BC Black History Awareness Society (BCBHAS)

“A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots” - Marcus Mosiah Garvey Jr.

 With special guest Dr. Verna Gibbs: “I followed in the footsteps of my great-great grand-uncle, Mifflin Wistar Gibbs ..”

 

vgibbs1 330 years ago while rummaging around in her father's office, Dr. Gibbs found a copy of the 1983 Heritage poster published to celebrate 125 years of Black History in British Columbia, on which she saw the regal picture of her great-great-granduncle.   In 2017, in Vancouver there was a patient safety meeting that Dr. Gibbs was going to attend and in anticipation of her first visit to the area, she sent a “cold call” email to the then President of BCBHAS, Mavis DeGirolamo.  Dr. Gibbs was interested in the community in Victoria, had planned to visit the Royal BC Museum Archives to see their holdings on Mifflin Gibbs and walk about to see what if anything, remained from the times that he lived in Victoria.  Mavis responded, they have stayed in contact and … the rest is herstory …”

A native of New Jersey and a third-generation physician, in 1979 Dr. Gibbs moved to San Francisco to begin her General Surgery residency at the University of California, San Francisco (USCF).  She states “I followed in the footsteps of my great-great-granduncle, Mifflin Wistar Gibbs, who had emigrated from San Francisco to come here to Victoria in 1858 in search of personal safety, the hope for equal rights and financial opportunity.”  While they travelled about 120 years apart, she to San Francisco and he from San Francisco, they were both seeking to escape the confines of the existing cultures, gain new knowledge to further their careers, start families and find freedom and adventure in their life’s journey’s.

Dr. Gibbs is the second of four children born to Jonathan C. Gibbbs Jr. MD, who was a general surgeon in private practice in Jersey City NJ and Verna Hazel Thomas Gibbs who was a New York City (NYC) public middle-school science teacher.  She attended primary school in Jersey City and then secondary school at the Elisabeth Irwin High School in NY.  She obtained a BA degree cum laude from Harvard University and a MD degree from Duke University Medical School.  She completed her residency in General Surgery at UCSF in 1984 and continued her clinical training with a fellowship in renal transplantation at the California-Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco and a molecular biology fellowship at Genentech Inc.  She then joined the faculty of the Department of Surgery at UCSF where she is currently a Professor in Surgery and a staff Attending General Surgeon at the San Francisco VA Medical Center.

In 2004, she founded the national surgical patient safety project NoThing Left Behind® which studies the Prevention of Retained Surgical Items.  She is a private surgical-safety consultant to hospitals around the world, to help them employ best practices to manage surgical sponges and devices, to prevent one from being inadvertently left inside a patient after an operation.  She has numerous publications, teaches and lectures widely.

She was married for 23 years to Marco Giuseppe Patti MD from Catania, Sicily and they have a daughter Verna Ada Gibbs Patti who graduated from Barnard College and recently completed the Professional Pastry Program at the SF Cooking School. She is a baker, bread is her specialty; she currently lives and works in San Francisco. 

 About the library  

 Verna Gibbs - James Bay Library

 

BC Black History Awareness Society (BCBHAS) Website User Agreement

  1. Acceptance of Terms

BY ACCESSING AND USING BCBHAS’S WEBSITE (the "Website"), YOU ARE AGREEING TO BE BOUND BY ALL THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS OF THE WEBSITE USER AGREEMENT.

BCBHAS may, in its sole discretion, revise these Terms at any time without advance notice to you. You are bound by such revisions by continuing to use or visit the Website after they are posted online.

  1. Scope of Applicability

These Terms apply to all users of the Website, including users who contribute content to the Website. The Website may contain interactive areas designed to allow you to post content on the Website and/or comment. The use of these features is governed by the Code of Conduct set forth in Section 11.

  1. Ownership of Website Content

Material on this website, including all images, designs, photographs, videos, and written text, is produced and/or compiled by the BCBHAS for the purpose of providing information about the achievements of people of African heritage in British Columbia and Canada. Copyright in the material may be owned by the BCBHAS or a third party, or may be in the public domain. The following conditions apply to all material reproduced from the Website:

BCBHAS property. Except as set otherwise set forth herein, BCBHAS owns all intellectual property rights, including without limitation copyright and trade-mark rights, in all materials on or comprising the Website, including, without limitation, all written, audio-visual or other materials and graphical elements on the Website, but excluding User Content defined in Section 5. Except for limited use as set forth in Section 4, fair use and other allowances under the law, republication of any of the content without express permission from the BCBHAS is prohibited.

Third-party material. The copyright on many of the images and part of the text on the Website is held by third parties. BCBHAS requires that anyone seeking to use these items first do due diligence to determine the actual copyright owner. Photographs, videos, images and third-party text are all rights reserved, and permission from the legal copyright owner must be obtained to use this material.

Public domain material. Some of the material on the Website is in the public domain, either because the material cannot be copyrighted under law or the copyright term of protection has expired. Other rights such as publicity, privacy, or moral rights may still apply to public domain material and may limit how the material may be used. The obligation to determine whether any material is in the public domain is the responsibility of the person desiring its use and not BCBHAS. BCBHAS does not seek to restrict use of material in the public domain or where use is permitted by an exception or limitation in the law. Nevertheless, BCBHAS requests that it be given credit for such items where they were originally sourced from the Website.

  1.  Limited Use

Subject to the rights of third-part copyright owners, BCBHAS grants you a limited licence to download and display on your computer monitor, or hard copy prints, the Website’s content, for non-commercial, personal or educational purposes only, providing that the Website content is not modified and this limited licence are included with, and displayed on, each printed copy of such content. A copyright notice must appear on every copy in the following form: “© BC Black History Awareness Society. All rights reserved”.

You may not:

  • use the Website’s content for commercial purposes;
  • include the Website’s content with any product or service that you or your agents create or distribute, including software or other digital products; and
    • display the Website’s content on any other website or make available the Website’s content on any file server.

Republication does not create an affiliation with or endorsement by the BCBHAS, and no representation of approval, affiliation or endorsement may be made without explicit permission to that effect.

  1. User Content

You may be able to post or upload (in designated areas of the Website) written content or other content (collectively "User Content") to the Website. You are solely responsible for your own User Content and the consequences of posting or publishing it. By uploading or posting User Content to the Website, you automatically grant BCBHAS a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty free, license to use, reproduce, modify, translate into different languages or formats, and publish such User Content on the Website for the purpose of sharing the User Content with users and visitors of the Website and to promote the Website. You represent and warrant that you own or have the rights to use and license BCBHAS to use the User Content in the manner contemplated by the Website and these Terms.

  1. Disclaimer

The Website is provided on an “as-is” and “as-available” basis. BCBHAS makes no warranties or representations that the Website, including its content, information, products or services or other material available through the Website, will be provided on an uninterrupted, timely, secure or error-free basis.

  1. Limitation of Liability

Under no circumstances will BCBHAS be liable for any damages relating directly or indirectly to any action or inaction based on the content, information, products or services or other material available through the Website. BCBHAS will not be responsible for any damages or losses related to, the accuracy, currency or completeness of the content, information, products or services or other material obtained through the Website.

  1. Indemnification

You agree to indemnify, defend and hold harmless BCBHAS, its governing board, officers, agents, employees, funders and suppliers from any liabilities, losses, claims, demands, and expenses (including reasonable lawyer’s fees) related to (a) your use of the Website; or (b) violations of these Terms of Use.

  1. Third-Party Information and Links

Third parties may provide information displayed on the Website. The third-party information displayed on the Website is not necessarily sponsored, endorsed, recommended, or licensed by BCBHAS. Third-parties should be contacted directly regarding any inquiries or for more information on their website policies. The Website may provide links to other Internet sites. BCBHAS has no control over such sites. BCBHAS does not endorse nor is it responsible for, any such sites or the information, material, products or services contained on or accessible through those other Internet sites.

  1. Termination

BCBHAS may at its sole discretion, with or without notice, suspend or terminate your use of the Website for any reason, including a violation of the terms of the User Agreement. BCBHAS may also prevent you from further use of the Website. BCBHAS will not be liable for any suspension, termination or prohibition of future access.

  1. Code of Conduct

a. You may not use the Website for any illegal or unauthorized purpose. In addition to the laws of the Canada, you also agree to comply with all local laws that apply to your use of the Website.

b. You may not use the Website in any manner which could disable, overburden, damage, or impair the Website, servers or computer network, or interfere with any other party's use and enjoyment of the Website.

c. You agree that you are responsible for your own conduct and communications while using the Website and for any consequences of that use. By way of example, and not as a limitation, you agree that when using the Website, you will not:

  • post or upload any inappropriate, promotional, defamatory, destructive, obscene, or unlawful content;
  • defame, abuse, harass, stalk, threaten or otherwise violate the legal rights (such as rights of privacy and publicity) of others;
  • post or upload any User Content that infringes any patent, trademark, copyright, trade secret or other intellectual property right of any party;
  • impersonate another person, or falsify or delete any author attributions, legal or other proper notices or proprietary designations or labels of the origin or source of any content;
  • use the Website in connection with surveys, contests, junk email, spamming or any duplicative messages (commercial or otherwise);
  • use any robot, spider, site search/retrieval application, or other device to retrieve or index any portion of the Website to collect information about other users or domain names;
  • upload files that contain bugs, viruses, trojan horses, worms, or any other similar software or programs that may damage the operation of the computer or property of another; or
  • submit User Content that falsely expresses or implies that such User Content is sponsored or endorsed by any party where it is not sponsored or endorsed by such party.

d. While BCBHAS prohibits such conduct and User Content in connection with the Website, you understand and agree that nonetheless you may be exposed to such conduct or User Content and that you use the Website at your own risk.

e. BCBHAS reserves the right to monitor use of this Website to determine compliance with these Terms and reserves the right to remove any User Content without notice for any reason.

  1. Privacy

By accessing and/or using the Website, you may provide us with personal information as described in our Privacy Policy, which governs the collection, use, storage and disclosure of such personal information.

  1. Governing Law

This User Agreement is governed by the law of the province of British Columbia and the laws of Canada.

 

BC Black History Awareness Society (BCBHAS) Privacy Policy

BCBHAS is committed to protecting the privacy of the personal information of its employees, volunteers, members, presenters, visitors and donors. During the course of our various projects and activities, BCBHAS may gather and use personal information. Personal information is any information that can be used to distinguish, identify or contact a specific individual. Business contact information and certain publicly available information, such as names, addresses and telephone numbers as published in telephone directories, are not considered personal information. Where home contact information is used as business contact information, that the contact information is considered business contact information. Information in the public domain is not subject to privacy legislation and as such is not included in this policy. Donor and volunteer information is always considered to be personal information, and not to be disclosed without consent.

BCBHAS observes the following practices when collecting, maintaining and using personal information:

Consent. An individual’s consent is required regarding the collection of and use personal information. Consent can be either express or implied and can be provided directly by the individual or by an authorized representative. Express consent can be given orally, electronically or in writing. Implied consent is consent that can reasonably be inferred from an individual’s action or inaction. An individual’s consent is required before confidential information is released to outside parties.

Limited Use, Disclosure and Retention. Personal information shall not be used or disclosed for purposes other than those for which it was collected, except with the consent of the individual or as required by law. Personal information shall be retained only as long as necessary for the fulfillment of those purposes.

Accuracy. BCBHAS relies on those providing information about themselves to provide accurate and up-to-date information.

Security Safeguards. Personal information collected by BCBHAS shall be kept physically secure. BCBHAS relies on third-parties to ensure that personal information collected electronically is secure and will endeavour to use reliable providers for that purpose.

Confidentiality. Donors who request that their name and/or the amount of the gift not be publicly released shall remain anonymous.

Cookies. BCBHAS’s website may use persistent cookies within visiting browsers to enable the functions of the website and analytics for tracking performance.

Further information on privacy and your rights regarding your personal information may be found on the website of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada at www.priv.gc.ca.

About this section: General information about the employment of Blacks in the province from their arrival in 1858 to more contemporary times is provided in this section.   The majority of the information pertains to the early Black settlers since their occupations have been well documented.  While the occupations of some contemporary Black individuals may be known privately, only a small number – because of outstanding or unique achievements – have been included in this section.

The occupations included are those from A to L inclusive including:  Athletes, Barbers, Brickmakers, Bricklayers, Businesses, Carpenters, Coalmen, Cooks, Creative Artists, Dressmakers, Dentist, Farmers, Gardeners, Grocers, Hunters, Lawyers

Information about occupations N to Z can be found in Part 2 and includes: Nurses, Midwives, Ministers, Painters, Plasterers, Policeman, Prospectors/Miners, Municipal Workers, Road Construction Workers, Storeowners, Shopkeepers, Tailors, Teachers, Transportation Workers, Writers/Journalists.

GENERAL INFORMATION

Books and Articles

Bertley, L. Canada and its People of African Descent. , op.cit. , p. 100.

The author mentions that some of the Black settlers were highly skilled as carpenters, bakers, cooks, draymen, barbers and prominent businessmen.

Brown, R.  The Negroes. , op.cit. , pp. 238, 241.

In writing about the Black pioneers the author notes that their occupational range included merchants, shopkeepers, saloon proprietors, barbers, and farmers.  She also reports that present day Blacks “are scattered throughout the region and many have achieved distinction as doctors, lawyers, engineers, scientists, teachers, social workers, businessmen, skilled artisans and artists.”

Fawcett, E. Some Reminiscences of Old Victoria, op.cit. p.215.

The author in mentioning the first Black settlers provides a list of the names and occupations of fifty-three “coloured men”.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing. , op.cit. pp. 162, 165, 166.

In discussing employment of Blacks in the 1940’s, Kilian states that the little information available “tends to confirm the view that Blacks were largely confined to such occupations as barbering, cooking and semi-skilled work”.  He mentions that during the early 1960’s “well known business firms in the Lower Mainland refused to hire Blacks.”  The results of a 1971 BCAACP survey reported by Kilian, show that of those interviewed 40% were white-collar workers, semi-professionals and professionals; 17% were skilled workers; and 26% were semi-skilled and 16% unskilled.  Kilian comments that by the late 1970’s Blacks were employed in social services professions out of all proportion to their numbers, but were relatively rare in law and medicine.

Woodcock, George. Canada and the Canadians.  London; Faber & Faber, 1973, p.87.  (LL)

In writing about Blacks, Woodcock noted “their most typical occupations, however, were those of entertainers and railway porters, and to this day most sleeping car attendants and most porters at Canadian stations and airports are still Negroes.”

Manuscripts

Black Community Survey. op.cit. pp.19, 20.

The results of this 1971 survey indicated that Blacks were well represented in the semi-skilled and professional categories and there were not many un-skilled or white collar workers.  The authors felt that although there were Blacks in all categories of from unskilled to professional, Blacks “are weak in the areas of business, the white collar world, which in most communities supplies the economic power and political aspirations.”

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. op.cit. pp. 1-48.

Pilton mentions that many Blacks were involved in gold mining while others were merchants, barbers, restaurant and saloon keepers and labourers.  He reports that Blacks supplied some of the economic needs of the community by selling goods and services which enable them to become successful.

Walhouse, Freda.  The Influence of Minority Ethnic Groups on the Cultural Geography of Vancouver.  op.cit. pp. 314-316.

In discussing the occupations of the majority of Blacks, the author describes work on the railroads as being almost the only form of employment.  They worked as firemen (engine stokers) in the early days and were later employed as porters.

Newspapers

Province, June 29, 1935.  “B.C.’s Colored Colony” by Anne Wood

The author reports that the first Blacks who arrived on Vancouver Island were representative of the following occupations: farming, carpentry, hairdressing, Indian trader, fisherman, porters, tailors, blacksmiths and coopers.

Province, March 4, 1950.  “’Shoeshine or Porter’ – Only Situation Open”.

The writer reports that a business agent for the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters stated that the only jobs open to a Vancouver Black after leaving high school is that of a shoeshine boy or a sleeping car porter.

Sun, May 10, 1978. P. 25 “Job Picture Improved for Blacks” by Kathy Ford.

In this article the author interviews Jim Cole, a Black man born in Vancouver, who recently retired as area sales representative for C.P. Express.  Cole states that sports activities and train porters have been traditional Black occupations since he began work as a porter in 1934.  But in his opinion, “it’s expanded and now we’re in every professional occupation.”

Times, February 5, 1938 p. 8.  “Victoria’s Negro Invasion” by Reby Edmond.

