbian Government, and were eventually declared
valid only for the prepayment of British Columbia inland postage and the postage on
letters from British Columbia to Vancouver Island. As these stamps were sold by the
Postmasters of Vancouver Island for the prepayment of British Columbia inland
postage on letters going to the mainland, in cases where the senders desired to prepay
the whole of the postage in advance, we find them occasionally bearing Vancouver
Island cancellations, a fact which has led many philatelists to assume that they were
'equally available in both Colonies.
The operations of the Post Office on the mainland extended considerably as- the
miners pushed farther and farther afield, and in July, 1860, Captain Gosset again made 52 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
strong representations to the Governor in regard to the desirability of remodelling the
postal administration and prohibiting the carrying of mail-matter by the express companies. But the Governor held to his opinion that the existing arrangements were
sufficient and he would not interfere with the operations of the express companies.
The inflated conditions attending the first rush of the miners had died away to a
considerable extent and caution in the expenditure of the public moneys was necessary.
The need for a regular head of the Post Office on the mainland was recognized, however, and Captain Gosset, who had been acting merely in a temporary capacity so far
as the Post Office Department was concerned, was relieved of the extraneous duties
he had discharged so attentively. Mr. Warner R. Spalding, Justice of the Peace and
Stipendiary Magistrate for New Westminster and district, was appointed to take
charge of the Post Office establishment of the Colony of British Columbia. There
was a difficulty with regard to his official title; he claimed to have been given to
understand that his appointment would be that of " Postmaster-General," and though
he urgently requested that he might be gazetted as such, his request does not seem-
to have been granted. The letter referring to his appointment speaks of him as " Postmaster" only. But, title or no title, he was undoubtedly in charge of the Post Office
operations in British Columbia, at a salary of £500 per annum, and he immediately
set about systematizing the postal arrangements so far as the means at his disposal
Apparently the first postal accommodation in New Westminster was provided by
the Royal Engineers. Not long after the founding of the city the Post Office was
housed in a small cottage occupied by Hon. Henry Holbrook. That gentleman handled
the mails without remuneration during the early stages of settlement in the Royal
City a«d his services were much appreciated by all concerned. In April, 1859, when
Spalding was appointed Magistrate, he had been allotted a house and lot which were
Government property. The house was now enlarged and improved at the public expense so as to be adapted for carrying on the business of the Post Office. Later the
office was housed in the right wing of the wooden Government building which contained the Treasury, the Assay Office, and the Mint.
The depressed conditions which obtained on Vancouver Island after the subsidence
of the Fraser River gold-rush necessitated severe curtailment of the postal arrangements there. D'Ewes, who evidently was expected to administer the Island postal
system, was left without an assistant, but was given a slight increase in salary to
cover his augmented duties.
Difficulty was experienced in connection with the transmission of the mails by
steamer from San Francisco. In June the master of the steamer " Pacific," the only
vessel remaining on the direct route, suddenly refused to carry the mails without
remuneration, and the British Consul at San Francisco, who forwarded the mails
from that place, was obliged to resort to the use of sailing-vessels.
Efforts were made to induce the Home Government to assist the Colonies by
subsidizing the vessels carrying the mails between San Francisco and Victoria, but
the Imperial authorities were unwilling to do anything which might hinder in any way
the project of a transcontinental railway which the Canadian Government had so
much at heart. Eventually, in July, 1862, the Government of Vancouver Island*
entered into an arrangement whereby the owners of the vessels were paid $250 per
trip for carrying the mails; but until 1865 no regular contract was drawn up and the
vessels were not under any Government control, either British or American, with
regard to the mail service.
The owners of the small side-wheel steamer " Eliza Anderson," which was carrying the mails between Port Townsend and Victoria without remuneration, also demanded payment for their services and were granted the sum of $500 per annum.
This service had assumed considerable importance because the mails at that time
travelling by way of the United States' overland service to Olympia were conveyed
via Port Townsend to Victoria.
* After I860 the Colony is referred to in official documents as " Vancouver Island " and the
old spelling of " Vancouver's Island " is not used. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 53
In September, 1861, John D'Ewes applied for leave of absence " between mail-
steamers " and was granted the desired leave. Unfortunately he neglected to follow
instructions that were given him to pay into the Treasury the revenue collected by
him during his incumbency. He went on leave and stayed away, taking the Post Office
funds with him. On September 20th, 1861, John L. Buckley, signing as " Officiating
Postmaster," advised the Colonial Treasurer that " on Mr. D'Ewes' departure the
amount of postage money left by him amounted to $1.15, and no transfer of public
funds was made by Mr. D'Ewes to me further than the above amount, which was in
the daily postage box." This delinquency dealt an unwelcome blow to the finances of
the struggling little Colony at a time of severe financial depression. D'Ewes must
have got away with several thousand dollars. No books were kept and the loss cannot
be exactly stated; but rates of postage were high in those days and D'Ewes had held
office for nearly two years. How he got away and where he went to are mysteries,
but it is generally supposed that he went to Australia.
The whole question of the administration of postal matters on Vancouver Island
now received the attention of the Governor in Council. After due consideration it was
decided to abolish the " Post Office Department" as a separate establishment and to
combine the postal duties with those of the Harbourmaster. Mr. Henry Wootton, who
was acting as Harbourmaster and assistant in the Customs at Victoria, was appointed
Postmaster and given the general superintendence of postal matters on Vancouver
Island, but he was never dignified with the title of Postmaster-General.
The Victoria Post Office was removed from its quarters on Government Street
to the Harbourmaster's office, a frame structure of two stories on Wharf Street,
opposite the end of Bastion Street, and was conducted from that site for several years
by Mr. Wootton.
The new Postmaster was given strict instructions in regard to the rendering of
accounts and the handling of the public funds. His services were so satisfactory that
he retained the position until Confederation and was confirmed in it by the Federal
Meanwhile in British Columbia W. R. Spalding, the newly appointed " Postmaster
of British Columbia," had not been free from trouble. In the winter of 1860-61 W.
T. Ballou, who had been carrying the mails to the mines without charge, refused to
continue the service without payment, and the proprietors of the steamers plying
between Victoria and New Westminster also demanded payment for carrying the
mails on their route. Spalding complained of gross inattention on the part of the
postmasters throughout the Colony, which hardly occasions surprise in view of the
fact that their services as such were unrewarded. Spalding was thoroughly dissatisfied
with the conditions in his department and strongly advised the Governor to remodel
the whole service and cancel the privileges granted the express companies with regard
to the transmission of letters, claiming that the exclusive performance of the postal
services by the Government would be more satisfactory in the long run. The Governor
could not see his way to interfere with the express companies, but he authorized the
inviting of tenders for the regular monthly performance of the mail service to the mines.
