I was asked to look for some marine based things for the local museum; and I thought, well now is the time to elaborate on a few of the images that I have of some of the marine history of Colony Farm, Essondale. I will just put a small amount here for a start, based mostly on what I could find out about one image in particular. Every picture tells a story they say
The artist Fred Clarke,(17 Jan.,1877 Dawson City, Yukon – 23 June 1960 Riverview) was a frequent contributor to “The LEADER” the patients newsletter. The drawing is from the August 1957 edition. Fred was married to Lois Chapman, and spent the last three years of his life at Riverview, where he left us with some wonderful drawings in THE LEADER.
Witten on the image in the bottom right:
" He was like an old cork from an emptied bottle, tossed by the current of a shallow stream into a shady nook to rest a while.
And here he built a boat, for in the soft shades of twilight he found the voyage has just begun.”
Mr. Daryl Kent built this house-boat during his stay here at Essondale and sailed away in it when he was discharged. This was a tremendous task for one man and we felt the achievement well warranted some recognition.
His father was Charles Herbert Kent (1862-1958)
Daryl’s mother was also born in Victoria, B.C., Georgina Seymour Waitt (1866-1933) was best known for her portrait painting, singing, acting, and wrote, Three girls under canvas, in 1900, which makes her a very early woman author of the Province.
There is a story that Charles Herbert Kent,(1862-1958)
was sick with typhoid at home, and his childhood friend Georgina, came over to visit him before she went to California for a visit, and she gave him a get well kiss,☺ and months later when Charles was better they married in July 1886
Georginas’ father, Marshall Wilder Waitt,(1833-1892) was a bookseller, stationer, sheet music, and musical instrument seller
He gave his son-in-law, Charles Herbert Kent a job, and after M.W. Waitt died in 1892, Charles slowly expanded the business, into Vancouver, and overtime it became known as Kent Music, and the company officially changed its name to "The Kent Piano Company Limited" in 1913.
The residence of Mr. and Mrs. M.W. Waitt on Quadra Street near Herald; Georgina Seymour Waitt, later Mrs. Herbert Kent, and her sister Janet Hibben, later Mrs. Leonard George Henderson, were born. photo:ca. 1890. BC Archives I-76875
To bad that the home above, did not survive it looks really interesting; but a later home of the family does survive at 228 Douglas Street, James Bay, Victoria.
M.W. Wiatt & Co., left us a legacy in some interesting early printed materials.
What follows is a small selection;
Bird's-eye view of Victoria, Vancouver Island, B.C. 1878.
Author: Eli Sheldon Glover,(1844-1920); Published by: M.W. Waitt & Co.
My favourite, Chinook as spoken by the Indians of Washington Territory, British Columbia and Alaska. For the use of traders, tourists and others who have business intercourse with the Indians. Chinook-English. English-Chinook (c1889)
Prof. Enrico Sorge, solo pianist & orchestral conductor (from London) : professor and teacher of singing and the pianoforte ... : apply at Waitt's Music Store : will be in attendance each day from 2 to 3 o'clock (1886)
Amateur entertainment consisting of vocal and instrumental music and tableaux : assisted by the Band of H.M.S. Triumph, Thursday evening, Feb. 11th, in aid of the funds of the B.C. Benevolent Society, under the patronage of His Honor the lieu. governor, the mayor and city council : musical director, Prof. Enrico Sorge : prices as usual, plan at Waitt's store (1886)
Clockwise from top Left: 1964; Right: 1889; Bottom right: 1917; Middle Left: 1885; Bottom Left: 1909
Daryl’s parents were accomplished singers, stage actors, and enjoyed playing numerous musical instruments, and teaching others the love of their crafts.
Mrs. Herbert Kent, nee Georgina Seymour Waitt, as Dame Durden, Herbert Kent as Little John.
Children of Charles and Georgina:
[ a good overview of the family HERE ]
Daryl Herbert (20 April 1887 - 5 March 1962); Hazel Gladys (18 May 1889 - 19 March 1890); Marshall Aubrey (8 September 1891 - 23 February 1978), m. Doris Harriet Evans; Marjorie Violita Ellen (9 October 1893 - 1983), m. Davies; Charles Truesdell (23 April 1898 - after 1945), m. Thyra Jane.
Four generations of the Kent family; Herbert, holding his grand-daughter Marion, son Daryl and father, Charles.
28 March 1913 BC Archives F-02018
Our industrious boatbuilder was married November 11, 1911 to Jennie Irene Mathe.
She frequently used her middle name, as her given name.
In the 1910 directory for Vancouver; Daryl is manager of the M.W. Waitt Co. Ltd., Vancouver. By 1915 secretary and manager of the Kent Piano Company Ltd., Vancouver.
1920 Daryl is the manager, 1925 secretary of Kent Piano Ltd.
And by1930 he is president of Kent Piano.
But by 1935 he is a salesman for, McDermid, Miller and McDermid; and in 1940 assistant to secretary of the, Abbott House Association. And the last listing for him is in1945 where he is a helper at Vivian Engineering, Vancouver.
