People

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2452 Resource results for People

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On Norton-Mackinnon Railway

Left to right: Mrs Kate Mills, Ozzie Rae, Olive Judd, and Minnie Rae on the Mackinnon Railway.

In 1910, a man by the name of Norton McKinnon came to the area to log by railway, laying track from the Mamquam River to the Northern Pemberton Railway line. Unfortunately, a company fire in 1913 by the Mamquam River resulted in the loss of McKinnon’s business, and he left Squamish soon after.

Despite this setback to one of the first logging pioneers, harvesting continued through the Squamish area with the company of Merrill and Ring. With a steam engine salvaged from Norton McKinnon’s company, Merrill and Ring continued laying railway track from what is now the log dump south of the Stawamus Reserve to Valleycliffe and across the Mamquam River.

Wilfred Rae behind Huey Mills home or hop farm

Wilfred (Whiff) Rae behind Huey Mills home or hop farm.

Hop farming was Squamish's first major industry. The major producer was Squamish Valley Hop Raising Co. (Bell-Irving Ranch). Hops are perennials and grown about 6 feet apart. They are picked during September and August. Hops are dried and bleached with sulphur in a kiln. In Squamish, Chinese labour was brought in to tend the hops. Local First Nations picked them. They would camp in the area now between Petro Canada gas station and the Cottonwood condominiums. The hops in Squamish were top grade. They were shipped to Vancouver in bales wrapped in Burlap, then shipped to Britain where they were used to make beer.

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