Ballou submitted the first tender, but it was considered to be too high and the contract
was placed in the hands of F. J. Barnard. By this time the Cariboo gold-rush had
fairly commenced and a spirit of unbounded optimism again prevailed. Business conditions in New Westminster and Victoria improved apace, and from all over the
world gold-seekers rushed to the Golden Cariboo. An agreement was entered into with
the owners of the steamers operating between Victoria and New Westminster for the
conveyance of the mails, but no regular contract seems to have been drawn up.
But the inhabitants of the two Colonies were growing more and more dissatisfied
with the postal facilities provided for them by the Government. Spalding reported
numerous complaints by the miners in the upper country, both on account of the slow
and infrequent mail service and the exorbitant rates charged by the express companies. The letters despatched by the Post Office were invariably one or two weeks
later than those sent by the expresses, and the recipients had in many cases to travel
long distances in order to obtain them.    The letters carried by the expresses were de- 54 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
livered more satisfactorily, but the rates were very high, as much as 6s. or 8s. being
charged to the more distant mines, and the newspapers carried by express sold for
fancy prices. Gold was plentiful enough, but the miners felt that they were being
unfairly treated in the administration of a vital public utility.
The rates of postage in effect in British Columbia at this time had been authorized
in May, 1862. From New Westminster to Douglas, Hope, and Yale the rate was 5d.;
to Lytton and Lillooet, Is.; to Williams Lake, 2s.; to Quesnel, 3s.; and to Antler Creek,
4s. Letters carried by the expresses still required to be prepaid the old Colonial
postage fee of 2y2<\. or 5 cents. The express charges were usually about double the
postage rates. Newspapers sent by mail to Lytton and Lillooet were subject to a
charge of 5d.; to points beyond those places the mails apparently were not utilized for
the transmission of anything but letters.
It was rumoured that some of the express agents were surreptitiously conveying
letters on which no Colonial postage fee had been paid, and in August the Magistrate
at Lillooet reported that this illegal traffic had assumed large proportions. Spalding
was at once instructed to submit a comprehensive suggestion for placing the postal
system of British Columbia on a proper footing in all its details, and he lost no time
in doing so. But after further consideration the Governor felt unable or unwilling to
take the responsibility of adding to the liabilities of the Colony of British Columbia
by establishing a fixed postal system which he foresaw could not be self-supporting
for many years to come, and it remained for his successor to promulgate the first
postal legislation for British Columbia.
The more stable conditions of settlement on Vancouver Island necessitated the
establishment of regular mail services from Victoria to Comox, Nanaimo, Cowichan,
Saltspring Island, and Saanich. A branch post office was opened at Esquimalt, and H.
E. Wilby acted as Postmaster thereof without remuneration, operating the office in
conjunction with his general store. The prosperity which had come to Victoria with
the Cariboo gold discoveries enabled the Island Colony to grant an annual subsidy of
$9,000 to the Californian Steam Navigation Company, whose vessels conveyed the mails
between San Francisco and Victoria.
Upon the retirement of Sir James Douglas his successor on the mainland, Frederick
Seymour, proceeded without delay to formulate a Postal Act for British Columbia.
J. R. Commeline, of Yale, was appointed Postmaster of Williams Creek at a salary
of i400 per annum. He was responsible, under Spalding, for the postal service at the
mines, and made it his business to protect the interests of the Colonial Postal Service
in connection with the operations of the express companies.
Mr. Valentine B. Tait, a nephew of the Archbishop of Canterbury, was appointed
clerk in the Post Office at New Westminster. He rendered valuable assistance to Mr.
Spalding and later acted as Postmaster of New Westminster. On the amalgamation
of the two Colonies he was appointed Postmaster of New Westminster and was confirmed in that position when British Columbia entered Confederation.
On 1st June, 1864, Messrs. F. J. Barnard, George Deitz, and Hugh Nelson, who had
joined forces and were conducting an extensive and efficient express service, were
awarded the contract, at i5,000 per annum, for carrying the mails in the interior of
British Columbia. Under this new agreement the mails were dispatched semi-weekly
as far as Yale, weekly from Yale to Lytton, and tri-monthly beyond the latter place.
This was a great improvement over the former service in point of frequency, but it
■remained to be seen whether there would be a sufficient increase in business to cover
the additional expenditure sanctioned by the new Governor.
On June 20th, 1864, Governor Seymour's Postal Ordinance was put into effect.
Under its provisions the rate of postage on letters passing between New Westminster
and Victoria was fixed at 3d. per half-ounce. All letters arriving from outside points,
with the exception of Vancouver Island, were subject to a charge of 3d. per half-
ounce in addition to the foreign postage, and letters passing between post offices in the
Colony of British Columbia were carried for 6d. per half-ounce. Newspapers were
carried to any point in the Colony for 6d. each. These rates applied to all mail-matter
handled in the Colony, whether actually carried by the Post Office or not. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS 55
The new postal legislation was welcomed by everybody in the Colony excepting
perhaps the express operators. The scheme was an ambitious one which deserved to
succeed; but unfortunately it was only fairly launched when the yields of the Cariboo
gold-mines began to fall off in a disastrous manner. As the production of gold
diminished the miners began to leave the country. In the autumn of 1865 the tofal
population of British Columbia did not exceed 8,000 souls, whilst that of Vancouver
Island did not reach 4,000. By the end of that year the great Cariboo gold-rush, upon
the continuance of which so many hopes had been founded, was over, and thenceforward the progress of the sister Colonies was hampered by ever-increasing debt; but
the efflux of the miners left in its wake the permanent settlers who were the real
pioneers of the Province, and who, by dint of hard work and perseverance, gradually
built up a sound basis of prosperity.
Arthur E. Kennedy, Sir James Douglas's successor as Governor of Vancouver
Island, took prompt measures to obtain a separate supply of postage-stamps for the
Island. Two denominations of stamps were issued—5 cents (rose) and 10 cents (blue).
The Island Colony had adopted the use of decimal currency, but British Columbia
still computed its official accounts in sterling money. The new stamps were placed on
sale in September, 1865, and continued in use after the amalgamation of the two
Colonies in August, 1866, when the stamps of both Vancouver Island and British
Columbia were made equally available in the united Colony.
