Chowder was a big draw during All Sooke Days.

All Sooke Day with clam chowder, 1934

Sooke pioneers celebrated with huge pots of chowder

Don’t they look lovely in their summer dresses, these young women of Sooke, as they gathered at “the Flats” and admired the men making clam chowder.  It was the “First Annual Celebration of the Progress of Sooke”?  Feminine glamour seems to have trumped for the bevy of beauties, in contrast to the men who were clad more conservatively in long sleeved shirts and sweaters.

The big pots steaming on the wood stove at the Flats would have been borrowed for the day from the fishtraps operators, Sooke Harbour Fishing & Packing Company, at that time based at the foot of Maple Avenue.

At left front is Dorothy Doran who grew up on her parents’ dairy farm near Glinz Lake Road; she became Mrs George Seaton. Next to Dorothy is Hazel Clark, one of the four daughters of Percy and Margaret Clark of Shirley hill.  Next is Minnie Dixon, wife of fishtraps worker Tommy Dixon; driving out West Coast Road, you pass Tominny Road, near the Prestige Hotel, named for Tom and Minnie’s old stamping ground.  Next is British-born Mrs. Slack, who lived at Felton Road.

Standing smack in the centre wearing a cap is Peter Wadams; it is for him and his wife Olive that the new connector road, Wadams Way, is named. Standing at rear, left, is Ken Cains; the motor garage on Sooke Road that he and his brother Bill Cains operated for decades has more recently been home to Razu Welding and headquarters for Sooke Backhoe.

Also in the photo is Ralph Kirby; he grew up at Kirby Creek but in the 1930s was operating a shingle mill on Kirby Road, off Sooke River Road. The other fellows include Willie Welsh, who was born in Moss Cottage to Jamie and Mary Ellen Welsh; Dadie Michelsen, second son of Captain Mandus Michelsen and his wife Sarah Poirier; Hugh Campbell, whose family settled up the hill from Muir Creek in 1890; fishtraps worker Fred Underwood whose family lived at the wharf, and longtime fishtraps company superintendent “Pop” Gray.

This happy gathering at the Sooke Flats heralded nearly seven decades of community visiting and volunteering that followed. While we all miss the traditions and legacy of All Sooke Day, new initiatives and events continue to come forward and claim a role in Sooke’s life today.

Elida Peers

Historian

Sooke Region Museum

Just Posted

Bay Street Bridge construction begins today

Point Ellice Bridge will be closed to eastbound vehicle traffic until October

Some showers, high of 18 C for Tuesday

Plus a look ahead at your weekly forecast

Sooke’s First Nations have Iroquois links

References to the proud Iroquois race tend to make one think of… Continue reading

Increased rental construction boosts housing starts across Greater Victoria

Rest of Vancouver Island experiencing spillover effect from Greater Victoria

‘Teams that win are tight’: B.C. Lions search for chemistry at training camp

The Lions added more than 50 new faces over the off-season, from coaching staff to key players

Feds launch tourism strategy designed to boost sector 25 per cent by 2025

The fund is supposed to back experiences that show off Canada’s strengths

Mamma Mia! poised to be biggest Chemainus Theatre show ever

Plenty of buzz as Island dinner theatre schedules ABBA-fueled romp

New book from Island author details social history of the E&N railway

Along the E&N tells the story of 32 establishments from Esquimalt to Campbell River.

Should B.C. already be implementing province-wide fire bans?

A petition is calling for B.C. Wildfire Service to issue a ban to reduce risk of human caused wildfires

Growing wildfire prompts evacuation of High Level, Alta.

Chuckegg Creek fire has been burning for several days, but grew substantially Sunday

Top women’s hockey player Natalie Spooner coming to B.C.

Natalie Spooner special guest at annual Grindstone charity weekend in Kelowna

Take-home drug testing kits latest pilot to help curb B.C.’s overdose crisis

Researchers look to see if fentanyl testing could be a useful tool for those who use drugs alone

Facebook takes down anti-vaxxer page that used image of late Canadian girl

Facebook said that the social media company has disabled the anti-vaccination page

Most Read