Salt Spring Island Archives

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Simon Henson

Mr. Henson gives a fascinating account of the archeological dig and archival research into the stonecutter's cottage on Dogwood Lane.

Accession Number 989.031.045 Detailed Tape Guide yes
Date Feb. 10, 1987 Location Cassette tapes box File #24 to File #48 Shelf 8C
Media Audio CD
ID 40 Duration 51 minutes




Unknown Speaker 0:00
As Tony has asked it, I conducted about three months of digging, and about several days of sort of sleuthing in the archives building in Victoria, in about 20 minutes. I'm gonna try my best. And again, when you have a question period afterwards. So there are a lot of details around this particular project. Now, let's go through some basics. So if there's any further interest in some areas, maybe you can just use that for the question time, okay. The whole thing to me was coincidental. I'm not an archaeologist, nor am I a historian. But I did work with archeological digs in England when we were working on the Roman and Saxon burial ground, which is where that basic kind of interesting training came from. And I'm actually a neighbor of norm Elliot to dog with Logan, where this stone or this cottage site is located. And I was working with him just on jabbing through one winter time. And he asked, he found out from Colin mode, who lived next door. So there was supposed to be a stolen credit card on his property. And nobody really knew quite where it was. But he did know was that there was a pile of rocks in a heap, literally a pile of rocks out of sandstone, down near the cliff top on his property. And he suspected that's where this cottage site was, but and calling mow it felt it was there because he remembers a photograph of his dad standing in the cottage with the walls around him about 1929. And it looks the same part of the property. So long wondered if I would just apply a little manpower at that time to try and move some of these rooms, to see if we could find any assemblance on walls or foundations or even lines of rocks that would dictate that that was a cottage. And I gather that the reason it was a heap of rocks and not a Carnage was that in about 1940 Somebody was logging that area, and the building was in the road. And they just went through bond war with a bulldozer and out the other side. And the whole thing just collapsed. It was just coming in. Yeah. So you know, that's why the actual definition of the opponent's was very hard to discover. So I got a young friend and just started hauling rocks. And the some of these slabs were huge, you know, not a very big guy, he managed to stop entering, you know, emptying this pile of rocks. And it was kind of exciting. Because at one end, we started to notice there were some big flat rocks, and they're in a particular line, that's an edge that was coming to the surface so that we would. So we established that this could be one of the boundaries, and we work from that point. Now what I do is I inadvertently left this on the table, I didn't realize you were going to have a refreshment break, because there is the journal I took the deer on a lot of the days, which I wanted to refer to some things. There's also a personal diary journal to see and I noticed people were flipping through this on the table, I thought, well wait a minute. Maybe this mentioned some of my earlier dating teams or whatever. But there is a section here that I wanted to show you about the dig. And I started out basically just drawing and sketching when we have to see this in any detail from there. But some of the formations of the rocks as they sort of evolved. And I took measurements and sort of locations. And I just went through the dig doing that. It took about a month and a half just to get rid of the rocks. There was a lot of work. Before we even established there was a cottage there. But when that whole work was done, what we had was kind of exciting, there was a rectangular room or building. And I've got the measurements here somewhere it was 14 by 30 won't see it on the inside. And I'll say on the inside because the actual foundation stone showed us the original base thickness, but there was also one section of wall that was entirely in place with about three feet high. And those walls were two feet thick, solid stone. And originally there were about five or six feet in height all the way around. And it's established that the roof was made of for shake on poles which long since burnt down and which we established this later in the day because we actually found the whole floor of the cabin cottage was lined with these little square shaped nails on a charcoal there. So there was obviously a fire burn. Actually one question I was gonna ask you as a historical society was I gather that that kind of