Governor Kennedy's attention was quickly drawn to the peculiar state of the postal
establishment of Vancouver Island, and he proposed to place the whole matter on a
proper basis by enacting a Postal Ordinance similar to that in operation in British
Columbia. A Bill was drawn up and placed before the House, but it was thrown out
by the Legislature as agitation was abroad for the amalgamation of the two Colonies
and the Island taxpayers did not propose to add in any way to their already overburdened administration.
Unfortunately Governor Kennedy quickly fell out of favour with the people of
the Island and nothing that he could do met with any favour in their eyes. Repeated
demands for retrenchment in the public expenditure met with no adequate response and
the heavy cost of maintaining a separate Governor and corps of Colonial officials was
crippling the Island Colony. At the height of the undignified disputes with the Governor came the reassuring announcement that the Colonial Office proposed to amalgamate the two Colonies. In the following November the union of Vancouver Island
and British Columbia was effected and Arthur Kennedy left Victoria with considerable
relief after an unpleasant tenure of office. Frederick Seymour assumed the Governorship of the united Colony of British Columbia and held that office until his untimely
death. Thus the Post Office Department of Vancouver Island, if such can be said ever
to have had a properly constituted existence, came to a sudden end, together with the
other separate establishments of that Colony. Its story is a curious one and probably
cannot be duplicated in the annals of British postal affairs. Henceforward the Post
Office on Vancouver Island was subject to the provisions of the British Columbia
Postal Ordinance of 1864 and its amendments.
The more persevering miners who had remained in the Cariboo district settled
down to work the. goldfields on a systematic basis and the situation in the upper
country was gradually stabilized. Many who had been drawn to British Columbia by
the lure of gold started farming and other activities, thus forming settlements which
developed into towns and villages requiring permanent postal services. Post offices
were established at various points in the interior, under the Postal Ordinance of 1864,
and regular employees of the Government were placed in charge of them, without,
however, being granted any additional remuneration for their postal duties. Commeline
was removed from Williams Creek to Barkerville, which had become the metropolis
of the mining district. But the express companies still remained a thorn in the flesh
of the Post Office and the Government mail services were maintained only at heavy
cost to the Colony. The officials of the Colonial Post Office held that the abolition of
the mail-carrying privileges enjoyed by the express companies would have resulted in
a considerable increase in the business of the Post Office, on account of the lower rates 56 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
of the latter; but it is improbable that official postal services over such a widely scattered and sparsely settled area could ever have been made to pay their own way except
by fixing excessively high postal rates. For many years after the Dominion Government took charge the low Federal rates of postage and the many advantages which
the Canadian Post Office Department offered did not enable the postal service in
British Columbia to pay its own way.
The stock of the old 2V2&. stamps bearing the names of both Colonies, which had
been provisionally increased in value to 3d. to meet the changed postal rates of 1864,
was nearly exhausted early in 1865, and a request was sent to London for a new issue
of 3d. stamps bearing the name of British Columbia alone. The new stamps were
placed on sale on November 1st, 1865, and after the union of the Colonies' they were
made available, with the Vancouver Island issue of 1865, throughout the united Colony.
Notwithstanding the greatly improved postal facilities on the mainland, the addi-
. tional patronage which had been expected to offset the increased postal expenditures
-failed to materialize sufficiently to prevent the piling-up of heavy and increasing
deficits in the Post Office Department. Every year Spalding was obliged to report a
deficit of several thousand pounds, but always his report ended on a note of optimistic
prophecy that the next year would bring different results. Matters reached a climax
early in 1866 when Spalding had to report a deficit for 1865 of £6,664, an increase of
£2,400 over the deficit for the previous fiscal year. So indifferent were the prospects
for the postal service that F. J. Barnard seriously proposed to the Government an
arrangement whereby all mail-matter should be turned over to the express companies,
as he claimed that their methods were better adapted to the needs of British Columbia
than the regular mail systems of older and more settled countries and " more suited
to the peculiar requirements of a Colony having a small, scattered and migratory
population." Such a proposal could not be entertained by the Government, so we find
the original document in the Archives laconically endorsed by the Colonial Secretary
" Too Heavy."
It was apparent, however, that matters could not be allowed to go on in this way
and various measures of economy were adopted, since demands for retrenchment and
even cries advocating union with Canada were in the air. Commeline's services were
dispensed with and Spalding's salary was reduced from £500 to £350 per annum. In
•April, 1866, Hon. Arthur N. Birch, the Colonial Secretary, who was acting as Administrator in the temporary absence of the Governor, sent Spalding to Quesnel Mouth
to act as Stipendiary Magistrate there. This arrangement was supposed to be only
temporary, but Spalding never resumed his duties as Postmaster-General. He was
afterwards made County Court Judge for Nanaimo and Comox district and held that
position until 1881.
The administration of the Post Office Department of British Columbia was entrusted to Arthur T. Bushby, a son-in-law of Sir James Douglas, who had been appointed Registrar of the Supreme Court of British Columbia in 1859. The additional
duties laid upon Bushby were discharged by him without remuneration and thus the
Department was saved the salary of its chief executive. For the rest of the Colony's
existence Bushby administered the Colonial postal service from New Westminster
in the capacity of Acting Postmaster-General.
In May, 1865, Messrs. Deitz and Nelson, the firm carrying on F. J. Barnard's
extensive express interests, had been awarded the contract for carrying the mails
through the interior, weekly in summer and fortnightly in winter, at the rate of £6,500
per annum. In the following November, in consequence of the alarming decrease in
business, the contractors agreed to a reduction of the contract price to £5,000. In
March, 1867, they tendered for the renewal of the contract at the same figure; but
this amount was regarded as entirely excessive, because the winter service had been
reduced in frequency to once a month, in spite of bitter remonstrance on the part of
the inhabitants. The Government considered that the mail-contract figure should be
substantially reduced and for a time it appeared that no agreement could be reached.
The Hon. Mr. Birch commented upon the situation in this wise: " It will resolve itself
into the express service for 1867, I fancy;   and I, for one, should not object."    The THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 57
postal service was rapidly becoming a sort of millstone about the neck of the heavily
burdened Colony. Eventually Deitz and Nelson agreed to undertake the service for
a period of three years at the rate of $16,000 per annum.
In Victoria a small economy was effected by removing the Post Office from the
building on Wharf Street, in which it had been accommodated since Mr. Wootton's
appointment, back to its old location on Government Street, thus saving the rent of
the Wharf Street quarters. The old building, erected in 1859, continued to house the
Victoria Post Office until about a year after Confederation.
