Showing 39 results

authority records
Cortes Island Museum and Archives

Anderson, Elton

  • Person
  • 1908 -1975

Elton Anderson (1908 -1975) was a naturalist and conservationist. He was born in Victoria and lived for some years on Cortes Island. A former logger, Anderson became a leader in conservation work in BC. He served as president of the Federation of BC Naturalists, was an honorary life member of the Vancouver Natural History Society and the Victoria Natural History Society, and a member of the Canadian Nature Federation.

Brooks family

  • Family
  • 20th cent.

Alethea and Frederick (Fred) James Brooks Sr. and their two sons, Frederick (Fred) Earl, Jr. and Bob, lived on Cortes Island from ca. 1941 to 1944, near Manson's Landing. Fred Sr. logged in Cortes Bay and employed two of the Hawkins boys, Bill and George.
Fred Jr. attended grades three to six at Cortes Island school before the family moved to Pender Harbour. Some of the names he recalls are: the Christiansen kids (Robert, Jim, and a sister), the Tibers on the west side of Cortes Island, and the Jefferys of Smelt Bay.

Carkener, Michael

  • Person
  • 1949-

Michael Carkener (b.1949) has lived at 757 Sutil Point Rd., Manson's Landing on Cortes Island since ca. 1978. The house at that address was originally built by the Froud family in 1914. Frederick Froud donated a portion of his land for Manson's Landing Community Hall and St. James Church in the 1920s.

Cortes Ecoforestry Society

  • Corporate body
  • 1999-2006

The Cortes Ecoforestry Society (CES) was incorporated in March 1999, under the following mission statement:

"To work in partnership with the Klahoose First Nation, to gain community stewardship of the working forest lands on Cortes to create perpetual ecological and economic benefits for the entire community, and to serve as a model for sustainable ecoforestry."

Preceding names for the organization include Cortes Island Forestry Committee (ca. 1988-1990), Cortes Island Forest Resource Committee (c. 1990) and Cortes Island Forest Committee (ca. 1991-1999). A draft document from October 1991 states that,

"[T]he Cortes Island Forest Committee (CIFC) was formed in 1988. The purposes of the CIFC are to develop ecologically responsible and balanced forest use of Cortes Island forests, to develop a sustainable forest-based economy, to educate ourselves and the public regarding appropriate use of Cortes Island forests, and to work towards a broad based public consensus for the use of these forests."

In July 1999 Klahoose First Nation and CES signed an unprecedented Memorandum of Understanding, stating that the two parties would work together to create a community forest that used eco-system forestry. In 1999 and 2000 the Cortes Ecoforestry Society began planning and preparing a community forest proposal. In 2003, volume was made available for small community tenures, including Woodlot Licences and Community Forest Agreements (CFAs). Klahoose supported the efforts to revitalize the community forest proposal and a small, voluntary advisory group was formed (Bruce Ellingsen, Chief Kathy Francis, Liz Richardson and Ron Wolda). To ensure the proposal was seen to be inclusive of all islanders, the proponent name was changed to the Cortes Island Community Forest advisory group. The community forest proposal stalled, and CES, which at one point had a membership of 400 residents supporting their goals, became less active.

In May of 2011, the Minister of Forests invited the Cortes Community Forest Advisory Group to apply for a Community Forest Agreement (CFA), and in September 2013 a Community Forest Agreement was issued to the Cortes Forestry General Partnership, which was established in June 2012.

The Cortes Forestry General Partnership is managed and governed equally by two partners, the Klahoose Forestry No. 2 Limited Partnership (KF2LP) and the Cortes Community Forest Co-operative. The tenure agreement lasts for 25 years and encompasses 3,869 hectares of crown land, about 35% of the island. The Klahoose Nation holds ancestral tenure over Cortes Island and is currently at stage 4 in the process of negotiating a treaty agreement with the province of British Columbia and the government of Canada.

Cortes Emergency First Aid Service

  • Corporate body
  • 1988-1992

In 1988, concerned members of the Cortes community formed the Cortes Emergency First Aid Service (CEFAS). They were trained in basic first aid and provided volunteer service to the island for the next four years. In 1992, the British Columbia Ambulance Service opened a station on Cortes which continued and expanded that service.