Daryl passed away on his beloved boat the “ Daryl K.” in downtown Vancouver, after suffering from a paraphysial cyst of the 3rd ventricle, which caused him to go unconscious, and he fell onto a hotplate, which completed the task. [ He probably did not feel any pain ]
AROUND the FARM
This is New Year’s Day. I have just returned from my annual trip to the old scows by the River Fraser on the way to the Power Line. I have always visited them On the New Year every year with the exception of 1954. I carved my initials on a tree in ‘50, in ‘56 and again in ‘58.
The fishing from the deck of the old scow was ideal in the Freshets. I used to catch really big fish, mostly “Dolly Vardens”; there were some “Jacks” and one “Sturgeon. This fish was only a baby and weighed a trifle under three pounds, but the fisherman on the point where the rivers, Coquitlam and Fraser join, identified it for me. I let it go again. It is illegal to take a “Sturgeon” less than six pounds in weight. The River Fraser is taking on a new look around the bridge site. There are islands of scaffolding laid out in order across the river. Dredges and motor launches are busy. I counted six cranes operating on these various islands. The culvert under the south dyke on the southwest corner is now completed and seems to be operating efficiently.
Messrs. Perini Construction camp is gradually expanding and is beginning to take shape as a village with electric light and water supply. There is a pier constructed overhanging the river.
[ Perini was building the Port Mann bridge ]
By the Piggery, the drainage dyke, which was rat infested and all “caved in”, is now receiving constructive attention. As for the rats, the Piggery Foreman who is, comparatively speaking, a young man and also an expert rifle shot, employed his off-duty hours declaring war upon the rats. He must have disposed of literally hundreds of them. There is nothing on record to say there was a bounty on the rats which, incidentally, were as big as cats but I would say that Piggery Foreman sure did a good job. The rats are now very few and far between.
The Piggery is still operating as usual and the old wooden foot bridge has been demolished. All traffic to Messrs. Perini is now diverted down the Colony Farm Road and around the south dyke.
Christmas Day was peaceful. Santa Claus visited some of the patients with comfort packages. They received all manner of things such as, neckties, socks, pipes, cigarettes, tobacco, handkerchiefs and “what-not”. Some were really nice little tokens. The dinner was Outstanding. There was turkey and dressing, mushroom soup, creamed “spuds” and good old “Plum Duff” and all the trimmings! Thank you !
I really think that the cooks and the culinary staff should receive a vote of thanks for their conjoint endeavours to bring the Spirit of the Season to everyone. I think it was an immense success.
To the time of writing, New Year’s Day has been perfect. “Nothing to do and all day to do it in.” I did play a game of Snooker and enjoyed it very much. I won! The sun is actually shining, and it is an ideal day for a walk. The old path to the “SCOWS” has not been used very much and time is leaving a heavy mark.
At the turn of the twentieth century, that same scow was a proud Sternwheeler. It was all decorated and gaudily painted, making its way between Port Mann and Port Dover. Later the engines were rejuvenated and it was employed as a Stump-puller. After that the engines were removed and it became a scow for hauling cut lumber from the mills upstream.
It now lies, stripped of its worldly grandeur, an ignominious wreck with its ribs all broken and decayed on the bank of the Fraser. When I first saw it, it was like a platform, raised so that the freshets and the tide just tipped the deck level. It was ideal for fishing and I spent many a pleasant afternoon lying on this platform basking in the June sun.
As it is now, the deck planks have been removed and there is nothing left but the broken shell. My rustic retreat has vanished.
When I first went down to Riverside, the first thing I did was to help build a “dug-out canoe” and a rowboat. I remember the day I met “Kuro”. He had a boathouse on the River Coquitlam, partially on the reservation, and he showed me how to build the rowboat. This was not the only thing we did; we collected cedar driftwood from the River Fraser and made firewood of it and then we sold it for five dollars a cord. “Kuro” has since been discharged from the Hospital.
Another source of income was renting rowboats to fishermen. We had quite a “clientele” carrying on until the Hospital authorities decided that it was illegal, burned down the shack and destroyed the boats. We rented the fishing boats for seventy-five cents a day. All this is now a time of the past; gone, never to return.
I wonder if the section of the airing court, which was levelled last summer for the Bowling court, will be ready for the coming season. It would be quite nice to have a game of Lawn Bowls on our own pitch.
A cabin cruiser in the planning stage necessitating the sacrifice of a number of leisure hours working on close arithmetic calculation, has come to full fruition for Mr. George Cook, a journeyman employed in the Essondale garage.
I interrupted him as he was preparing his welding torch, to glean from him the details of his finished project.
The boat is 23 feet long, with a beam of 8 feet, 7 inches, with a speed of 18 knots, which is sufficient to buck the restraining efforts of the Fraser River. From the keel post to the wheel, is a painstaking nautical way of saying what goes into a boat.
The ribs are set in a precise mathematical flare from bow to stern, using the tangent of a circle as a guide to form the graceful sweep which is to reduce the resistance of the water.
It took him a year and a half to build the craft, at a cost of approximately $3,000, when asked if he intended to use "her" as a fish-boat, his answer was "No," she will be used as a pleasure cruiser out of the Fraser into the Sound.