On March 13, 1867, the British Columbia Postal Ordinance was amended to provide for new rates of postage in decimal currency. Under the amended Act the letter
rates of postage in force throughout the United Colony were as follow:—
Between ports in the Colony    5    cents per ounce.
To points in the interior as far as Savona's Ferry 12J4 cents per ounce.
Between points in the interior above Douglas,
Hope,  and Yale   12J^ cents per ounce.
To points beyond Savona's Ferry   25    cents per ounce.
Newspapers pSssed throughout the Colony for 2 cents. The stamps already in use
were made to serve by authorizing the Vancouver Island 5- and 10-cent issues for use
throughout the Colony and altering the value of the 3d. B.C. stamps to 6J4 cents.
Pairs and blocks of four of the latter made up the higher rates.
In April, 1868, the Legislative Council of British Columbia decided that the
Capital of the Colony should be located at Victoria. However, Mr. Bushby remained
at New Westminster in his capacity as Registrar of the Supreme Court there, and
thus the Post Office Department was administered from a point other than the Capital.
The death of Governor Seymour in 1869 removed an obstacle to the project of
union with Canada which had been steadily gaining ground in the Colony. With the
appointment of Governor Musgrave and the assurance that the Imperial Government
was strongly behind the move for Confederation, there came a renewal of public confidence and a slow but sure return of prosperity. Optimism increased as it became
known that the Canadian Government was so favourable to the proposal that the
suggested terms of union included the guarantee of a transcontinental railway and the
assumption by the Dominion of the heavy Colonial debt. Not the least of the considerations that helped to bring about the entry of British Columbia into Confederation
was the understanding that the Canadian Government proposed to take over the
Colonial postal service and defray all expenses in connection therewith, at the same
time reducing the rates of postage and giving the inhabitants the advantage of Canada's
postal conventions and arrangements with other countries. The Dominion Government also undertook to maintain a fortnightly mail service by steamer between Victoria and San Francisco and a weekly service to Olympia. Once the project of a
transcontinental railway was assured there could be no further objection on the part
of the Canadian Government to subsidizing the San Francisco service. The importance
to the ordinary settler and citizen of the postal aspects of Confederation has perhaps
been hardly sufficiently indicated by historians.
The activities of the Colonial Post Office Department during this last and more
stable period of its existence indicate steady growth and development. On 1st July,
1870, Governor Musgrave sanctioned a Postal Convention with the United States and
the Colony entered for the first time into proper postal relations with the American
Republic. The letter rate between the two countries was fixed at 6 cents per half-
ounce if prepaid and 10 cents per half-ounce if unpaid. Newspapers passed for 2 cents
each. The Colonial postage-stamps were made valid for the prepayment of rates to
the United States and also to the United Kingdom. Hitherto they had been available
only for Colonial postage. These changes rendered new denominations of stamps
necessary and the required issues were obtained as economically as possible by overprinting the old 3d. dies in different colours. These surcharged stamps, which were
issued in 1869, were the last to be brought out by British Columbia. Certain of the
preliminary issues, which were prepared hurriedly in response to an urgent order, have 58 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
-unusual perforations and are quite rare. The bulk of the main issue was destroyed
after Confederation.
Regular postal communications were established with the Kootenay and Burrard
Inlet districts. Gerow and Johnson, of Victoria, secured the mail contract to the
upper country in October, 1870, at $40,000 for three years' service and continued it until
after ConfSderation. Deitz and Nelson had refused to renew the contract for less
than $16,000 per annum.
A detailed account of the negotiations which resulted in British Columbia entering
Confederation with Canada would be out of place in this paper. It is sufficient to say
that the small but by no means negligible minority which opposed the move was
obliged to give way before the overwhelming sentiment in favour of the only reasonable solution of the Colony's serious and increasing difficulties.
The truly Imperial vision of a united Canada from coast to coast was realized on
20th July, 1871, when the Dominion Government assumed control of British Columbia
and that Colony became one of the Canadian Provinces. The Federal authorities took
charge of the entire Post Office establishment of the Colony. The salaried officers of
the Colonial Post Office were retained and confirmed in their positions under the
Dominion Government. Mr. John Bowron was appointed Postmaster of Barkerville
at a small salary. As far as possible the persons in whose hands the Colonial Post
Offices had been placed were retained under the new regime. All unsalaried Postmasters were granted a percentage of the postal receipts as compensation for their
services, and in consequence there was an immediate and perhaps natural improvement
in the service at the outlying points.
Mr. Gilbert E. Griffin, Post Office Inspector, of London, Ontario, visited British
Columbia in the summer of 1871 and made all necessary arrangements for carrying on
the postal work under Federal control. His work was confirmed and supplemented by
Mr. John Dewe, Chief Post Office Inspector, of Ottawa, who visited the Province
in 1872.
The semi-monthly mail service by steamer from San Francisco, which had been
expressly provided for in the terms of Confederation, was put under contract after
advertisement. Messrs. Rosenfeldt and Bermingham, of San Francisco, owners of the
iron steamship " Prince Alfred," and the last contractors under the Colonial Government, submitted the lowest offer received—namely, $2,250 per round voyage. This
service was maintained by the Dominion Government, by means of different steamers,
for many years after all real necessity for it had disappeared, and an annual subsidy
for its maintenance still figures, though much reduced, in the public accounts of
Canada.   It has not been utilized for the conveyance of the mails since December, 1904.
The weekly service to Olympia was contracted for by A. E. Starr, owner of the
steamer " Enterprise," at the rate of $5,000 per annum.
Thirty Colonial post offices were turned over to the Federal Government on 20th
July, 1871. The Colonial postage-stamps were withdrawn and replaced by current
issues of the Dominion Government. The unsold remainders were gathered together
•from the Treasury and the various post offices and tradition saith that they were
destroyed by fire at Victoria under the supervision of Mr. Griffin. No documentary
evidence to this effect appears to exist locally, but such may yet be found in the
Archives at Ottawa. Accounts differ as to the spot where the holocaust took place;
some say that it occurred at Beacon Hill, others affirm that it was carried out at the
Court-house. But there is no reason to doubt that all remainders of the Colonial
postage-stamps were duly destroyed in accordance with the procedure usual on such
occasions. Mr. E. H. Fletcher, former Post Office Inspector, of Victoria, distinctly
remembered hearing Mr. Wootton and his assistant speak of Mr. Griffin's punctiliousness in carrying out this important part of his duties.