the North End assessment and there was a forest fire turn of the century around 1900 went through that area and this to me when I was digging actually gave me a marker because when I was going down in the lab, because I mean it was an area where there's a lot of you is free and still for free. So there's a lot of this forest litter built up a conflict left in the soil, which I have to work through before I got to the actual aerial of that period. But I found this fine layer of charcoal running right through outside the cabin. And inside the cabin, there was a fire of some quite large amount at about the time, but after these guys are living anyway, we established there was certainly a square room. But it didn't make sense. And it didn't make sense because Collymore it was saying from his photograph that we could look at that there was a doorway, a definite doorway and he says he remembers as a little kid running in and out of this old building back in the sort of 30s and the door faced his property. Now when I actually uncovered some of the foundations on the wall that was on call inside was this huge flagstone I thought it was a heart for a fireplace, because there was this beautiful carved and almost Muzej tightly fitted stonework, very well done. And there were ashes that were actually there was a little cavity with a lot of wood ash and we start to find a few things attributing to a fire there was some phones that were slightly burnt on, I guess their food bones like tossed in the fire, we found an actual fire iron poker. And which of these clay pipes and you know, these come from different parts of Digg as well. But there wasn't like Hi, my gala from that kind of lifestyle that very often when they broke whatever they toss things in the fire up window. So I couldn't figure this out for the longest time. Also, the floor of the cabin was another mosaic thinner slivers of sandstone. And I thought about this for a minute. And I thought, well, it doesn't make sense because there's no doorway. I mean, like this fireplace was right in the middle of a doorway, and it's not a place you have a fire door, I knew that there was also no sign of any doorway on the other three wall. So I hope Beth isn't into this, but I did something that most professional archaeologists don't do. And that's when you've established something disturbing. Because I was taking a bit of a risk here, but I somehow suspected that I was at the wrong level. Okay, so I actually did a very careful sketch of those flag stones, and I started to move them so that I could replace them in order. And I found that underneath the flagstone was another layer of ash and charcoal. And then I started to find some of the things attributing to this period that I'm gonna talk about. So there were two periods of habitation in that cottage, the original period, which we feel are the stonemasons that lives there that work the stone in the area. And then later on, somebody had gone in there and fixed up the college a little bit and had built this other fight. So I'm presuming that's what happened. And then as with a lot of archaeological kind of uncovering, you're just speculating, you're dealing with hypothesis a lot and there's not a lot of fact there. So I'm just surmising that. This is what happened but it anyway I finally removed all have that flagstone heart. And they're right through a two foot thick wall at the doorway. So finally found the doorway and caught him was quite right. It was right where he said it would be, you know. So that's a logical entrance for the cottage. What period of history we're talking about what we're talking about first year or two, that Salt Springs. Now I would imagine most of you here know a lot more about the history often than I do, because this has been your interest in pursuit for a lot of years. But I found out at that time, I wanted to kind of set a sort of historical see here because for me, it was very indicative of the things we were trying to solve and difficulties of solving the question about the people that live there, who they were, who killed them, how they will kill that comes out of the lifestyle that they were dealing. First of all, we're talking just after the gold rush. In 1858, when the Fraser Gold Rush, collapsed. Victoria the poor Victorian had a lot of immigrants, a lot of black people, a lot of Chinese people have been working the railway across the country, and a lot of other immigrants from other nationalities were left in Victoria. And the governor at that time was the James Douglas had a problem. You had all these people. The economy was not that good because the gold boom was over. And he didn't want them to leave because they didn't want Victoria to go back to a third trading post. They wanted it to pick that up as a center and as