Cortes Island Seniors' Building Society

  • Corporate body
  • 1987-

In 1987, members of the Cortes Island Old Age Pensioners' Organization incorporated the Cortes Island Seniors' Building Society (later known as the Cortes Island Senior's Society) with the following stated purposes:
(a) to operate a facility where persons aged 65 years or older, or persons between 55 and 65 years of age who are in need, can improve their health through physical and other acitivity;
(b) to operate a residential housing facility for such persons;
(c) to carry on social activities incidental to the above purposes, but not to own, operate or manage a social club.
The records of the Cortes Island Seniors' Building Society provide useful insight into their process of envisioning the future of seniors' housing on Cortes Island.

Cortes Island Transportation Committee

  • Corporate body
  • 1993-

The Cortes Island Transportation Committee was formed in 1993. At a meeting on March 22, 1993 in Campbell River between the B.C. Ferry Corporation and local government representatives, Peter Hughes, chairman of the BC Ferry Corp., recommended that Cortes Islanders form a Transportation Committee to liaise with the Corporation. Director Ralph Nursall convened a public meeting on Cortes to explore the possibility in May. A high turn-out (50+) indicated an intense interest in transportation issues on the Island and a committee of volunteers was formed.

The mandate for the Committee and its Executive, as expressed by Ralph Nursall, Regional Director at the time, is as follows: "It is intended that the Transportation Committee be an independent, community committee operating as it sees fit to collect opinions of Islanders to transport to the B.C. Ferry Corp. and getting information from the Corporation for Islanders...The Committee will also interest itself in Highways and other transportation matters of the Island."

Cortes Island Women's Institute

  • Corporate body
  • 1984-2000

The Cortes Island Women's institute was formed in 1984. Although Cortes Island had historically been difficult to traverse, and the communities consequently insular, by the 1980s the road systems were such that "a Women's Institute for the whole of Cortes Island" seemed to make sense.
CIWI was founded with the bank balance of a Manson's Landing service group called the Ladies Guild, which was founded in the 1940s. When membership and activity in the guild declined in the 1970s, the focus was shifted to a renovation and addition to Manson's Hall. Once the Hall had been sufficiently updated, it was thought that the remaining funds might be put to use "creating an instrument for better communication between all our women and a chance to work together in the community".
Charter members of the CIWI were Heather Berry, Peggye Newsham, Maryann McCoy, Linda Hendricks, and Mary Block.

Cortez Lodge

  • Corporate body
  • 1910-1974

Michael Manson started a trading post at Manson's Spit in the 1880s. In 1910, the "Lodge" was built to house the Mike Manson family. Many people - students and loggers - flowed through the building. In 1921 Hazel Manson and her husband Henry Herrewig moved into the Lodge, later turning part of it into a small store. Mr. and Mrs. Jacks rented the Lodge in 1940 and constructed the front half of a new building which became the Manson's Landing store. The Lodge, store and property was purchased by Mr. and Mrs. Lowe and their in-laws, Ev and Jack Summers. Many improvements were made including living quarters in the store, cabins for rent along the beach and a coffee shop where Mrs. Summers sold her famous pies. Jim Taylor owned the property in the 1960s and it was sold to the government after his death. In 1974 the government designated the 117 acres at Manson's Landing a provincial park. The store continued to operate until 1995, but the Lodge and other buildings were dismantled soon after.

Ellingsen, Elmer

  • Person
  • 1913-2002

Elmer Ellingsen (1913-2002) was born in North Vancouver to Sigurd and Gladys Ellingsen. After graduating from high school, he took a short course in business at Sprott Shaw College. In the early 1930s Elmer worked in logging and became a strong supporter of the trade union movement. He also had classical piano training in school, later turning to popular music; he played for many dances and parties until well into his eighties.
Elmer married May Freeman on August 1, 1936. They built a float house and spent the next ten years in the Loughborough Inlet/Phillips Arm area where Elmer worked in his father's logging operations. While there, their children Shirley (1939), Bruce (1940) and Andy (1941) were born. In 1946 they moved to Von Donop Creek, where Elmer formed a logging partnership with Mike Herrewig and Scotty McKenzie. In 1950, he formed a new partnership with Erne Anderson for logging in the Whaletown area, and moved the floathouse to Manson's Landing lagoon. Two years later their floathouse was moved to its present location on Hague Lake.
After traveling from home to various logging operations, Elmer retired from logging. He bought a D8 Caterpillar tractor, backhoe and gravel truck and worked for the next forty years excavating, delivering gravel and moving things. He often worked with BC Hydro and BC Tel on pole installation, repair and maintenance.
Both Elmer and May were very active in community life. They sponsored weekly movie nights through the 1950s and square dancing in the sixties. Elmer was a leading promoter of bringing ferry and hydro service to the island; he helped renovate Manson's Hall in the late 1970s, lobbied for road paving and helped initiate the Cortes Island Firefighters Assoc. in the 1980s. Both were founding members of the Cortes Island Museum and Archives Society.

