Lighthouse History – 56 (1931-05-09 – 1931-05-31)

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.

Please Note: December 20, 2012 – I am continuing this series with Lighthouse History #51 because the newspapers have now been indexed up to 1932. I quit posting at #50 as the extracts only went to 1926. They have now been extended from 1927 to 1932 so I will sift through the data for anything lighhouse!

 Captain Cook’s Landing presented in Pageant on Clayoquot’s Shore… ; May 12, 20 – photo of Major George Nicholson as Captain Cook…; May 9, 20 – Tofino Legion’s day of celebration… ; B Nicholson, of the Department of Marine, was in Tofino attending to the installation of a new telephone cable connecting Lennard Island lighthouse with the mainland. Visitors were entertained at tea by Mrs Jackson and Miss Gertrude Jackson, who reside at Long Beach. [Colonist, 1931-05-09, p. 17]

 

June 9, 1931, 20 – Nootka. Taking the census on the outlying points of Vancouver Island is proving to be an exceedingly interesting and exciting expedition… To say ‘called on’ is stating it mildly, according to the experience of Major George Nicholson and Jack Mathison, who have been entrusted with finding the lonely settlers, prospectors, trappers and other isolated persons dotted along the coastline… 
Owing to the rough nature of the coast, none but the staunchest of vessels would be suitable for this work, so Ottawa has chartered the fishing vessel Yankee Boy, owned and manned by Bjarne and Trygve Arnet, of Tofino, and these two men, both well known and experienced fishermen and born on the west coast… 
As an instance of the isolation of some of the settlers visited is the case of a man who lives on a pre-emption at Escalante Point, to reach whom the census enumerator has the choice of walking 15 miles along the rugged shoreline north of Estevan lighthouse and wireless station, or else chancing a hazardous landing in the ocean surf in the vicinity of Escalante Rocks, one of the worst spots on the coast, many ships having been wrecked at that point. 
Mathison, not relishing the walk each way, the Yankee Boy undertook the landing behind the reef itself. Watching for a time when the tide was suitable and the prevailing westerly wind not too strong, and with the aid of the staunch lifeboat carried along, the landing was successfully made, but not without excitement in making the beach in the big combers. A mile and half walk along the rocky coastline found the settler in a snug bay, facing the warm, sunny south, and the enumerator, to his surprise, was treated to a feast of fresh strawberries.  Continue reading

Lighthouse History – 52 (1927-12-13 – 1929-05-19)

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.

Please Note: December 20, 2012 – I am continuing this series with Lighthouse History #51 because the newspapers have now been indexed up to 1932. I quit posting at #50 as the extracts only went to 1926. They have now been extended from 1927 to 1932 so I will sift through the data for anything lighhouse!

 Died Dec 11, 1927 at V, Frederic Argyle, 52, born Dec 25, 1871 at Rocky Point lighthouse, where his father, who came here in the Royal Engineers, under Colonel Moody, was lightkeeper for many years, son of Thomas Argyle of Englandl and, and Ellen Tufts, of Halifax, NS. Leaves widow, Mrs E R. Pallbearers: G Ball, H C Helgesen, T F Helgesen, T Foster, Herbert Parker, W Welty. Metchosin burial. [Colonist, 1927-12-13*]

 

Died Apr 17, 1928 at Victoria, BC, Ellen Josephine Forsyth, 53, wife of James T, lighthousekeeper at Race Rocks. Born in NS, resident of BC 48 years. Leaves husband, daughter, 2 sisters, 2 brothers [Guthro]. Pallbearers: N Bertucci, W H P Trowsdale, W Muir, A E Whittaker, Captain G Evans, J Talbot. [Colonist, 1928-04-19*]

 

Died Jul 4, 1928 at Saturna Island, BC, James Georgeson, 79, leaves widow, Joan, 4 daughters, 3 sons. Born Oct 20, 1849, he came to Canada from the Shetland Islands in 1887, and was keeper of the East Point lighthouse for 32 years. He was granted the Imperial long service medal. Mayne Island burial. [Colonist, 1928-07-28*]

 

Rosina, 52 [47], wife of the Daniel O’Brien, Entrance Island lighthousekeeper, drowned today in Entrance Island. She was with her husband in a rowboat, and, on attempting to make a landing, the boat upset, throwing both into the water. O’Brien reached shore safely and ran to the McConvey ranch for help. McConvey, Bennett and Griffith returned with him to the scene and took Mrs O’Brien from the water. Formerly of Victoria, born in County Down, Ireland. Also leaves son, and a sister. Pallbearers: E Burkmar, W Mills, A Morgan, G Morgan, W Fisher, R Trowsdale. [Colonist, 1928-10-13, p. 15]

