PenderBlog From The Pender Islands Of Canada

April 21, 2010

Looking back…

Filed under: Ramblings — Jocko @ 7:26 pm

From:  “The Pender Palate – Tastes and flavours from our favourite island“, Compiled and written by Georgina Montgomery and Andrea Spalding.  (Available for sale online or loan from the Pender Island Public Library)


A Pender librarian recently brought The Pender Palate to my attention as a great little book.  Published in 1992 to raise money for the Pender Island Play Group, it is organized by the four seasons, with recipes from locals to fit the time of year.  Little tidbits of Pender history, activities and facts are interspersed throughout.  A handy spiral binding makes this compact book a perfect addition to any kitchen.  Forget about Googling for these practical recipes, they’re only in the book.  Here is a history tidbit from the book:

Pender appears as “Isla de San Euevio” on an early chart of the Pacific Northwest, an area surveyed by the Spanish in the 1790’s.  However, Spanish naval officer Pantoja, in charge of the survey ship Santa Saturnina, is also reported to have named the island “Isla de Sayas” in 1791.  Although Pender today has little Spanish nomenclature itself, it is surrounded by other islands and waterways with names such as Saturna, Galiano, San Juan, Sucia, Haro and Juan de Fuca, reminders of this period in its history.

It was the British, nearly 70 years after the Spanish had their tour, who gave Pender its present name.  Captain Richards of the Royal Navy named the island in 1859 (one year after B.C. became a province) after Daniel Pender, second master aboard H.M. survey vessel Plumper.  Daniel Pender went on to become master of the Plumper and then of the Hecate, and in 1863 was placed in command of the Beaver, hired from the Hudson Bay’s Company for more survey work of coastal waters.

The first white settlers on Pender arrived in the 1870’s, and many island features still bear their names.  Hope Bay is called after David Hope, who originally owned about half of North Pender.  Port Washington and Grimmer Bay are named after Washington Grimmer, as is Grimmer Road.  Watch, too, for Hamilton Beach, Spalding Road, Auchterlonie Point, Corbett House and Hoosen Road.  Also, pick up a copy of A Gulf Islands Patchwork – there are two volumes – written by the Gulf Islands Branch of the B.C. Historical Association.  These books contain some Wonderful stories about the early settlers on Pender.

Why not visit the Pender Museum for more local history.

March 6, 2009

Attention all Pender Facebook users…

Filed under: Ramblings — Jocko @ 9:20 pm

Submitted by Richard Fox:

For you Facebook members, I have formed a group to petition Facebook to form a Gulf Islands Network.  Similar requests are in the works for Vancouver Island, Victoria, and the Sunshine Coast.  Right now Vancouver is the only Network available for this region. The more people that ‘suggest’ a new Network, the better chances we have.

Follow the link to the group, then ‘suggest’ a  Gulf Islands, BC Network.  Instructions on how to do that are on the group’s home page here.

January 31, 2009


Filed under: Ramblings — Jocko @ 9:38 pm

 Submitted by ‘Rocky’:

POSTCARDS :   ” A Sea Captain, an Irish Lass, Adventure and a Family Reunion ”

In an age when snail mail reigned supreme and few had access to a phone, postcards were a major means of keeping in touch with friends and family. There is a story behind each one, but after 100 years most have been lost and those that remain are meaningless to the reader. If only we could put together the pieces.
In these historic cards is revealed a gem of a story – one that comes full circle at the end.