Unknown Speaker 9:55
the incentive that he was working on with the help of one of the general service A genuine Pemberton at that time, was to try and create cheap land for the pioneers that no land at that time was $20 or $20. I think 20 shillings, I can't remember quite my faculties expensive in the states that was $1 and a quarter, just across the border. So there was a sort of a committee set up to try and woo a government to reduce land prices to where it was manageable, because a lot of these people, the black people, and the Chinese people, the other immigrants, had lost a lot in trying to get a goal, you know, that loss applies at last food, they didn't have a lot of money to buy land. But what do you do with all these people? And there was one story where apparently, Sir James Douglas, distributed 400 Black people couch and humaneness salt stream in that general area. On this land reform deal. Tom, you're sort of backing me up here, Thompson, some interesting stories on black, really black sediment assault, in fact, probably more accurate than mine. The other thing, of course, you gotta consider is that salt stream, although it was available land was still used there. We had an Indian community, we had the northern tribes that were coming down, spending the winter time in Victoria, using on the way home in the summertime Salt Spring as a way of gathering herbs, they made plans here, they occupied the island in a transient way. The other problem that's that James Douglas had was over on the San Juan Islands, the US putting a military base there. And that's awfully close. We just had this war with the states and here across an island or a short space of ocean is the American military. So he had a lot of pressure there coming on. And what do you do with all these people, and I got him seven things. And I gathered that actually, Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands was a grant from the Hudson Bay Company. But it wasn't really cleared up that it was owned by BC at that time. So again, how can you cheapen the price of land and sell it? If you don't own it? So what do you do, here's this land that everybody wants to go to, and who owns it. So he actually James Douglas actually conceded under pressure from this sort of surveyors learning to cheapen the land. And I think it went down to about $4.25 an acre, including Saltspring, that was kind of enough for these people to settle it in the first period or first summer 117 applications went through to buy land. And not many of those people actually went through with it, because I suddenly realized difficult 170 people buying land at that price. And it turns out, you've got some problems now to get rid of them, and so on. So they put a couple of riders on the agreement. One was that you could only own the land as long as you occupied it as soon as you left. In other words, you couldn't speculate and just buy the land and live in Victoria. As soon as you left, you lost the title of the land. So given this in sort of detail, because in some of the records, it mentioned, some of the people that filed those claims. And one of the claims that was filed was five men, and their names are listed and we have the original document, who established a business license for the Salt Spring stone company called the fight. And that was in 18 6060. And shortly after they filed the business application, or this stone company has serious unsalted benign. They actually put an ad in the British colonists newspaper in Victoria saying this wonderful stone that we discovered it has building qualities and working qualities and the hardness of Linde, your secondary granites. And it's yours for $8 a ton on the dark side and Victoria. We will do the rest. So, to me it was fascinating that the same year that starts things being settled, I mean, you have got a one to three day trip by canoe was supplied depending on the weather conditions. Some of the documents are looking to get stuff over to soft and have very sort of troubled Indian people coming onto the island that really are not too happy with you being there. In those days, you've got some predators to deal with. If you had livestock the worst and wolves and Cougar on Saltspring that were predating some of the cat. There was rustling some of the early black people had trouble with rustling and it wasn't always Indian rustling or black People rustling black. All this was going on. And there