The author mentions that Blacks who arrived in Victoria were teamsters, coopers, barbers, cooks, blacksmiths, draymen, hairdressers, caulkers and laundrymen.

Vancouver Newspaper,  July 29, 1949. “Few Occupations to Negroes, Group Told”.

This article deals with the observation made by the President of the Canadian Association for the Advancement of Coloured People (CAACP), that Vancouver employers, due to little experience, tended to decide against them when hiring.

OCCUPATIONS

Athletes/Athletic Instructors

EMERY BARNES

Books and Articles

Bartley, L. Canada and its People of African Descent., op.cit. , p. 310.

The author notes that while attending the University of Oregon, Barnes was an all-round athlete in track and field, basketball, and football, and that he was a popular football star in B.C.

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing. , op.cit. p. 169.

Kilian reports that Emery Barnes played professional football with the B.C. Lions for five years.

JOHN BRAITHWAITE

Books and Articles

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing. , op.cit. p. 169.

It is mentioned that Braithwaite organized and coached the “Harlem Nocturnes”, an all-Black team which won the B.C. Provincial championship.

SERAPHIM (JOE) FORTES

According to the biographical data taken from sources listed, Seraphim (Joe) Fortes, who was born in Barbados, came to Vancouver in 1885.  He worked as a porter and bartender, and later as an unofficial swimming instructor and lifeguard at English Bay.  Eventually he was officially appointed and also made a special constable by the City.  There have been frequent reports and accounts of the many lives he saved from drowning.  Testimonials to his popularity and the reminiscences, of those taught to swim by Joe when they were young, have been numerous.  In 1910, the citizens of Vancouver presented him with a text thanking him for his services; a gold watch and a sum of money.  When he died in 1922, the city gave him a large public funeral which was attended by many citizens.  Several years after his death, a children’s drinking fountain was erected in memory of Joe Fortes.

Books and Articles

Brown, R. The Negroes, op.cit. p. 240

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing.  , op.cit. p. 115

Morley, A. Vancouver, From Milltown to Metropolis. , op.cit. pp 76, 156-158, picture opposite page 130.

Nicol, Eric. Vancouver. , op.cit. pp. 42, 65, 85, 111, 129, 200.

Pethick, D. Vancouver Recalled.  , op.cit. p. 52.

Vancouver’s First Century, A City Album 1860 – 1960. Op.cit. p. 57

Newspapers

Colonist, September 28, 1975, Magazine Section p. 3. “The Real Old Black Joe” by George Bangs.

The Courier, May 27, 1976, p.10. Picture of Joe Fortes.  Caption?

News-Advertiser, January 19, 1913. “The Story of My Life” by Joe Fortes.

News-Herald, July 26, 1838. “Casual Comments” by George Wright.

Province:

August 25, 1900, p. 1. “Joe Fortes Bravery Saves Man and Wife from Watery Grave”.

April 16, 1901, p. 2. “Neelands and Joe Fortes”.

August 6, 1902. p. 1. “He saved four lives in a day”.

October 1, 1902, p.1. “Twelve lives saved in Season”.

 June 4, 1906, p.1. “Joe Fortes Had a Busy Day”.

February 12, 1926. “Memorial to Children’s Friend”.

August 12, 1928. “The Passing of Old Black Joe”.

July 19, 1947, p.7. “Joe Fortes – Little Children Loved Him” by Ian Nicholson.

September 10, 1955, p.4-5. “Vancouver Loved Joe Fortes and he repaid the love in full” by Alan Morley.

February 11, 1961, p. 15. “Piracy – English Bay Version” by William Heilbron.

March 16, 1964, p.4. “Remembering the days of ‘Old Black Joe’” by Bruce Ramsey.

March 18, 1964, p. 4. “Vancouver Album”

May 28, 1976. “A Legacy from Joe” by Aileen Campbell.

April 1, 1977, p. 44. “Even tributes showed bias to ‘Black Joe’” by Bruce McLean.

Star, January 14, 1925.  “Memorial Planned at English Bay in Honour of Life Saver” by Beatrice E. Green.

Sun:

February 5, 1922. “Death Calls Joe Fortes, Lifeguard”.

February 6, 1922. “Joe Fortes – Children’s Friend”.

February 7, 1922. “Great Crowd at Funeral of Joe Fortes”.

February 8, 1922.  Pictures and description of funeral.

August 23, 1952.  “English Bay Joe was our First Lifeguard” by Mary E. Colman.

May 12, 1954. “Joe Fortes, English Bay ‘Senor’ was Greatly Beloved Figure” by Roy Brown.

June 25, 1955, Magazine Section. “West End Memories” by Joyce Taylor.

May 6, 1968. “Legendary Joe Fortes Won Mersey Swim Race”

December 24, 1973, p. 33.  James K. Nesbitt’s column.

Times, April 20, 1965. Reprint of an article from The Innocent Traveller by Ethel Wilson.

Aural History Tape

Tape 23553:1 – Interview on July 20, 1976 with Mrs. Marjorie Dickie, aged 71, a Vancouver resident of British descent.

Mrs. Dickie recalled being taught to swim by Joe Fortes and talks of his work and his death.

Slide – Tape

Racism in B.C. op.cit.

While showing a slide of Joe Fortes, the narration points out that Joe Fortes could save lives of whites at English Bay but Blacks could not swim there.

HANBURY INDOOR BASEBALL TEAM

The Hanbury Indoor Baseball team played in the Upper Island League that included Courtenay, Cumberland, Nanaimo, Royston Lumber Company.   

Digital

Vancouver City Archives: Blacks in Canada

There is 1 image that is a team photo taken in 1924 showing 1 Black man on the team. 

ERNEST LEOPOLD HARRISON

Ernest Harrison, born on Salt Spring Island in 1867, is noted in several articles as being a track and field star and boxer.  He was the middleweight champion of B.C., 1897 – 1898, and taught boxing at the YMCA in Victoria for thirty years until 1931 when he returned to Salt Spring Island where he died in 1956. His parents as listed by Salt Spring Island Archives are: William Henry Harrison, Virginia USA & Harriet Copeland, Virginia USA.  

Newspapers

Colonist, March 14, 1954. “Pioneer to Keep Traditional Date”.

Colonist, March 16, 1656. P.8. “Former Slave’s Son Enters 90th Year”.

Colonist, September 13, 1956. P. 23. “Pioneer’s Son Dies, aged 82”.

Nanaimo Press, March 17, 1956, p. 7. “Salt Spring Man Now 89 Years Old”.

Times:

March 15, 1950.  “On the Times” by Art Stott.

March 17, 1952, p. 10. Picture and brief description of Ernest Harrison.

March 19, 1954. P. 7. “E. Harrison, 87, Recalls Gulf Indians on Warpath”.

May 15, 1955, p. 6. “Salt Spring Pioneer 88 Today”.

March 16, 1956, p-. 13. “Salt Spring’s Oldest Son on 90th Year”.

September 12, 1956, p. 12. “Salt Spring’s Ernie Harrison Dead at 90”.

BARBARA HOWARD

Born and raised in Vancouver at 10th and Nanaimo. During the late 1930s, the Vancouver-born Howard was one of the fastest female sprinters in the British Empire. She represented Canada at the 1938 British Empire Games in Sydney, Australia. She was inducted into the BC Sports Hall of Fame in 2012 and inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in 2015.

Newspapers

Sun, February 25, 2017. 

“Barbara Howard – Obituary”.

Globe and Mail, March 7, 2017

“Barbara Howard – Obituary”. 

These obituaries provide biographical details about her life, accomplishments and family.  These articles were published after her death on January 26, 2017. 

Digital

Vancouver City Archives: Black Canadians.

There is 1 image of Barbara Howard holding a koala bear which was gift she received when she represented Canada at the 1938 British Empire Games in Sydney, Australia.

UBC News, March 8, 2017.

“Remembering Barbara Howard”.

DOUG HUDLIN

Doug Hudlin worked for the City of Victoria, but his love was being on the field as an umpire; he umpired generations of Island ball players over four decades.  He was the first non-American to be invited to umpire the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania in 1967 and again in 1974.   He also twice umpired at the Senior Little League World Series at Gary, Indiana. Doug was inducted into the B.C. Baseball Umpires Association hall of fame in 2011 and inducted, posthumously into the Canadian Baseball Hall of fame in 2017.  The 21st induction ceremonies takes place June 23 in St. Mary’s, Ontario.

Newspapers

Colonist, January 11, 2014

“Longtime Island umpire dies at 91”

Colonist, February 3, 2017

“Islanders enter Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame”.

Colonist, February 11, 2017

“Umpire Hudlin taught life-long lessons”.

Saanich News, June 12, 2017

“Beloved Victoria umpire celebrated where it all began”

This article states that the City of Victoria had declared June 11, 2017 as ‘Doug Hudlin Day’.  On June 11th “in his old neighbourhood at Cook Street and Hillside Avenue, an enthusiastic crowd of family, friends and National Little League families and alumni gathered to pay tribute to a born-and-raised Victorian whose knowledge and passion for the game, and his love of teaching young players made him a legendary and larger-than-life figure on diamonds around Victoria”.

Digital

Greater Victoria Sports Hall of Fame 

Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame 

HARRY JEROME

Books and Articles

Bertley, L. Canada and its People of African Descent. ,  op.cit., pp. 263, 331.

Harry Jerome’s athletic career is described briefly.  Some of his achievements and awards include: 100 metre Olympic medal winner in 1964, voted Canada’s outstanding male athlete and inducted into the Hall of Fame of the Amateur Athletic Union in 1966, named Male Athlete of the Century in 1967 and was appointed to the Order of Canada in 1970.  His work as a B.C. high school teacher and sports consultant is mentioned.

Fraser, Fil.  Running Uphill:  The Fast, Short Life of Canadian Champion Harry Jerome.  Edmonton, AB: Dragon Hill Publishing/Lone Pine Publishing, 2006. 

‘Running Uphill’ showcases Harry Jerome's race upon the treadmill of 'race,' where progress against racism is glacial, even for an Olympic sprinter. This is the heroic story of a young Black man who overcame crushing adversity to achieve national acclaim as an athlete and as a champion of human rights. Despite the many challenges for a Black athlete in the 1960s, Jerome made Canadian sports history by winning the bronze medal in the 100-metre sprint at the Tokyo Olympics and gold medals at both the Commonwealth and Pan American Games. Jerome is immortalized by a graceful statue in Vancouver's Stanley Park, as well as by the multi-sport Harry Jerome Centre in North Vancouver. The Harry Jerome Awards, sponsored by the Black Business and Professional Association, are held annually in Toronto.

Newspapers

Newspaper Index

As at 1978 there are ten cards (each card contains several entries) listing articles which have appeared about Harry Jerome in Vancouver and Victoria newspapers from May 1959 to January 1978.

BILL LONG

Newspapers

Sun, March 15, 1977, P. 25.

“Car burned in race-hate campaign”. 

In this article Bill Long is noted as being an athletic instructor at Douglas College.

GEORGE PARIS

In the sources listed, it is noted that George Paris coach and trainer for boxers and runners, at age 60 became a coach for the Vancouver Police until he was well past 70.  At the time of his death in 1947, several writers reminiscence about his personal life and his athletic career.

Books and Articles

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing, op.cit. , p. 160.

Newspapers

Province, September 2, 1947, p. 9. “City Athletes Friend, George Paris, Dies at 78”.

Province, September 3, 1947, p. 19. “Work of George Paris Praised”.

Sun:

September 2, 1947, p. 9. “Death at 70 Halts Career of George Paris, Negro Sportsman”.

September 3, 1947, p. 4. “Two Good Citizens”. The author refers to George Paris and Joe Fortes.

September 4, 1947, p. 2. “Mayor Attends Paris Funeral”.

September 30, 1947, p. 11. “Memories of Paris” by Alf Cotterel.

Vancouver Newspaper, May 19, 1943. “George Paris Reaches 75, Remains Active Coach”.

BAKERS

ROBERT ABERNATHY

Manuscripts

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. , p. 209.

ROBERT THOMAS CLANTON

Books and Articles

Bertley, L. Canada and its People of African Descent., op.cit. , pp. 100-101.

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing, op.cit. , p. 150.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit., p. 153, 208.

Picture File

There is one picture of Robert Clanton and his wife, Victoria Clanton.

BARBERS/HAIRDRESSERS

RANDALL CAESAR

Manuscripts

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia, 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. , p. 208.

Pilton lists Caesar as being a barber and the proprietor of the Saucelito Baths.

ISAAC DICKSON

Books and Articles

Bertley, L. Canada and its People of African Descent. , op.cit. , pp. 100.

Dickson is mentioned as a barber in Barkerville.

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing, op.cit. , p. 87.

Dickson is described as a Black barber in Yale in the 1860’s.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. p. 161, 163.

Dickson is described as a barber in the Barkerville area.  Pilton also mentions Dickson’s contributions to the “Cariboo Sentinel” in the form of letters.

JOHN EDWARDS

ARCHER FOX

JOHN EDWARD FOX

WILLIAM ALEXANDER SCOTT

Manuscripts

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. , p. 208.

Pilton lists Archer Fox and John Edward Fox as barbers. William A. Scott and John Edwards are listed as hairdressers.

WELLINGTON DELANEY MOSES

Moses’ occupation as a barber is cited in numerous works.   He owned one of the five barbershops in Victoria in 1858 and later opened a barbershop and general store in Barkerville in 1862.  He is mentioned as keeping a lodging house in Victoria in 1861 and is noted as having the first bathtub in the city of Barkerville in his salon.

Books and Articles

Brown, R. The Negroes. , op.cit. , p. 239.

Bertley, L. Black Tiles in the Mosaic. , op.cit.

Bertley, L. Canada and its People of African Descent. , op.cit. , pg. 100.

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing., op.cit. , 1st edition p. 46; 2nd edition p. 37, 65-66, 75.

Ramsay, B. Barkerville: A guide to the Fabulous Cariboo Gold Camp. , op.cit. , p.25.

Ramsey, B. Ghost Towns of British Columbia. , op.cit. , p. 64.

Smith, D.B. (Ed) Lady Franklin Visits the Pacific Northwest., op.cit. , p.6.

Winks, R. The Blacks in Canada. , op.cit. , p. 276.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. , pp. 50-51, 161, 164, 208.

Newspapers

Colonist, Feb 22, 1866. 

Moses advertisement for hair tonic described as “Hair Invigorator” appears in this issue.

Gazette, July 24, 1858.

This is an advertisement for Moses’ Pioneer Shaving Salon and Bathroom on Yates Street.

ROBERT TILGHMAN

Manuscripts

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. opcit,, pp2018-213

Tilghman is listed as a barber.  

BLACKSMITHS

JOHN FRANKS

ROBERT WILLIAMSON   

Manuscripts

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. , pp. 208-213

Pilton lists Banks and Williamson as blacksmiths.

BUSINESSES

THE ALEXANDER FAMILY

Books and Articles

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing., op.ci. , p. 181.

The author writes that in the 1900’s the Alexander family ran a successful coal business in Victoria.

WILLIS BOND

Willis Bond is reported as being involved in several business ventures including auctioneering, contracting, house moving, and merchandising.  He is also noted as being an outspoken orator and politician.

Books and Articles

Bertley, L. Black Tiles in the Mosaic. , op.cit.

Bertley, L. Canada and its People of African Descent. , op.cit. , pg. 101.

Brown, R. The Negroes. , op.cit. , p. 239.

Higgins, D.W. The Mystic Spring and Other Tales of Western Life. , op.cit. , pp. 47, 121.

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing., op.cit. , p. 84.

Morton, J. In The Sea of the Sterile Mountains. , op.cit. , p. 138

Winks, R. The Blacks in Canada. , op.cit. , p. 271.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. , pp. 61-65, 108.

Newspapers

Colonist, January 31, 1854, p. 10. 

“Old Homes and Families” by Jim Nesbitt.  

This article retells some of the business ventures in which Bond was involved and describes some of the disagreements Bond had with the law.

 Colonist, February 26, 1867, p. 3.

“Victoria was known as Fine Place for Romantic Runaways.” By James L. Nesbitt.

This article details some of Bond’s public speaking activities.

Gazette, April 26, 1859.

Bond, as an auctioneer, advertises the goods for sale at the auction that day.

Press, November 21, 1861.

Willis Bond advertises as a general contractor in raising and removing buildings in Victoria.

ORVILLE BOYNTON

Books and Articles

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing. , op.cit. , p. 126.

The author reports that Orville Boynton was a manager in the lumber industry until he retired at the age of 80 in 1947.

