BEACON HILL PARK HISTORY

By Janis Ringuette

Copyright 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009    Limited excerpts are permitted but please credit the author.

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[Note:  Appendices, Illustrations, Articles, Maps, References and Index are listed after chapter contents.]


CHAPTER CONTENTS


Chapter 1: 1842 ...James Douglas selects the future fort site...Local First Peoples’ last year in control...Traditional uses of the land...Cultivating camas...Garry oak habitat prior to the impact of white settlement.    CHAPTER 1

Chapter 2: 1843-1848 ...The Company takes over...Strategies of control...Fort mentality and British attitudes...Lekwungen lose prime land to Company farms...The Park used as a Commons...Habitat changes.    CHAPTER 2

Chapter 3: 1849-1857 ...HBC controls Vancouver Island...Land divided according to the Wakefield System...“Park Reserve” set aside...The British “buy” the Victoria region for 371 blankets and a cap...Douglas acquires a personal estate.    CHAPTER 3

Chapter 4: 1858 - 1869 ...The Gold Rush increases white population... The Lekwungen population declines...Horse racing in Beacon Hill Park...HBC sells more of the Park...A duel on Beacon Hill...Arguments over control of the Park.    CHAPTER 4

Chapter 5: 1870 - 1888 ...Military camps, powder magazine...Park transferred to the City of Victoria in Trust...Landmark decision by Supreme Court Chief Justice Sir Matthew B. Begbie...First bandshell constructed...Fountain Lake constructed.    CHAPTER 5

Chapter 6: 1889 ...Beacon Hill Park landscape design competition won by Henry Cresswell...City quietly switched to Blair Plan...Protests against Blair developments fill...Evaluations of Blair Plan...Other Park news.    CHAPTER 6

Chapter 7: 1890-1899 ...Beacon Hill Park Zoo overview...Powder Magazine remains...Problems with bear pits...Religious groups oppose Sunday concerts... Park improvement plans...Controversy over renting grandstand seats.    CHAPTER 7

Chapter 8: 1900-1909 ...Burns Monument erected...Gravel pits in Park...Grass and broom fires...Chinese Bell installed...Alderman proposes selling part of the Park...First automobiles on Park roads... Furor over zoo conditions...Ownership of Park moose disputed... Helmcken opposes private bowling greens and clubhouse...Replica of the Athens Parthenon proposed for Beacon Hill.    CHAPTER 8

Chapter 9: 1910-1919 ...Lawn bowling club signs with City...Restaurant proposed...Seismological Observatory proposed...First greenhouse built...Renting chairs controversy...Ice Skating fatality... Military camp takes over park's north section.    CHAPTER 9

Chapter 10: 1920-1929 ...Assessing the Purdy years...Overview of broom in Park history...Ursus Kermodei cub arrives...Wading pool opens...New bandstand...Bonfire beacons...Mayors Grove established...Open-air checkerboard...Two buffalo arrive.    CHAPTER 10

Chapter 11: 1930-1939 ...The “Warren Years”...Consensus grew for major improvements...Warren’s selection and first days on the job... Relief labour used in the Park...Dog off-leash controversy...Chinese Bell painted orange...Stream completed between Fountain and Goodacre Lakes...Concrete replica of “Indian Village” proposed...Cranes arrived from India...Enclosed shelter built at Finlayson Point...Checkers Pavilion opened...Rose garden constructed...Hanging baskets program started...Flagpole erected.    CHAPTER 11

Chapter 12: 1940-1949...Birds in the Park...Cutting “dangerous” trees...Two commercial golf proposals... Flower stealers...Zoo conditions...Carp acquired...Squirrels introduced...Tropical aviary proposal...Tea-room proposal...Army huts moved to Park...Theatre proposal...Cameron Bandshell constructed...Kermodei bear died.    CHAPTER 12

Chapter 13: 1950-1959...“Mountain Indicator” on Hill...Ice skating fatality...Tree cutting battles ...Poisoning Goodacre Lake...Vandalism...World’s Tallest Totem...Navy Day...Marathon swimmers...Southgate Street constructed...Royal Visit.    CHAPTER 13

