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History of Crofton

Andrew Gibson

Accession Number Interviewer A Gibson
Date 1994 Location
Media tape Audio CD mp3 √
ID 121 Duration 31 min.




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myself, but about crafting.

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the reason and I also wanted to say that I'm delighted to be here and even contemplated putting on a tie. But my wife said it would be revolution.

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But I chose cotton because I've got kind of a sentimental

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attachment to,

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to craft. And because that was the first part of BC that I saw. And that was many years ago, I left home when I'm in Toronto. And I went, I had seen turn pages CPAs and went over to Britain, and I thought I would

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roll the world and tramp ship, which I did, but I managed to choose the worst firm in the entire world. It was run by a bloodsucker called Lord Runciman.

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And we were nearly starved. And when we came in on this ship, to British to prophesy that we were just about to the end of my tether, and that in fact, we probably had the distinction of sending the last man and the British merchant, Merchant Marine, you ever went ashore with skirt. So that came from our ship, so we always felt distinguished about that.

Unknown Speaker 1:21
But from where we've been, we've been in Africa, and we've been up the paradigm, we've been various places. And when we got to

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DC in the spring of 1939, we were enchanted, it seemed like Harry Potter was remembered. And that was an impulse made the impulse to come back. And that's really, to some extent, why we're here because we could see Saltspring from crossing there, we took a load of timber back to, to Britain, and soon as we got the

Unknown Speaker 1:56
timber and loaded the word started

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other things on our minds now. So that's why I chose crop and besides, it's very close. Now crafting was

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it was only a hamlet it had next to nothing going for it until

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the turn of the century. It was it had fishing and farming, and there were farmers and some logging. And the next one for that to be developed.

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And until the turn of the century, and but in 1897, that started to change because a guy called Let me look at his Harry Smith, went up massacre,

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and found what appeared to be promising copper, gold silver claims. Now

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Harry didn't hang on to it because he sold it the next he sold the claim the next year to Henry Croft, and that's where the crossing really started.

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Now, Henry was a he was an Australian actually, but he had had survived an education at Rugby, one of the prominent

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public schools in Britain. And he then are gone into mining and he was an extremely good

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mining engineer his papers that I believe are still used.

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But and he was also very precocious, because after he had graduated, he went back to Australia.

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And then he went to, to did project work there. Then he went to the United States and his project over the service was a tremendous mining boom in both countries.

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Then he went back to Australia. Then he came to Canada, and he arrived in Canada in 82, by which time he was 26. We've done all that. By the time he was 2016, remarkable man. And he had obviously had great storage of energy.

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Now he bought from Mary Smith, this Leonora mine, which was called after Harry Smith's daughter.

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And he, then he ran into some problems right away because my second is I don't know whether you know that the part of the property, the mount sticker is about in the same relationship to Ganges. As

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let me go after that, again. Mount Secor is in the same relationship to craft as now Bruce is approximately two games so that if you wanted to, we would have to bring an organ on my head, this marvelous department and you might have to bring board down to two.

Unknown Speaker 4:44
Again, as well, in this case, let's assume that you're only going to bring the order down as far as the bottom of knees Hill.

Unknown Speaker 4:52
That's as far as you're going to go at that time because that's where, if there were an equivalent situation, a railroad ran through, you could get a tie

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as well.

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Well, he, the, the terrain was terrific. And so he, what he did, he started off with a

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with a

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bringing it down by horse and wagon, numerous team, but it was totally impossible because they were far more production in the mind than you could possibly get down by that route. So he very sharp me, built us. tramway at the bottom of it where it became more level they use the horses on the steepest part. Then they use the tramway that didn't work. Then he built a railroad, a proper mining railroad, three foot gauge, and started to bring in the locomotives that would handle all your the art was testing out at 8%. And I'm not the mining person, but I believe that 8% is

Unknown Speaker 5:54
almost unheard of 8% copper and what was the other thing?

Unknown Speaker 5:59
Well, that that was okay. He then he he decided that

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he, he what he was already, you know, already had right with Him. And Osborn Bay, as I call it, at that time, he already had a deepwater port. So he would he would get a smelter. So he built a smelter, and he had to get the railroad, he had to go from where his present operation and hit the end.

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The spiral railway, and he had to get the

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the railroad to crop and then began even more difficulties. Now I have here or rather, committee has.

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And we could distribute around, I didn't know how many people would be coming coming. And I only have half a dozen of these maps showing a little bit of this and perhaps if you don't mind

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sending them around.

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But they tell you what

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he was up against.