is this very business like very commercial, and, and business happening at the same time. And I thought this was really strange. And it was even stranger when I started to go through the dig and find material for Monday. What became clear to me was that the stone cutters carnage that I actually excavated, and the quarry of the Soviets were not related in terms of types of stone pretty produce the same time in history. So yeah, but they were not associated in an activity. And when they talked about the five men during the Saltspring stone company, we refer to the quarry. And apparently that quarry was work. And it was a very crude lifestyle and all the people that weren't masons, they were just heavy duty laborers, really. And they the process of splitting rock was the same as the other guys use, but there was no finishing. They just cut the blocks of stone out of the quarry, scattered them down onto walls that they'd built out into the channel onto schools and volunteers and ship them away. And some reports say some of that stone went to San Francisco, the Opera House and the the mint building were built the Saltzman stone is actually little plaque in San Francisco, and says the study is from focusing on the middle. And yet, what about the lifestyle of these guys? Well, quarry workers aren't really there for a long time. It's hard work conditions, as I've just explained with very hot and I gather that the habitat that they lived in was a log cabin. Again, it was Thoreau at that time. And there is one plot along quarry drives where there's a corner of the cabin that you can still see the logs overlapping interest to getting into and what people have often referred to here as the ovens on Laquan. Were actually fireplaces at the end of the cap. There weren't oven, I mean, there's one that would use like a Dutch oven, but they were basically the fire and the half at the head of these cabinets. And the roof was merely just a rough pole frame of canvas. Now that's temporary, transient kind of labor. And to back that up. I found that the same by guys put in this ad and we're running the salts being stolen company a year later in 1961 had filed a gold claim in the caribou to do some mining. So they had stayed on stock. Coincidentally, they creek that they were mining was called Salt Spring Creek recycling. But they had gone they had had it they thought cutting stone out of a cliff was a little bit too much like hard work. And then I thought well, when I'm looking at the walls of that cottage, there was actually cut stone blocks. And it was two feet thick. It was built substantially for a lengthy period of time stone. There was a forge that I found slag and coal from the ground on calling its property as an open seam of coal right on the beach. And some of that coal was in a pile by the cottage for the fall was actually a stone a large block of sounds been with a hole in it the slack stuck to the back of it which would be used bellows for the fall. So they obviously did a lot of 14 other tools. There was a lot of products, I mean, these bottles that these are all broken by the way there is no broken and they are iridescent is that there was the heat from the fire. There isn't a solid bottle there. But a typical kind of bottle for that period. But a lot of them and the the tools that they work for clay pipes are bits of broken pottery, lots of bones and things are eating. There's lots of stuff. And these guys weren't there for just a year and then cleared off to go gold counting. I mean, they were seriously working. I also found that the stone that they were producing was really beautifully done. And I think you've all seen on stone buildings, the sills that go above the door or window sill, nice rectangular slabs of stone, wood, they were producing that kind of material, and each stone and there was a couple there on the site had actually been chiseled the whole surface on these chisel marks but it hadn't cut a lot of work and it takes a skill to cut the hole in the middle of a block of sandstone to the bellows for the fall. You've got to know what you're doing because you know you can hit the straw to the wrong way and just break. So this intrigued me I thought well 100 We've got the quarry, and all the information is talking about the quarry in the archives. So who are these guys? I mean, here we have a stone house on salt. They're making these beautiful pieces of crafted masonry, stone.

