This brochure came from Seagirt Resort which was a popular vacation spot in the 1940s and '50a.

This brochure came from Seagirt Resort which was a popular vacation spot in the 1940s and '50a.

Tourists have been coming to area for more than 80 years

Throughout the region we’ve been hearing a lot about promoting our attractions and encouraging people to vacation here. Far from being a new initiative, this process has been in effect since the 1930s.

Two resorts in East Sooke, Seagirt and Glenairley, plus Grouse Nest on Gillespie Road and Sunny Shores in Saseenos were drawing vacationers.  Attractions further west included Sooke Harbour House, Woodside Farm and Malahat Farm. Woodside Farm offered Victorians a tempting treat on Sundays, “Chicken Dinner – 75c” complete with strawberry shortcake dessert.

Malahat Farm boasted the renowned Emily Carr among its clientele, while Sooke Harbour House, operated at that time by Antony Kohout, prior to the LaVertu family, offered restaurant service and four bedrooms with shared baths.

The accompanying brochure/image came into the museum’s collection through Roman Catholic Church historian Grace Horgan. Ray and Grace Horgan operated Seagirt as a resort during the 1930s and 1940s, and in 1950 purchased the more expansive property of Glenairley. One of their repeat-guests at Seagirt was the first woman speaker of a Legislative Assembly in the British Commonwealth, Victoria’s own Senator Nancy Hodges, who was also a columnist for the Victoria Times.

When built by Alexander Gillespie as a family home and farm in 1911, Glenairley was home to his wife Rose Ellen Todd and their four daughters, Sheila, Daphne, Jean and Rosanna. The Gillespies farmed until they moved to Victoria in 1929 and the property became a resort, with a succession of owners up to the Horgans.

Building small A-frame cottages on the seafront hillside was an initiative of the Horgans, and guests were attracted to bask in the sunshine or wade out into the salt water of the basin to bathe in their modest swimsuits.

After the passing of her husband, Grace Horgan left the Glenairley property to the Roman Catholic Order of the Sisters of St. Ann. For a time, the Order, then based at Queenswood in Victoria, used the historic resort property as a rest retreat for the Sisters.

Just Posted

Kenny Podmore, here seen at Sidney’s cenotaph in November, says he feels for the veterans after organizers had to cancel an event acknowledging Victory in Europe (VE) Day for the second time in as many years because of COVID-19. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
North Saanich event marking 75th anniversary of VE-Day cancelled

Sidney resident first planned event for May 9, 2020 moved to May 8 before being cancelled

Individuals and businesses are encouraged to bring their unwanted electronics to Tillicum Centre May 14 to be shredded, recycled or donated. (Black Press Media file photo)
Greater Victoria residents can shred, donate electronics safely

Vancouver Island Better Business Bureau hosts event May 14 at Tillicum Centre

Scheduling popular summer events like the Canada Day celebrations is difficult due to the pandemic. (File - Sooke News Mirror)
Sooke summer events schedule clouded by COVID

Public health guidelines hamper plans

The District of Sooke is looking at new plans to build a fenced dog park at Ponds Park Corridor. (Pixabay.com)
Sooke seeks input on dog park

Public comment welcomed until June 4

Potatoes have two genetic centre of origins, one from the lowlands in Chile and the other from the highlands in Bolivia. The highlands potatoes flower and produce fruit profusely, which is where the seeds come from. They contribute to exciting and ecologically imporant genetic diversity of potatoes. (Submitted/Fiona Hamersley Chambers)
Metchosin farmer shares how to invent a new potato

Using seeds anyone can name their own variety

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

Chilliwack’s Kile Brown, performing as drag queen Hailey Adler, dances and lip syncs in front of hundreds of people during the inaugural Chilliwack Pride Barbecue at the Neighbourhood Learning Centre on Aug. 24, 2019. Monday, May 17 is International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of May 16 to 22

International Day Against Homophobia, Talk Like Yoda Day, Sea Monkey Day all coming up this week

Sinikka Gay Elliott was reported missing on Salt Spring Island on Wednesday, May 12. (Courtesty Salt Spring RCMP)
MISSING: Salt Spring RCMP find woman’s car, still seek Island resident

Sinikka Gay Elliott is 5’3” with a slim build and dark brown short hair

A Saanich man received almost 10 years in Supreme Court in Courtenay for a shooting incident from 2018. Record file photo
Shooting incident on Island nets almost 10-year sentence

Saanich man was arrested without incident north of Courtenay in 2018

Bradley Priestap in an undated photo provided to the media some time in 2012 by the London Police Service.
Serial sex-offender acquitted of duct tape possession in B.C. provincial court

Ontario sex offender on long-term supervision order was found with one of many ‘rape kit’ items

Rich Coleman, who was responsible for the gaming file off and on from 2001 to 2013, was recalled after his initial testimony to the Cullen Commission last month. (Screenshot)
Coleman questioned over $460K transaction at River Rock during B.C. casinos inquiry

The longtime former Langley MLA was asked about 2011 interview on BC Almanac program

Steven Shearer, <em>Untitled. </em>(Dennis Ha/Courtesy of Steven Shearer)
Vancouver photographer’s billboards taken down after complaints about being ‘disturbing’

‘Context is everything’ when it comes to understanding these images, says visual art professor Catherine Heard

Trina Hunt's remains were found in the Hope area on March 29. Her family is asking the public to think back to the weekend prior to when she went missing. (Photo courtesy of IHIT.)
Cousin of missing woman found in Hope says she won’t have closure until death is solved

Trina Hunt’s family urges Hope residents to check dashcam, photos to help find her killer

Most Read