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Perhaps I could show here.

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Over on the on the right hand side here is properties.

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And the mind is on the far left side, we have observed this crooked line which goes on and on like that it goes to the railroad which goes through here.

Unknown Speaker 7:28
And then his continuation to the smelter. The later bill is right here. Now these these operations that he did, he was it must have been a railroad enthusiast because they were almost impossible for an engineer. They had 13% grades, which is simply unheard of.

Unknown Speaker 7:50
I mean, he must have used the brake far more than they did the engine.

Unknown Speaker 7:56
And I must say also, I neglected to say that one thing that Henry Croft did make a wonderful career move three years after he came to Canada and he married.

Unknown Speaker 8:07
What was the name? Mary Jean Dunsmuir, the daughter of Robert. Now that was a great thing. He helped him a great deal. But he was he already had a sawmill in Germany's and he was a rich guy by this time. And he it was 42 or so by the time he got the smelter any for a few years. He did that now he he had bought already the townsite. In crafting, he arranged to get gold after himself. And he had this smelter there. And what I wanted to

Unknown Speaker 8:44
I was going to his railroad became It was built by the man that had nothing to do ENN. It was a very well constructed railroad. But the only that had to be because it was actually the terrain was simply terrific. And there's a little thing here where the people would come from, from Victoria and other places in order to see this phenomenon. And the colonists had this said this, that they send pardons of people up, you know tourists to see this thing and there was no accommodation for them on the railroad. And they You said we were instructed by the conductor in charge of the board training to hang on anywhere we could as with a warning whistle, the little engine began to push off and to map the big hill to an elevation of well over 1000 feet from the starting point. The ride was somehow thrilling to those unaccustomed to such trip as the straining or to skirted the edge of the mighty Canyon dividing mountain Breton and massacre. Sometimes the car was at such an angle that a chunk of order would roll off rather syndicate passengers were compelled to sit on the side of this oscillating vehicle over their vehicle, but their feet dangling over the precipice if they look below while rounding the sharp curves the tall through spiriting in the humaneness river looked like animated toothpicks moving

Unknown Speaker 10:00
In the mazes of some strange dance while the river from that gray tide appeared to be a silver thread between the mountains. If the passengers looked above to the lofty snowcat recipe to their close proximity across the yawning cannon also because the intent was to cause an uncomfortable sensation, to those unaccustomed to the hills, it was out of the question to close her eyes. So they just stared at the appalling immensity of nature. The thought occurred to everyone in the party of the breaks and failed and become unmanageable. What a terrible trip they would have taken to eternity.

Unknown Speaker 10:32
So it was really quite a thing.

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Now he

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he had a great difficulty, this section of the line.

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Because it has

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triple switchbacks on you know, what switchbacks are,

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you back the train up, and then it just, it's just a zigzag, you can do it as long as you can reverse the and you've got to have swept into a very difficult operation. And the reason he had to go there, instead of around here,

Unknown Speaker 11:11
where they would have had a level of room was I think, I don't know this, but I think there must have been he had, he had fallen out with a dungeon, because we wanted to make a smelter, and they wouldn't be carrying the ore up to Lady Smith. So he was he was now in touch with them. And I think that they are not certain that there must have been some obstructions to stop them from taking the normal way around, which would have kept them on the level it couldn't be done for

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a fraction of the price and a credit apart from that it would have made it a much less expensive operation than having.

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Anyway he did. He's the he I think it is a very determined man and he wasn't.

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Now to give you an idea of the energy needs guy.

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Here's what he did. In 1897. Clean was state in 1898. It was bought, he bought it. In 1899. He had a town site up on the hill where the ore body was that was an elevation of 1900 feet.

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and he built the wagon road and the tramway that's all in one year in 1900. He had built, totally built this six and a half mile railroad around terrific terrain.

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In 1901, he built the smelter and then continued the railway to craft

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between 1902 and oh three, he was in full production.

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And he had altogether up at the mind site. There was two there was more than him and there was another one. But of the two of them, there were 1700 people living

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there nowadays movement 290 No four, it went into receivership.

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I don't know why I think it had something to do with the difficulty of getting

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in the night. Anyhow, he laid back. I'm sure he sold off in the province he went into you know, we don't hear any more about him after that.

Unknown Speaker 13:14
19 Oh, 506 it was a little bit of production 1907 The mining was reactivated. And in it Oh, and took a lot of order in 98. And we've gone dismantle, finished and the townsite. So every house up at the town site was put on the block for $2. And the hotel itself was last week, I believe donating 25, but it wasn't new. That wasn't his mantle, and they wanted to $8 for the hotel.