Unknown Speaker 20:17
Who were.

Unknown Speaker 20:19
So I started to then trace my steps and do some work in the the period I was working with sort of went from what I was hearing about the quarry and the use of the stone. But what was kind of exciting is I did find two points in the excavation, and I did a little rubbing, I couldn't bring the time the guy that these artifacts by the way, I've just a few that belong to normally it knows the property. Publix and I pleaded with them, I said you'd asked me to do this talk. And it would be really nice if you had something to look at, set up just my boys and knees, take some things for meeting said yes, but not my coins. Treasures them. But I have got rubbings off and there was a dime on a quarter, dated 1860 and 1859 accordingly. And what was kind of neat was that they were minted in San Francisco, which is the very building of the stone fountain was being shipped an understanding that the maybe this exchange of material now that could have been coincidence, because there were people coming up from the states from all over the place. And I'm not sure how close other coins would be minted, you know, probably quite natural for American coinage to be in that area. We were on a trade route. But it was kind of neat to find that in the counter. And then I I started to figure out well, somewhere there has to be a name. Like two people can't work in the first years on Saltspring. Without a name, there has to be a land claim filed somewhere. They have to be a census and there was a census in the early days that mentioned some of the early settlers and I went down and they listed a lot of the early inhabitants with occupations. But at that time, they stonemason. I was gonna give more mystify. And it was then just as a bit of a coincidence that I started to read in some of the old newspapers in around 1969. I mean, sorry, 1860 to 61. These murder cases is something of next week because I remember reading somewhere that I think it was Willie staff or Samsung, one of those early people here, had reportedly gone to visit to stay in stowaways. But found them dead in the cabin and partly buried in the floor and had suspected it was the Indians that was coming from coop Brian. They used to come over and Russell and and terrorize the early settlers. And he apparently went over to Cooper island in front of it and found out who it wasn't killed. The bad guy and the Indian in question, reported back to Sir James Douglas, or at least the authorities that Victoria there's no need to send any officers piece of taking care of it. Now. This is a rumor that came to me via Colin Lorac flyer, Collins brothers. I don't know where that information originated. So I thought well, what I had not considered was that the people that were in the cottage might have been killed. I thought I just slipped there and moved on to another business. And so I thought, well, if they were murdered, then I still need to name. And I started to investigate about 11 murders. Within two or three year period, that the carnage was built, we established the date. And then it gets wild. I mean, it just gets really crazy. What happened apparently was that one of the schooners that used to call in, make a stop at Salzburg, and head up to Nanaimo and go back around the other side and drop in at Fernwood back Victoria would occasionally drop in to see these Masons or that one of the settlers. And on one occasion, apparently the Scrivener Captain sort of dark and he walked up the slope to the cottage, and he was met by that guy. And then we just got chatting and, and he said, we've had the black fellow partners that we've had some trouble with rustling, but I've taken care of. And, you know, they chatted and it was always that the Masons weren't there and they used to go down to San Francisco sometimes with their loads of stone. So the school captain didn't think this that if anything amiss, went on his way. And for some reason, he decided to go back the next day or later on, I'm not quite sure. This fellow that made him originally had disappeared, and he was reported to her pushed open the door of the cabin and tripped over something sticking out of the floor with these pair of legs that he caught quite distressed about and realized that something was wrong here so he thought he better go to Victoria. Get the authorities now getting from Victoria and back. Bye bye between those days, two or three day situation, the time he got back, no bodies, no legs on the floor, and a spoon and captain was heavily remanded for tipping on the job. But it was another entry for me. It was even more intriguing, because when I asked me dug up the floor, down the pit, about six feet long, three feet wide, and about three feet deep, right in the middle of the cabin floor. And I likewise, thought, Well, okay, let's be logical. Let's not get excited here. I know, it ties into the story. But why would you build a pit in the middle of your cabin course a little cabin, but a fireplace at one night, it was a root cellar. But I thought, kind of hard to have a root cellar just beside the doorway. I mean, it's not a good place. But sometimes it's an awkward place to get out. And what was also neat is that when I dug down into the pit, on the level of the floor, I found some stuff that were buttons. There was bones, there was ash from the fire. I don't know. I mean, but they were there. And there was actually a chisel down there. So I got quite intrigued. Now I thought, well, how do I ever answer these questions? We do know some basic facts that the two people that occupy the cabin, work with stone, you know, and there are some tools that I brought along, just to show you very simply the kind of tools they used and made. They definitely were working stone on the site. They weren't tied in with Vesuvius. Because if you look at the the sort of shoreline just near the cabin, you can see rocks that had the marks of how to cut them. And they do that very quickly. They just drilled holes along the rock these big blocks of sounds and drill holes. They put in these these little wedge shaped pieces of material into the hole, then this in there, and imagine a line of long and you just went along with a hammer when you tap, tap tap. And you can go into the aquarium pursue this now and you'll see holes drilled all through the rock, whether we're going to cut it and use the same method. So I knew they weren't stone. Well, they also was talking to some of the stonemasons that currently work on like Andy curry, and people like that. And they said that, you know, certain chisels like this is for actual carving stone, it isn't just snapping, and finishing, you know, so some of the chisels and there are many types of chisels that I did find, were obviously craftsmen. And then I read an article that said that, uh, John Lee, who, incidentally, was one of the five guys that was working in the car and then went to the Caribbean gold digging, was supposed to have built an old stone house, further up the coast, in stone comes back. And he and two other fellows had worked, finished on that. And apparently, he was quite a respected Mason, in fact, some of the stonework along the old post office building in Victoria, and some of John needs work. And I suddenly thought, what this is it, this is the guy I mean, you know, I mean, there's, there's a document here that says, John, and he built a house with two guys. But when I mean, did he end up going to be murdered a lot. And it was a bit of a disappointment. I also read that he was supposed to have been with a shipment of stone, and these blocks down to San Francisco. And he got in the way when they were unloading the block and sort of John Lee was made a sandwich between the stone it's a very sort of obvious, recorded death. But it still left the other two mice in question. And I guess, my intrigue at this point is, and frustration is to have worked through early records or history of design. And looked at a very small part of the history in terms of lifestyle. But nothing was written. We have a whole industry here within the first two years of suffering of the eye. There's probably about two pages of written work and nothing else. Incidentally, the duration of the carving is a little uncertainty didn't go on for many years, apparently, because there was one report that there was a reactivating of the stone quarry in Vesuvius about 10 years later, and the scope finished car was used in a graving dock in Esquimalt with a driver. But they do say that 10 years since the car was used, but again, that's the car. And I still don't know whether that ties in with

