British Columbia from the Earliest Times to the Present, Complete 4 Vol. set.


Cat No.:   CA0361-S:

This is the complete 4 Volume set, divided into a History (Vol. 1 & 2) and Biographies (Vol. 3 & 4.) Volume one authored (mainly) by E.O.S. Scholefield (1875 - 1919), has a text page count of, 688 pages. Volume two authored by F. W. Howay (1867 - 1943), has a text page count of 727 pages. Volumes three and four are authored by the individual contributors and have numbered page counts of 1161 and 1208 respectively. All four volumes are liberally illustrated, often with pages that do not carry page numbers and so add significantly to the total page count. Both authors of note are well known, and recognized as expert historians, making them the ideal people to write this fascinating work.

British Columbia was the last of the southern tier of Canadian Provinces to be settled and exploited by non-indigenous peoples. For many years this isolation could be attributed to its inaccessibility, i,e,. being walled off to the east by the Rocky mountains and requiring long and often dangerous sea voyages to attain the Western shores. Not to say that this shoreline was undiscovered, as the Spanish had entered the Pacific ocean in the 1600's and laid claim to ALL of its shoreline! Their actual occupation of the shores and subsequently, land, was limited to the more southern areas of the American continent. This resulted in many counter claims for ownership of the northern shores as explorers of several nations began to explore, land and initiate settlements and bases there. Most of the first volume is taken up with this early exploration, including the attempts to gain access overland, and the resulting altercations and negotiations both between the various interested nations and between the explorers and the indigenous locals, many of whom objected to these strange people moving in on their source of food and their hunting space.

The first volume terminates and the second volume overlaps in a recounting of the discovery of gold, the rapid increase in population due to the rush, and the evolution into a more industrial mining industry. In terms of the overall development of the province the extraordinary influx of settlers was both a blessing and a curse. A blessing in that the growth in population was extraordinary but a curse in that this increase in population exceeded the ability of the governance to adapt and provide all the necessary infrastructure for, for instance, policing and land registry. Nod did it help that the administration of the mainland and Vancouver Island had developed as separate governments. The second volume records a number of attempts to establish governing bodies, in order to find one which was;

a: not a function of self interest and,

b: one in which the individual members could work together.

Volume two continues to track chronological developments up until the first few years of the 1900s. Both volumes one and two carry chapters in which specific aspects of BCs development are traced in some detail. These topics include Medical and Legal services, Church and Missionary establishment, Rail service developments, Fur and Sealing and the establishment of a northern border with Alaska, amongst others.

The second two volumes, three & four, do their part in telling the history of British Columbia by relating the life stories of about 1320 of its prominent citizens. It accomplishes this in the form of individual biographies, many (about 530) of which are accompanied by professionally photographed studio portraits of the subjects. Each biography has been submitted by its subject - or by his family and / or close acquaintances - so there is no real common structure to them but, in general, they provide a familial and working history of the subject's life. In this process his spouse(s), his children, his parents and any siblings are introduced, at least by, name and often by genealogical and national origin. The amount of this content varies from a single paragraph to one of several pages.

We have placed samplers of some selected pages from the History and Biography sections of this set of books - including the whole of the Indices of Biographical Subjects - on our Downloads page so you can experience what the book's content looks like.

The four volumes of this complete work are available as four individual CDs, or in two single CDs giving the Biographies (Vol. 3 & 4) and the Complete History (Vol. 1 & 2) or as a complete set comprising all four volumes.We invite you to join in our thanks to the the Vernon & District Family History Society (Vernon, BC) and the Slocan Community Library, BC and particularly to Nancy and Joyce, their librarians, for allowing us to borrow these wonderful books so we could make the digital edition available to the wider Genealogy community. We will be donating copies of the resulting CDs to the libraries so further wear and tear on these great old books can be avoided

You can also reach the Sampler by clicking on the following link
You can return to this page by closing the Sampler Page when you are ready to purchase.

No. of CDs is:  1 ;   Format is:  PDF ;   Searchable?:  YES;

FastFind:  Yes;  ISBN No.:   978-1-927503-11-9 ;