Postmasters in British Columbia were authorized to redeem Colonial postage-
stamps which had been sold to the public, exchanging them for current issues of the
Dominion Government. The stamps thus redeemed were cancelled and forwarded to
the Post Office Department at Ottawa for disposal. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 59
Immediately the Dominion Government took control of postal affairs in British
Columbia the carriage by private persons or expresses of letters, as a remunerative
business, became illegal and punishable by statutory penalties, as the Postmaster-
General of Canada, in whom is vested the sole and exclusive privilege of conveying
the public correspondence, deputes his rights to none other than his duly constituted
representatives and assistants. On more than one occasion this point has been clearly
established, when the Post Office Department has prosecuted express companies for
violation of the law in this respect.
The post offices and mail services of British Columbia were maintained by the
Federal Government for many years at a heavy loss, until the gradual increase in
population and improved methods of transportation enabled the Department to pay its
own way in the territory west of the Rocky Mountains. The total receipts of postal
revenue in British Columbia during the first year under Federal control amounted to
only $8,809, whereas the expenditure was $96,871.94. The completion of the Canadian
Pacific Railway to Vancouver in 1885 involved the Department in outlays which far
exceeded the revenue derived from the territory served. So far as postal facilities are
concerned, there can be no doubt but that the people of British Columbia gained inestimably by entering Confederation with Canada. Still there are some of us to whom
the old-time brigades and expresses, the canoes and pack-horses of the first hectic
gold-rush days, and the camels, mule-trains, stage-coaches, and steam-tractors of the
romantic Cariboo Road are inexpressibly more fascinating than the most up-to-date
methods of transportation; and we continue to look back with keen interest and a
degree of affectionate respect to the postal services of Colonial days and the men who
blazed the trails of postal communication in British Columbia.
By the Editor.
In the Second Annual Report it was announced that reviews of books and articles
relating to British Columbia would be annually published in the Report. To begin
the series of reviews books and articles which had appeared since the formation of
the Association in 1922 were included. This year the number of books will be rather
less and the articles reviewed are those which have been published in the journals of
learned societies during the year 1925. Some books published in 1923 and 1924 but
not as yet considered in the pages of our Reports are now duly recorded. We hope
that these brief notes may be of some service to the members of the Association and
may enable them to keep in closer touch with recent publications which affect our
A History of the Canadian  Pacific Railway.   By Harold A.  Innis.   Toronto:
McClelland and Stewart.    1923.    pp. viii 365.
The Romance of the Canadian Pacific Railway.   By R. G. MacBeth.  Toronto:
The Ryerson Press.    1924.   pp. 263.
The Canadian Pacific Railway has played a part in the history of Western Canada
in general and British Columbia in particular that these two books cannot fail to be
of interest. Dr. Innis's work is a piece of erudite research. It is packed with facts
and is a vast storehouse of information. Dr. MacBeth, on the other hand, has written
a popular history of the railway, full of personal touches and anecdotes of the great
railway-builders. He has stressed, as the title suggests, the romantic side of the story
of the Canadian Pacific Railway. He makes one feel the overwhelming task which
Lord Mount Stephen, Lord Strathcona, Sir William Van Home, and their associates
faced in attempting to build a railway to connect our Province with the Atlantic
In his Preface Dr. Innis announces that in his book " an attempt has been made
to trace the history of the Canadian Pacific Railway from an evolutionary and scientific
point of view."   On the whole the attempt is successful.  The author's first chapter is 60 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
a discussion of the geographical areas of Western Canada with rather detailed references to their history. Usually these historical notes are accurate, but one regrets that
on p. 4 Dr. Innis makes no reference to the Spanish expedition of 1774 and states that
Captain Cook discovered Vancouver Island in 1778. The early history of the Canadian
Pacific Railway is dealt with in fifty-four pages, covering the eventful years from 1870
to 1887. The remainder of the book, over 200 pages, discusses the expansion of the
road and the development of the freight traffic, the freight-rate situation, passenger
traffic, earnings from operations, expenses, total receipts, and capital. The nature of
the book is indicated by these chapter headings. Almost every page bristles with
statistics culled from Sessional Papers, Canadian Pacific Railway Reports, and other
reliable sources. The author has done his work carefully and thoroughly. The result
is that he has produced a volume which is a real contribution to the economic history
of our country, but which makes little appeal to the average reader. But Western
Canadians will note carefully these sentences from the conclusion:—
" On the whole . . . the predominance of eastern Canada over western Canada
seems likely to persist. Western Canada has paid for the development of Canadian
nationality, and it would appear that it must continue to pay. The acquisitiveness of
eastern Canada shows little sign of abatement."
One can only express regret that Dr. Innis did not in his chapter on the freight-
rate situation devote more space to the " mountain differential." Probably in a subsequent edition of the work he will deal fully with British Columbia's attempts to obtain
better terms from the Board of Railway Commissioners.
Dr. MacBeth's " Romance of the Canadian. Pacific Railway " is pitched in a totally
different key. It is an attempt to give in short compass that epic of Western Canada,
the tale of the construction of the first transcontinental railroad. The author is a Westerner who remembers the days before the railway came, who has known the chief
railway-builders, and who breathes into his pages the high hopes, the heartrending
anxieties, the dogged determination, and the ultimate triumph of that little group of
far-seeing Canadians who planned and built the Canadian Pacific Railway. The book
is a frank panygeric of the " giants in action," but the theme is worthy. The leading
characters of construction days, Van Home, Shaughnessy, Strathcona, Mount Stephen,
are sketched by one who knew them well. The scene at Craigellachie, B.C., when the
last spike was driven on November 7, 1885, is described with vivid touches. We can
see the white-haired Donald Smith, taking off his overcoat, and lifting the heavy
sledge to drive home the iron spike. We can hear Van Home's laconic sentence: " All
I can say is that the work has been well done in every way." Then comes the conductor's thrilling cry: "All aboard for the Pacific!" All this is part of our national
heritage, but Dr. MacBeth has told it well.
It must be confessed that Dr. MacBeth's book is written for the general public,
while Dr. Innis is addressing himself to scholars. Both books quite naturally suffer
from the defects of their qualities. Dr. MacBeth becomes rather sketchy at times;
Dr. Innis, on the other hand, packs his pages with statistics and his foot-notes fairly
bristle with research. But one does not always get a clear view of the development
of the railway as a whole. In fact, the one book is a complement of the other. The
two together tell the story of an institution which Dr. Innis has styled " a vital part
of the technological equipment of western civilization."
The Book of the West.    By Howard Angus Kennedy.    Toronto: The Ryerson Press.
1925.   pp. 206.
