Merville – 100 Years and Counting Part 11

The area now known as Merville was logged by the Comox Logging & Railway Company.

In his book Island Timber, historian and author Richard Mackie wrote: “Two other camps-4 and 5-were both short-lived, and logged most of the area that became Merville just prior to and during the First World War. Camp 4 was situated at what is now the corner of Merville Road and the west side of the Island Highway. After the war it was taken over by the Soldier Settlement Board. Camp 5, open from about 1914 to 1916, was a mile and a half down Williams Beach Road on what became Reid’s Farm.”

Bonus Photo
Originally identified as logging, but perhaps land clearing for the Soldier Settlement, circa 1920.

Periodical Wisdom: November 2019

Looking for ways to “Avoid Wars at Mealtime”? This article from the Farm & Home magazine of October 15, 1930 contains some thoughts on how to keep the peace with finicky eaters. As the author says “Every modern mother must … combine her knowledge of dietetics with some of the tact of a seasoned diplomat.”

All kinds of helpful hints, advertisements and practical “how-to” advice can all be found in periodicals from our archival collection.

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It’s All There in Black and White: Comox District Blackouts During WWII

Blackouts to avoid air attacks during WW II were not limited to Europe. The Comox Valley was also under threat and observed its first blackout in 1941.

This article from the December 11 edition of the Comox District Free Press tells of some successes, a car accident and local first aid stations.

With legacy support from the Bickle Family and the Comox Valley Echo.

November 2019 Watershed Moments

Here is the latest newsletter installment of an image from the museum’s award-winning book Watershed Moments – A Pictorial History of Courtenay and District.

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Photo credit: Local members of the British Columbia Women’s Service Corps display plums picked for the “Jam for Britain” campaign, ca. 1941. Left to right: Pam Harvey, Mrs. Lucy Muir, Mrs. Clive, Mary Bell. Lynn Henderson photograph. Photo: 982.24.76. Page 182.

Photo caption: “In 1941, the Red Cross, the Women’s Institute (WI) and the Comox Valley Co-operative Producers joined forces with the people of the valley to send jam to Britain. They borrowed a jam kettle from the Creamery and asked the public to take surplus fruit and sugar to the old cannery, where Mrs. McPhee, Mrs. Harmston and the ladies of the WI made plum and blackberry jam. Children raised money to purchase sugar and went on blackberry-picking expeditions by the busload. The Courtenay Rotary Club arranged the buses and helped with packing. That year, they shipped three tons of jam. In the following two years, when the harvest was leaner, two tons.” Page 182.

Periodical Wisdom: October 2019

All kinds of helpful hints, advertisements and practical “how-to” advice can all be found in periodicals from our archival collection.

For example, if you ever wondered “Where’s the beef?” we’ve got the answer! Learn more about the cuts of meat you may have been missing with this chart from the Farm & Home magazine of November 15, 1930.

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Merville – 100 Years and Counting Part 10

Merville’s rural nature attracted “back-to-the-landers” in the 1970s. The free spirited ethos of the time allowed for unique styles in architecture; one example was the driftwood house built by Jim Egan and Jack Nesbit.

The Comox District Free Press of September 14, 1977 featured an article about the unusual construction.

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Bonus
Jim Egan was a writer, politician and gay activist who was honoured with a Heritage Minute in 2018. The Heritage Minute can be viewed here.

Comox Valley Chamber Reaches Milestone

The Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce was first founded as the Board of Trade in 1913. It was incorporated on March 22, 1919 and in 1948 the name was changed to Chamber of Commerce.

The first building was constructed from donated supplies and volunteer labour in 1958 on Cliffe Avenue. Once the building was completed and funding was secured from the City, students were hired to provide tourist information. The new location was perfect for the arrival of the “Deuce,” the logging locomotive donated to the City of Courtenay from the Comox Logging & Railway Company.

In the 1970s times were tough for the Chamber, but good ideas were created. Frank Lockwood came up with the idea for Market Days and Ruth McKellar produced Citizen of the Year awards.

This year the Chamber of Commerce will be celebrating their official 100th anniversary at the Native Sons Hall on Saturday, September 28, 2019 at 8pm. Tickets are available online or in person at the Chamber office.

Periodical Wisdom: September 2019

It’s harvest time! Who wouldn’t want a brand new Massey-Harris binder? And while you’re at it, how about a new tractor too?

They both look great on paper but may not have been within everyone’s reach as this advertisement is from The Nor’- West Farmer magazine of July 21, 1930. By then the effects of the Great Depression would be noticeable.

All kinds of helpful hints, advertisements and practical “how-to” advice can all be found in periodicals from our archival collection.