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Lyn Bittancourt

Accession Number Interviewer Imbert Orchard
Date Location
Media mp3 Duration 31 minutes




Unknown Speaker 0:01
He bought in 1870. And Father was about a year or something older.

Unknown Speaker 0:08
He was born in 69,

Unknown Speaker 0:10
something like that.

Unknown Speaker 0:11
What was your father's name?

Unknown Speaker 0:13
Abraham Reed Betancourt? Where was he from? A was born here in Ghana his

Unknown Speaker 0:24
Oh, then he came out here with our erotic

Unknown Speaker 0:27
no and my grandfather. Yeah, yes. It was original Betancourt share.

Unknown Speaker 0:33
What was your grandfather's name?

Unknown Speaker 0:39
Lawn? No, that's not right. We should have Nora here. Leah asked alone. No, I think esalaam was the other bit in court. Maybe we better skip that one.

Unknown Speaker 0:54
But he can you tell me about your grandfather?

Unknown Speaker 0:56
No, I've never shown my grandfather.

Unknown Speaker 0:59
You don't remember the story in coming here.

Unknown Speaker 1:02
Except from what father said that they dropped shipping Victoria Harbour. Who was they? That is the two Betancourt brothers and Emmanuel Norton

Unknown Speaker 1:15
they were on the one of the ships

Unknown Speaker 1:16
the same ship

Unknown Speaker 1:19
and you don't know how they got to Salzburg?

Unknown Speaker 1:21
Motivate canoes the sailing group here at that time and father grandfather hauled sawdust from Mill Bay in this loop to Vancouver for you know the meat markets and you see that just way back to fathers only a boy

Unknown Speaker 1:52
you don't remember what why your grandfather and his brother came up here

Unknown Speaker 1:57
I know excepted to to get clear have maybe been saying hi again I'm so mothership possible angle right there. What's your what's your he came up here wildly vulnerable born here. So that taken it back quite a long time to be

Unknown Speaker 2:25
in the 60s. Waited your father said

Unknown Speaker 2:30
Victoria. Afraid he settled in didn't settle here until he was injured on a carbon green job. And he came up here to recuperate and he got the job to build that Vesuvius Lodge. Around $1,400.03 cottages for ocean cottages complete for little over $600 for the three of them. They still exist out there and Vishal Vish.

Unknown Speaker 3:02
So why his brother lived here, the Soviets he stayed in Detroit.

Unknown Speaker 3:08
That is her grandfather's brother. grandfather moved to Victoria. I was brought to this island when I was two years old. I've been here 70 years that's not counting the other two when I was brought here either. See, I'm 72

Unknown Speaker 3:36
And did he come to several

Unknown Speaker 3:38
of them to live here the father after this injury came up here to recuperate as I quoted a little while ago and and he got there was three jobs and after that we stayed here. What did you find to do? Boiler carpenter who was trained under an old country carpenter stare builder and but he had a wonderful training because in those days, it wasn't much machinery. You had to make your own window frames and doors. No works as a magnetic played out your own molding stuff. So you grew up here? Oh, yes. I've been here all my life.

Unknown Speaker 4:28
Where did the where was this?

Unknown Speaker 4:31
Where did you live? Oh, we were when they came up here. First it was a Bisou fish. And then we gradually worked in here, too. We lived up here on the hill out of Ganges. Is he? Betancourt the Vesuvius Betancourt's they owned all the property. You couldn't buy in there. And they they knew the store started at the center. Hold that's where you turn their central settlement no Hall and finally got the odd Nick garden dream jobs and then we started a store that would be about 95 or older in that time I wouldn't judge and that first door was opposite where that to forestry branches it is a home there now. You know the forest remains police and forestry is faced with that right across the road that horrible fella has it now we started the store. There it is. Oh, that's in Ganges. You see the foreign singers just up here

Unknown Speaker 5:50
on the tape. But if there's nobody was nobody up here.

Unknown Speaker 5:53
That's right. Anyway, they. We sold that out and move down to the foot of the hill word adopters. French's is today at two storey building there we operated there. And then we sold out two more brothers.

Unknown Speaker 6:12
But now growing up here. How do you remember the community? What kind of a base Oh,

Unknown Speaker 6:20
it was far better than it is today? Because I'm a stranger Now in those days. And we knew everybody. But I'm no stranger now.

Unknown Speaker 6:32
Was it a good mixture of people? Or was it?

