The following extracts taken from early Victoria, British Columbia (BC) newspapers are credited to Leona Taylor for her excellent work in indexing the papers. Full information can be found here: ”Index of Historical Victoria Newspapers“, 2007-09.
phs/Clayoquot, called after a West Coast tribe of Indians. ‘Cla-o-quaht’ means people different from what they were. (See Walbran). It is situated partly on a peninsula of Vancouver Island and partly on Meares and Stubbs Islands. The white settlement is commonly known as Tofino, though it is registered at the Provincial Land Office as Clayoquot Townsite, and is situated at the Northwest extremity of the peninsula extending about 9 miles Northwest from Long Beach. The Indian village, known as Opitsat is situated on the Southwest shore of Meares I. The hotel, large store, and wharf belonging to Mr Dawley are on Stubbs I, with the Post Office and police stn shown on the Admiralty chart as Clayoquot.
The common meeting ground of all the settlements is the large sheet of water between them, full of sand banks and channels, with strong tide rips, so that all the inter-communication has to be by boat, making it a miniature Venice. There are many Norwegian seafaring settlers, many of whom form the lifeboat crew at Tofino; besides owning their own houses, they build rowing and motor boats with great success. The only motor boats and pilots to be hired for the work up the many inlets of Clayoquot and Nootka Sounds are at Tofino. The expeditions after timber, minerals, earths, cannery sites and land locating in these sounds are nearly endless, and they have been all transported by these Tofino guides and their motor boats. In fact, Clayoquot is the best place to commence any small expedition to any inlet South of Cape Cook and Quatsino Sound.
Tofino has a Post Office, school, telegraph, telephone, a lifeboat and a small store. They will soon have an hotel.
The only regular way of getting to Tofino is by Canadian Pacific Railway Tees, about 4 times a month. After arrival one has to wait 4 days before she returns South bound, and in these days this is much too long for a business man. The real development of Clayoquot Sound is retarded owing to the long time between trips.
So far as is at present known the largest and highest mountain ranges (7000 to 8000′) on the Island are at the back of Clayoquot Sound towards Gt Central and Buttle Lks.
Taking the Clayoquot arms of the sea in rotation from the South, we have Browning Passage to Long Beach, Tofino Inlet with Kennedy Lake entering on the E, Warm Bay, Bedwell Sound, into which Bear River flows, which is fed by the glaciers of the Seven Peaks; Herbert Arm, North Arm, Shelter Arm and Sydney Inlet, which is the northerly ship passage. At a rough estimate, there is about 300 miles of sea frontage in the Clayoquot Sound, and Kennedy Lake has about 50 miles of water frontage. On the East side of Deception Chan, on Meares I, is a large grey building, a school for Indian boys, belonging to the Roman Catholic church. The priests from here also have charge of the chapels at Hesquiat and Friendly Cove.
At the Southeast end of Flores I is Ahousat, situated halfway down a peninsula formed by Matilda Creek, which comes in from the North. Ahousat means ‘people living with their backs to the land and mountains,’ because the original home of the tribe was on the seafront of Vargas I near Foam Reefs, there being no land to obstruct the full view of the ocean from the village. In 1864 the Ahousat Indians massacred the crew and destroyed the small trading Schooner Kingfisher, while lying in Matilda Creek. There is a branch store belonging to Mr Dawley in the Indian village, and to the South is a large building, a school for Indian boys and girls, belonging to the Presbyterian church.
Hesquiat Harbour is not in Clayoquot Sound proper, but lies 8 miles West of Sydney Inlet, in the bay formed by Estevan Point. It is 4 miles long in a Northwest direction and upwards of 2 miles wide at the entrance, opening out a little inside, but on nearing the head it contracts to less than 1 mile, and the depth varies from 4 to 8 fathoms. The large Indian village and mission of the Roman Catholic church is on the West shore, with the store about 1 mile North, where the trail comes in from Estevan lighthouse and wireless station The anchorage is offshore, as that off the village is too rocky. The name is an adaption of Heish-kwi-aht, derived from the Indian word Heish-heishja, meaning to tear asunder with teeth. A salt water grass called ‘Segino’ drifts onshore in large quantities, especially at the time of the herring spawning, which the Indians are in the habit of disengaging with their teeth, esteemed by them a great delicacy. The Hesquiats claim to have the 1st tradition of a ship being seen anywhere on the whole coast; this claim is conceded by all the West Coast tribes. The vessel referred to by the tradition was without doubt the Spanish corvette Santiago, Lieutenant Juan Perez in command, which anchored near what is now known as Estevan Point, Aug 8, 1774.
From my own observations I think this is one of the best fishing grounds for bottom fishing on the Coast. I can think of nothing more pleasant than a cruiser motorboat trip to this place, and lots of sole, cod, plaice fishing, interspersed with a tramp to Estevan and rambles around the harbour. PC [Colonist, 1912-04-14]
Mr W P Daykin, who for over 25 years has been in charge of the Carmanah Point lighthouse, has been transferred to the McLachlan Point fog stn, and Mr Woodbine, will move from this aid to Carmanah. Mr Daykin, during his stay at Carmanah, has been of great assistance to shipping, and many a shipwrecked mariner has been succored by him. Carmanah is a signal stn and inbound vessels have been reported for years by Mr Daykin. [Colonist, 1912-07-20]