This book should be of interest to every Western Canadian. The author has lived
for years on the prairies and served as a war correspondent in the North West Rebellion of 1885. He has watched the development of Western Canada with a more
than sympathetic eye and in this volume has attempted to analyse the elusive " spirit
of the West." He traces the early history of the West from the days when the
gigantosuar and tyrannosaur roamed over the Red Deer Valley in Alberta down to the
present time, when the self-same valley is filled with prosperous farms where " new THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 61
Canadians" from eastern Europe are living in harmony with the " old Canadians "
from eastern Canada.
The following sentences culled from the "jacket" of the volume describe clearly
the author's aim in writing " the Book of the West" :—
" This is the first book of the kind on the West to be written by a Westerner. It
evidences an understanding of the history and problems of the West which only a
Westerner can have, and, furthermore, it has been written with the interests of the
West always in view. For the student it presents necessary information in an impressive form which will always be remembered. For the general reader its highly
sustained human interest will be a marked feature. For the private or public library
it will be specially valuable in its presentation of our Canadian West from a new
The prairie, as might be expected, bulks more largely in this work than does
British Columbia. But all parts of Western Canada are portrayed in the three concluding chapters in which the author and his four companions, one from each of the
western provinces, take an imaginary aeroplane flight from the Pacific to the Manitoba-
Ontario border and then up to the Arctic and back. The life of the settler in the
West is described in vivid detail. His trials and successes are told in simple language
by one who is well acquainted with frontier life. Mr. Kennedy is sympathetic toward
the " new Canadian" and pleads for better understanding among the various peoples
who are slowly but surely being fused into a Canadian nation.
As one would expect, the most interesting chapter in the book is that which deals
with the North West Rebellion of 1885. The story is told truthfully and without embellishment, a defeat is not termed a victory, and full allowance is made for the
attitude of the rebels. The narrative is extremely vivid. The bullets whiz once more
on Cutknife Hill and the author's companion is struck down. Later we see Pound-
maker and his chiefs coming in to surrender to General Middleton. The ex-war
correspondent has lost none of his vigour when he describes " our western war " forty
years after.
There are a few minor errors which will be doubtless corrected in a second
edition. They are chiefly minor points; e.g., on page 50 the author states that Mackenzie set out from Lake Athabaska in the spring of 1793, " in 1793, early in May he
once more left Lake Athabaska behind." For a matter of fact Mackenzie had left
Fort Chipewyan, Lake Athabaska, the previous autumn and had wintered on Peace
River near the mouth of the Smoky. But inaccuracies such as this detract but little
from a most interesting book.
All about Canada for Little Folks.   D. J. Dickie.   Toronto: J. M. Dent and Sons.
1925.   pp. 63.    (Dent's Canadian History Readers.)
All about Indians.   D. J. Dickie.   Toronto:  J. M. Dent and Sons.   1925.   pp. 95.
How Canada was Found.   D.J.Dickie.   Toronto: J. M. Dent and Sons.   1925.   pp.128.
The Long Trail.   D. J. Dickie.   Toronto: J. M. Dent and Sons.   1925.   pp. 175.
These four volumes by Miss Donalda J. Dickie, M.A., of the Provincial Normal
School, Calgary, Alberta, strike a new note in Canadian History text-books. They
are the first half of a set of eight books which are intended for use in the eight grades
of the public school. Miss Dickie has carefully suited the contents of the volumes
to the age of the students. The second book is more advanced than the first; the
fourth than the third.   All four are beautifully illustrated.
Miss Dickie's purpose in writing these books on Canadian History has been to
interest the pupils of our schools in the romantic story of our country. In the first
book, which can easily be used in the second half of a child's first year at school, the
little tots are told simple stories about Canada. The words used by Miss Dickie are
quite within the comprehension of Grade I. As a result children of 6 or 7 become
interested in the history of Canada. The second book, " All about Indians." is fascinating. The life of the Indians, especially the prairie Indians, is vividly described.
The pupils unconsciously become sympathetically disposed toward the red man. They
admire his hardiness, his courage, and his resourcefulness, but they learn as well th? 62 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
weaker points of his character. Miss Dickie knows that all North American children
love to hear about Indians and she gratifies their desire in this pleasing little book.
The beginning of Book III., " How Canada was Found," well illustrates the
author's method. In her early training and in her teaching career she has acquired
sound historical principles and uses them to great advantage. It is an axiom now
among American historians that a knowledge of the European background is essential
to a right understanding of American History. Miss Dickie begins her third volume
with a description of English social life at the time of the discovery of America. She
invents the story of an English family, the " Lintons," and tells about Master David
Linton, his sister, his mother, and his father. She sketches the life in an English
manor-house, tells the children how meals were served and what the people had to
eat in those days. Then she sends young David and his father to the neighbouring
market town. On the way they meet the great Lord Willoughby with his band of
feudal retainers. In the town the father and son stop at an inn. One can almost see
that inn, it is so clearly portrayed. When the travellers arrive home again they find an
uncle who has just come from Italy bringing news of the discovery of America by
Christopher Columbus. Then we are told of the early voyages to America and how
Canada is found. The deathless stories of the early explorers are narrated in simple
language fitted to the comprehension of Grade III. pupils. When one remembers the
" dry bones " of Canadian History as taught a quarter of a century ago in the average
Canadian school, one is inclined to envy those fortunate youngsters who can read
Miss Dickie's books!
The fourth volume, " The Long Trail," brings the story of Canada from east to
west. In the preparation of these books Miss Dickie has worked in the provincial
libraries from Charlottetown to Victoria, in the Public Archives at Ottawa, and in
the libraries of the leading Canadian universities. She knows our country from sea to
sea and in this fourth volume she exhibits her knowledge to advantage. It is impossible here to refer to this volume in detail, but two things deserve notice. The first
is her ability to construct little plays introducing the early explorers. The youthful
adventures of Radison, one of the founders of the Hudson's Bay Company, form the
theme of a most interesting short play. Her other forte consists in the brief historical
poems scattered through the volumes. One verse from " The Spanish Governor at
Nootka " illustrates this:—
" Said the Spanish Governor at Nootka,
Will you dine with me to-day?
Said Vancouver, so politely,
Be my guest, I pray!"
Already one of these volumes has been used with success as a supplementary
reader in one of our schools. The youngsters loved it and the teacher was most enthusiastic over its reception. Anything which can make Canadian History more interesting to our school-children is to be welcomed. The appearance of the other four
volumes is to be eagerly awaited.