Freeman, Wilfred

  • Person
  • 1917-2012

Wilfred (Wilf) Michael Freeman was born October 21, 1917 in Vancouver B.C. and died December 23, 2012. He was the son of William George Freeman and Robina Steel (Manson) Freeman and brother to Elizabeth Jane May (Freeman) Ellingsen (born March 13, 1914); his grandparents were Michael and Jane Manson. Wilf grew up on Hernando Island until 1926 when the family moved to Vancouver. One of his first jobs in the early 1930s was in Powell River where, among other things, he was hand digging basements under some of the original Powell River townsite homes.

He gravitated to the logging industry, working for Sigurd Ellingsen and Eric Flescher in Phillips Arm through the late ’30’s and into the 1950’s. He was an excellent worker; strong, resourceful, thoughtful, humorous and thorough, and, as well, he enjoying hunting and fishing.

Wilf and his wife, May (Spence, died 1970) moved down to Smelt Bay on Cortes in the early 1950’s from Phillips Arm. He logged with Bill Mathews between 1954 and 1965 in the Von Donop Creek areas. As well, they both crewed on the seine boat “Courtenay Maid” with Pat Andrews for a few summers.

When the ferry came to Cortes Island, both Wilf and Bill worked as deckhands, always cheerful and busy throughout the trips, often chipping and repainting rust spots on the ship.

Wilf was active in many community affairs over all the years living on Cortes: among them the Ratepayers Association, the 1958 Centennial Committee, the Cortes Grapevine Telephone Assoc. (a local telephone system, 1959 - 1966), Cortes Days summer celebrations, Cortes Island Firefighters Assoc., Cortes Rod and Gun Club.

Wilf and his second wife, Nora, lived on in Smelt Bay until they moved to Willow Point, South of Campbell River, in 2002. There they lived until, on December 23, 2102, he passed away while shoveling snow in their back yard.

Friends of Cortes Island Society

  • Corporate body
  • 1990

Friends of Cortes Island Society, also known as FOCI, registered as a society in 1990, with the mandate of protecting the physical environment of Cortes Island and adjacent land in the context of ongoing and proposed residential and industrial development.

FOCI "exists to monitor and preserve the health of local ecosystems, and to provide educational programs that foster a greater understanding of the natural environment". Their purposes are as follows:
• To identify environmentally sensitive areas, particularly on Cortes and neighbouring islands.
• To monitor and protect wildlife and the safeguarding of its natural habitat.
• To promote the protection of the forests, lakes, streams and critical watersheds and the enhancement of fish stocks where appropriate.
• To promote the study and preservation of the cultural heritage and historical landmarks of the area.
• To provide educational programs that relate to ecological understanding and appreciation of the environment.

FOCI has worked with many local and provincial organizations, most notably Cortes Ecoforestry Society (CES). Other colleagues include Linnaea Farm Society, Southern Cortes Community Association, Whaletown Community Club, BC Parks, Environmental Youth Team, the Cortes Island Museum & Archives Association, and EcoAction Community Funding Program.

Gorge Harbour Community Hall Society

  • Corporate body
  • 1930-1952

The Gorge Harbour Community Hall Society was formed in 1930, when residents decided to build a community hall. The young people of the area formed the Gorge Harbour Dramatic Society and put on plays and dances to raise funds. The Hall was built on land donated by George Beattie. Volunteers split shakes for the roof and did all the building, with Charlie Allen as supervisor and Bill Ballantyne as work boss. The Hall opened on Nov. 11, 1933, with an Armistice dance.
The Gorge Harbour Hall Society disbanded in 1952 and handed responsibility for the Gorge Hall over to the Whaletown Community Club. From this time, the Gorge Hall replaced the Church Hall as the main venue for weddings, dances, meetings and parties for both the Whaletown and Gorge Harbour communities.

Harbour Authority of Cortes Island

  • Corporate body
  • 1998-present

In 1995, Canada's Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) was directed to divest all its recreational harbours managed under the Small Craft Harbours program. In the following years, the DFO launched a program to encourage local non-profit groups to assume day-to-day management and operation of fishing harbours.