Newspapers

Province, September 12, 1966.  P.2.

“Fresh Air beats the years”

Written at the time of Boynton’s 100th birthday, the article describes the work of Boynton who lived in B.C. for 63 years.  He built two mills in Fernie and worked in the lumber industry until his retirement at age 80.

Province, April 10, 1968. P. 26.

“Centenarian’s rights held”.

Sun, April 9, 1968, p. 12.

“101 Year-Old City Man Given Rites”.

These articles announce the death of Boynton and mention that he worked as a manager in the lumber industry most of his life.

JOHN SULLIVAN DEAS

John Sullivan Deas arrived in Victoria in 1862 and was a tinsmith in his early years.  It is thought that he was one of the founders of the canning industry and he was considered to be the leading canner from 1872 – 1876, prior to his canning business, he also owned a hardware and stove business under the name of Birmingham House at the corner of Fort and Broad Streets in Victoria.

Books and Articles

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit. p. 152.

Ralston, H. Keith. John Sullivan Deas: A Black Entrepreneur. B.C. Studies, #32 Winter 1976 – 1977, pp. 64-78.  (PA)

 Schloefield, E.O.S. & Howey, F.W.  British Columbia from the Earliest times to the present.  Op.cit. Volume II, p. 565.

Newspapers

Colonist, September 13, 1867, p.2.

Deas is reported as being a tinsmith.

Colonist, July 25, 1872.

Deas is noted here as leasing a fishery and employing twenty-five men to work there.

Colonist, September 30, 1873, p. 3.

This is a report on the quantity of fish canned at Deas’ Fishery.

Colonist, December 15, 1986 p. 9.  Magazine Section.

“Victoria’s Ghosts” by T.W. Paterson.

This article gives an account of a night spent by Deas and his family in a house which they had purchased and which was said to be haunted by its previous owner, R.H. Johnson, a Black man.

Mainland Guardian, August 28, 1878, p.2. – Deas, J.S. File.

This article reports that Deas is selling his cannery business.

Tribune, April 16, 1866 p.2. Deas, J.S. File.

Deas advertises as selling stoves and tinware is his store on Front Street in Yale and offers his services as a repairman.

MIFFLIN WISTAR GIBBS

Books and Articles

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing. , op.cit.  1st edition pp.142-144; 2nd edition pp. 37, 118-122.

Mifflin Gibbs was involved in other areas besides being a store owner and a public servant.  He is reported in Kilian’s book as Director and major shareholder of the Queen Charlotte Coal Co. prior to 1868.  He resigned this post when his bid to build a tramway and wharf for the company was accepted.  Later he became mine superintendent following completion of the tramway.

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada. Op.cit. p. 276.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. , pp. 82-83.

PETER LESTER

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing. , op.cit. 2nd edition p. 37

The author writes that “Lester and Gibbs” ran ads in the Victoria Gazette as dealers in groceries, provisions, boots, shoes etc; retail and wholesale.

LESTER & GIBBS

Peter Lester and Mifflin Gibbs were partners in a general store in Victoria in the 1860’s.  The establishment is noted in several works and some sources state that their store was the first large mercantile business in B.C. other than the Hudson’s Bay Company.

Books and Articles

Bertley, L.  Black Tiles in the Mosaic, op.cit.

Berley, L.  Canada and its People of African Descent.  op.cit.  pp. 99, 104.

Gould, Jan.  Women of British Columbia,  op.cit.  p. 91.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit.  1st edition p. 45; 2nd edition p. 37.

Ormsby, M.  British Columbia: A History.  Op.cit.  p. 139.

Winks, R. The Blacks in Canada.  op.cit.  p. 274.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  , op.cit. , p. 208, 209.

Newspapers

Gazette, March 22, 1859.

Lester & Gibbs advertised their wholesale and retail store continuously and one example can be seen in this issue.

Picture File

There is one picture of Mifflin Gibbs and of Mr. and Mrs. Peter Lester.

JOHN FREEMONT SMITH

Smith is noted as being a shoemaker, prospector, secretary of the Board of Trade, Indian agent, alderman and an agricultural and mining journalist in Kamloops.

Books and Articles

Balf, M. Kamloops.  A History of the District to 1914.  Op.cit.  pp. 80, 109, 116, 120.

 Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing. ,  op.cit.  p. 154.

Newspapers

Kamloops Sentinel, February 19, 1966, p. 3.

"John Freemont Smith was the first non-Indian to Explore Northern Territory".

Kamloops Sentinel, no date, Smith, J.J. File.

"Late J.F. Smith a Real Pioneer of the District".

Province, November 21, 1931

"Who`s Who”

Short article describing John Freemont Smith.

Province, October 6, `1934.

“Beloved Kamloops Pioneer is Dead”

CARPENTERS

CHARLES ALEXANDER

It is mentioned that Charles Alexander with his skill as a carpenter, helped to build the first Methodist Church at Shady Creek in South Saanich.

Books and Articles

Glover, George. History of the United Church: North and South Saanich Archives.  Sidney, B.C.  Not dated, p. 5.  (PA)

 Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op. cit.  p. 150

Virgin, V. History of North and South Saanich Pioneers and District.  op.cit. , pp. 46, 56.

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada.  op.cit. p. 277

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1868 – 1871.  op. cit. pp. 67, 208.

Pilton noted that Charles Alexander earned $6 a day as a carpenter when he first came to Victoria.

Newspapers

Colonist, May 13, 1973, p. 4.

“The Alexander Story” by Margaret Belford.

Picture File

There is a picture of Charles Alexander with his wife Nancy Alexander.

JAMES BARNSWELL

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit.  1st edition: pp. image between pages 48-49, 149.; 2nd edition: 126,127,  image pg. 127.

The author describes Barnswell as a carpenter who built some of Victoria’s most elegant homes, and states that he became a prominent member of the Victoria community during the 1870’s.

Newspapers

Sun, October 21, 1972. P. 36.

“At 74 Wally is still a 2-stacker” By Leslie Peterson.

Barnswell is mentioned by his descendant Wally Alexander as having been a private carpenter for Sir James Douglas and as having built a church that stands on the corner of Pandora and Quadra in Victoria.

MIFFLIN WISTAR GIBBS

Books and Articles

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing. ,  op.cit. 1st edition p. 45   

This author noted that Gibbs had been a carpenter by trade in the U.S. and that he had remodelled the home he bought in Victoria himself.

FORTUNE RICHARD

Books and Articles

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing. ,  op.cit. 1st edition p. 46; 2nd edition p. 39.

Fortune Richard’s occupation is described in this work as a ship’s carpenter.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1868 – 1871.  Op.cit.  p. 211. P

 CHARLES H. THORP

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1868 – 1871.  Op.cit.  p. 212.

Pilton lists Thorp as a ship’s carpenter by trade.

THORENTON WASHINGTON

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1868 – 1871.  Op.cit.  p. 212.

The occupation of Washington as a carpenter is recorded by Pilton.

COALMEN

WALLY ALEXANDER

Newspapers

Sun, October 21, 1972. P. 36.

“At 74 Wally is still a 2-stacker” By Leslie Peterson.

In this article interviewing Wally Alexander, he gave the information that he had been a coalman for the past 45 years and at 74 was still actively doing this job.

COOKS

HAROLD EDWARD ALEXANDER

Newspapers

Colonist, May 13, 1973, p. 4.

“The Alexander Story” by Margaret Belford.

This article reports that Harold Alexander, son of Fred Alexander, was a cook on the CPR for five years, then a cook on American passenger boats where he later became a master chef with five cooks to supervise.

HENRY HOLLY BRONEN

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1868 – 1871.  Op.cit.  p. 208.

Bronen is included in Pilton’s occupational list of Black settlers as a cook.

JULIA AND MARY HERNANDEZ.

These women are mentioned as working for Victoria of $100 a month in 1858.

Books and Articles

Gould, J.  Women of British Columbia, op.cit. p. 91

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1868 – 1871.  Op.cit.  p. 70.

PHILIP SULLIVAN

Books and Articles

Gould, J. Women in British Columbia, op.cit. , p. 91.

There is mention here by Gould that Josephine Sullivan helped her chef husband, Philip, prepare meals at Moody’s Mill.

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing, op.cit. p. 155

Philip Sullivan’s occupation as a steward at Moody’s Mill in 1870 is noted.  He is described as possibly being the first Black resident of what is now North Vancouver.

CREATIVE ARTISTS

LEON BIBB

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (1st edition).  Op.cit. p. 168.

Kilian notes that Leon Bibb, an American singer, settled in Vancouver in the early 1970’s.  “His performance in Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris, Berlin to Broadway, and numerous solo concerts have enhanced his already solid international reputation.”

Newspapers

Colonist, October 24, 2015,

“Vancouver performing legend Leon Bibb dies at age 93. “

The article mentions that Bibb’s final public performance took place at Government House, the vice regal residence in Victoria, in February, 2014. He was singing as part of celebrations to mark B.C. Black History Month.  His long-time pianist Sample: “It couldn’t have been better planned. We played in Victoria at Government House, just he and I. We got piped in by a piper, no less, and the Lieutenant-Governor introduced us, and Leon sang his ass off in front of a huge crowd at Government House”

Globe and Mail, November 1, 2015

“Singer Leon Bibb was the Voice of Civil Rights” Tom Hawthorn

This article recalls Bibbs move from New York to Vancouver in 1970 and his career in Vancouver.  The article also lists his many awards and recognitions prior to his death on October 23, 2015.  “His death on Oct. 23 at 93, after a series of strokes, was preceded by many honours, including investment into the Order of British Columbia, induction into the B.C. Entertainment Hall of Fame and, many years earlier, a Tony award nomination. The University of British Columbia had also granted him an honorary Doctor of Letters degree.”

GRAFTON TYLER BROWN

Newspapers

Colonist, June 26, 1883, p2. Advertisement

“Art Exhibition of British Columbia Scenery by G.T. Brown”

Colonist, June 26, 1883, p.4.

“Exhibition in Oils of British Columbia Scenery”. 

The article mentions that the exhibition consisted of 22 paintings of views of Victoria and surroundings in addition to scenes of the mainland. The paintings are on display for 1 week in The Colonists new building on Government Street.

Digital

The Grafton Tyler Browin website provides biographical information about G.T. Brown written by Dr. John Lutz, Professor and Department Chair of History at the University of Victoria; as well as images of many of Brown’s paintings.

JAY BURNS

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (1st edition).  Op.cit.  p. 168.

Kilian reports that Burns started a Black Cultural Awareness Program in 1975 to help introduce children to African and Caribbean dance and music, jazz and Black cultural history.

ELEANOR COLLINS

Eleanor Collins is a Vancouver singer who in the mid-1950’s had her own half-hour weekly show on national television.

Newspapers

Colonist, November 17, 1968.  Op.cit. p. 48.

“Canada’s Swinging-est Grandmother Even Sews”.

Columbian, January 29, 1966.

“Her career is enriching the lives of others and her own”.  By Mildred Jeffrey.

Province, August 16, 1973, p. 34.

“The Best of Both Worlds” by Nicole Strickland.

Sun, July 16, 1955. P.2. Magazine Section.

“Meet Vancouver’s Eleanor Collins” by Norma Rudolf.

REBECCA GIBBS

Rebecca Gibbs established a laundry in Barkerville circa 1868 and published poems in the Cariboo Sentinel.  Her most memorable poem is “The Old Red Shirt” that is engraved on her grave marker in the Ross Bay Cemetery.  The grave marker, erected by the VBPS and the Old Cemeteries Society says she was born in Philadelphia, USA about 1808, lived in Barkerville for many years and died in Victoria, B.C. in 1873.   Her occupations include Laundress, Poet and Nurse.

Books and Articles

 Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing, op.cit. , 1st edition pp. 95; 2nd edition pp. 79-80.

In the 2nd edition, the author notes that her poem the on a Barkerville fire was published in the Cariboo Sentinel and later reprinted in The Elevator.  The poems about the fire and The Old Red Shirt are printed in this book. 

ERNIE KING

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (1st edition).  Op.cit.  p. 168.

The author notes that since the mid-1970’s, Ernie King’s Sepia Players have staged several “creditable productions”.

JENI LeGON

She was born Jennie Bell in Chicago.  She settled in Vancouver in 1969 to teach tap and pointe.

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (1st edition).  Op.cit.  p. 168.

Kilian mentions that “Jenny LeGon’s Troupe One has provided opportunities for young people to develop their abilities in dance.”

Digital

“Jeni LeGon: Living in a Great Big Way”, National Film Board of Canada, 1999, directed by Grant Greshuk and produced by Selwyn Jacob.

SARAH LESTER

It is noted that Sarah Lester, daughter of Peter Lester, gave piano lessons in Victoria. 

Newspapers

Gazette, December 23, 1859.

This is an advertisement for music instruction on the piano given by S.A. Lester at her residence on Vancouver Street in Victoria.

SAM RAYMOUS

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. op.cit. pp. 208-213.

Pilton list Sam Raymous as a minstrel.

ARTHUR SULLIVAN

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing. , op.cit. , 2nd edition pp. 134-135

Kilian writes Sullivan he was a musician, played the organ at church and played the harmonium at a festival.

Morley, Alan.  Vancouver from Milltown to Metropolis,  op.cit.  pp. 49, 79.

Arthur Sullivan is mentioned as becoming “the town’s leading musician and most popular master of ceremonies.”

VAUDEVILLE ACTORS

AL ANDERSON

WALTER CRUMBLY

JAY GOINES

Digital

Vancouver City Archives – Blacks in Canada

There are images of Al Anderson (ca:1915), Walter Crumbly (ca:1922) and Jay Goines (ca:1915) as well as three group photos of Black actors who performed at the Orpheum Theatre.

DENTISTS

WILLIAM ALLEN JONES

Books and Articles

Brown, R.  The Negroes.  op.cit.  p. 239

The author mentions Jones as a dentist in Barkerville.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit. , 1st edition p. 90, 109; 2nd edition p. 123.

Kilian states that Jones was the first dentist in Barkerville. He also mentions that Jones provided an update to the Oberlin alumni in 1895: “”Painless” Jones was still in Barkerville working in “Gold Mining and Dentistry”.   

DRESSMAKERS

? Alexander

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (2nd edition). ,    op.cit. , p. 137.

Kilian quotes a classmate of Wealtha Alexander’s  “Her mother was an excellent dressmaker and made dresses for a lot of well-known women, and of course her daughter was always well turned out”. 

FARMERS

GENERAL INFORMATION

Books and Articles

Lyons, C. P.  Milestones on Vancouver Island.  Op.cit.  p. 86.

The author states that from 1860 – 1870, early Black settlers were recorded as land owners, who were “hard at work turning farms out of the wilderness.”

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada.  op.cit.  p. 27.

Winks writes that a substantial, proportion of pioneer property owners on Salstspring Island were Blacks and that many ran small farms.

CHARLES ALEXANDER

It is noted that Charles Alexander was a prominent and respected farmer for 33 years in the Shady Creek district of Saanich.  He also assisted in the formation of an Agricultural Society there.

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit.  p. 150

Virgin, V.  History of North and South Saanich Pioneers and District.  op.cit.  p. 46.

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada.  op.cit.  p. 277

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  Op.cit.  p. 65

JIM ANDERSON

Jim Anderson is described as a farmer and a logger.

Books and Articles

Hamilton, Bea.  Saltspring Island.  Op.cit.  pp. 172-173

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing,  2nd edition op,cit.  p. 142. 

Photograph seated with Willis Stark, p 92.

Newspapers

Colonist, March 11, 1973.  P. 10.

“Hepburns on Saltspring”. 

The reporter of this article in an interview with the Hepburns obtained some information about Jim Anderson.  It is mentioned he had a farm on the Island and he made it available to the young by transforming it into a park.

Province, January 5, 1946.

“Jim Anderson.  Gulf Island’s Old-Timer and Friend of the Children” by Betty Barber.  

The author gives a biographical description of Anderson’s “Grandview” farm.  She also notes that he was famous as a powerful logger.

The following newspapers carry reports of the death of Jim Anderson on Saltspring Island in 1946.  Anderson is described as having been a logger and a farmer all his life on the Island.  His home with its terraced gardens, is mentioned as having been one of the showplaces of the district.

Province, October 7, 1946

“Noted Negro Pioneer Dies on Saltspring”

Saanich Peninsula, Gulf Island Review, October 9, 1916 – Anderson, J. File.

“Native Son of Salt Spring Dies Suddenly at Fulford”.