The first (above) is of the original CPR Hotel Vancouver as it looked at the turn of the last century – mailed from Vancouver 100 years ago in February 1909. Note the stamp of King Edward VII .
It was written by a sea captain, Charles Wall, an englishman originally from Birmingham, to his intended, an irish lass, Mollie Courtney, from Killarney, Co. Kerry.
Mollie was an adventurous soul, being the first of her siblings to leave the farm and emigrate to America in 1900, all the way to the gold fields of Nome, Alaska, “the ends of the earth”, as her father described it in a letter entreating her to return home.
Fortune she did not find, but while there she was befriended by a member of the Imperial Russian Court, a certain Prince Vladimir, Count Baranoff who had stayed in Alaska after the American purchase who lived in the tiny community of Golovin, [ current population 144 ] and visited Nome on occasion.
Her brother Cornelius, followed by brothers James and Denis, were despatched to find her, but by the time they arrived the gold fever had turned to dust and Mollie had headed south to warmer climes in San Francisco, where they were reunited. None was ever to return to their native land.
The small house at 349 Precita Ave where Cornelius, his wife Julia and small family were living still stands today. Next to the school, opposite the park overlooking the Mission District.
Note : The term “The City”, to describe San Francisco is a common term used in northern California  to this day.


The second postcard (above), an excellent early example of commercial art by the Campbell Soup Company was also written by Captain Wall in August of the same year [1909]  by then to his new wife, Mollie. In the meantime they had married in San Carlos, then a small community south of “the city”. and she was continuing in domestic and housekeeping work with many an address change involved apparently.
He writes ” Got your letter. Am sorry you feel so bad. Such is life being a wife. Will write more soon…”  Hmmm…
The presumption is that he was enroute across the continent by rail from Seattle at the time and had reached Minneapolis where he posted the card.

Of their life together, little is known. They had no children. He died in the 1940’s, and she in the mid 1950’s after retiring as Head Housekeeper of the [now Four Seasons] Clift Hotel on the slopes of Nob Hill in San Francisco.

For reasons no one alive knows, the families of Cornelius, James and Denis completely lost contact with each other until this January 27th – the birthday of Cornelius’ daughters, Rose and Marion – when Roses’ daughter Norma was contacted “out of the blue” by one of James’ great grandchildren to see if there was a connection between their families. Coincidence or….?

After 100 years, Mollie would be overjoyed!


The author recently found an interesting website to visit if your forebears came from the emerald isle.

October 18, 2008

Double take (LOL)

Filed under: Ramblings — Jocko @ 7:05 pm

You’ve seen this bumper sticker before, OR HAVE YOU!

September 27, 2008

Small towns and islands…

Filed under: Ramblings — Jocko @ 1:42 pm

The following poem was originally written about small towns, but I think it is relevant to a small island community as well:

Islands are an attitude
Toward helping one another.
Where each person finds special joy
In making glad the other.

An island thrives on kindly words
And kindly deeds to share.
The essence of each day is this
Capacity to care.

Yes, islands are an attitude
Toward loving simple things.
Like quilting bees and church bazaars,
And Christmas carollings.

A island thrives on parades
And programs in the park.
With picnics and school affairs
And bonfires after dark.

The attitude is one of peace
From deeply thankful hearts,
Who saw the deeds that must be done
And gladly did their part.
                              (Author Unknown)

June 2, 2008


Filed under: Ramblings — Jocko @ 12:38 pm

Postcards courtesy of John Jones

Store and Post Office, Port Washington, Pender Island, B.C. c. 1913

April 15, 2008

Fabulous annual MEGA garage sale!

Filed under: Ramblings — Jocko @ 12:18 am

Last year’s sale was an all round success!  (photo: Jocko)

Yes, it’s once again time for the Pender Islands Garage Sale at Thieves Bay Park.

Sponsored by the Magic Lake Property Owners, 10% of your table proceeds and all of the Medical Clinic table proceeds go to the Medical Clinic Building Fund!

So join in, get some $$ for the treasures you no longer need and find some new treasures.

Call 629-6843 now to book your table. This is a great community event where everybody gets together to catch up on local gossip and do some bargain shopping for a good cause at the same time. What’s not to like? Oh yes, there is usually a concession (to be confirmed) and that marina view park is such a perfect setting.

Sale takes place Sunday, May 11 from 10 am – 2 pm.

February 6, 2008

Mystery photo of the month…

Filed under: Nature watch,Ramblings — Jocko @ 2:45 am

Photo: Jocko

Can you guess what this is a photo of?

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