The Harbour Authority of Cortes Island was formed in 1998 or 1999 to "[r]epresent the community of Cortes Island to preserve and promote the present and future marine infrastructure and maritime transportation links, including wharves; docking launch and moorage facilities until being replaced by a suitable public representative or government agency".

The Harbour Authority of Cortes Island manages five locations: Cortes Bay dock, Squirrel Cove dock, Gorge Harbour Government Dock, Manson’s Landing dock and Whaletown dock. All provide safe well-maintained moorage facilities for a wide-ranging group of marine users year round.

Hawkins family

  • Family
  • 1866-

Frederick (Fred) Hawkins (1866-1952) and his wife Doris (1906-1959) settled in Manson's Landing in 1908. The Hawkins family lived across from the entrance to Manson's Lagoon at the Spit in a house originally built by Horace Heay (at the end of Taka Mika Rd). Fred lived there until his death in 1952; he is buried in the cemetery in Manson's Landing. Doris died in Powell River in 1959.
George Hawkins, son of Fred and Doris Hawkins, was born in 1928. He had two brothers, Bill and Bob. George and Bob Hawkins both moved to Powell River, in 1947 and 1955 respectively; Bill was killed in a logging accident in 1972.

Hurst, Yendor

  • Person
  • 1948-2005

Yendor (ca.1948-2005) moved to Cortes Island in 1973, after buying into Redlands Land Group, at the top of Robertson Rd. Gloria Jorg joined him in 1979. He was very involved in community activities, including the drama group, forestry committees, talent shows, drumming, oyster farming, Emergency First Aid Service, and the Whaletown Community Club. He served as webmaster for the Watershed Sentinel from 1995 to 2004.
Yendor made many trips to Ghana. He built djembe drums and had a gallery in his home featuring handmade drums, natural African products, and drum carving workshops. His import business of shea butter supported a women’s co-operative in Ghana, and helped preserve the trees.
Yendor died in an accident in 2005, when his safety belt broke as he was limbing branches high up in a tree.

Island Women's Club

  • Corporate body
  • 2000-2016

The Island Women's Club was formed in 2000, when the members of the Cortes Island Women's Institute withdrew from the British Columbia Women's Institute in order to focus their efforts locally. It was the successor to previous women's service organizations on Cortes, local branches of the Women's Institute and the Anglican Church Women's Auxiliary. Activities included awarding bursaries to graduating high school students, contributing to school projects such as printing yearbooks, sponsoring sports teams and building playground equipment, supporting the community halls and organizing memorial teas on behalf of bereaved families. They disbanded in 2016.

Layton, James George

  • Person
  • 1897-1990

James (Jimmy) George Layton (1897-1990) was born in Camberwell, England. He fought in World War I, was severely wounded when he flung himself on a grenade which had landed in his foxhole, and received a medal for his bravery. In 1920, Layton emigrated to Canada, where he found work in coastal logging camps. Other members of the family, including his parents and seven of his ten siblings, also moved to Canada. At the time of his father's death in 1939, Layton, his parents and three of his brothers were living on Thurlow Island. In the 1940s he moved to the head of Von Donop Inlet on Cortes Island. His float house was drawn up on the beach next to a little islet that was joined to the shore at high tide, where he cultivated a garden and orchard. Layton found work logging and caretaking for local camps active in Von Donop, and helping his brother on his oyster lease. He moved to Powell River in 1973, where he passed away at the age of 92.

Linnaea School

  • Corporate body
  • 1987-2010

Linnaea School was a small independent school located on Linnaea Farm, a land trust with 315 acres of forests, fields, organic gardens and lake-front which is governed by The Linnaea Farm Society, a registered non-profit. Linnaea School offered its holistic, community-based approach to education for 23 years, from 1987 until its closing in 2010.

The school was founded by Donna Bracewell in 1987. It expanded from a first-year enrollment of eleven students to take in close to half of the island's school-age children. Linnaea offered a program of creative, nature-based, alternative learning for Kindergarten to Grade 6. Strong academics were enhanced by farm classes, environmental and outdoor education, mentorship programs, music classes and service projects. A notable project was the annual spring musical play. Bracewell left in June, 2009 to take a teaching position in Vietnam and the school closed a year later.

Maclean family

  • Family
  • 20th cent.