Sun, October 7, 1946.

“Salt Spring Negro Pioneer Dead at 78.”

HOWARD ESTES

Estes’ occupation as a farmer on Saltspring Island and in Saanich is recorded briefly in these works.

Books and Articles

Hamilton, B.  Salt Spring Island.  Op.cit.  p. 14

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing  op.cit.  2nd edition p. 88,89

Virgin, V.  History of North and South Saanich Pioneers and District.  op.cit.  p. 43.

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada.  op.cit.  p. 277.

This author notes that Estes ran goats on Saltspring Island.

Newspapers

Colonist, April 30, 1961.  P.8.

“Saltspring knew the Curse of the Penalakuts” by Cecil Clark.

Old West,  Spring 1976.  Western Publications, Austin Texas, Stark Family File.

“A Color-Blind Island” by Ruth Herberg.

This article describes the early arrival of Estes and family to Saltspring and there is mention that Estes brought first cattle to the Island.

ERNEST HARRISON

Ernest Harrison is noted as having an eight-acre farm on Saltspring Island where he was born in 1867.

Newspapers

Colonist, March 14, 1954.

“Pioneer to keep traditional Date”

Saanich Peninsula and Gulf Islands Review, March 23, 1955. P.1.

Harrison, E. File

Times, March 19, 1954, p.7.

“E. Harrison, 87, recalls Gulf Indians on Warpath.”

JOHN NORTON

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing. ,  op.cit. , 2nd edition p. 87.

Kilian writes that John Norton became one of the most successful farmers on Saltspring Island.

FIELDING SPOTTS

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing. op.cit.  2nd edition p. 129.

Kilian writes that the family farmed on Saltpring Island for a few years before moving to Saanich.  There is also an image of Fielding Spotts on that same page.

Virgin, V. History of North and South Saanich Pioneers and District.  op.cit.  pp. 32-33.

This author writes that Spotts owned a 100-acre farm in Saanich.

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada.  op.cit.  p. 277.

The occupation of Spotts is recorded by Winks is that of a cooper as well as a farmer.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  Op.cit.,   pp. 67, 212.

Newspapers

Saanich Star, November 1, 1951.

“He Brought His Family Here to Find Freedom”

This article gives information on one of the first homes in Saanich, which was built by F. Spots in 1860.  A picture of the house accompanies the article.  Brief information is included about Spott’s arrival with the first Black pioneers.

Saanich Peninsula Gulf Island Review, January 2, 1952 – Spotts, F. – File.

“He Came in Search of Freedom”

This article is identical content as that in the Saanich Star cited above.

FIELDING WILLIAM SPOTTS

Newspapers

Province, June 29, 1935

“B.C.’s Colored Colony” by Anne Wood.

The author in writing about early Black settlement in B.C. mentions Fielding William Spotts’ arriveal in Victoria as a child.  His father, Fielding Spotts, who had emigrated from California, was one of the first Black settlers in 1858.  F.W. Spotts became a farmer on Saltspring Island and later moved to Vancouver in 1902.

Province, February 2, 1937.

“Patriarch Once Part of Negro Migration to New Caledonia Under Douglas Dead.”

Vancouver Newspaper, February 1, 1937.

“Man Who Came to B.C. 75 Years Ago is Dead”.

These papers report the death of F.W. Spotts in 1937.

LOUIS STARK

Louis Stark and his family came to Saltspring Island in 1860.  He bought ten to fifteen dairy cattle wwith him from the U.S. and practiced mixed farming on his land “Fruitvale” until 1875.  Then most of the family moved to the Cranberry District near Nanaimo where he bought a new farm called Extension.  He farmed there until his death in 1895.

Books and Articles

Brown, R.  The Negroes.  op.cit. , p. 239.

Flucke, A.F.  Early Days on Saltspring Island.  Op.cit.  , pp. 186, 193-194.

Gould, J.  Women in British Columbia.  op.cit. , pp. 71-72.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit.  , 2nd edition pp. 93, 96, 132.

Lyons, C.P.  Milestones on Vancouver Island.  Op.cit.  , p. 152.

Winks, R. The Blacks in Canada.  op,cit., p. 277

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  Op.cit.,   pp. 137, 143.

Louis Stark to J.W. Trutch (Chief Commissioner of Land and Works), November 3, 1869.

In this letter from Louis Stark, he explains that because of the threat of Indian attack, he has moved his family to another part of the Island and requests that his pre-emption rights be transferred to a piece of land on the north-east side of Ganges Harbour.

Louis Stark to B.C. Pearse (Acting Commissioner of Lands and Works) September 15, 1870.

In this letter, Louis Stark request the government to aid in the completion of building a road from his farm to the school and boat dock.  He himself cleared two miles of road but the remaining mile and a half needed was blocked by the claims of two other farmers.

Newspapers

Colonist, April 30, 1961, p.3.

“Saltspring Knew the Curse of the Penalakuts” by Cecil Clark.

Colonist, October 27, 1968, p.3.

“Murder Followed the Starks” by Brenda Sharp.

WILLIS STARK

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing .  op.cit. 2nd edition , pp. 89, 94, 132-133.

The author notes that after his father, Louis, moved to the Nanaimo area, Willis Stark remained on Saltspring Island to look after the farm; otherwise they would have lost their pre-emption.  

PATRICK JEROME ADDISON

GEORGE ANDERSON

GEORGE CARTER

DANIEL FREDISON

WILLIAM ISAACS

HENRY ROBINSON

FORTUNE RICHARD

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  Op.cit.,   pp. 208-213.

Pilton lists these men as farmers.

GARDENERS/ BRICK MAKERS

RICHARD JACKSON

HENRY PERPENO

WILLIAM ROBINSON

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  Op.cit.,   pp. 210, 211.

Pilton lists Richard Jackson as a gardener, Henry Perpeno as a gardener and brick maker and William Robinson as a brick maker

HOTEL AND RESTAURANT OWNERS/WORKERS

HENRY GRANTON

JOSHUA HANDY

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  Op.cit.,   p. 209.

Pilton records Granton and Handy as being restaurant owners. 

RICHARD JOHNSON

R.H. Johnson was a hotel owner who built the Mount Ararat Hotel near the gold diggings at Leech River near Sooke to accommodate miners and travellers in 1865.

Books and Articles

Bertley, L.   Black Tiles in the Mosaic.  Op.cit.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing op.cit. , 2nd edition, pp. 83-84.

The author notes “It’s good and well-appointed rooms were praised by Governor Kennedy”.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871, op.cit.   p. 175.

Newspapers

Chronicle, May 13, 1865.

This article includes Governor Kennedy’s complimentary description of the Hotel Ararat where he stayed while visiting the area.

Colonial Correspondence

R.H. Johnson to Henry Wakefield, October 3, 1864.

This is a letter requesting land for a public house.

WILLIAM MILLER

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871, op.cit.   p. 211.

Miller’s occupation is reported as a saloon-keeper.

 .

SAMUEL RAMSAY

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871, op.cit.   p. 208-213.

Samuel Ramsay is listed as a waiter.

SAMUEL RINGO

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing  op.cit, 2nd edition pp. 37.

Samuel Ringo owned a restaurant, situated on Yates Street that was noted as the best in Victoria and known as Ringo’s.

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada.  op.cit.  , p. 274.

Newspapers

Colonist, October 8, 1961.

“History Neglects the Famous Ringo” by James K. Nesbitt.

The author of this article includes a quote from an anonymous letter to the Colonist in May 1857.  The quote describes Ringo’s Restaurant as serving some of the best “cuisine”, a fact which made him famous.

STEELE

Books and Articles

Bertley, L.  Canada and its People of African Descent, op.cit. , p. 100

Bertley notes that Steele was the owner of one of the outstanding restaurants in the Cariboo.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing. ,  op.cit, 1st edition pp. 90.

Kilian records a Black man named Steele as owning a restaurant in Barkerville.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871, op.cit, p. 153.

ARTHUR & JOSEPHINE SULLIVAN

JOSEPHINE SULLIVAN

Books and Articles

Morley, Alan.  Vancouver from Milltown to Metropolis, op.cit.  pp. 49, 79.

The author mentions that Arthur Sullivan and his mother had a restaurant and a store and were the proprietors of Gold’s Hotel on Water Street before the great fire in 1886.  Arthur Sullivan is also mentioned as becoming “the town’s leading musician and most popular master of ceremonies.”

Gould, J. Women of British Columbia, op.cit. , p. 91

Gould writes that Josephine Sullivan had a successful restaurant in Gastown after her husband’s death.

J.S. TAYLOR

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871, op.cit, p. 212.

Taylor’s occupation was a restaurant and saloon keeper.

HUNTERS

WILLIS STARK

Newspapers

Colonist, December 2, 1973, p. 4.

“Pioneers Who Made Saltspring the Paradise It is Today.” By Lillian Horsdal.

In this article it is mentioned that Willis Stark was a well-known cougar and game hunter.

Aural History Tapes

Tape #100:1

Interview on August 23, 1972 at Ganges, Saltspring Island with Mr. Desmond J. Crofton, retired manager of Harbour House Hotel.  Mr. Crofton is of British descent.

Tape #798:1

Interview in 1965 with Len Bittincourt, aged 72, a Saltspring resident of British descent.

Both of these men mention that Willis Stark was also known as a cougar and game hunter.

LAWYERS/JUDGES

JOSHUA HOWARD

Books and Articles

Bertley, Leo.  Black Tiles in the Mosaic, op.cit.

The author notes that Joshua Howard was the first lawyer to advertise in a B.C. newspaper.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871, op.cit, p. 49.

Pilton reports that Joshua Howard practiced law and gives information about his career.  A copy of his newspaper advertisement appears here.

Newspapers

Columbian, May 26, 1960, p.3.

“Some People Don’t Know” by John Pearson and J.M. Reitz.

This article states that Joshua Howard, a Black man was the first attorney to practice law in the colony of Vancouver Island, and British Columbia.  There is mention that Howard lost his first and only known case in 1858 because he was too talkative.

Gazette, July 18, 1858.

An advertisement by Joshua Howard announced Howard as an Attorney and Counsellor at Law in Victoria.  “Advice in law to the poor, gratis” was a phrase he utilized in his advertisement.

Vancouver Newspaper, October 29, 1955.

“Negro First as Barrister”

The article mentions Howard was the first person to practice law in the colony of Vancouver Island, and appears to have obtained this information from the July 1958 ‘Gazette’.

SELWYN ROMILLY

Newspapers

Province, October 1, 1974, p. 21.

“Judge Named”

This is an announcement that Romilly was appointed provincial court judge in Smithers.

Province, October 27, 1976, p.4.

“In Terrace a Judge with a Difference”   by Chuck Poulsen.

This article describes the background of Romilly and notes that two years previously at the age of thirty-four he became B.C.’s first Black judge.

Vernon Daily News, December 8, 1976, p. 18.

“Black B.C. Judge acts as Bridge”.

This article is based on the same information in Poulsen’s article in the Province.

VALMONT ROMILLY

Newspapers

Province, October 27, 1976, p.46.

Valmont Romilly is mentioned in an article about his brother, Selwyn Romilly, regarding their setting up a law practice together in Smithers.

EDSWORTH SEARLES

Newspapers

Province, October 9, 1957, p. 19.

“First Negro Lawyer called to bar in B.C.

Sun, October 8, 1957, p. 19.

“First Negro Admitted to B.C. bar”.

Times, October 9, 1957, p. 16.

“Negro Lawyer Called”.

These articles report Searles history-making achievement and provides some brief background data about him.

 

This section is under construction:

Still to come navigation and external links.

General information about the employment of Blacks in the province from their arrival in 1858 to more contemporary times is provided in Part 1.  The majority of the information pertains to the early Black settlers since their occupations have been well documented.  While the occupations of some contemporary Black individuals may be known privately, only a small number – because of outstanding or unique achievements – have been included. 

In addition to the General Information,  the occupations included in Part 1 are those from A to L inclusive including:  Athletes, Barbers, Brickmakers, Bricklayers, Businesses, Carpenters, Coalmen, Cooks, Creative Artists, Dressmakers, Dentist, Farmers, Gardeners, Grocers, Hunters, Lawyers

The occupations in this section, Part 2, includes: Nurses, Midwives, Ministers, Painters, Plasterers, Policeman, Prospectors/Miners, Municipal Workers, Road Construction Workers, Storeowners, Shopkeepers, Tailors, Teachers, Transportation Workers, Writers/Journalists.

 

 

MACHINISTS

CLIFFORD LESLIE ALEXANDER

Newspapers

Times, April 13, 1966, p. 13.

“Member of Pioneering Family Clifford Alexander Dies at 72.

In this article announcing the death of Clifford Alexander, he is reported as being a machinist.

MINISTERS/MINISTRY

More detailed information can be found in the section Church and Religious Life

CHARLES ALEXANDER

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing. , op.cit. , 2nd edition p. 128.

Kilian notes that for some years the Shady Creek Church, which Alexander helped to build, had no regular minister, but Alexander often preached there.

MALINDA THORNE

Malinda Thorne, an ordained African Methodist Episcopalian Zion Church elder, came to Vancouver in 1957.  She runs God’s Rescue Mission and Miracle Centre where clients can obtain food and clothing as well as counselling from Rev. Thorne.  She is frequently a guest preacher at United and Baptist churches and has been described as “part preacher, part social worker, part counsellor.”

Newspapers

Province, August 7, 1972.

“Malinda heading uptown but only for a short stand.”

Province, June 30, 1973, p. 12.

“Malinda Sounds Uptown”.

Sun, September 26, 1970, p. 16.

“Tiny Mission run by a woman with a large heart”.

Sun, March 11, 1978, p. B5

“Malinda tosses a lifeline to any soul in need.”

MISCELLANEOUS OCCUPATIONS/SERVICES

C.W. BROWN

Winks, R. The Blacks in Canada, op.cit.  p. 101

The author reports C.W. Brown is a janitor who in 1902 organised a Vancouver chapter of the Colored National Emigration Association, a back-to-Africa group.

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  Op.cit.  pp. 208-213.

Pilton lists the names and occupations of the following men:

CORNELIUS CHARITY – Bootmaker

SAMUEL RAMSAY – Waiter

SAM RAYMONS – Minstrel

FIELDING SMITHEA - Messenger

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  Op.cit.  pp. 51, 212.

Smithea is described as being a messenger in the government offices.

STEPHEN WHITLEY – Laundryman

MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES

JACOB ALEXANDER

Newspapers

Colonist, February, 10, 1951.

“Early Resident of City Dies in 88th Year”.  

This article announces the death of Jacob Alexander, son of Charles and Nancy Alexander, born circa 1863.  It is reported that he worked with the City Water Works department for 22 years.

EDWARD BOYNTON

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing. op.cit, 2nd edition pp. 142.

Kilian notes that Boynton worked in the Vancouver City Works department for many years.

Newspapers

Province, February 2, 1965, p. 24.

“E. Boynton dies at 89”

This article announces the death of Edward Boynton, husband of Matilda Boynton, “Vancouver’s oldest resident (born circa 1876).  His retirement from the city works department in 1940 is mentioned.

DOUG HUDLIN

A great grandson of Nancy and Charles Alexander, who arrived in Victoria in 1858; Hudlin was born in 1922.  He worked for the city of Victoria for 30 years.

NURSES/MIDWIVES

MARY ALEXANDER

Picture File

The information accompanying the picture of Mary Alexander describes her as a midwife.

SYLIVA STARK

Books and Articles

Gould, J.  Women of British Columbia.  op.cit.  p. 72.

Sylvia Stark worked as a volunteer midwife and nurse according to this author.

UNIVERSAL BLACK CROSS NURSES

Books and Articles

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada.  op.cit.  p. 119.

In Vancouver during World War I, Black women of the Garvey movement are credited with the organization of a branch of the Universal Black Cross nurses, which received the commendation of Lord Byng of Vimy.

PAINTERS/PLASTERS

ELISON DOWDY

PETER J. LESTER

ADOLPHUS RICHARDS

Manuscripts

Pilton, J. Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  Op.cit.  pp. 209-212..

Pilton lists Dowdy and Lester as painters.  Richards is listed as a plasterer.

POLICEMAN

GENERAL INFORMATION

Several authors note that the first police force appointed in B.C. in 1858 initially included Blacks.  Because white miners did not accept the authority of the Black constables, the Government withdrew the Blacks after less than two months of service. 

For details on individual policemen, both colonial and contemporary refer to “The Military and Police”.  