Unknown Speaker 30:15
the situation as it is now is the norm has cottage, and we excavated it out quite thoroughly. We have a lot of material that gives us some dates, clay pipes, and if you look at this one clay pipe, it actually has written on the side of the pipe stem MCDU stamped in clay and on the other side, Glasgow and then a TD on the ball. And if you get a catalogue of lifetime, manufacturers look up my doodle. The TV series of clay pots was between 1850 and 8080. And then they discontinued that line. So it puts us in the same kind of area. This type of bottle and and the coinage gives us those dates. But I still don't know who the guys were, you know, and I still don't know, whether they were murdered, or whether they just left why there was a pit in the floor, we can

Unknown Speaker 31:19
what excited me though, just as a resident of the island, is that it led me into exploring some of the history. And I hadn't really thought about doing that before, there was a small booklet that came that we've all seen about early settling and Saltspring and some of the family history. But I really got into the life of those early days. And I found that really exciting when I think of how I came to the island and and the facilities I worked with, compared with those people Dell has absolutely made that they survived. But I still and I have no answers for the stolen credit cards. I mean, it's there. They weren't there. Examples of them, their lifestyle, we dug up. But they vanished. They just literally, historically. And if anybody ever finds out anything, let me know. I really would like to know. I don't unless there's any other question. I don't think I've done my 20 minutes

Unknown Speaker 32:29
really don't know, do you see a lot of local gangs and the worst things like some of the antlers from the deer were evident in the food supply because we found quite a few sort of animal bones. One looks awfully like a T bone steak. That shape. But I don't know. I mean, they could be analyzed as to what species of mammal they were, whether they were human or not. Could be there's a lot of maybe they were here. You must remember though, at the time that there were wolves and cougars on the audience. And one suggestion was that the animals predated the biters and just kind of remove that

Unknown Speaker 33:26
I did talk about when I talk about Yeah, but I've talked to a lot of local people and about those days and they keep leading me back to the article about John Lee being killed in San Francisco and everybody gets confused with the quarry because there was actually a write up done not so long ago and if you've seen the fireplaces are the ovens and on the quarry so there was you noticed some of that has been gone unfortunately the lady that had the site put a driveway through and then a real nice up and bulldoze down and put a driveway but I took some photographs fortunately before it happened, but anyway there was an article that chose that photograph. And it says mystery of stone College on Saltzman I will the oven was an inquiry was nothing to do with this carnage. And the whole story was about John Lee building this cottage and all that's left standing is the fireplace. So you know this is where

Unknown Speaker 34:40
the sewers just, you know, quarry drive to and that's the quarry site. And actually some of the chisels that I found work down on the beach you can they used to put three or four fingers of war and all the chips they built this long is long arms for the schooners to come in and load again got washed away in a horrendous storm. But if you can see the cross section through those, those walls and you'll see kind of a rusty smear. So if you poke around where the rust stain is you'll bring a little chisel out you know, it's it's roughly the process is directly below the chorus but there's also supposed to been on the other side of the ferry terminal. Some quarrying done just not you know Bittencourt half the land above the pub in there and apparently was a bit coring done. You can see some blocks on the beach with holding where they might acquire it ahead of the other side

Unknown Speaker 35:52
6118 61 Yeah, yeah. Oh, it might have been, and I know that whether it's dark or Samsung, who was the first? Fun Yeah, they were there originally. That's right. Well, he came over first. I think he left Silvia over there while he checked out Saltspring and then he finally got the family to come over the Saltspring after a while, but he wasn't uh, he died in it was found in aquarium they never did find out why he died. in Nanaimo. Yeah, he was found in the bottom of a cliff or something. Quite

Unknown Speaker 36:46
a good idea, even the Mormon church because I learned a moment very careful, genetic

Unknown Speaker 37:03
that's not a bad idea.