Unknown Speaker 6:36
Oh, no doubt no good mixture. We had our three sections. Valley through here. And then you're Norris and of course you're a horse and buggy days student all that people didn't get around like they do today. C sections were the forefront Valley forefront bar going bad of what we call the valley and then the Ganges section through here up to Central and you had the north and Fernwood way. It was very scattered.

Unknown Speaker 7:13
What part did the colored people live in?

Unknown Speaker 7:15
Oh, they had choice pieces. Scattered It was no community. They're all integrated with some fine people among them to

Unknown Speaker 7:28
those days but there have been any attitude towards the color feet. No,

Unknown Speaker 7:35
no, no. When I went to school, I sat alongside of Bobby wouldn't he quite a quite black to in final add the fact that a lot of white people would do well to take a page out of their book. They've been very good at going going back to their grandmother, the negros trustees was brought her up here from the American Civil War. Was that my grandmother?

Unknown Speaker 8:09
What was her name?

Unknown Speaker 8:11
Well, it would be Betancourt. Oh no, I haven't got that. Now. It was a she and her brother was brought up here by negros as trustees. Trustees.

Unknown Speaker 8:27
I see Yes.

Unknown Speaker 8:32
The same the the other Betancourt, the girl he married was brought up from Civil War was saved by a trustee.

Unknown Speaker 8:43
This is interesting because this is the story I've been trying to get. And this is the sort of feeling I've had about that

Unknown Speaker 8:51
load the mixture of people here I think her name was Logan or Hogan logon or something. I'm not too sure of that. But there she was in her brother would have brought it up here. It was the Negro was that they could trust others show her warmth.

Unknown Speaker 9:14
Any outstanding negros particularly that were here at a personality is that because you mentioned

Unknown Speaker 9:21
and no at the start? Of course they they they didn't know how long they should live well no sorry, art boy. They reached all ages. But they they were all one and all of us see it was no I hadn't anybody.

Unknown Speaker 9:44
Is there anything you could say about Mr. Stark she was a very outstanding woman.

Unknown Speaker 9:53
I know more about Willis, her boy and he's great Cougar Hunter you know we seen him in the woods hunting and he wouldn't just shoot any deer that he like we would that we saw he was after what and if he didn't get it he wouldn't shoot the others into their habit so well

Unknown Speaker 10:17
she had she wrote her I understand she started typing when she was over eight no need to write her memoirs

Unknown Speaker 10:23
already I see her I think our boy died when he was about 90 Witness and she was still around but they were nice family the you have even now the the like said Claiborne he married a miss Wallace see they're around because he spent a lot of time I think in America you did American services services

Unknown Speaker 10:56
did the community or the community seem very English?

Unknown Speaker 10:58
Oh yes, they had their shindig here and everybody bought food alone and they had one wonderful time now it's not different or close to where we have had glatt class distinction to it all is Tell me about that. I was wondering Of course we had the the English element here of course they're better than anybody else should do.

Unknown Speaker 11:39
We still have this past year. But the longer that I can stay a lot more relaxing than going with it

Unknown Speaker 11:51
was not using some of these things without mentioning names because we're trying to get at the truth

Unknown Speaker 11:59
as it really was because you take those days a lot of these people were sent out from England because they were no good back there and they sent them out here and they were kept live out here remittance we've had a lot of it on the coast here you take Duncan and Victoria and a lot of those all English families some outstanding some maybe not so good

Unknown Speaker 12:32
the the English nodes made their own society

Unknown Speaker 12:36
Well yes, of course in a way it's understandable they come from back there the gang up no you take your go down to San Francisco Canadiens down there you see more down and you won't be here on the group.

Unknown Speaker 12:51
What are the the majority of people in this bar where the majority English or majority knowledge?

Unknown Speaker 12:57
Oh no, I think we had more of the ordinary people hear the English to hit and miss year English is just a small PT as they spread about not so much the south and more up at this and of course to we had the old country clergyman here you see in there again the weather fluids.

Unknown Speaker 13:22
And you have first of

Unknown Speaker 13:24
all, yes. Father built his house. While I believe that he was his money had to give so much the church gosh, they feature they St. Mark's Church and but he did a lot of good orphans get out of the home and cook and wait on the table and so on. And actually when they left him there were a lot better boys when he took them in. There's still something here. I think Goodman was Bullock Jessie ball and there was another one that was was Mr. Bullock could tell you a lot. He's out. Submarine Lakeway Odyssey is at least two I know that. I think Goodman did he's right. And Ganges. We he was good. Even Miss Frances Norton. I mentioned Ovie and he's an old timer. He was was born.