PROSPECTORS/MINERS

GENERAL INFORMATION

Books and Articles

Berley, L.  Canada and its People of African Descent.,   op.cit.  p. 109.

The author notes that in 1858 Black miners were in Hope and Yale, and in the Cariboo at Horsefly Creek, Keithley Creek and Williams Creek.  He also mentions the Black Harvey-Dixon Mining Company.

Lyons, C.P.  Milestones on Vancouver Island.  . op.cit.  p. 277.

At Leechtown, a Black man found a gold nugget worth $75.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit.  p. 153.

Pilton records the presence of Black miners in 1862 in the Cariboo and Williams Creek.  The Harvey-Dixon Co. is mentioned as a mining company partly owned by Blacks.

Newspapers

Seattle Times, October 8, 1961. – Negro File

“Black Miners Settled in B.C. Island near Victoria”.

This article states that the 600 Blacks who first came to Victoria, came for the purpose of mining.

HORSEFLY CREEK

A company of Black miners is reported as being involved in shaft mining in 1863 at Horsefly Creek.

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (1st edition).  , op.cit.  p. 89.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit.  p. 153.

Newspapers

Colonist, September 19, 1863.

“Horsefly Creek”

This article contains information that seven out of the ten workers of the Horsefly Creek Company were Black and that they made $3 - $6 daily.

CHARLES ALEXANDER

Books and Articles

Gould, J.  Women of British Columbia. , op.cit.  p. 91.

Alexander is mentioned in this work as a prospector in the Cariboo who successfully struck gold.

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada. , op.cit.  p. 277.

Alexander is noted here as going to the Fraser River to mine.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit.  p. 67.

Pilton states that Charles Alexander arrived in Victoria in July 1858, and left soon after for the gold country until 1861.

STEPHEN ANDERSON

ROBERT HALLEY

JOHN ROBERT GISCOME

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (2nd edition).  , op.cit.  p. 125.

The author mentions that Giscome was a mining partner of Henry McDame.  Giscome Canyon, Giscome Portage, and Giscome Rapids were all named after John Robert Giscome. 

JAMES SCOTT

WILLIAM WILBY

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit.  p. 208-213.

These men are listed as miners in the section of this work listing Black settlers and their occupations.

SAMUEL BOOTH

This prospector is noted in several sources as having found the big nugget at Leech River near Victoria that precipitated the 1864 gold rush.  He is also mentioned as having formed the Industry Company with three other black men, John Tyril, George Munro and George Dyer, to pan for gold near Sooke.

Books and Articles

Bertley, L.  Canada and its People of African Descent, op.cit. p. 107.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (2nd edition).  , op.cit.  p.83, 125.

There is a picture of Booth on p. 83 courtesy of the B.C. Archives.

Perry, M. Eugene.  A Visit to Leechtown.  United Empire Review. Vol. 19, No. 1928. (PA)

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit.  p. 171-174.

Picture of Samuel Booth appears on p. 172.

Picture File

There is one picture of Samuel Booth.

ARTHUR CLORE

Books and Articles

Assante, Nadine.  History of Terrace.  , op.cit.  p. 53.

Arthur Clore, an inhabitant of Kitselas near Terrace, is described as a prospector around that area and Cooper City for many years.  He died in Terrace in 1968.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (2nd edition).  , op.cit.  p.140, 141.

The author writes that in 1910, prospector Arthur Clore began a long career in the northern interior.  Clore Mountain and Clore River are named after him.

Newspapers

Northern Sentinel, September 8, 1960. P. 4. – Clore, Arthur File.

“I’ve stood on my own two feet so long ..” by Stan Rough.

This article reports an interview with Arthur Clore who describes his life since arriving in Prince Rupert 1910.  He first worked as a logger and later as a miner in 1932.  He was also a placer miner and later prospected for gold as well as copper.

Terrace Herald, January 30, 1963, p.4.

“Old Timer’s Story As Displayed at Chamber of Commerce Convention”.

The article reports the story of Arthur Clore since he arrived in British Columbia.

Terrace Herald, July 24, 1968. P. 2.

“Veteran Prospector Arthur Clore dies”.

This insertion reports the death of Clore on July 23, at the age of 81.

LOWHEE JACK

Books and Articles

Lindsay, F.W. Cariboo Yarns, Quesnel, B.C. 1962, p. 15. (PA)

The description of Lowhee Jack state that he was a miner in the Cariboo district.  On a creek named Lowhee, he had a mine which he worked during the summer seasons and he returned to California during the cold weather.

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada. , op.cit.  p. 277.

Winks states that Lowhee Jack was a well-known Cariboo figure who was later murdered in Victoria.

WILLIAM AND ELIAS JONES

Books and Articles

Flucke, A.F.  Early Days on Saltspring Island., op.cit.  p. 175.

The author states that William and Elias Jones were to the Barkerville mining district.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (2nd edition).  , op.cit.  pp. 38, 75, 84, 92, 123.

Kilian notes that William and Elias Jones came to the mainland of B.C. from Ohio during the fold rush.  They were both graduates of Oberlin College as well as their brother John Craven.  Kilian also mentions that William was among the first miners to apply “hydraulic” techniques to gold mining, using jets of water to blast hillsides into a slurry from which gold could be extracted.  William Jones spent the rest of his life as a dentist and mining investor in the Cariboo and Elias eventually returned to the U.S.

Roberts, E.  Saltspring Saga. ,op.cit. p. 16.

According to Roberts, William and Elias Jones were miners in the Cariboo goldfields.

HENRY McDAME

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (2nd edition).  , op.cit.  pp. 124-125.

Henry McDame, a prospector in 1870, discovered a rich gold creek in the Omeneca, initially called “Nigger Creek – later named after McDame.  Another gold discovery was made by McDame 90 miles from Deas Lake in 1874, and with a group of predominately Black miners he formed the Charity Company.

The Beaver.  British Columbia Posts (Hudson’s Bay Co.), August 24, 1942.  P. 395.

This insertion mentions McDame’s Creek Post as being named after a Black miner.

Newspapers

Colonist, July 28, 1974.  Pp. 4 – 5.

“Yes!  B.C. Is Celebrating Another Centennial”. Buy Lyn Hancock.

This article credits McDame with bringing life to an area known as Centreville, a town which housed numerous miners in the 1870’s.  Previously recorded history of McDame’s life in the area is mentioned briefly. McDame Creek, is reported here, as producing the largest all-gold nugget ever recovered in B.C.

JOHN EDMUND STARK

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (2nd edition).  , op.cit.  pp. 92, 132-133.

John Stark is mentioned by the author as being a noted prospector.   

Newspapers

Colonist, October 11, 1940.

“Alice Arm Pioneer Dies At Age 71”.

In this article announcing the death of John Stark, “the oldest resident of Alice Arm”, it is noted that he arrived in 1900 and prospected and owned several mining properties.

Stewart Sentinel, April 17, 1974, p. 10 – Stark, John E. File; April 24, 1974, p. 7.

“Stewart Mining Town That Would Not Die – Two Colourful Pioneers” by O. Hutchings.

This two-part article describes some of the claims staked by John Stark.   He stayed in the Stewart district then moved to Alice Arm when the Dolly Varden Mine became the big silver producer.

LOUIS STARK

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (2nd edition).  , op.cit.  p. 96.

Kilian writes that Louis Stark wrote to the colonial land agent to advise that he had moved his claim to a safer site in Ganges and that Sylvia recalled Louis working a claim on Vancouver Island with a black man named Overton but this has not been confirmed.

L.J. WATSON

Manuscripts

Black Community Survey. , op.cit.  p. 6.

L.J. ‘Lucky’ Watson is reported as having made the first major copper strike at Jedway in the Queen Charlotte Islands.            

DANIEL WILLIAMS

Books and Articles

Bowes, G. (Ed) Peace River Chronicles. , op.cit. , pp. 77-79, 93-97, 119, 143-148.

Dan Williams is noted in this work as a gold prospector along the Peace River.  He was a miner in the summer and a trapper in the winter.  Williams’ claim to the land on which he lived at Fort St. John in his battle with the Hudsons Bay Company in 1873 is described.  There is mention of Williams as a guide for a miner on a trip down the Peace River in 1872, and an account is included of his trial in 1874 for aiming and discharging a gun at another man.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing (2nd edition).  , op.cit.  p. 9, 125-126. 6.

The author mentions that Williams was a partner of Henry McDame and was a successful trapper and prospector.  Kilian also writes about Williams disputes with the Hudsons Bay Company.

MacGregor, James G.  The Land of the Twelve Foot Davis.   Edmonton: Publisher Institute of Applied Arts Ltd., 1952, pp. 10, 13, 186-188.  (PA)

Dan Williams’ arrival in the Peace River area as a gold seeker is mentioned.  He is described as one if the “hardy souls” who stayed on after the gold rush was over.  Previously recorded history about Dan Williams and an account of his death as told by an old opponent, as well as a speculative version, is included.       

Canada West Magazine, Volume 6 #3, Summer 1976.  Pp. 13 – 15 (PA)

This magazine carries an article about Dan Williams but the material was unavailable at the time of publication (of the 1st edition of the catalogue).

Newspapers

Alaska Highway Newspaper, April 23, 1957 – William, Dan File May 16, 1957.

“With Gun and Bible a Black Man named Dan Williams Ruled Peace River.”

PUBLIC SERVANTS

Detailed information on politicians, Emery Barnes, Rosemary Brown and Mifflin Gibbs can be found in the section Politics.

CHARLES ALEXANDER

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.   , op.cit. , 1st edition p. 151; 2nd edition p. 128.

Kilian notes that Charles Alexander was a school trustee in Saanich for many years.

JOHN BRAITHWAITE

When elected in 1972, John Braithwaite topped the polls and served as a North Vancouver alderman until 1976.

Books and Articles

Bertley, L.  Canada and its People of African Descent. , op.cit. , p. 277.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing. , op.cit. , 1st edition p. 167, 169; 2ND edition pp 145.

Newspapers

Newspaper Index.

As stated in the 1st edition of this catalogue:  There are eight cards (each with an average of six entries) listing several articles pertaining to John Braithwaite which have appeared in Vancouver and Victoria newspapers from June 1958 to October 1977.

ABRAHAM COPELAND

Several authors note that Abraham Copeland was elected to the first three-man school board on Saltspring Island in 1869.

Books and Articles

Flucke, A.F.  Early Days on Saltspring Island. , op.cit. , p. 194.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  , op.cit, 1st edition p, 43; 2nd edition p. 97.

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada. , op.cit. , p. 278.

Manuscripts

Irby, C.  Black Settlers on Saltspring Island in the Nineteenth Century. , op.cit. , p. 10.

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  , op.cit. , p. 135.

JOHN CRAVEN JONES

HENRY WILKINSON ROBINSON

It is noted in several works that John C. Jones and Henry W. Robinson were elected to the first seven man Municipal Council on Saltspring Island in 1873.

Books and Articles

Flucke, A.F. Early Days on Saltspring Island. , op.cit. , pp. 194-199.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit.  1st edition p. 114  

Roberts, E. Saltspring Saga.  op.cit.  pp. 61-63.

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada.  op.cit.  p. 278.

Manuscripts

Irby. C.  Black Settlers on Saltspring Island in the Nineteenth Century.  op.cit.  p. 10.

JOHN FREEMONT SMITH

In Kamloops; in 1902 Smith became a secretary of the local Board of Trade, a year later he was elected Alderman which he held for four years. In 1908 he was appointed City Assessor.  

Books and Articles

Balf. M.  Kamloops: A History of the District to 1914.   Op.cit. pp.80, 109, 116, 120.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit.  1st edition p. 154, 2nd edition p. 134.

FIELDING SPOTTS

Fielding Spotts served as a school trustee for many years in Saanich.

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing,  op,cit.  1st edition p. 151; 2nd edition p. 129.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  , op.cit. , p. 68. 

ROAD CONSTRUCTION WORKERS

Bartolo, O.  Blacks in Canada “1608 to now”, op.cit.

The author notes that nearly one-third of the 1942 construction crew, working on the road from Dawson Creek, B.C. to Big Delta, Alaska, were Black.

Bertley, L.  Canada and its People of African Descent. op.cit.  p. 100.

Blacks are mentioned here as helping in 1859 to construct the Harrison River Valley Road which led to the Upper Fraser country.

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  , op.cit. , p. 151.

Pilton states that some Blacks were among the Harrison River Valley Road construction workers.

SOCIAL WORKERS

EMERY BARNES

Emery Barnes has a degree in Social Work from the University of British Columbia.  He was Director of children’s and teenagers’ programs at Gordon Neighborhood House in Vancouver; Director of Grandview Community Centre; Supervisor of Social Training at Haney Correctional Institute; and group worker at the Narcotic Addition Foundation.

Books and Articles

Bertley, L.  Canada and its People of African Descent. op.cit.  p. 310.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing,  op,cit.  1st edition p. 169; 2nd edition p. 145.

JOHN BRAITHWAITE

John Braithwaite has a degree in social work from the University of Toronto.  In 1956 he began work at the North Shore Neighborhood House in Vancouver and one year later became Executive Director.  He was involved with the growth of the North Shore Neighborhood House until elected alderman in 1972.

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing,  op,cit.  1st edition p. 169; 2nd edition p. 145.

ROSEMARY BROWN

In 1964 Rosemary Brown received her degree in social work from the University of British Columbia.  During her career as a social worker she worked with the Montreal Children’s Hospital, the Children’s Aid Society of B.C. and with epileptic and cerebral palsy patients at the Vancouver Neurological Society.

 Books and Articles

Bertley, L.  Canada and its People of African Descent. op.cit.  p. 308.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing,  op,cit.  1st edition p. 169-170; 2nd edition p. 145.

STOREOWNERS/SHOPKEEPERS

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  , op.cit. , p. 208, 209, 211

Pilton includes the names of the following persons in his list of Black settlers:

JOHN ARCHER - Groceries and provisions merchant.

JOHN BALDWIN - greengrocer

WILLIAM BROWN - merchant

PARIS CARTER - Grocer and debt collector

A.H. FRANCIS - Groceries and provisions merchant

THOMAS PALMER FREEMAN - Store keeper 

LESTER AND GIBBS

Peter Lester and Mifflin Gibbs were partners in a general store in Victoria in the 1860’s.  The establishment is noted in several works and some sources state that their store was the first large mercantile business in B.C. other than the Hudson’s Bay Company.

Books and Articles

Bertley, L.  Black Tiles in the Mosaic, op.cit.

Berley, L.  Canada and its People of African Descent.  op.cit.  pp. 99, 104.

Gould, Jan. Women of British Columbia,  op.cit.  p. 91.

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit.  1st edition p. 45; 2nd edition p. 37.

Ormsby, M.  British Columbia: A History.  Op.cit.  p. 139.

Winks, R. The Blacks in Canada.  op.cit.  p. 274.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  , op.cit. , p. 208, 209.

Newspapers

Lester & Gibbs advertised their wholesale and retail store continuously and one example can be seen in the Gazette, March 22, 1859.

Picture File

There is one picture of Mifflin Gibbs and of Mr. and Mrs. Peter Lester.

GEORGE HENRY MATTHEWS

MATTHEW FRED MONET

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  , op.cit. , p. 211.

Pilton records that Matthews was a merchant and Monet was a fruiterer. 

WELLINGTON DELANEY MOSES

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit.  1st edition p. 90-91; 2nd edition p.75, 131.

Moses opened a dry goods store and barbershop in the Cariboo district in the 1860s after moving from Victoria.

Winks, R. The Blacks in Canada.  op.cit.  p. 276.

Winks mentions that Moses was a money lender.

Manuscripts

Moses, W.D.  Accounts, Diaries, Day Book.  1869, 1873-8. (PA)

These notations by Moses record his business affairs and activities in Barkerville from 1860 – 1870’s.

Newspapers

Colonist, May 30, 1965.

“Nugget Tiepin was Murder Clue” by Cecil Clark.

The article reports some of the information gleaned from Moses’s diaries and account book.

Kamloops Sentinel, May 21, 1929.

The Black Barber of Barkerville

The article reprints some of the names and purchases of Moses’s customers recorded in his diaries and account books.

NATHAN POINTER

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit.  1st edition p. 46; 2nd edition p.38.

Nathan Pointer is described as owning a large clothing store in Victoria.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  , op.cit. , pp. 48,211.

Pointer is mentioned as having been a partner of Gibbs while in the U.S.  In Victoria he had one of the largest clothing stores.

Newspapers

Colonist, January 15, 1865.