 

Mar 29, 8 – Tofino lifeboat brought Mr Halkett from Ucluelet to inspect the lifesaving station and Lennard Island lighthouse… [Colonist, 1929-03-19*]

 

Died Apr 3, 1929 at Victoria, BC, Henry Herbert Smithman, 39, born in North Carolina, he leaves widow, 4 children, mother, brother, 6 sisters. He served overseas in the Great War with PLI and was lighthousekeeper at Sister’s Rock Light. New Westminster burial. [Colonist, 1929-04-04*]

 

T Guerney to relieve D McPhee at Lennard Island lighthouse for 3 weeks. Owing to the Tofino customs office being closed, Fred Towler, postmaster, has been appointed to take over minor customs duties. [Colonist, 1929-05-19, p. 8]

Reprint – The Lighthouses of British Columbia

 

In February 2012 I wrote an article on the seawater sample collecting from the BC lighthouses here My story discussed the duties and .trials a lightkeeper had while obtaining the samples. This story details the use of the information collected from a scientist’s point of view.

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The Lighthouses of British Columbia

by Allan Roberts

Not only are British Columbia’s lighthouses picturesque, and important for navigational purposes, but they also collect oceanographic data! You can access sea surface temperature (SST) and surface salinity data at the following website:

www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/science/oceans/data-donnees/lighthouses-phares/index-eng.htm

This website also has photographs of the lighthouses. (See below.)

Figure 1. Race Rocks (48.180 N, 123.320 W). Photo credit: Fisheries and Oceans Canada. Photograph obtained from: http://www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/science/oceans/data-donnees/lighthouses-phares/index-eng.htm

Figure 2. Amphitrite Point (48.550 N, 125.320 W). Photo credit: Fisheries and Oceans Canada. Photograph obtained from: www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/science/oceans/data-donnees/lighthouses-phares/index-eng.htm

I’ve compiled and plotted some of the data from the Race Rocks and Amphitrite Point lighthouses. Race Rocks (Figure 1) is near Victoria, while Amphitrite Point (Figure 2), on the west coast of Vancouver Island, is closer to Bamfield. The data plotted in Figure 3 are monthly averages for October, covering the years 1936 to 2011. The plot shows an evident contrast in SST and surface salinity between the two sites.

Figure 3. October averages for surface salinity plotted versus October averages for sea surface temperature. The data are from two different lighthouses: Race Rocks (48.180 N, 123.320 W) and Amphitrite Point (48.550 N, 125.320 W). Race Rocks is near Victoria, while Amphitrite Point is on the west coast of Vancouver Island. Data are not plotted for 1940 and 2007, because of missing values. Graphics produced with R (R Core Team, 2012). Data source: Fisheries and Oceans Canada, www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/science/oceans/data-donnees/lighthouses-phares/index-eng.htm (accessed Oct. 9, 2012).

A peculiarity of the lighthouse data is that they are not collected at the same time every day, as explained on the lighthouse data website: “Sampling occurs at or near the daytime high tide” (Fisheries and Oceans Canada, 2012).

If you want data for ocean bottom temperature and salinity (as opposed to surface temperature and salinity), such data are available through NEPTUNE Canada, and through the VENUS network (NEPTUNE Canada, 2012; VENUS, 2012).

Citations

Fisheries and Oceans Canada. 2012. Website. Accessed Oct., 9, 2012:http://www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/science/oceans/data-donnees/lighthouses-phares/index-eng.htm

NEPTUNE Canada, 2012. Website: www.neptunecanada.com

R Core Team, 2012. R: A language and environment for statistical computing. R Foundation for Statistical Computing, Vienna, Austria.

VENUS network, 2012. Website: www.venus.uvic.ca

Book – Lighthouse Chronicles by Flo Anderson

Lighthouse Chronicles – Twenty Years on the B.C. Lights

These are the first-hand stories of Flo Anderson and her husband Trevor and their four children as left left the city life in 1961 for a life on the British Columbia lighthouses.

They worked as lighthouse keepers for the next twenty years at Lennard Island, Barrett Rock, McInnes Island, Green Island and Race Rocks.

The book is interesting as it is written from a woman’s point of view.

Many B&W photos give illustration to the narrative.

Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: Harbour Publishing (1998)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 155017181X
ISBN-13: 978-1550171815
Product Dimensions: (9″ x 6″) 22.9 x 15.2 x 2 cm
Availability: Used (Out of Stock)