The Nootka Sound Crisis

She is back by popular demand.

Catherine Gilbert’s illustrated lecture about the international incident known as the “Nootka Sound Crisis” sold out in mid-May so she has agreed to do a repeat performance.

Location of the Spanish Fort

In June 1789, the Spanish, under the leadership of Esteban Jose Martinez, built a substantial fort at Friendly Cove, on a grassy knoll below where the lighthouse stands today. What ever became of the fort? Why did the Spanish abandon Friendly Cove? These and other questions about the settlement of Nootka Island will be covered in the lecture.

Gilbert will discuss the events that led up to the Nootka Sound Crisis, highlighting such scoundrels as the opportunist John Meares who precipitated the incident, and will talk about Captain George Vancouver’s visit of 1792 with Spanish Captain Juan Francisco de Bodega y Quadra. At this historic meeting, commemorated in recent years by a beautiful stained glass window in the church at Friendly Cove, the two captains attempted to resolve their countries’ territorial dispute.

The presentation will include a discussion about the important role played by the Mowachaht, whose territory was at the centre of this dispute and the relationship between successive European captains and the powerful Mowachaht Chief Maquinna.

Gilbert’s presentation will begin at 7 pm; doors open at 6:30 pm.

Admission to the evening is $6 plus GST. Advance tickets are recommended and can be purchased by phone: 250-334-0686 ext. 5.