Nathan Pointer’s advertisement as a supplier of “gentlemen’s furnishing goods” appears in this issue of the newspaper.

HENRY ROBINSON

CHARLES HUMPHREY SCOTT

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  , op.cit. , p. 211.

Pilton records Robinson as being in groceries and provisions as well as being a farmer, Scott is reported as being a grocer.

ARTHUR WILLIS SULLIVAN

Books and Manuscripts

 Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit. 1st edition p. 155; 2nd edition pp. 134-135.

Arthur Sullivan is reported as being the first merchant in the mid-1870’s in Granville, presently known as Vancouver.  Sullivan ran a grocery store on Water Street as early as 1876.

TAILORS

ASHBURY BUHLER

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  , op.cit. , p. 200.

Buhler’s occupation is listed here as a tailor, as well as proprietor of a clothing and variety store.

J.T. PIERRE

Books and Articles

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op.cit. 1st edition p. 149; 2nd edition p. 126.  

Pierre is reported as being a successful tailor in Victoria in 1869 - 1870

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871.  , op.cit. , p. 210.

Picture of Mrs. J.T. Pierre is on page 71.

Picture File.

There is a picture of Pierre working in a tailor shop on Fort Street near Blanshard St. in Victoria. There are also pictures of Mrs. J.T. Pierre and her son, Samuel.

TEACHERS

General Information

There is substantial details in the section Education about the Education System and Teachers. The specific teachers are Norman E. Alexander, Barbara Howard, John Craven Jones, Frederick Lester and Emma Stark.

TRANSPORT/TRANSPORTATION WORKERS

FREDERICK D. ALEXANDER

Newspapers

Colonist, May 13, 1973.  P. 4.

“The Alexander Family” by Margaret Belford.

It is reported that Frederick Alexander was one of the first tally-jo drivers in Victoria.  He also drove a hack at night.

JOHN ALEXANDER

Newspapers

Colonist, May 19, 1955, p. 15.

Times, May 18, 1955, p. 2.

These articles report the death of John Alexander at the age of 80.  He is noted as having been a teamster and logger throughout his life.

NORMAN ALEXANDER

Newspapers

Colonist, August 28, 1968, p. 10.

Times, August 27, 1968, p, 13.

These articles announce the death of Norman Alexander at the age of 69.  He was born in Victoria and worked as a truck driver and logger.  His hobbies included hunting, fishing, playing baseball and racing pigeons.

THOMAS ALEXANDER

Newspapers

Colonist, July 13, 1926.

“Pioneer Coloured Resident Passes”

Sun, July 12, 1926.

“Pioneer Resident Dies at Victoria”.

Times, July 12, 1926.

“Late T. Alexander ws Pioneer here”.

Times, July 14, 1926.

A picture of T. Alexander accompanies this brief insertion.

These articles report the death of Thomas Alexander at the age of 67.  It is noted that he was in the business of general trucking or haulage.

LIST OF TRANSPORTATION WORKERS - PILTON

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. , pp. 208 – 213. 

Pilton lists the name and occupations of the following men:

AUGUSTUS CHRISTOPHER - porter

JOHN DUNLOP - livery stable worker

WILLIAM GANT- teamster

WILLIAM GLASCO - teamster

ISAAC GOHIGGAN - teamster    Note:  The original catalogue listed as ISSAC GOLIGGAN

GEORGE HOBBS - teamster

THOMAS JACKSON - drayman

ARCHY LEE - porter and drayman

JOHN LEWIS - porter

T. DEVINE MATHEWS - carrier

TIMOTHY ROBERTS - drayman

JAMES SAMPSON -  teamster

ANGUSTUS TRAVERS - porter

FRANK COLLINS

Newspapers

Sun:

March 30, 1959.  P. 3.  “Negro Bus Driver Race-Group Head” by Mac Reynolds. This is a report on Frank Collins, a bus driver and formerly a railway porter, becoming President of he British Columbia Association for the Advancement of Coloured People (BCAACP).

February 3, 1960.  p. 25. “Anti-Semitism Called Threat to World Peace”. Collins, in his capacity as President of the BCAACP is reported as speaking out against world anti-Semitism.

August 27, 1969, p. 76. “Bus-only Lanes Urged for the City”. Collins in his role as business agent and representative for the Amalgamated Transit Union discusses Vancouver city traffic problems.

STEPHEN FARRINGTON

Books and Articles

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing. , op.cit. , 1st edition p. 83; 2nd edition p. 133; 2nd edition p. 68-69.

AARON LEWIS NEWBY

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. , pp. 210. 

Pilton lists Newby as being a sailor.

ED PHILIPS

Manuscripts

Potter, H. & Hill, D. Negroes in Canada 1628 – 1965. , op.cit. , p. 85.

In this work the authors cited an article that appeared in the May 17, 1960 Montreal Star Magazine which carried a large picture and story of Ed Philips a Black instructor at Canada’s only school for helicopter pilots in Penticton, B.C.

CURTIS M. RUFFIN

Books and Articles

Porter, M.  Three Thousand Nights on Wheels.  MacLean’s Magazine. , March 15, 1949. (VPL)

The private and working life of Ruffin as a railway porter between Vancouver and Toronto for 20 years which “adds up to 3,000 nights on wheels” is described in this article.

RICHARD STOKES

Books and Articles

Kilian, C. Go Do Some Great Thing. , op.cit. , 1st edition p. 149 with image between pp. 48-49; 2nd edition p. 126 with image. 

A picture of Richard Stokes appears in these works where he is described as having kept a livery stable on Broughton Street in Victoria in 1870.

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. , p. 71.   

Picture File

There is 1 picture of Richard Stokes 

ROY WILLIAMS

Books and Articles

Tulloch, H.  Black Canadians: A Long Line of Fighters. , op.cit. , pp. 125-130.

Tulloch gives a short biography of Williams, a CPR porter transferred from Calgary to Vancouver in 1960.

WRITERS/JOURNALISTS

JOHN ANDERSON

Manuscripts

Pilton, J.  Negro Settlement in British Columbia 1858 – 1871. , op.cit. , p. 168.   

John Anderson is noted as “the negro Cariboo correspondent” during the gold rush for a Black newspaper in San Francisco.

TRUMAN GREEN

Truman Green graduated from UBC in l968 with a BA in English Literature and American History.

Works by Truman Green

Green, T.  A Credit to Your Race.  Self-published in 1973; republished in 2011 as part of the City of Vancouver’s 125th anniversary.

A Credit to Your Race is a short, semi-autobiographical novel about the interracial relationship of two teenagers in 1950s Surrey, British Columbia. 

This section is under constuction: All the articles are included, however links are only partially completed.

This section contains items, derived mainly from newspapers, relating to the social life of Blacks in the province from 1858 to 1978.  It encompasses social events and social problems throughout the years, in an attempt to provide a general picture of this aspect of life. 


Guide to Newspapers 

Cariboo Sentinel 1865-1867

Colonist 1859-1899

Colonist 1903-1930

Colonist 1954-1978

Chronicle 1863-1866

Highway-News Review 1966

Ladner Optimist 1969

Monday Magazine 1978-

News Herald 1945-1947

Old West 1976

Press 1861 

Province 1900-1978

Sun 1945-1978

Times 1911-1978

Vancouver 1941 - 1959

The World 1911 - Black Immigration from Oklahoma


Books and Articles

Flucke, A.F. Early Days on Saltspring Island, op. cit. pp. 193-194.

Flucke states that “Although racial antagonism as such did not flourish on the island, the needs of the coloured people were sometimes resented or brushed aside by the rest of the inhabitants.”  The author cites an incident involving a road needed by Louis Stark from his land to the school and boat landing.  Stark built two miles of the road himself and then asked the government to act in completing the last mile and a half of road since it crossed the claims of two other farmers.  The government agreed but during church service one Sunday, (it was expressly forbidden to carry out road work on Sunday) some settlers completed the road but diverted it to a barn of a settler who already had a road to his land, thus denying Louis Stark the access to the harbour he needed.

Foner, P.S.  The colored inhabitants of Vancouver Island.  op. cit.,  pp.29-33.

While giving his impressions of life on Vancouver Island in the early 1860’s, a Black traveller noted that “when they were organizing fire companies, Jacob Francis endeavored to have the colored inhabitants represented, but he was voted down.  In some places of public accommodation, such as barbershops, barrooms, restaurants and hotels, colored persons are denied the usual privileges.”

Kilian, C.  Go Do Some Great Thing.  op. cit., 1st edition p. 163; 2nd edition pp.142-143.

Kilian notes the sympathetic newspaper coverage given in 1954 to the case of Dorothy Hewitt, the Jamaican bride of a white English teacher at Shawnigan Lake Boys School.  A week before classes began, the headmaster ordered her to leave the school “before the boys come and see a colored person here”.  Mrs. Hewitt returned to Jamaica.

In the 2nd edition Kilian notes that John Hewitt resigned and returned to Jamaica. The Jamaican government sent protests to Ottawa which prompted a ‘stream of sympathetic messages from Canadians”.   He goes on to say “While it’s encouraging to see that British Columbians were beginning to reject generations of prejudice, it’s also striking that Ms. Hewitt’s precise one-eight blackness was still, in 1954, considered a point worth mentioning” .

Macfie, M.  Vancouver Island and British Columbia.  op. cit., p. 391.

Macfie mentions that in the early 1860’s in Victoria, the members of a temperance union preferred to disband rather than admit Black members.  Later when a literary institute was being formed, when Blacks subscribed, the idea of establishing an institute was dropped.

Winks, R.  The Blacks in Canada.  op. cit., p, 287.

Winks reports here a letter written in 18?0 by a Black man to his friends in Ontario, stating that life in the West was better than in the South.

Newspapers

Cariboo Sentinel, June 12, July 1, 1865.

Isaac Dickson’s letters to the editor, which are written in dialect and signed “Dixie” from the “Shampooin ‘Stablishment”, appear in these issues.  These letters provide a social critique of life in the gold fields in what was considered dialect humour at the time.

Cariboo Sentinel, December 31, 1866, p. 3.

“The Colored Population”.

This is an announcement that the Blacks intend to celebrate Emancipation Day on January the first.

Cariboo Sentinel, January 15, 1867, p.2.

“Celebration”.

It was noted that the Black people held their Emancipation Day celebration at the Parlor Saloon on January first.

Colonist, February 5, 1859, p. 3.

“Colored Emigrants”.

This article by J.J. Moore (a Black minister from San Francisco) deals with the intended emigration of Blacks from California to British Columbia. Their reasons for wanting to migrate are stated.

Colonist, January 10, 1860, p. 3.

“Correspondence”.

In this letter Mr. Alfred Charles Bayley responds to a letter which appeared in the Victoria Gazette charging him with having said “not another colored man shall appear in my saloon”.

Colonist, January 14, 1860, p. 3.

“Meeting of colored people”.

The author gives an account of a meeting held in the Victoria Congregational Lecture room by the Blacks to discuss problems of Blacks in Virginia.

Colonist, July 26, 1860. 

“Grand Serenade”.

This report deals with the performance of music and speeches made by a group of Blacks in honour of Colonel Baker of Oregon.

Colonist, July 26, 1860.

“Cool Impudence”.

This is an account of a Black porter who, when sent with a message to the House of Assembly, did not stay outside the bar, but “opened the little gate and walked in among the members, (a privilege which is not allowed a white person)”.  However, he left when asked.

Colonist, July 31, 1860, p. 3.

“Rotten Egged”.

This is a short report of a Black man who was pelted wth rotten eggs as he entered the parquette of the Colonial Theatre.

Colonist, November 6, 1860.

“Riot at the Theatre”.

The author provides an account of the fights that ensued after two Blacks entered the parquette of the theatre.

Colonist, November 7, 1860, p. 2.

“The Colored Invasion”.

This is an article dealing with the public’s reaction to the “invasion of colored people into the parquette of the Colonial Theatre”.  The writer felt that if some Blacks “riot”, they will bring undue prejudice to all Blacks in Victoria.

Colonist, November 10, 1860.

“The Prospects Tonight”.

It is reported that a large police force would be guarding the theatre in the event that there was another riot. The police had observed “quite a few strange coloured men” about the town.

Colonist, December 15, 1860, p. 2.

The writer of this letter attacks an article written by J.E.W. in the December 1 Weekly Bulletin as an “exaggerated, garbled and biased account” of the disturbance which took place in the Colonial Theatre.  The writer feels that “J.E.W.” is trying to create more racial prejudice against the Blacks.

Colonist, January 11, 1861.

“The Negro Corner in England”.

This article discusses the resolution of the disagreement between Mr. Clarke and Mr. Macfie over the seating of Blacks in church.  The Colonial Missionary Society ruled that there was to be “freedom of access to every part of the church to all persons”.

Colonist, May 21, 1861.

This article reports that the three year old daughter of Mr. Waldron, a Black man, fell into a well and nearly drowned.

Colonist, May 21, 1861, p. 2.

“Colored Picnic”.

This short report states that a picnic attended by Blacks took place at Cadboro Bay, Victoria.  The author notes that everyone had a good time.

Colonist, September 26, 1861, p. 3.

“Row at the Theatre”.

It is noted that at the performance of a concert someone threw a packet of flour on two Black men who then bumped into an innocent bystander.  This started a general disturbance which police soon quelled.

Colonist, September 27, 1861, p. 2.

“Concert Difficulty”.

The writer reacts to the disturbance at the theatre on September 25.  The writer feels that the Black residents should be given equal privileges in places of amusement and those who oppose this should leave.

Colonist, September 27, 1861, p. 2.

“A Card – Emil Sutro”.

Sutro presents his interpretation of the September 25 theatre disturbance.  He states that he does not believe in “the amalgamation of colored people and whites … and colored people should not socially mix with whites”.  He feels that Blacks are not desired by a majority of the whites and therefore should not force themselves on white society.

Colonist, September 28, 1861, p. 3.

“Reply to Emil Sutro”.

A writer who signs herself “an offended English woman” responds to Emil Sutro’s letter.  She feels that the Blacks should have the same rights and privileges as anyone else in a British Colony.  She refutes Sutro’s statement that 1) “Colored people force themselves on a society where they are not desired”, and 2) “they are offensive to a majority of the residents in Victoria”.

Colonist, September 28, 1861, p. 3

“The Theatre Row – A Remedy”.

The author, signed “an English woman” comments on the theatre disturbance and offers her solution. She feels that it should be made clear on the tickets if Blacks are allowed admission.

Colonist, September 28, 1861.

“Letter from Assaultee”.

In this letter to the editor signed “B.W.L.”, the author accuses the editor of taking an ambivalent stance on the Colonial Theatre incident.

Colonist, February 15, 1862, p. 3.

“Another Insult”.

This is a letter from a Black man concerned with how the British officers constantly insulted the Blacks by putting on minstrel shows.

Colonist, February 18, 1862, p. 3.

“Colored Question”.

This letter signed by “Simon Pure” states that the “colored man” who wrote “Another Insult” is believed to be a white man intent on making the Englishman look “ignorant and presumptuous”.

Colonist, February 18, 1862, p. 3.

This is another letter responding to “Another Insult”. The writer feels that the letter was not written by a Black man but, whatever colour the writer was, the only purpose of the letter was “to place the Englishmen and the colored men in conflicting and antagonistic states”.

Colonist, June 26, 1862, p. 3.

“Wouldn’t Let Him Drink”.

It is mentioned that Jacob Francis, a Black man, had a summons served on Mr. Lovett who refused to serve him a drink at Lovett’s bar.

Colonist, June 28, 1862, p. 3.

“Shall a Black Man Drink at a white Man’s Bar?”.

This report concerns the complaints Jacob Francis filed when he was refused a drink at a local bar in Victoria.

Colonist, January 16, 1863.

This is an announcement of a Jubilee celebration of the Emancipation Proclamation at Beacon Hill by about 200 Black men.

Colonist, January 16, 1863.

“The Vexed question settled”.

This article deals with the questions, ‘Shall a Colored Man drink at a White Man’s Bar?”  It compares to the prejudice against the Blacks in saloons to the service they receive from other tradesmen.

Colonist, May 16, 1863, p. 3.

“Liberal Donation”.

This is an announcement of a donation made by Peter Lester and others to the Social, Civil and Statistical Association of Blacks in Pennsylvania.

Colonist, August 3, 1863, p. 3.

“Celebration of the 1st of August”.

It is reported that at Cadboro Bay in Victoria, the Blacks celebrated a proclamation giving liberty to Blacks in the West Indies.