A word should be added about the illustrations. The publishers have spared no
pains in obtaining coloured pictures which will interest the youthful readers'. The
result is that the volumes differ from the ordinary run of History books. They are
works of art, whose influence on the mind of the young should be beneficent.
The Canadian Historical Reviezv for 1925 contained several articles and reviews
of interest to British Columbians. Our President, Judge Howay, has an able article
on Indian Attacks upon Maritime Traders of the North-West Coast, 1785-1805, his
presidential address before our Association in 1924. Dr. Lennox Mills, a graduate of
the University of British Columbia, now resident in Oxford, writes on The Real
Significance of the Nootka Sound Incident. Mr. V. L. Denton's The Far West Coast
is reviewed by Judge Howay, who also reviews Woolen, The Inside Passage to Alaska;
Anderson, Vancouver and His Great Voyage; McCormac, James K. Polk; Fanning,
Voyages and Discoveries in the South Seas; Snow, The Sea, the Ship, and the Sailor; THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 63
Restarick, Hawaii, 1778-1920. Mr. James White contributes a discussion on Henry
Cabot Lodge and the Alaskan Boundary Award, taking issue with some of the statements of the late Senator from Massachusetts. Mr. T. F. Mcllwraith reviews -Harrison, Ancient Warriors of the North Pacific, and supplies much-needed bibliographical
information regarding the Archaeology and Ethnology of Canada (pp. 378-387 in the
December, 1925, issue). On the whole the Canadian Historical Review is maintaining
its excellent standard. It deserves the hearty support of every Canadian who is really
interested in the history of his country.
The Annual Report of the Canadian Historical Association for 1925 has not yet
been received. It should contain the papers read at the annual meeting held in Montreal in May of last year. Mr. H. A. Kennedy read a paper on Our Western War,
Principal E. H. Oliver dealt with The Coming of the Barr Colonists, and Professor
Sage contributed a study entitled Sir James Douglas, Fur Trader and Governor.
The Quarterly of the Oregon Historical Society in 1925 published an article by
Judge Howay bearing the title Some Additional Notes Upon Captain Colnett and the
"Princess Royal," and also a review by the same pen on Cochrane, David Thompson,
the Explorer. Mr. T. C. Elliott dealt with the activities of David Thompson in two
articles, published in the March and June issues respectively, Introduction to David
Thompson's Narrative: The Discovery of the Source of the Columbia; and David
Thompson, Pathfinder, and the Columbia River, a reprint, with corrections and additions, of the article on the same subject first published in Volume XII. of the Oregon
Quarterly. In the June issue are valuable articles on La Verendrye expeditions in the
prairie provinces and states. De Mofras's Exploration of Oregon is the theme of
another article, the author being Nellie Bowden Pipes. Certain chapters from De
Mofras's own narrative are reproduced in English. They tell about Fort Vancouver
and the French settlement on the Willamette. The Journal of Lieutenant George
Foster Emmons, of the United States Navy, is reproduced in the September number,
the extracts dealing with Fort Vancouver. A feature of this record is the plan of the
fort reproduced on page 264. Marion O'Neil has pointed out An Error concerning
Finlay's Journal, showing that the journal attributed by Hubert Howe Bancroft to
James Finlay, the discoverer of the Finlay branch of Peace River, is really Simon
Fraser's First Journal.
The Washington Historical Quarterly as usual contained much of interest to the
members of our Association. Mr. J. Orin Oliphant contributed a valuable article on
Old Fort Colville, the Hudson's Bay Company's post erected in 1825 near Kettle Falls
on the Columbia River. Professor Edmond S. Meany edited the diary of Lieutenant
Charles S. Wilkes, commander of the United States Exploring Expedition. This diary,
to which Professor Meany has contributed an historical introduction, was found, after
much search, in the Hydrographic Office, United States Navy Department, Washington,
D.C. It describes the visit of Lieutenant Wilkes to Fort Vancouver in 1841 and contains interesting references to Dr. John McLoughlin and James Douglas. Judge
Howay's article on Captain Simon Metcalfe and the Brig "Eleanora," which appeared
in the April number, threw new light on the maritime fur trade. In the same number
Mr. William S. Lewis, of Spokane, furnished Information Concerning the Establishment of Fort Colville, and edited a letter of Angus MacDonald, who was Chief Trader
at Fort Colville (for that was the accepted spelling of the name of the old fort when
the Hudson's Bay Company held sway). This letter, dated June 4, 1870, contains a
reference to Mr. Jason Allard. A foot-note gives us the surprising information that
Mr. Allard " died about two years ago near Ft. Langley." His presence at Fort
Langley on May 2, 1925, has already been chronicled in this Report.
In July, 1925, under the auspices of the Great Northern Railway, the Upper
Missouri Historical Expedition visited historic sites in North Dakota and Montana.
Celebrations were held at Verendrye, N.D., where the work of the great French-
Canadian explorer was duly chronicled, and a monument was unveiled to the memory
of David Thompson, the astronomer of the North West Company, who visited that
spot in 1797; at the site of old Fort Union on the present boundary-line between the
States of North Dakota and Montana—Fort Union was the chief trading-post of the 64 BRITISH COLUMBIA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION.
American Fur Company; and at Meriweather, Montana, where the great Lewis and
Clark Expedition was fittingly remembered. Two other gatherings were held—one off
the railway at the scene of the last stand of Chief Joseph and his band of Nez Perces
in the autumn of 1877; the other at Marias Pass, where a statue of John Frank
Stevens, the discoverer of the pass in 1889, was unveiled. Mr. Stevens was an
honoured guest at this ceremony, one of the too few occasions when a pathfinder has
been suitably remembered during his lifetime. All these monuments were erected by
the Great Northern Railway, under whose auspices and at whose expense the entire
expedition was conducted. Great credit is due to President Ralph Budd and to the
other officials of the railroad who brought the great undertaking to such a successful
In commemoration of this expedition the Great Northern Railway issued a unique
series of pamphlets.   The following are the titles of six of the most important:—
The Verendrye Overland Quest of the Pacific.
A Glance at the Lewis and Clark Expedition.   By Grace Flandrau.
Fort Union and its Neighbours.   By Frank B. Harper.
The Story of Marias Pass.   By Grace Flandrau.
Chief Joseph's Own Story.
An Important Visit, Zabulon Montgomery Pike, 1805.
Although these pamphlets do not in any way touch the history of our own Province and have only an indirect bearing on the story of Western Canada, it has been
thought well to list them as an indication of the public spirit of a great railway corporation. The Great Northern Railway is planning other celebrations which will more
closely affect the story of our Province. Judge Howay was present at these celebrations. The Secretary and the Editor were also invited, but were, unfortunately, unable
to attend.
