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The Salt Spring Island Historical Society


The Whims of Salt Spring Island:
Social Cooperation and Friction in Early Canada

applesThe Historical Society program on February 8, 2017 will focus on the Whims family, whose patriarch, Hiram Whims, was one of the first contingent of Black settlers from the United States who arrived on Salt Spring in 1859. 
As well as recognizing that February is Black History month, this presentation also takes us back to the beginnings of Canada, 150 years ago, when early settlers of Salt Spring were eking out a precarious living, clearing their pre-empted land and dependent on the cooperation of their extended families and their community.
Ling Weston will present the first part of the talk, giving the background and context for US black settlers in general and the Whims family in particular.  She will describe their family tree, where they lived, and who their neighbours were. It has become clear that one can’t talk about the social context of the Whims family in those early years without also mentioning the Sampsons, who were not only close neighbours, but family.
In the second part, Gillian Watson will focus on the dramatic elopement in 1881 of Clark Whims and Ann Maria Sampson and the subsequent hearing held on Salt Spring at Central Settlement. These events and the mixed cast of characters at the hearing are worthy of a soap opera. However, they also highlight the interdependence of settlers and the friction this could sometimes cause. Finally, Gillian will trace the long-term ramifications for the Whims and Sampson families through to the 1900s.

All are welcome to attend this meeting on February 8th, at 2:00 pm at Central Hall.
Admission is by donation.

February 8th, 2017 at 2 PM,
Central Hall

All are welcome.
Free or by donation
*Contribute to the Archives by putting grocery tapes from Country Grocer into Box 131

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