Colonist, November 3, 1863.

Willis Bond is reported as being present at a public meeting for the upcoming elections and causing amusement due to his comments on the various candidates.

Colonist, December 29, 1863, p. 2.

Notice of the intended January 1, 1864 celebration by Blacks at the emancipation of slaves, is given.

Colonist, February 25, 1864, p. 3. 

“Victoria V.I. described by Colored Man”.

A Black visitor from San Francisco discusses the prejudice against Blacks in Victoria.

Colonist, March 19, 1864, p. 3.

“Exclusion at the Banquet”.

In a letter to the editor, J.C. Davie expresses his surprise over the refusal of tickets to the Governor’s Banquet to his “respectable neighbours”, Lester and Gibbs, “because they are men of color”.  Davis concludes that he himself will not be able to take a ticket as this would compromise his principles.

Colonist, March 11, 1864, p.1.

A Notice of Dissolution of Partnership as merchants and general traders is advertised for Peter Lester and M.W. Gibbs.

Colonist, March 12, 1864, p.3.

“Exclusion at the Banquet”.

In reply to Davie’s letter of March 10, another letter to the Editor signed by Joseph Arnoup describes Davie’s action in championing the cause of Blacks, who had been refused tickets and not taking a ticket himself, as “affectation of principles” being displayed publicly for “selfish purposes”.

Colonist, March 15, 1864, p.3.

“Exclusion”.

This letter to the Editor signed “Saxon” condemns Arnoup for his letter of attack on Davie.  He describes the exclusion of citizens of the calibre of Lester and Gibbs because of their color as an injustice, and states that this banquet is not being given by the citizens of Victoria but by a few “self- selected capitalists and their admirers”.

Colonist, March 17, 1864, p.3.

“Exclusion”. 

This letter from John Arnoup mentions that his name was incorrectly printed as Joseph in his letter of March 12.  Arnoup writes in reply to “Saxon” whom he states misinterpreted the intentions of his letter.  Arnoup quotes “a colored gentleman” as saying: “the white men will come to our parties, to our balls but they will not bring their wives and these (women) will not associate with our wives”.

Colonist, April 11, 1864, p.3.

This is a report of public meeting which passed a resolution that there should be a free Common School providing education to children of “all classes and creeds”.  When one person suggested the segregation of Blacks, he met strong opposition from those in the audience and from the Chairman of the meeting.

Colonist, May 24, 1864, p. 3.

“A Card”

A.H. Francis writes this letter concerning the refusal of Mr. Cruikshank to sell Black men tickets to a subscription ball commemorating the Queen’s birthday.  He felt that it was an insult to them since they were British subjects.

Colonist, October 6, 1864, p. 3.

“The Colored Question”.

It is reported that the Black citizens of Victoria approached Governor Kennedy concerning the public announcement excluding Blacks from portions of the theatre.  The Governor expressed sympathy, but did not offer any solution.

Colonist, October 11, 1864.

“Reply to B.W.I.”

The writer responds to a previous letter in the Times dated October9, signed “B.W.I.”, who stated that in older colonies there are social distinctions between Blacks and whites.  The writer of this letter gives examples from the West Indies to refute B.W.I.’s statements.

Colonist, January 4, 1865, p. 3.

“Emancipation Dinner”.

It is announced that the Blacks had a celebration on January 2, 1865 to commemorate Lincoln’s Emancipation Act.

Colonist, May 9, 1865, p. 3.

“Pioneer Rifle Company”.

This letter is written to the editor in reply to his inquiry “What has become of the Pioneer Rifle Corps which at one time promised to become a very efficient and soldier-like body?”  The reply included the explanation that the company had disbanded due to the “mean and scandalous manner” in which they were treated by Governor Kennedy.

Colonist, May 24, 1865.

This is an announcement that Willis Bond would lecture on various subjects in the Athenaeum Hall.

Colonist, July 29, 1865, p. 3.

“Colored Deputation to Mr. Colfax”.

On behalf of the Black residents of Victoria, A.H. Francis and M.W. Gibbs called on Hon. S. Colfax to express their appreciation of his stance on emancipation in the United States.

Colonist, August 2, 1865, p.3.

“Emancipation Day”.

It is reported that 200 – 300 Blacks residents of Victoria gave a picnic at Parson’s Bridge Hotel in commemoration of the 27th anniversary of West Indian emancipation.

Colonist, November 23, 1865.

John Dunlop writes this letter to the Editor concerning his being refused admission to the theatre because of the color of his skin.  He emphasizes that theatres and other places of entertainment are suffering financially “due to the direct insult of respectable colored people”.

Colonist, January 10, 1866.

M.W. Gibbs inserts a notice that during his absence from the colony all rents and debts are payable to his Power of Attorney, A.H. Francis.

Colonist, January 4, 1867, p. 3.

The editor apologizes for omitting to mention the Black people’s Emancipation Celebration on New Year’s Eve.

Colonist, February, 1867 p. 3.

“Letter from the Cariboo”.

It is mentioned that Blacks in the Cariboo celebrated the Emancipation Act.

Colonist, March 26, 1867.

“Peppering an Audience”

This article describes the melee caused by the stampeding of the audience when burning pepper caused sneezing and coughing during a speech by Willis Bond.

Colonist, July 6, 1867, p. 3.

It is reported that the Blacks celebrated the Fourth of July with a picnic at the Willows on Cadboro Bay.

Colonist, August 3, 1869, p. 3.

“Vancouver Bachelor’s Pic-Nic”.

This article reports the reunion of Blacks at Willows for a picnic.  A large group commemorated West Indian Emancipation with an evening of celebration.

Colonist, August 16, 1871.

It was noted that M.A. Phipps was appointed District Deputy Grand Master of the Black Masons of British Columbia.

Colonist, January 4, 1872.

“Celebration of Emancipation Day”.

A grand dinner and ball was given by Black residents to celebrate Emancipation Day.

Colonist, May 7, 1872, p. 3.

“Colored Men as Jurors”.

The article states that the House had been presented with a petition signed by a number of Black residents who complained that they were barred from serving as jurors.  The writer supports the petition since there is no law prohibiting Blacks from serving as jurors and suggests that the matter be take up at the next Assizes.

Colonist, March 21, 1872, p.3.

“Colored jurors”.

The report states that the House declined to pass a resolution that the Governor be asked to instruct the Sheriff to place the names of Blacks on the jury list.

Colonist, November 27, 1872, p.3.

There is a brief report that the first Black jurors had been empanelled.  The report ended with the remark. “Another blow at prejudice”.

Colonist, June 19, 1879, p.3.

“Mr. Wm. Lloyd Garrison in memory of the late William Lloyd Garrison”.

This article dealt with a meeting of Black residents of Victoria at the time of the death of William Lloyd Garrison.

Colonist, January 7, 1899, p. 7.

“Exclusion of Negroes”.

This is an article concerning the barbers in Victoria who refused to render their services to Blacks.

Colonist, September 19, 1903, p.7.

“’Black and White’ Victoria’s Miniature Race War”. By D.W. Higgins

This article describes in some detail the arrival of Blacks on Vancouver Island.  There is mention of some of the problems which occurred when the first Black police attempted to carry out their duties.  The author gives an account of the 1860 election in which Blacks, voting as a group, controlled the outcome of the election.  The theatre “riot” involving an attack on Gibbs and Pointer, and other race-related incidents are mentioned.

Colonist, March 29, 1930, p. 2. 

“Citizens of Colored Race make History”.

This article summarizes a report given to the B.C. Historical Society by its president.  He described the early arrival of Blacks in 1858 and 1859.  There is some mention of the difficulties they encountered with racism in the church, theatre and saloons.

Colonist, April 11, 1930, p.3.

“Colored Pioneer is 70 Years of Age”.

There is a picture accompanied by a brief description of Mr. G.P. Carter who was celebrating his 70th birthday.  Carter was reported as being Victoria’s “oldest colored pioneer”.

Colonist, January 31, 1954, p. 10.  Magazine Section.

“Old Homes and Families”, by Jim Nesbitt.

This article is devoted to describing the colorful life of Willis Bond in Victoria between 1859 and 1889.

Colonist, April 26, 1959, p. 16.  Magazine Section.

“Hot Time in the Old Town”. By James K. Nesbitt.

In an article about John Guest and his many brawls in the 1860’s, Nesbitt mentions that John Guest, Thomas Burnes, and William Baugh were charged with assault by a Black man, Stephen Farrington.  After hearing all the evidence Chief Justice Cameron dismissed the case against the three white men.

Colonist, February 15, 1962.

“Birth of a City”. By J.T. Jones.

The author quotes several newspapers to point out that it was very fashionable to make fun of the Blacks until they protested, then “the fun turns ugly”.

Colonist, April 23, 1962.  Magazine Section. p. 3.

“Christmas Dinner for 50¢” by James K. Nesbitt.

Nesbitt, in writing of the Christmas celebrations of the 1800’s, includes a report of the golden wedding anniversary of Charles and Nancy Alexander, 63 years previously on Christmas Day.  The report describes briefly the guests and the gifts given at the function.

Colonist, July 19, 1969, p. 19.

“Blacks Play Big Role in Victoria’s Founding” by Diane Janowski.

This article reports some of the information presented to a group at the University of Victoria by Robin Winks, an American historian writing a book about Blacks in Canada. Winks describes some of the contributions of the first Blacks in Victoria and briefly traces the history of Blacks in Canada mentioning “behavior seldom associated with Canadians and then usually hidden” such as segregation and the Ku Klux Klan in Canada.

Colonist, February 7, 1971.

“Puget Sounders Watch Victoria”. by James Nesbitt.

The article emphasizes the fact that prejudice existed even in Victoria which was considered “the most benevolent speck in her Brittanic Majesty’s possession in the Pacific”.  The Colonial Theatre incidents are described.

Colonist, July 6, 1971, p. 6.

“BC’s Blacks: One Third Found Prejudice”.

This article carries the report of some of the findings of a survey done by the British Columbia Association for the Advancement of Colored People (BCAACP) in Vancouver in 1971.

Colonist, June 10, 1973, p. 4.

“In 1860 Racial Prejudice Created Riot in Victoria”. by T.W. Patterson.

There is a description of the events leading to the “riot” at the Colonial Theatre.  Blacks were allowed to attend as long as they sat in the “pit”. It mentions four accused Blacks were found ten pounds sterling and dismissed.

Colonist, July 11, 1973, p.4.

“Correcting a False Impression.  Going Back 113 Years”. By Peggy Cartwright (daughter of an original settler.) 

Ms. Cartwright writes a letter to refute the article “In 1860 Racial Prejudice Created Riot in Victoria”.  She argues that Amor de Cosmos was well known for his “racist attitudes and intemperance of expressions”.  She states that the article fails to mention that the Black men charged with creating a riot were found not guilty.

Colonist, April 23, 1978, p. 13.

“Blacks Pay Tribute to Pioneers”.

This article provides general information about the Victoria Black People’s Society.  It briefly outlines the reasons that Blacks first came to B.C. and mentions the dance sponsored by the Society to commemorate the occasion.

 

Return to Newspaper Guide

 

Chronicle, January 3, 1863.

“Donation Party”

The report deals with the New Year’s Eve benefit given by Black residents of Victoria for the “contrabands” (newly freed slaves) in the United States.

Chronicle, April 7, 1863.

“Coloured Bazaar”.

A bazaar held in aid of the “contrabands” in the eastern U.S. is reported as having taken place the previous night.

Chronicle, July 10, 1863.

It is noted that the “committee of colored ladies” of Victoria sent money to the Vice President of the United States for the benefit of the “contrabands” in Beaufort, South Carolina.

Chronicle, December 31, 1863.

“Emancipation Day”.

The author reports that on the first anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, the Black residents proposed to celebrate by firing a salute from Beacon Hill Park and had plans for a dinner and ball in the evening.  The author felt that they had great cause to celebrate.

Chronicle, December 31, 1863.

“Brutal”

The article mentions that a Black drayman violently destroyed his horse after being unable to extricate it from the mud.

Chronicle, December 31, 1863.

“The Anniversary Dinner”.

This is an announcement of the kind of entertainment to be provided at the dinner.  Mr. S Ringo, a Black man, was noted as the caterer.

Chronicle, January 14, 1865.

Willis Bond advertises that he has a room available at the rear of his bar.  This hall can be used for public meetings and gatherings.

Chronicle, January 14, 1865.

It is reported that Willis Bond had called a meeting to discuss the question of Free Trade for Victoria.

Chronicle, February 26, 1866.

This short insertion noted that Black residents, hoping to form a library, held an exhibition of art by Black children.

Highway News-Review, September 14, 1966, p.2 – Happy Valley File.

“Was it Bachelors Who Gave Happy Valley Its Name”, by Maurice Corbett

The author reports that it is commonly believed that Happy Valley (in Metchosin near Victoria) was given its name because in the early days Black bachelors who lived there would gather together at night to sing and laugh and enjoy themselves.

Lasdner Optimist, June 18, 1969. P. 15 – Deas J.S. File.

“Deas Island Settled Over 30 Years Ago”.

This report gives the information that Deas Island in the Fraser River was named after the first settler, John Deas, a Black man, who lived there in the early 1880’s.

Monday Magazine, July 3-9, 1978, pp.10-11.

“The Great Black Hope”, by D. McDonell. 

This article presents events in the history of B.C.’s Black pioneers as quoted from Crawford Kilian’s book Go Do Some Great Thing.  McDonell also notes the present day efforts of the Victoria Black People’s Society to raise awareness of the contributions of Blacks and mentions the upcoming Black People’s Day celebrations at the Victoria Folkfest.

Monday Magazine, August 28 – September 3, 1978, p. 4.

“Would a Rose by any other colour sing as sweet?” by D.M.

In this article the author outlines Louise Rose’s attempts to acquire landed immigrant status.  Ms. Rose was given temporary work visa but immigration authorities have delayed granting her landed immigrant status – she applied through the proper channels five months ago – which would enable her to accept a job offer of being the music director/youth counsellor at the racially mixed St. Giles United Church in Vancouver.  The author asks the reader to decide if Louise Rose’s situation is a result of a “plantation mentality towards potential Black immigrants to Vancouver”.

News-Herald, May 26, 1945.   

“First Canadian Agreement signed by Railway Porters”

The Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters signed a labour agreement contract with the Canadian Pacific Railway Co.  This agreement was described by the President of the Toronto Brothehood as the “most victorious ever afforded negroes in Canada”.

News-Herald, August 3, 1945.

“Porters’ Union Head Urges Equality for Jap Citizens”.

This article includes an observation by the Black New York leader of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, that greatly increased competition for jobs after the war would affect the weakest racial groups, and that in Canada, Blacks were included in these groups.

News-Herald, August 6, 1945.

“Negroes Seek Full Civil Rights.”

The aims of the new League for the Advancement of Colored People are reported.  The major objectives were outlined in Vancouver by the International President of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters.  These objectives included civil rights, fair employment and more extensive education for Black youth.

News-Herald, August 15, 1945, p. 4.

“Race Prejudice”.

This editorial article reports the refusal of accommodation to members of the Black cast of ‘Carmen Jones’ in Vancouver because of their color, forcing them to seek private accommodation.

News-Herald, August 20, 1945, p. 8.

“Union Probes ‘Hotel Race Discrimination’ Reports”. 

The Hotel and Restaurant Employees Union business agent is reported as having started an investigation to discover whether discrimination against the cast of ‘Carmen Jones’ had taken place.

News-Herald, October 7, 1947.

“Chinese, Negroes Swim Alone Tuesday Morning”.

The article reported the practice of segregation at the Crystal Pool (Vancouver) which only permitted the use of the pool by non-whites on Tuesday morning.

Old West, Spring 1976, p. 34. – Stark Family File.

“A Colour-Blind Island” by Ruth Herberg. 

The author of this article in recounting life on Saltspring Island and its inhabitants, mentions that the main road across the north end of the Island is known as Stark Road in honour of Louis Stark who “single-handedly slashed the road out of the wilderness”.

Press, November 19, 1861.

“History of the Coloured People in Vancouver Island”.

This article sent to the Press and signed “Monitor” deals with the arrival of the Blacks, their lifestyle and the way they were treated by other citizens.

Press, November 21, 1861.

This report is a continuation of the article sent to the Press by “Monitor”.  The author observed that Jacob Francis, a Black man, may rightfully be eligible to win the contested election seat.  This possibility caused a controversy which exposed many people’s feelings concerning racial equality.

Press, December 1, 1861.

