The Vancouver Island Power Company's general manager's log book is now at the Sooke Region Museum.

The Vancouver Island Power Company's general manager's log book is now at the Sooke Region Museum.

Jordan River artifacts reveal rich history

The Sooke region Museum was gifted a number of historical items

collection of trophies, drawings, and record books from the Jordan River Athletic Association arrived at the Sooke Region Museum by way of a confidential donor last month. The donation consisted of extensive material from the Vancouver Island Power Company.

The artifacts and archival material spans the 40-year era from the 1910s to the1950s when Jordan River was the most active industrial, residential and social centre west of Sooke. In 1909 the Vancouver Island Power Company began the task of harnessing the Jordan River to provide electric power for the City of Victoria.

Curator of the Sooke Region Museum, Lee Boyko, is excited by the historical and archival contribution.

“I think that they’re some of the earliest information about the dam at Jordan River and how it progressed over time,” said Boyko.

The engineer’s journal started by plant superintendent D.I. Walker prior to WW1, proves to be the gem in the collection. Other employees added to the journal into the 1950s. It contains interesting facts such as the total output and water use for 1913 revealed on one page, while a hand-drawn image of a waterwheel is on another.

“The collection gives us a sense of what the community was and what the activities were. It includes the general manager’s logbook about the dam flow and the series of events from that time,” said Boyko.

Boyko first ran the museum full time in the early 1990s and he loves working as the curator because of the variety. ”You never know what’s going to walk through that door, what’s going to happen day to day,” he said. Unfortunately, too often the museum has had to turn away donations because as Boyko says, “they’re not relevant to our collection mandate.”

Other times the individual can not confirm legal ownership to the artifacts and this can also create issues.

Dating the various donations that come through the door is a tricky business explains Boyko.

“Trying to date something like an adze blade out of context is pretty much impossible. If needed we call in the experts.”

Radiocarbon dating, the most advanced technique used by archeologists and historians to determine the age of organic material, can theoretically be used to date anything that was alive any time during the last 60,000 years.

“That’s why knowing the site where the artifact was found is most important,” said Boyko. The artifacts found at Jordan River are not archeological however, they are historical.

The Sooke Region Museum is a community service supported, in part, by the taxpayers of the District of Sooke and the Juan de Fuca Electoral Area. Donations of artifacts and archival material given to the museum contribute to an understanding of our local history and allow the museum the chance to add to its collection of First Nations and pioneer exhibits and archives. Donations are always welcome but “the museum never purchases items” said Boyko. More information about the museum is available on its website: http://www.sookeregionmuseum.com/

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

During a press event on March 6, Const. Alex Berube, media relations officer for the West Shore RCMP, addressed a deadly shooting that occurred in Metchosin the night before. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
UPDATED: One man shot dead in ‘targeted incident’ on Sooke Road

Highway 14 reopens following multi-hour closure for investigation

A decade into the 100-year blueprint for restoring the Bowker Creek watershed, Soren Henrich, director of the Friends of Bowker Creek Society, feels positive about the future of conservation and daylighting of the creek. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
Ten years in, Greater Victoria’s 100-year Bowker Creek blueprint gets a boost

Victoria council passes several restoration recommendations

A resurfacing of the tennis court in Metchosin is being eyed for the community. However, funding opportunities still need to be solidified for the project. (Michelle Cabana/Black Press Media)
Renewed surface eyed for Metchosin tennis court

Funding source must first be solidified in order for project to happen

Paragliders worked to capture a big enough gust to get them flying near Clover Point Saturday. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
PHOTOS: Victoria residents dive in and take flight under sunny skies

Warm, sunny weather had people flocking outside Saturday

The James C Richardson Pipe Band marches in a Remembrance Day parade on Nov. 11, 2019 in Chilliwack. Wednesday, March 10 is International Bagpipe Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of March 7 to 13

International Bagpipe Day, Wash Your Nose Day and Kidney Day are all coming up this week

The Conservation Officers Service is warning aquarium users after invasive and potentially destructive mussels were found in moss balls from a pet store. (BC Conservation Officers Service/Facebook)
Aquarium users in B.C. warned after invasive mussels found at pet store

Conservation officers were told the mussels after found in a moss ball from a Terrace pet store.

Hockey hall-of-fame legend Wayne Gretzky, right, watches the casket of his father, Walter Gretzky, as it is carried from the church during a funeral service in Brantford, Ont., Saturday, March 6, 2021. HE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky remembered as a man with a ‘heart of gold’ at funeral

The famous hockey father died Thursday at age 82 after battling Parkinson’s disease

Donald Alan Sweet was once an all star CFL kicker who played for the Montreal Alouettes and Montreal Concordes over a 13-year career. Photo courtesy of Mission RCMP.
Retired B.C. teacher and star CFL kicker charged for assault, sexual crimes against former students

Donald Sweet taught in Mission School District for 10 years, investigators seek further witnesses

(Black Press Media files)
Medicine gardens help Victoria’s Indigenous kids in care stay culturally connected

Traditional plants brought to the homes of Indigenous kids amid the COVID-19 pandemic

Personal protective equipment is seen in the COVID-19 intensive care unit at St. Paul’s hospital in downtown Vancouver. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
$16.9 million invested to improve worker safety, strengthen B.C.’s food supply chain

Money to be used for social distancing, personal protective equipment, cleaning, and air circulation

More than ever before, as pandemic conditions persist, the threat of data breaches and cyberattacks continues to grow, according to SFU professor Michael Parent. (Pixabay photo)
SFU expert unveils 5 ways the COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed cybersecurity

Recognizing these changes is the first in a series of steps to mitigate them once the pandemic ends, and before the next: Michael Parent

Kevin Haughton is the founder/technologist of Courtenay-based Clearflo Solutions. Scott Stanfield photo
Islander aims Clearflo clean drinking water system at Canada’s remote communities

Entrepreneur $300,000 mobile system can produce 50,000 litres of water in a day, via solar energy

Malawian police guard AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines after the shipment arrived in Lilongwe, Malawi, Friday March 5, 2021. Canada is expecting its first shipments of AstraZeneca vaccine next week. (Associated Press/Thoko Chikondi)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 cases climb to 634 Friday, four more deaths

Currently 255 people in hospital, 66 in intensive care

Most Read