Unknown Speaker 37:12
Yeah, the thing is that we're not talking early black settlers. In terms of the Masons, they were reporting to behind the Scottish or Irish Masons because train masons, for immigrants that would no train they have come from an apprenticeship which was just a Scotland Ireland

Unknown Speaker 37:36
they Australia Boston

Unknown Speaker 37:49
Yeah, that's what a lot of the murders. They said were the Indian. But what parently happened was there was some white and black people rustling were murdering and then they were leaving the murder to look like Indian murderers. So there was a problem that identified the source at that time. But just one last thought that completely baffled me is somebody told me after I've done all this research, oh, you've been working in the Spanish stone house. And stone cutters Bay, I think what do you mean Spanish stone houses? Well, everybody knows that the Spaniards want to sail through here first, as opposed to build an old stone house and salting it. At this point, I thought I'm just I'll go back to my art you know, it's I can deal with what my what is factual, but this hypothesis of all these stories, and so no, I don't have any other.

Unknown Speaker 38:55
Story must do what is what the must be some kind of either story handed down family to generation or documentation. And another Collins brothers See, they lived on the side of the car. And they had left with common merit, some material and some storage, which is where I got the direction for the Indian murder, and Sam's. I mean stuff. But I don't know how to access that because I've talked to some of the oldest members of the family. And they remember stories or rumors, but nothing really factual. And what I guess I was trying to establish was names because once you got names, then there are sensors. There are, like I said, land claims or documents that they had to file in order to get even just the product that didn't work. And none of the people that were listed in the early settlers were mentioned living in that area, or were stonemasons or tied in with the names by hand at work. Next. I don't know how that slipped through. I mean, how many people would actually come to Salzburg in those days and set up a lifestyle that was that established. And these weren't just transient pioneer farmers that broke their backs for a couple of years and then decided that it's too hard. I mean, this house must have taken a long time to build well, they must have the Masons said that to build a house without with two or three guys must have taken at least two seasons, if they were not here in the wintertime. The cutting stone to summer? I would think there would have to be Yeah, doesn't go back. Well, what is interesting to Tom is that and yet, there's no record of that particular law, there is a map of 1875 A surveyors when the guys went surveying, they, you know, they paced out and chains that went right around the north while I went right around. And I've got the pages in my journal, in my presentation. At that stretch across from Saudi point, almost in suits, and it's got the measurements and the pasting in about whatever sections was the mentioned stone house. So it's listed there. So I checked with the surveyors sort of archives material, and there's no land claim in that area of that date. Well, I guess so I don't know enough about the legality of the reason I went into the know sort of fairly informative thing about the early days of topspin. And that whole length clean business was just because I would have suspected with with that system that set up that the names would have been put on a land claim but they weren't.

Unknown Speaker 42:08
But at the same time, Tom, you know, you you have started a business that you're advertising a paper in Victoria. So you know, like, I want to stop legally, that would have been some advertising. Well, you see, this is where it gets foggy because the same person John Lee is supposed to have been one of the masons in the carnage. But he also was one of the people that was in the quarry business and then a year later was gold mining in the Caribbean so I mean, like it's really intriguing

Unknown Speaker 42:47
Shut up, I did have them down.

Unknown Speaker 43:13
Now, we even found out the names of the boats and the captain's like Captain Maxwell is actually one of the skippers on a boat that we're shipping the stone now and there is a there is a hole of a boat that is sunk off I think it's off main island or one of the other islands It might even be up towards the name of some divers Mike logical divers have gone into in the stones are still aboard this vessel

Unknown Speaker 43:43
maybe that maybe that was it was cutting. Although I don't know whether that was the sort of building stone because they were producing millstones to the circular millstone is one of the cars the names were H Elliot John Lee all leech E. Williams, and serving sermon serving W serving for those guys that filed the court. That was in 1860 while on June the 19th they actually filed a business license

Unknown Speaker 44:21
William I never trace that through. That was e WM

Unknown Speaker 44:33
anyway, it's intriguing. It was it was what was exciting was actually to spend three months on my hands and knees, sifting through very carefully and then you'd find things and then, you know, typically when it had a name or a date on it got to be quite sort of intriguing.