“A Card”

A person signed “Justice” suggests the removal of signs on the street which state, “Coloured People will not be allowed in any part of this building”.

Province, August 21, 1900.

“Coloured Folks in Garment Gay Observe Emancipation Day”.

This article gives an account of the celebration of the Blacks in Vancouver at Moodyville.

Province, October 1, 1935, p. 5.

“Victoria Had Negro Troops 85 Years Ago”.

This article recalls the formation of the all-Black Victoria Pioneer Rifle Corps in Victoria.

Province, April 15, 1948, p.1.

“Young Negro Couple Threatened with Death Unless They Move”

This report concerns the threatening letter signed Mrs. J.J. Jones, sent to Mr. and Mrs. D.G. Cromwell stating that they should move from their home in Vancouver as they were not wanted in the neighborhood.

Province, May 27, 1948, p.1.

“Woman Guilty of Jim Crow Threat Here”.

This article states that a woman had received a suspended sentence on posting a bond of $1000 to keep the peace for a year, for threatening a Black family.

Province, August 13, 1948.

“Hotels Refuse to Take Negroes”.

This report describes the necessity for the Black cast of ‘Carmen Jones’ to locate accommodation in the homes of Black residents since the cast was refused admission to Vancouver hotels.

Province, August 20, 1948.

“Union Clears City Hotels”.

On receiving a petition protesting hotel discrimination against the cast of ‘Carmen Jones’, the union officials at the Hotel and Restaurant Employees stated that they found no evidence of discrimination.

Province, April 16, 1948, p. 1.

“Neighbours rally behind threatened Negro Couple”

This article dealt with the support, given by neighbours and friends, to a Black couple who received a threatening letter.

Province, March 4, 1950.

“‘Shoeshine or Porter’ – only Situation Open”.

The writer reports that a business agent for the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters stated that the only jobs open to a Vancouver Black after leaving high school is that of a shoeshine boy or sleeping car porter.

Province, July 15, 1959, p. 39.

“Deas Tunnel begun by Delta Petition in 1910”.

The article describes the long struggle to have a permanent Fraser River crossing in the Delta area.  There is mention here that the tunnel built was named Deas Tunnel after John Sullivan Deas, the Black man who lived on the island where the crossing is located.  The island is also called Deas Island.

Province August 6, 1963.

“Integration Lesson on B.C. Island”.

This article deals with the estimated twenty original Black families on Saltspring Island and how they were genuinely accepted in this community.  Intermarriages on the Island are also mentioned.

Province April 29, 1978, p. 15.

“On the Town – Black Festival”

The author describes the activities planned for the Black Cultural Festival being held at U.B.C. to commemorate the arrival of the first Black pioneers to B.C.

Sun, August 24, 1945, p.6.

“Race Antagonism”.

This is a letter to the editor discussing the prejudice and discrimination encountered by Blacks in Vancouver hotels.  It specifically protests the treatment accorded the Black cast of ‘Carmen Jones’ by city hotels.  This letter is signed by 89 persons.

Sun, October 29, 1947, p. 7.

“Negro Play here as social protest”.

There is an announcement that an original Vancouver all-Black play, entitled “Black Chronicle”, written by Fred Wilmot, will be produced early in 1948.

Sun, November 3, 1947, p. 15.

“Our Town”

In his column, Jack Scott mentions the Vancouver Blacks and notes that they are mainly employed as railway porters.  He concludes that “their number is not too large to produce a recognizable negro community and too small to encourage an easy tolerance by the whites.”

Sun, April 15, 1948, p. 1.

“” Jim Crowism’ Feared here as warning letter received”.

This article dealt with a Black Vancouver couple who were afraid to leave their house unattended after they had received several threatening letters stating they were not wanted in the neighborhood.  Mr. D.G. Cromwell, the threatened Black man, was the President of the Canadian Society for the Advancement of Colored People.

Sun, April 21, 1948, p.1.

“Negro threat notes laid to neighbour”

It is reported that the note threatening D.G. Cromwell was traced to a white women in the neighborhood.

Sun, May 29, 1948, p. 10.  Magazine Section.

“Arts Flourish at Negro Workshop”.

This article describes the development of a Black workshop that has been formed in Vancouver to provide recreational and creative outlets for young Black people in their teens and twenties.

Sun, July 12, 1952.

“More Than 5 Masons Coming”.

This article deals with the forty-ninth annual meeting of Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons, a Black organization meeting in Vancouver.  At that time the membership numbered 24 having grown from only five initial members.

Sun, July 19, 1952, p. 5.

“Negroes Live next door”.

The author discusses the fact that Vancouverites had 700 Black neighbours about whom they knew very little.

Sun, March 30, 1959, p. 3.

“Negro Bus Driver Race-Group Head” by Mac Reynolds.

Frank Collins is reported as becoming President of the British Columbia Association for the Advancement of Colored People.  Collins was noted as being critical of discrimination practices in the city of Vancouver.

Sun, September 21, 1962.

“Discrimination in Housing Charged”.

A University of British Columbia article is quoted here as charging homeowners in the Point Grey district of Vancouver with refusing accommodation to a Black person.

Sun, July 13, 1965.

“Negro Mason’s Fun Here Unshadowed by Prejudice”.

Concerning the large meeting of Black Masons held in Vancouver, one of the members was quoted as saying “the fun has gone on without even a shadow of prejudice”.

Negro Masons Unbiased”. 

It was noted that the Black Masonic Order of the Prince Hall Grand Lodge has four white members in its Victoria Lodge and a few whites in Seattle lodges.

Sun, August 28, 1965.

“Our Negroes the Fewer the Safer” by Nadine Assante.

The author of this article writes of the discrimination practices against Blacks.  She noted that the immigration policies restrict Blacks, and as a result the Blacks are here but are not noticed.

Sun, April 13, 1968, p. 10.

“Equality in B.C. Impresses Negroes”.

This report covered the visit of 33 low income teenage Black boys from Seattle who visited Vancouver.  They were impressed with the equal treatment and the lack of colour distinction accorded them by whites with whom they came in contact.

Sun, June 19, 1970, p. 12.

“Color Issue Denied in Dismissal”.

The report here states that the mayor of Surrey had denied that the Parks Director, a Black man, had been fired because of discrimination.  The article said that the ex-director would take the case to the Human Rights Commission.

Sun, February 16, 1971, p. 52.

“Coloured People Quizzed on Treatment in B.C.”.

The British Columbia Association for the Advancement of Colored People is reported in this article as beginning a province-wide survey of Blacks.  In this report there is information given by the president of the Association, Norman Alexander, that financial help was being given the group by the federal citizenship branch.

Sun, July 5, 1971, p. 28.

“Many Blacks Fear Government” by Lorraine Shore.

Shore writes that from the survey conducted by the BCAACP, it had been found by many Blacks that living in B.C. sometimes “wasn’t so beautiful”.

Sun, September 4, 1973, p. 41.

“Jack Wasserman” column.

The author commented on the manner in which the police in Vancouver attempted to crack down on Black pimps who were believed to have come from the States.  Wasserman states many Black male residents in the Vancouver area were being “hassled” by being stopped, questioned and searched in an unpleasant manner.

Sun, January 21, 1974, p. 17.

“Port Moody student chosen”

This article reports that Karen Taylor became the first Miss Black B.C.  The beauty contest was sponsored by the BCAACP which would also be staging a production of “A Raisin in the Sun”.

Sun, August 3, 1974, p. 39.

“Jack Wasserman” column.

In his column, Wasserman suggests that the proposed provincial park in the Gulf Islands should be named after Howard Estes.  He gives information about Estes and the Black pioneers who came to B.C. in 1858.

Sun, February 5, 1977, p. 5.

“So Non Whites Didn’t Help Build Nation”.

In this letter, G. Garraway, Vice-President of the BCAACP, states his opinion of Sheila Thandani’s remark that “the country and society of Canada was built without the help of non-whites”.  He goes on to give several examples of how the Blacks contributed to the building of the Canadian nation.

Sun, March 15, 1977, p. 25.

“Car burned in race-hate campaign”.

It is reported that the car of Bill Long, a Douglas College athletic instructor, was destroyed by arson.  Long and his family have received “several hundred’ threatening phone calls “all of a racist nature” over the past two years.  Other forms of harassment have included having his car broken into several times, letters and calls at work, and possible attempted kidnapping of Long’s son.  Police are investigating the arson.

Sun, April 21, 1978.

“Back to the Basics of Being Black” by Sarah Jane Growe.

Written at the time of the B.C. Black Cultural Festival in Vancouver, this article goes back in history to describe the Blacks leaving Canada due to being disillusioned.  She mentions Crawford Kilian’s book Go Do Some Great Thing and reports the opinion of several contemporary Blacks who feel that Blacks seem to be losing their connection with the Black culture and need to learn more about their history and culture.

Sun, June 2, 1978.

“Prejudice Enough” by Alan Morley.

This author gives a description of the current book on Black history in B.C. – Go Do Some Great Thing by Crawford Kilian.  In the author’s opinion the book fails to mention that the Blacks were well accepted socially in Vancouver.

Times, February 25, 1911.

“Some Colored Pioneers” by Edgar Fawcett.

The author gives examples of discrimination against Black pioneers in bars, churches and in organizations such as the fire department.

Times, February 5, 1938, p. 8.

“Victoria’s Negro Invasion”, by Reby Edmond.

This article briefly describes and summarizes the immigration to B.C. of Blacks from the U.S. in 1858 – 1859.

Times, April 15, 1948, p. 2.

“Racial Prejudice blamed for threat”.

A brief report of an incidence of racial prejudice in Vancouver where a Black couple reported that they had received menacing letters urging them to move out of their home.

Times, March 16, 1965, p. 3.

“City Negro Unmoved by Minstrel Shows”.

This article reports the controversy surrounding a minstrel show which was to be performed at the McPherson Playhouse.  There was considerable discussion at the question, “Do black-face minstrel shows degrade Negroes?”  Chester Alexander, a Black man born in Victoria, comments on this question.

Times, August 6, 1965, p. 2.

“Scores of Offers with Apartments”.

In this article Black B.C. Football players state that with the publicity concerning their being refused accommodation in Vancouver because of color, they now had many offers of accommodation.

Times, July 6, 1971, p.2.

“Black People Find Prejudice in B.C.”.

Statistics are given on the number of Blacks in B.C. who felt they had experienced racial discrimination and the types of prejudice encountered are outlined.

Times, August 15, 1978, p. 17.

There is an announcement that a bronze plaque to commemorate the arrival of the first Black settlers in 1858 will be unveiled on Friday, August 18, 1978 on the causeway in Victoria.

Vancouver Newspaper, April 10, 1941.

“Crystal Pool Controversy”.

This article stated that a member of the Parks Board would protest at a Board meeting of the “color ban” prohibiting Blacks from using the Crystal Pool.

Vancouver Newspaper, April 11, 1941.

“Park Board Members Silent on Pool ‘Color Line’ Issue”.

This report noted that the “Color Line” question was not discussed at the Board Meeting since the members refrained from dealing with the issue.

Vancouver Newspaper

“Color Bar Removed From Crystal Pool” – November 7, 1945.

“Pool Now Open to All Colors: - November 7, 1945.

“Race Discrimination and Swimming Pools” – November 8, 1945. 

These articles report the changes in policy at the Crystal Pool in Vancouver to open its facilities to the public regardless of race, color or creed.

Vancouver Newspaper, July 9, 1947.

“Negro Band Barred From Hotel Here”.

This article pointed out that a popular Black musician and his 17-man orchestra were refused admission to Vancouver hotels.  Accommodation was eventually offered after the orchestra had chartered a plane to fly to Victoria.

Vancouver Newspaper, February 1, 1948.

“Negro Finds Prejudice Becomes Less”.

A Black entertainer from the U.S. compared his present ability to obtain hotel accommodation in Vancouver, now that he was well-known, with the impossibility to do so seven years previously.

Vancouver Newspaper, April 15, 1948.

“Young Negro Couple Threatened with Death Unless They Move”.

This article dealt with a letter threatening the lives of a Black couple in Vancouver.  The letter was signed “Mrs. J.J. Jones”.

Vancouver Newspaper, May 21, 1948.

“Woman Guilty in Threat Case”.

This insertion announced that Mrs. Margaret Kent was found guilty of threatening a south Vancouver Black couple.

Vancouver Newspaper, July 30, 1948.

“Colour Bar Said Drawn in Local Pub”.

This article noted that the International representative of the Packinghouse Workers Union is bringing charges before the Vancouver Labour Council against a beer parlor concerning discrimination of Charles Ross, a Black shop steward in the Union.

Vancouver Newspaper, August 11, 1948.

“Unionists Hit Pub for Barring Negro”.

It is reported that the members of trade unions in Vancouver were urging the Vancouver Labour Council to have a beer parlor picketed for refusing to serve a Black unionist.

Vancouver Newspaper, August 23, 1948.

“Negro Raps Color Bar in Industry”

Black trade unionist, Charles Ross of Vancouver, is quoted in this article as saying, “the Negro hasn’t the same chance to keep his health, get a job or education”, because of racial discrimination.

Vancouver Newspaper, July 29, 1949.

“Few Occupations Open to Negroes, Group Told”.

This article deals with the observation made by the President of the Canadian Association for the Advancement of Colored People, that Vancouver employers, due to little experience with racial minorities, tended to decide against them when hiring.

Vancouver Newspaper, July 28, 1951.

“’We Don’t Hire Niggers’, Said He”.  .

This letter written to the Editor is concerned with the constant abuse of the democratic rights of Canadian Blacks in employment and housing, and the lack of action taken by Parliament.

Vancouver Newspaper, August 8, 1951.

“Subtle City Racism Lashed by Porters”.

In this article, the International President of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters compared the discrimination against Blacks in Canada with that in the U.S.  In his opinion, it was subtle in Canada whereas south of the border, it was “brutal”.

Vancouver Newspaper, August 12, 1959.

“Motel Picketers End Race Protest”

It was noted that the members of a “committee against racial discrimination” collected signatures for a petition.  They asked the Council to incorporate into licenses issued to motels and hotels, a ban on discrimination “on grounds of race, color, creed or faith”.  The report also stated that the members had withdrawn their pickets outside the “Downtowner Motel”.

The World, April 15, 1911, p. 1.

“Advance Guard of Blacks Arrives in B.C.”

This article reports that thirty Blacks were detained at Whiterock and then refused entry to Canada.  The group from Oklahoma, had sufficient funds to settle and stated that more Black people intended to immigrate to Canada.  The article concluded that “this advance party will probably mean an influx of Blacks into this country, already overrun with nations of colors and creeds”.

The World, April 17, 1911, p. 1.

“Immigration Order will be Suspended”.

Ten members of the group which “formed an advanced guard of what was to be an invading army of Blacks” were rejected by the New Westminster immigration authorities.  Since some family members were rejected the whole group planned to return to the United States.  The group had intended to settle in Alberta.

The World, April 17, 1911, p. 1.

“Will Bring 5,000 Negroes In.”

A former Kentucky colonel stated in this article that he would help to settle Blacks “on every quarter section of land he can buy in the prairies”.  He claimed to have no connection with the group detained in Whiterock and did not understand why “the government should turn down a Black man if the Black bore a good clean reputation and was self-supporting.”

The World, April 17, 1911, p. 5.

“Negroes Awaiting Action by Ottawa.”

The article reported that the group detained at the border was still awaiting a decision from the Dominion immigration officers as to whether they could enter Canada.  It was pointed out that, “All are well supplied with money, and if they pass health inspection they will, no doubt, be allowed to enter the country”.

The World, April 19, 1911, p. 1.

“Negroes Complain of Bad Treatment”.

The author states that all but two members of the detained group of thirty Blacks had returned to Oklahoma.  The superintendent of immigration stated that “they would have to conform strictly to the regulations, as they were not desirous of encouraging Negro immigration”.  He also pointed out that “negroes as a class did not do well in this country as they were not fitted to stand the climate”.

The World, April 22 1911, p. 5.

“Negro Influx was discussed”.

In discussing Black immigration, the New Westminster Board of Trade felt that “a few negroes with money were quite admissible, but when it came to large numbers coming in and taking up residence it was time to stop.”

Digital

Vancouver City Archives – Blacks in Canada

There is 1 image that is a group photo of the Negro Masonic Lodge [and members] - The M.W. United Grand Lodge R. & A.M. Washington & Jurisdiction 20th Anniversary that took place in Vancouver on July 9, 10 and 11 in 1923.

 

Return to Newspaper Guide