The Maclean family (parents Don and Doris, and children Janice, Heather and Ian) lived in Whaletown from 1961 to 1973. Don Maclean acted as a lay reader for the Columbia Coast Mission in the 1960s. Doris Maclean led the Vacation Bible School in the early 1950s, and was a Brownie leader in the 1960s.
Don Maclain's parents, John and Edna Maclean, lived for many years in Edmonton, Alberta. After their son came home from World War II, they bought property near Coulter Bay and moved to Cortes Island. Don Maclean became a fisherman, eventually living on his fishing boat.
Doris Lancaster Maclean was born and raised in Victoria, B.C. In the late 1940s she volunteered with the Anglican Church to run a Vacation Bible School for the Columbia Coast Mission on Cortes and nearby islands. Doris and Don married in 1954. They moved to Cortes Island in 1961 when Don was hired to operate the Columbia Coast Mission boat, the "Alan Greene", and lived in the Mission house in Whaletown, next to the church. Don Maclean acted as a Lay Reader for the Columbia Coast Mission in the 1960s when no clergymen were available, holding services in the three Anglican churches on the island.
In 1967 the Diocese sold the "Alan Greene". Don Maclean was hired as the Industrial First Aid man on site for the building of the Whaletown Ferry dock and after that worked as a clam digger. The Maclean family left Cortes in 1973 and moved to Regina, SK.

McIvor/Forman family

  • Family
  • 1911-

Mary-Anne Forman is the daughter of Daniel Erskine McIvor (1911-2005). Her family has a summer cottage on Hague Lake on Cortes Island and has spent summers on the island since the 1950s. Dan McIvor and his wife Isobel are buried in the Manson's Landing Cemetery, which also holds a memorial bench for Eric Collins.
Dan McIvor joined the R.C.A.F. in 1941. After his discharge in 1945, he and his family moved to British Columbia where he flew the B.C. coast as one of the legendary "Bush Pilots." In the 1960s he found and arranged the purchase of four Martin Mars flying boats - the only ones of their kind in the world. Dan had always believed that the safest and most effective way to fight forest fires was from the air. His innovative ideas resulted in the conversion of the Martin Mars to the first modern water bomber.

Milne, Eleanor

  • Person

Eleanor (Christensen) Milne is a third generation Cortes Islander. Her parents are Mabel (Lowe) and Buster Christensen; her grandparents are Henry and Lydia (Heay) Hague. The Christensen/Hague/Milne family homes are in the Manson's Lagoon area.

Newsham, Peggy

  • Person
  • 1907-1999

Peggy Newsham (1907-1999) was born in Belfast, Ireland. At the age of 16, she emigrated to Vancouver, Canada. In 1937, Peggy met Doll (Jeffery) Hansen and together they traveled on the Union Steamship to Cortes Island. She worked for Alice Robertson at Burnside in Whaletown, helping with the gardening, livestock and household chores. Peggy moved to Manson's Landing in the late 1960s, where she was active in the Community Club and took part in many social activities. She was crowned "Queen of Cortes" by acclamation at Cortes Day in 1979. There is a memorial to Peggy in the garden of the Cortes Island Museum.

Nursall, Ralph

  • Person
  • 1925

(John) Ralph Nursall was born in 1925. He joined the University of Alberta in 1953 as a lecturer in marine zoology and was granted full professorship in 1964. Nursall chaired the Department of Zoology for three terms, retiring in 1988. A specialist in freshwater biology and the anatomy of fish, he was president of the Edmonton Zoological Society and Chair of the panel on hazardous waste for the Environmental Council of Alberta. Material relating to his professional career may be found in the John Ralph Nursall fonds in the University of Alberta Archives.
Ralph and Mary (Stewart) Nursall (1924-2017) married in 1953. They lived in Edmonton for thirty-five years, both working at the University of Alberta, and moved to Cortes Island in 1989.
Nursall was elected Regional Director of Electoral Area I (Cortes Island) for the Regional District of Comox-Strathcona (RDCS) in November of 1990. He served two terms as Director: 1990-1993, and 1993-1996. From 1995 to 1997 the BC government undertook a comprehensive review of salmon aquaculture; continuing after the end of his term, Nursall represented the RDCS on a Salmon Aquaculture Review Committee. He was involved in the BC First Nations treaty process from 1996 to 2002 as chair of the Cortes Island Local Advisory Committee (CILAC).

Olson, Jalmar

  • Person
  • 1869-1964

Jalmar Olson (Apr 30, 1869-Feb 29, 1964) was born in Sweden. He emigrated to Canada in 1906 and moved to Cortes in the 1930s. He had a house and garden in Gorge Harbour (509 Whaletown Road). He was a Weather Observer for Transport Canada until 1949, when he moved off-island for health reasons.

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