Unknown Speaker 14:37
What any stories about books that you

Unknown Speaker 14:39
remember? Oh, no, no, no. He was just a good citizen. Not no anecdotes about no. It was very good. No, I wouldn't say they were ready. Stories. Certainly not any humor anyway. Have

Unknown Speaker 15:03
any other outstanding or extinct people in the community in those days?

Unknown Speaker 15:11
Well the habits there were quite interesting because they are again all country. You see we are we going to get back to the Boer War in a minute they add one and successful but they were father built the building for him down here that was a better throne. Edwin came out here wesselman Got to establish he goes back. He's the one that helped start the ball war he was in that Jemison raid they don't worry we're going too far by I know.

Unknown Speaker 16:01
What year wasn't that built the books house.

Unknown Speaker 16:07
Oh, we have to go around to about 1898 Somewhere around there. Maybe a little ahead of that the the Gold Rush was 89 wasn't it? My uncle worked on that building. And he went into the gold rush or we'll say a team they this Evan eth Marone in that period. He spent 28 years up there looking for the mother lode and he's passed on without finding it too.

Unknown Speaker 16:50
Remember, has been

Unknown Speaker 16:52
no. No. It's like the show Vichy I don't remember that the Vichy V's lounge. I was at 97 I do remember in the cottage industry mother at AG but I'm under down there with a saltwater so handy and. And lots of wasps for Island too. We understood those. See, I was only two years old. I was brought up here because I was born in 1893.

Unknown Speaker 17:27
Any incidents that you remember

Unknown Speaker 17:30
growing up Biden,

Unknown Speaker 17:32
was there anything any incidents in your life? You remember growing up here as a child,

Unknown Speaker 17:37
there's nothing too exciting. Because we went to school up here at the divide forest. And that's row 1902. And that was Irish was a school teacher. But the witness aid was anything outstanding except it was a happy life. Yeah. It does seem like we have here now where they're flying around corners and you don't know where they're going to get a clip or not. Because my life has been seafaring. Let the scene I started there was father in the engineering and when I was 15 There's only since I've had to stay ashore that quit. I'd rather get back to it now. And all this is slavery. Where were you? Well, I father was in the customs. That was engineer was him aboard the vessel. And then, of course I wouldn't need Imperial Navy in the First World War. And then when I came back, I wasn't going to go back was following I was going to go on the Alaska run see that country. But I stayed where they met and that job finished and my wife tried to get me on the beach again. But it didn't last. I was trying to get a pier head job. And I worked a CPR a little while. That's very interesting is wages go. I got 65 months on that job and they found no a deckhand gets nearly $400 A month because they have to keep themselves

Unknown Speaker 19:31
work. What's

Unknown Speaker 19:34
up. I worked at charmer for a while because she just finished was long ago. I was on the run between Vancouver, Nanaimo and just hauling excess cars, the other ships couldn't handle it trip over in the morning and back at night. When it changed, it was alright. We're happy with our jobs. We weren't worried about eight hour days and 40 hour weeks or anything

Unknown Speaker 20:05
in the customs work, where was your headquarters

Unknown Speaker 20:07
here? Yes, we worked out here. Tell me about the swepco. It was preventive service, preventive service, keep people out of trouble wrong and get them into trouble.

Unknown Speaker 20:22
What did you have to do?

Unknown Speaker 20:23
Well, there wasn't much to do, except around fishing American picking up bait in our country. But of course when they started this room running business see that made it quite difficult.

Unknown Speaker 20:40
As much as you can about the running business.

Unknown Speaker 20:43
Well, you have to look at it. This way the Canadian vote, take a cargo boarded clear for a given point. Today not breaking the law. But they'd break the law was the American breaking it coming in here and they're breaking the law then by transferring to American vessel without the supervision of a customer? As far as we were attending, certainly they weren't renegades and another thing that was so many of you couldn't keep up at home. We did get the out American the EB one news inviting to at something like over $28,000 was a cargo but the I wouldn't say that. As far as our side was concerned, the breaking the law except to you you had to go away and when they said they'd clear too and of course they couldn't transfer it while you were there. So they've moved that nude move.

Unknown Speaker 21:58
Country what's the area that you?