Chapter 14: 1960-1969...The demise of the first Royal Bust...Easter Egg Hunt fiasco...Speakers Corner... Building and grass fires...Second bust of the Queen...Park workhorse Queenie makes news...High-rise buildings line western boundary...Provincial Museum proposed on Beacon Hill...City street through Park proposed...Tree-house proposed...Love-Ins...Rock garden...Water diviners.    CHAPTER 14

Chapter 15: 1970-1979...Warren retired...Assessing the Warren Years...Caverns proposed under cliffs...Fire circle... Anti-car rallies...Freeway proposed through Park... Queenie died...Elm infestation... Beacon Hill Park Association assertive...Fight on cricket parking...Service building completed... Internal road closures...Michigan Street extension...Firehall proposal...Children’s Farm opened...Lakes and islands named...Putting green installed...First female hired...Development freeze urged...New cricket clubhouse.    CHAPTER 15

Chapter 16: 1980-1989...New lawn bowling clubhouse...100th anniversary of Park...Tearoom proposal... Pesticide kills ducks... Police horse patrol...Children’s Farm privatized...Lookout Shelter options... Speakers Corner revived... Aboriginal burial cairns reconstructed...Chinese bell removed...Preserving the Southeast Woods...Friends of Beacon Hill Park organized.    CHAPTER 16

Chapter 17: 1990-1999...Southeast Woods restoration...Police horse barn constructed...Events and monument damage native plants...Camas Day...Off-leash dog problems...Horseshoe Bay rock berm...”Gay-bashing”...Lookout Shelter debated... Children’s Farm wants to raise fees...Great Blue Heron Colony...Cooper’s Hawks...Bald Eagles...Burns statue stolen...Folk Roots Music Festival proposed...B. C. Supreme Court Justice Wilson’s landmark decision...Wildlife Trees...Mile Zero development plan.    CHAPTER 17

Chapter 18: 2000-2002...Appeal of 1998 court ruling debated...Beacon Hill Park Management Plan process begins...Luminara Lantern Festival...World’s Tallest Totem restoration... Nesting birds... Effect of Bald Eagle predation on Great Blue Herons...Consultant reports...Wading pool closed, spray fountain installed... Commercialism report... Cricket club beer sales controversy...Police horse patrol ended...New water-spray park proposed...Snowbird air-show attracts 30,000...Beacon Hill Park Annual Report 2002.    CHAPTER 18

Chapter 19: 2003-2004...Great Blue Herons...Advertising at charity events...Luminara...Water spray facility plans...Turtles, fish and birds...Off-leash dogs problems...Well drilling...Heritage Landscape Plan...Butterfly sanctuary proposed...Cooper’s Hawk nest rescue...Contaminated wood chips in playground...Trucks damage meadows...Drought affects the Park.    CHAPTER 19


Chapter 20: 2005...Media coverage... Luminara Festival...Great Blue Herons...Bald Eagles...Volunteers pull ivy in S.E. Woods...Wildlife Trees...Hanging baskets...Camas harvesting... Scotch broom removal on Beacon Hill...Federal HSP grants...Cameron Bandshell events...Dogs in parks...Park staffing...Squatters camps...Terry Fox statue...Aviary sound installation...Water play area.    CHAPTER 20


Chapter 21: 2006...Storm damage...Great blue herons...Bald eagles...Cooper’s hawks...Elodea in Goodacre Lake...Fewer Red-eared slider turtles...Bullfrog captured... Carpet Burweed spreads...Finlayson Point restoration proposal...First Nations marker... Illegal campers...Native plant research...Water play design...Southeast Woods planting party...Wildlife trees increase.    CHAPTER 21


Chapter 22: 2007...Herons abandon colony...Bandshell refurbished... 125th anniversary celebration...New "Watering Can" play area...Luminara in the rain...Cooper’s hawks...Goodacre Lake...Children’s Farm given more land...Banner year for wildflowers...Native plants disappearing... Homeless campers...Park Managers gone...Carpet burweed...Invasive Eastern cottontail rabbits...New perspective on aboriginal burial cairns...Southeast Woods restoration...Tree Appreciation Day...Cross-Country event damages meadows.    CHAPTER 22