Unknown Speaker 44:50
An animal or as an agency, as well as a realist

Unknown Speaker 44:54
and maybe start with when I was in Vista government Alliance.

Unknown Speaker 45:00
I have to

Unknown Speaker 45:02
tell them the story and the angle. And at the start, it's not a cougar when you took a boy and tie the rope around him, and he said, You have to remind you that when he said the captain that could have economic always been another sign. You're kidding. Oh, no. Is that one of the girls in this group?

Unknown Speaker 45:26
Okay, because I know I traced that they originally went to an IMO to try and settle. He came over and found that Saltspring is more potentially profitable for farming or settling and bought some of your open and they settled when they were in the Fernwood area. The back settlement they were all around here. All right. I think the stamps, I think he was

Unknown Speaker 45:56
you're falling?

Unknown Speaker 46:10
If any of you actually read the history by Mr. Flute, it gives a really, yeah. It's really an interesting document. It goes right from early settling, it goes how they developed a municipality, the elections. And the early settling, which is where I got a lot of that material from it was it you can get it from the Heritage brand. And he did a very extensive sort of look at the political and the sort of sociological beginnings on this island. And you mentioned a lot of the original families. And so really nice doc. Did you?

Unknown Speaker 46:53
Didn't have been solved? Oh, yeah. That was what 51 I think it did manifest 123. Right. But when you actually go into their own, have you been in the archives and done any work on Saltspring access to any of the film? It's coming, it's just bits and bobs. And you just trace odd names. You kind of think, you know, it's, it's, it's history, okay. There will be a file Saltspring Island, and it starts at 1858 or whatever. And it comes to 1986. But it doesn't, you get a newspaper clipping here and an article there and a family name there. And you've got to try and link it all together.

Unknown Speaker 47:35
It's a public safety building in San Francisco is built entirely from the Saltspring Island. Really? Yeah. There are buildings in Boston built from Saltspring on buildings in Olympia, Tacoma and Seattle and Victoria Beltran. So have you ever wondered why the stone came to the Salt Spring Island not from my own island, Pender Island rather adultos. And I do happen to know the reason why chose Spring Island stone for us so extensively over such a wide area. And that was because the stone on forthcoming Island is not superior doing butter floors, easy to land, and the original shipment pipeline for service bay with a stone being taken from the hill and really pay above it. And the reason was that was that they were just stack flown flat stone bottom there, and of high tide the vessels could come in with the barges. At low tide the barges, the tide would go out with a barge that would be resting on a flat stone shell and the father use the wagons could come down and carrying the stone and go right alongside when the tide was out on a grind shop and the stone could be immediately changed from the wagon to the barges and high tide, they would float

Unknown Speaker 49:07
away. And it was a natural little high

Unknown Speaker 49:10
there were only two places in the column where there's convicted some existed and that was extra service and also a starting point. And this is why the stone cutters were fined because they had good landings you're probably aware of

Unknown Speaker 49:29
partly but I also think just to extend that there is also the reason is that the sandstone at the north end of the island is sort of like cutting through an onion. It's a square the layers had been pushed up and it's a dome and on the north side on the trick multi channel it's one slope and on the Stoke and the other slope and the ladder questions I get home it was whether the frost crack off and they're almost have these lovely sloping blocks Ready to just slip into the ocean. All you gotta do is pop them into the right side and hit him downhill because gravity is with you. You know, so you had that kind of facility. But there's also that huge car is in the same time, that Newcastle Island phenomenon that we're producing a lot of buildings. It's now pocket International, I mean a Provincial Park. Bill Cowen family and I just recently discovered this bill Count's family originally did a lot of the quarrying in this area on the new cast line and all over towards up the coast and C sharp and so on me, he has some of the early stone cutters diaries, where they talked about the life and pay and the food conditions and so on. And I haven't been able to get that material yet. But I think some of that might be off the Saltspring period. His family actually originally did the quorum exam system. Anyway, thanks for tuning well. This has been most fascinating