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Well, now in all those minds at all, I should also mention that

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he must have been a railroad fanatic. Because above him was a mind COVID Tiny.

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And it was adjacent to his claim, but higher up. Now, the tiny instead of using a railroad put down what they called an aerial trembling, you can imagine what it was, you know, they got the hang up. Now.

Unknown Speaker 14:12
The air the John Cranston, who introduced me to all this and I'll talk about him later said that it was the most marvelous operation they've ever had, because if they send the loaded or cards down, you know, the credits keep slow.

Unknown Speaker 14:28
Again, you can refer to

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and they had I don't know how they geared it down, but

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what are they the impetus that we had and the poorest part of the generator in my way down?

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Took the orchestra back.

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So I mean, it was just there was only a person one person at one end and one person at the other self unloading into the into the railroad cars. And as far as I know, the tiny mind you that during all the time in operation which was at least

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As long as you're talking

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never had any trouble, but you can't avoid these, the thought that these people were very combative. But they wouldn't be. We're not about to cooperate with one another or do anything for themselves. Now the done has experience in getting this railroad wrong and profitable. So just as if we were coming from, you know, as I was saying, came down Mount boost to the bottom of Lee's Hill. And then instead of coming in the best possible way you can you went halfway up maximum mountains, which is quite a bit and then back down again.

Unknown Speaker 15:42
He'll he can't help.

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And there's some obstruction here that made him do it. And but he got his own back again, in case the time people get him in, because he wouldn't allow them to dream their minds. They were higher than he was. They wouldn't allow them to drain through his his claim.

Unknown Speaker 16:02
Consequently, they had to they had to pump and they had to use 100 cards and what did they pump

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when that mine was made? So it went out of production at the same time.

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He did it in I think I'm not certain because I'm assuming that's what happened. Now.

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So that was the rise and fall crop. And our Crossing, of course, by this time, had a great dark, it had a workforce, it had houses, it had an opera house,

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and schools and everything. So then it became a continued and then of course in 1957 and beyond with my I don't think we went to Baltimore came and we all know

Unknown Speaker 16:48
the changes have been since that time.

Unknown Speaker 16:52
Now, I would like to say

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that I went to in order to prepare for this. I asked, I asked, I found I found the firehall to cough, and I could find somebody who knew all about it. And they told me that John Cranston was the guy. And he's quite a young man, young family. But he's a history history enthusiast. He's got a computer there. And he's on the internet with that archives. And he really is very, very knowledgeable. And he's that he, he works at the mill, but he lives, archives and Local History and provincial history. And he couldn't have been kindly. He took the whole half day of his time. And I'm sure there are a million other things to do. And he told me all around the clock.

Unknown Speaker 17:42
And he gave me the these

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some photographs, and he gave me books. One of them was very rare. And he just great to

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talk to me

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that it had the history of the

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there's no I think I'm going to suggest that if people haven't done this, that they perhaps visit the

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museum, which he was instrumental in creating over there. And I'm sure some of you have seen it.

Unknown Speaker 18:12
But it's the old schoolhouse, original schoolhouse from that time. And they even even told me that the talks today went down and got them successive coats of paint off it until they got the original paint and they got that analyzed and got paint with the same composition and did the school and exactly the same thing that's carrying, you know, that's doing quite well. And they put it

Unknown Speaker 18:38
they put it over there with it 1986 With a senior's complex, and all you have to do is

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walk off the ferry it's within a minute and a half. And I tried to fool him John to find out when he's

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in the afternoon. And that

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I expect that would take me a short trip and I rather expected there are remnants of the railroads in the tiny tramway down here. And many other things have moved into them the smelter which you good

Unknown Speaker 19:17
we're interested in that thing. I gotta see how am I doing?

Unknown Speaker 19:21
I'm, I'm within.

Unknown Speaker 19:23
Yes, I'm almost dead on I have a couple of minutes. Now if you

Unknown Speaker 19:30
if you want to I sometimes I talk as you see to some extent extemporaneously so I never know how long it's going to take. But I knew I wouldn't take the online time and I did bring

Unknown Speaker 19:43
something a different kind of historical thing which I would read to you, but not necessarily because I can. I can leave it up to another time and it would take 10 minutes. Our attention span is not out yet at all.

Unknown Speaker 19:58
This one is totally

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Different. This one is

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again, not about salt when you vote Gabriola in Ghana.