Captain Bishop's brochure on Sir Alexander Mackenzie's Book, issued by the
Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, has already been mentioned in the
Introduction. Here it is merely our pleasant duty to chronicle it as one of the noteworthy contributions to our provincial history which appeared during 1925. It is
hoped that the members of our Association will soon have the opportunity to be
present at the unveiling of a fitting memorial to Mackenzie and to witness the
chiselling of the immortal inscription on the Rock. THIRD ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS. 65
Akehurst, Rev. H. S., English Church, Kamloops, B.C.
♦Anderson, J. R., Union Club, Victoria.
Anstey, Arthur, 1050 Fifteenth Avenue West, Vancouver, B.C.
Averill, A. S., 1503 Rockland Avenue, Victoria.
Barry, Capt. G. H, P.O. Box 44, Victoria.
Blackwood, E. E., 911 Linden Avenue, Victoria.
Boggs, Beaumont, 620 Broughton Street, Victoria.
Bolton, Mrs. W. W., 316 Cook Street, Victoria.
Bone, W. H, care T. N. Hibben Co., Victoria.
Bruce, Hon. Robert Randolph, Lieutenant-Governor of B.C.
Bullen, D. B. F., Langford Station, V.I.
Bullen, Mrs. D. B. F., Langford Station, V.I.
Bullen, Mrs. Fitzherbert, Oakdene, 924 Esquimalt Road, Victoria.
Case, C. C, Kamloops, B.C.
Chisholm, A. J., Kingsgate, B.C.
Church, Mrs. J. W., 46 Douglas Street, Victoria.
Clark, Ernest, Kamloops, B.C.
Clarke, Mrs. C. E., 1130 Summit Avenue, Victoria.
Cree, Mrs., 974 Island Road, Victoria.
Denton, V. L., 1866 Forester Street, Victoria.
Dunbar, C. H, Kamloops, B.C.
Eastham, J. W., Court-house, Vancouver, B.C.
Elliot, T. C, Walla Walla, U.S.A.
Finlayson, Miss, 1009 Terrace Avenue, Victoria.
Forsyth, John, Provincial Librarian, Victoria.
Fraser, Donald A., 314 Phoenix Place, Victoria.
Fraser, Mrs. Walter, Vancouver and Courtney Streets, Victoria.
French, Cecil, Empress Hotel, Victoria.
Gardiner, George.
Georgeson, Mrs. Allan, Albert Head, V.I. -
Goodfellow, Rev. J. C, 714 Queen's Avenue, Victoria.
Hamilton,  Basil  G.,  Invermere,  B.C.
Hamilton, J. H., Suite 101, Merchant's Exchange Building, Vancouver, B.C.
Harris, Miss Hilda, 603 Superior Street, Victoria.
Harrison, Victor B., Nanaimo. B.C.
Hart, Mrs. E. C, 643 Courtney Street, Victoria.
Helmcken, Mrs. J. D., 1538 Beach Drive, Victoria.
Henderson, H. S., Victoria Book &.Stationery Co., Victoria.
Hosie, John, 3521 Savannah Avenue, Saanich, V.I.
Howay, His Honour Judge F. W., New Westminster, B.C.
Howson, Miss Helen E., 2648 Alberta Street, Vancouver, B.C.
Hubbell, C. S., 1001 Alaska Building, Seattle, Wash., U.S A.
Leeson, B. W., Quatsino, V.I.
Longstaff, Major F. V., F.R.G.S., 50 Highland Drive, Victoria.
MacKenzie, Hugh, 1039 Richardson Street, Victoria.
♦McMicking, Mrs. R. B., 703 Linden Avenue, Victoria.
McTavish, George S., 733 Lampson Street, Victoria.
Martin, Hon. Mr. Justice, Court of Appeal, Victoria.
Maynard, A. H., 734 Yates Street, Victoria.
Murphy, Dr. H. H, Kamloops, B.C.
Murphy, —, 514 Keith Road West, North Vancouver, B.C.
Neal, William J., Box 55, Duncan.
Newcombe, W. A., 138 Dallas Road, Victoria.
Nimmo, James E., Hixon P.O., B.C.
Norris, N., Vernon, B.C.
Paterson, Mrs. Thos., Uplands, Victoria.
Pemberton, C. C, 1207 Douglas Street, Victoria.
Peters, E. S., Sheriff, Prince George, B.C.
Pierce, Lome, Ryerson Press, Toronto.
Rathom, Mrs. M. H., 1415 Gladstone Avenue, Victoria.: '
Reid, R. L., K.C, Vancouver, B.C.
Robertson, His Honour Judge, Prince George, B.C.
Robertson, Lieut.-Col. F. A., 1611 Stanley Avenue, Victoria.
Ross, Francis H, 146 Eberts Street, Victoria.
Russell, Miss Alma, 27 Boyd Street, Victoria.
Rutherford, Hon. A. C, Edmonton, Alberta.
Sage, Professor W. N., University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C.
Schooling, Sir William, K.B.E., 14 Brook Green, London, England.
Sewell, Richard R. F., 576 Obed Avenue, Victoria.
Shiels, Archie, Pacific American Fisheries, South Bellingham, Wash., U.S.A.
Smith, John F., Indian Office, Kamloops, B.C.
Soward, Professor F. H., University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C.
Terry, Miss Ilace, 1220 St. James Street, Victoria.
Thompson, R. A., Kamloops, B.C.
Thornton, Miss S. M., 410 Oswego Street, Victoria.
Tolmie, Miss Jane Work, 978 Cloverdale Avenue, Victoria.
Tolmie, Miss Josette C, 978 Cloverdale Avenue, Victoria.
Tyrrell, Arthur, Box 462, Kamloops, B.C.
Tyrrell, Mrs. A. M., Kamloops, B.C.
Wade, Dr. M. S., Kamloops, B.C.
Watson, A. J., Hudson's Bay Co., Victoria.
Wheatley, Mrs. M. S., 712 Lampson Street, Victoria.
Young, Dr. H. E., Provincial Health Officer, Victoria.
Affiliated Societies.
Art, Historical, and Scientific Association, Vancouver, B.C.
Canadian Historical Association, Ottawa, Ont.
Lady Douglas Chapter, I.O.D.E.
Native Daughters of B.C., Post No. 3.
Natural History Society, Victoria.
University of British Columbia Historical Association.
• Denotes honorary life members.
Printed by F. Banfield, Printer to the King's Most Excellent Majesty.


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