Unknown Speaker 22:00
Well, we had all through down through international boundary in Victoria. We did a lot of work on opium and stuff smuggling. We had to follow the ships from quarantined in and sometimes he had to get bored and shovel cold trying to find this stuff. It was a Winamac father owned a vessel she was under charter and then they went in for their own vessels and a father was wisdom. 18 years I wasn't there all that time. And they put their own on and that seemed to fizzled out and gosh the Northwest monitor automotive police look after that now that they have you in Bay they've sent us up to Union Bay was saying chips in for calling to check on. Visa was opium a lot of open nowadays. But the emphasis seemed to be the main deal. meeting them at quarantine and to Victoria and after they left Victoria where they could do what they're like anywhere you couldn't keep up the load for the sake turned out vessel they're doing about 18 You see them they're not able to make new awaken the water and that you can't keep up to them

Unknown Speaker 23:42
you don't have any incidents and customers work

Unknown Speaker 23:45
around running Oh no. The nobody shot at ash

Unknown Speaker 23:52
nothing exciting to

Unknown Speaker 23:54
know accepted Oh as is one share we in the case will go back to that even be we see Easter at Portland Island brought her in here and we had the cruel of her plus the the top brass aboard ever and they're super cargo and we let them go to the harbor house and then we put up a cap watch all night I was held out to get some sleep but they Oh boy about midnight and all the shooting that went on down here and I don't know whether they saw us to be that he was another bachelor this reduces was there and she high powered sorry to not you know the time she was had come in there to hijacker but the way they did nobody got hit anyway little exciting here for a while especially when you get basically get into bed after or never pick up in the smuggling any packages they do over anything like that together. Oh no. It goes weekend go way back. Time me my head in the First World War when we had the Flying Dutchman gang, they were up top here komak snapback way east Elmax ottoman. They stole stuff at South Pender. And they were at reed island and we take off after them was a police and they were about a day ahead of us all along the line. We got up to Koh monks. And we've got stuck out of k plus oh, boy blue there. We didn't make an inch. So they had to double back. They went overland up to Campbell River they got them in quasi Aska Cove. Boy he a lot of artillery award that vessel. So that question the police were more interested in it. And we were just a matter of stealing because that was provincial police nowadays. So we got him and then we went up the next day and started toying him back down to the table. So the I said, I think I better go back and start to enjoy bucking a headwind and this MyChart admin says your engineer on the restaurant that ancient he spoke a lot of truths in a way Oh, the master wires is only a two cylinder make and break and general polymer. It was hopeless. But all I did was rewire the engine and discard it all his junk and just rewired it and in about five or 10 minutes I had to say going that helped out a lot Oh yeah, I guess he's already had everybody buffalo know that it is quite easy to rewire the engine even more and more involved. But they I think my fishing fishing angle is the best part of my career was that I fished on the West Coast, Vancouver Island trolling years ago. I started in 29 I think it was I put in 16 years and I would say that's the happiest part of my whole life free agent at all. Didn't want to go over to NAFTA. And it's a wonderful life on the west coast because you have to enjoy the elements then they I enjoy the elements the things you see out there you nobody else ever see them unless they're out there. Those it's it's outstanding life. us a thumbs up at Kaiyukan but I would my way up, fool around Barkley sound and Luca sound, sometimes Queens Cove, then k you could learn from Kai you could we fished up fires Cape Cook, and Delta Force Esperanto is a lovely country.

Unknown Speaker 28:45
You didn't mind the big seas,

Unknown Speaker 28:48
overlord. No all I say in the 16 years that I was up there I didn't miss all the bad weather

Unknown Speaker 29:00
it gets quite interesting at times

Unknown Speaker 29:02
any newspaper something

Unknown Speaker 29:05
oh no the I had a good Vaseline because the engine angle I was able to look after and kept that in very good shape. The whole thing in the vessels to keep it up and even your fire hazard that look at these vessels are burning up explosions. It's it's the individual. It's causing it. And when I was under the Navy I will use to put 2000 gallons of gas aboard at 40 gallons a minute. And we don't have explosions. We don't let gas get into the abilities and things like that. It's just the individuals neglect it cause always I work for the BC packers on the coasts first and coaches before I went up there on my own quite interest Mastering 20 hour days good average sometimes 22 hours. I got fat. Imagine 20 and 22 hours a week to be eating. Everybody get fat out of a job like Vichy packers guy. He gave you the finest food you could buy finest of everything you got ever good. You are running out of time. I hope you're quite satisfied with what I've been saying. I'm saying I would like to comment on anything you're wiser that's going

Unknown Speaker 30:52
we we don't necessarily use things like to hear about

Unknown Speaker 31:00
the VCC father went to school on this island. A walk from Vesuvius, so they lived here after we're born here and eventually atmosphere mischievous to the foreign witness school because that is done