Chapter 23: 2008...Aboriginal marker on Beacon Hill..."Tent City" dismantled...Herding geese...Luminara...Urban forest plan...Monster knotweed...Poisonous invasive plants...Osprey platform...Park staff plan improvements...Eastern cottontail rabbits...Deer visits...Native plant research and seed collection...Insect pests...Butterflies...Dog owners ignore on-leash rule in park...Off-leash dogs on Dallas Road...Cooper's hawks banded...Farm boundaries expanded...Farm uses media to pressure city...Parks Master Plan stalled...More park staff needed...Public approves current park use...Terry Fox Run...New Mayors Grove sign...Trail construction damage.    CHAPTER 23



Chapter 24: 2009...Beacon Hill Park designated a municipal heritage site...1888 Bandstand/Aviary will become an information display kiosk...Successful park outreach program...Bark beetles...New Mayor's Grove signs...Goodacre Lake maintenance problems...Third year for Goose Patrol...New wildflower interpretative signs... Developing an improved traffic plan...Campers leave tonnes of garbage...Children's Farm allowed larger goat barn...Bubblegum on Queen's bust...Fires in park and on beach...Invasive elms on Dallas Road bluffs   CHAPTER 24




APPENDICES


APPENDIX A    Original Beacon Hill Park Boundaries and Details of Land Sales.          APPENDIX A



APPENDIX B    Developments proposed--but not implemented--in Beacon Hill Park.   
APPENDIX B


APPENDIX C    DALLAS ROAD WATERFRONT HISTORY

I. CLOVER POINT HISTORY (1842-2005)...James Douglas names Clover Point...Aboriginal use of the land... Henley’s Hotel/Cliff House...Clover Point Rifle Range... Boathouses on the Point...Military use during WWII...Victoria gets 99 year lease...City garbage dumped in sea returns to beaches...Clover Point “improvements” includes loop road...Erosion problems... Sewage outfall and pumping station...Tearing up loop road proposed...Kite festival.      I. CLOVER POINT HISTORY

II. HOLLAND POINT HISTORY (1843-2005)...Aboriginal use of the land...Hudson’s Bay Company farm...Named after George Holland...Nias house used for smallpox quarantine...Military gun emplacement...Crown transfers land to city...Used by military in WWII...Public park 1947...Harrison Yacht Pond...Coastal erosion controversies.    II. HOLLAND POINT HISTORY



APPENDIX D     OFFSHORE REEFS:
I. BROTCHIE LEDGE HISTORY (1843-2005)...Named for Captain William Brotchie...Buoys and markers, 1843-1897...First Brotchie Ledge beacon, 1898-1989...Second Brotchie Ledge beacon, 1989-2005...Wreck of the San Pedro, 1891...Efforts to refloat San Pedro, 1891-1894...San Pedro demolished, 1897...Scuba diving on the wreck site.    I. BROTCHIE LEDGE HISTORY

II. GLIMPSE REEFS...Marine chart of Victoria seafront...Photos of Glimpse Reefs...Grounding of tanker Santa Maria (1938)...Pleasure boat wrecked (1994).    I. GLIMPSE REEFS HISTORY



ARTICLES


ARTICLES ABOUT BEACON HILL PARK......................................
ARTICLES INDEX




MAPS


PARK MAPS - CURRENT & HISTORICAL.....................................
MAP INDEX




ILLUSTRATIONS


ILLUSTRATIONS BY GORDON FRIESEN......................................
ILLUSTRATIONS




REFERENCES


REFERENCES:  Books, Periodicals, Newspapers, City of Victoria Publications and Archival Records, Unpublished Sources, Legal Documents, Maps, Websites ................................................................
REFERENCES




INDEX


INDEX
   Lists topics with years in which they appear for Chapters 1-20 and appendices.............INDEX
                    



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