Unknown Speaker 20:14
There's a legend believed by the credulous that these lovely islands were named for certain humdrum Spanish sailors. The truth. According to my research is far more romantic. Gabriola and Galliano were lovers historic compared to those of Orpheus and you achieve Romeo and Juliet, Gordon and Judy. Allow me to reconstruct

Unknown Speaker 20:38
the beautiful Gabriola, Cabeza de Vaca was the scientists of a noble Castilian family of a lineage so ancient that included the first Barbary apes to emigrate to Spain.

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At so much a word, they helped to write every page of Spain's glorious history as America had the minimum marriage broker for Ferdinand and Isabella, another supply the chart with which Columbus avoided falling off the edge. And yet another, had been the strategist of the Spanish they're a matter of reason. The years they spearheaded such good works as a conversion to Christianity of the Indians of Peru.

Unknown Speaker 21:15
And the de vaca galleons has been kept busy relieving the hedon of the curse of wealth.

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Our story begins in the early 1700s, the incumbent Duke, Gabriola, his father, had been a rebellious and an evil been hailed before the Inquisition because of a pamphlet claiming that contrary to Holy rips, the earth revolved around the moon. But he decanted this flaps me settled down, and after negotiations lasting for years, one of the hand and other advantages of the lovely Dolores regime Abraham Angostura.

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After a decent interval, she presented him with a daughter, although woman like she didn't say where she got her.

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The marriage was not a success. Before long little Gabriola was virtually mother's motherless for the Duchess unable to stand the tedium of life on the de vaca Hacienda had fled to Madrid. She was frequently seen in her box in the class that they taught us graciously accepting the bulls ears from a certain celebrated Matador

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with whom it was remembered she interfaced on a regular basis. The fact that his normally the Turo are booming with Gabriola that they know that by idle gossips.

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Now in his doted, the devoted doted on his daughter, carefully shielding her from masculine company other than that of her he killed her father Valdez, who was teaching her the rudiments of navigation, including logarithms but omitting vulgar fractions. She developed not only mentally but physically, she blossomed and assumed the abluminal woman with a strikingly as symmetrical features immortalized by the castle and they, her beauty was so ethereal that it seemed impossible that she had any natural functions whatsoever. And yet, deep within her breast close to the backbone emotions raise the number she wouldn't admit it to herself, nevermind father dollars. The cause was Galliano the handsome young woman who had the task of the sister here that arrived at us when he hoisted her under the saddle. And last year to the farmer with a job first, a keen observer would have noticed that her breathing was in short pants.

Unknown Speaker 23:29
Yeah, Eliana was not only a commoner, but I found him he'd be left on the Hacienda doorstep without a forwarding address, but they do. A compassionate man had given them to one of the shepherds to an intelligent man. He quickly learned to rustle sheep from the neighboring landowners the timing of being a shepherd's crook. He applied for it, and was given the post of Ruth or a young lady ship. The result?

Unknown Speaker 23:54
As we have seen, whether she became decomposed when they were together, unknown to him or her so that you know the bulk of them when the nukes army would smile and bow, swallow his Havana cigar and mother in Latin need a maximum?

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It's what mysteries here.

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One day that you summon Gabriola, my child, he said, I have bad news and good news, bad news and those villainous English pirates have captured all the one of my galleons. The good news is that I've been given a royal charter to found a colony at a playboy called Los Angeles. On the west coast of America. We leave for cadets tomorrow. Don't worry,

Unknown Speaker 24:33
father, now this can come to your navigation.

Unknown Speaker 24:37
But father she grew up can Galliano come to divorce me aboard? Yes, he can make himself useful as an officer's mess now going back.

Unknown Speaker 24:47
Within a few days, USS sailing ship, Santa Delilah was halfway to the horizon for whole full of colonizing materials, rolling skirts and trousers to civilize the natives bales to summon them to work in

Unknown Speaker 25:00
prayers and strongboxes to receive their donations of gold and silver to Spanish majesty. For a month they carefully tallied the meridians until the vessel was run aground at Panama. taken apart carried over to the Pacific reassembled Riccar preload rebar, nickel relaunched and the voyage resumed during this time, the Gabriola is heartbeat faster when looking up from her navigation lesson she saw galley animals lives figures spread, we build on the upper two gallon sky, so donning a hole, or later, when he was carrying over the isthmus on his back, yes, it did, and so did his. And in spite of the vigilance of the gift, and Father Valders did they on moonlit nights when the ship all sales flapping is feeding through the tropical sea, sometimes clam hand in hand to the pinnacle of the pinnacle their two days world was wordlessly at each other's eyes.

