Salt Spring Island Archives

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Salt Spring’s Black Community

Salt Spring’s Black Community

An Introduction to Salt Spring’s Black Community

from Charles Kahn’s book Salt Spring: The Story of an Island

Many of Salt Spring Island’s first settlers were Blacks who came from San Francisco. Some were former slaves or children of slaves but all were free citizens of the United States when they immigrated to British Columbia. They included merchants, miners, farmers, and teachers among others. All shared a desire to escape discriminatory California law and to live fully as free citizens. Like many settlers, they had little money. The offer of free land drew them to an island wilderness. Chapter 4, p. 57

Audio Files

The Stark Family
Audio tape of Naidine Sims’ 2002 presentation to the Salt Spring Historical Society.

1977 Interview with Myrtle Holloman
Amber Hindle interviews the granddaughter of Sylvia Stark.

To Be Free: The 150th Anniversary of Black Settlement on Salt Spring
Evelyn White and Joanne Bealy’s 2009 presentation to the Salt Spring Historical Society.

Families & Collections

Stark / Estes Family

Gwynne / Woods Family

John Craven Jones

Whims Family Photographs

Other information

Location of Early Black Settlers

Who Killed Willam Robinson?
Ruth Sandwell & John Lutz

Salt Spring's First Teacher
Article by Gail Sjuberg in the Gulf Islands Driftwood of February 23, 2005