Unknown Speaker 25:54
But then disaster a typhoon Gordo to the west so suddenly there was no time to store the mass or even to get the laundry and faster and faster the vessel spun, hurling off everything not tied down. Soon she was a mess of of the decks have been carefully swept perfectly to the storm past and do Gabriola and follow routers unless themselves doing the math and considered the situation.

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Gabriola was the one who rose to the occasion.

Unknown Speaker 26:22
Let's look on the bright side sea turtles. True most of the stars have been washed overboard, but since the crew is also gone, we won't starve. We have no sales, the galley Anna can delay the mass. I've saved my sex, so I can be navigator and we have father Valdez who can lead us in prayer to Jehovah and also to Allah just in case. heartened by the Brave Girls where they perform the land. We sailed on that soon, it was apparent the Dukes house undermined by the rashes of heart attacks, weevils and saltwater was failing. He called Gabriola.

Unknown Speaker 26:57
Donnie whispered My heart has been stuck for 10 minutes i Since I'm dying, we must lead the expedition now. Gabriola space disintegrated. Father, she sobbed under the circumstances will you let me marry Galliano even if he is a continent? That cannot be he has to know when there was a youthful indiscretion? I am his father. You can only be assisted to me. Does he know that she blurted? No, you must promise never to tell him. He can be your groom but never your bridegroom now. Bring me a backup file. I still have strength and my thoughts. reduced to three are really two and a half since father Valdez was to be more than Phillip the weevils. They continued north. Eliana was mystified by the change in beloved she no longer returned to Darden classes and glances and waited for in vain atop rabbinical, desperate. He confided in Father God was, my son,

Unknown Speaker 27:49
said the priests champion. This time you knew the truth. You're not a pm that appears the Duke was your father, as Gabriola, his brother, you must put away any thoughts of matrimony.

Unknown Speaker 28:01
galley on a job dropped this, you know, you asked after replacing it, no, and you must not tell her. Had Kellyanne was seeing the piece, the priest telling smile he would have known the stone in three minutes every day.

Unknown Speaker 28:14
Gabriola was posted to the masthead were there sections of an hourglass and when the Latitude was the same as that of Los Angeles, you ordered the right turn during the interdistrict. But something was wrong instead of the palm and the Hollywood trees. They were first cedar than our duty lining the shores. She checked her calculation, she failed to notice the minus sign in the sun's declension. They were 15 degrees north of Los Angeles. But they couldn't turn back their supply of food and even salt water was dwindling. They passed island after island until they found one that seemed to have everything they needed flocks of oysters called around the beach, say from the marauding salmon, and the area was full of the plaintiff call of meeting networks. They beach the vessel and soon had built a stockade in the form where they can shelter around new sales could be made of the skins of sailfish in hard tech could be fired and legal, and a new anchor could be carved from the abundant cedar.

Unknown Speaker 29:08
The young people welcomed the hard work for and helped them each to forget for a while the inexplicable coolness of the

Unknown Speaker 29:16
birth father Valdis was thinking when he reached the horizontal columns of children he said I'm faced for determining or even longer. So I must.

Unknown Speaker 29:27
I face eternity or even longer in Purgatory and so I must tell you the truth. I didn't exactly live. Such protect my comfortable position as Gabriola, spiritual advisor I didn't tell you, the only I know everything you know that you are the son of the youth and you Gabriola also known as but now I know that you must both know what I know, which is that neither of you knows the other knows

Unknown Speaker 29:48
until that exhausted

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but my sin He whispered was not telling you Gabriola that you're not the dude's daughter. Your father is really Gabriola, the matter the time

Unknown Speaker 30:00
just confessed this to me when I noticed the similarity the names a little bit deep never suspected. So you're not related. I know that you're in love so I can marry you to each other.

Unknown Speaker 30:09
As soon as the simple ceremony was over the happy couple left on their honeymoon thoughtfully leading father Valders bucket within reach of his foot. They never did leave the island. They were to happen and anyway in the Santa Delilah Shover do timbers in the game and saying that we're not left with children. So when Englishmen came a century, later Little remains just to care and marking the spot where you were born literally, burned themselves, and carved wooden signs, naming the three islands of Gabriola Galliano and separating them and deaths as a novice

Unknown Speaker 30:45
and no threats would make me reveal how their diaries came into my possession.

Unknown Speaker 30:50
That isn't to say that Martha denominate nomination proves he wouldn't do the tip.

Unknown Speaker 31:01
Thank you very much. Thank you.