The History of the Village of Queen Charlotte

Located along the shoreline of Bearskin Bay in Skidegate Inlet, The Village of Queen Charlotte was founded when the North American Timber Holding Company began to build a sawmill there in early 1908.

This early sawmill ran from 1908 until 1912 and was put into operation again towards the latter part of the First World War to saw clear Sitka spruce for aeroplane lumber, it then shut down when that market closed.

The operation of the sawmill and mining possibilities drew settlers to the community and by August of 1909 a hospital had been opened to serve the community. Three general stores, a drug and clothing store, two hotels, a pool hall, a boarding house, a barbershop and the newspaper were all operational within a year.

The first school classes were held in The Village of Queen Charlotte in September 1909 in a room above the pool hall, and at the beginning of October the new Methodist Church building was opened. Several of the buildings from these early times are still in use today.

This thriving community was and continues to be the administrative center for the Islands.

The years of the depression saw the community pull together to assist one another over these difficult times, and a lucrative fishing industry carried on through the mid to later part of themed through most of the last half of the 1900's. The timber industry boomed through most of the last half century and provided the community with a stable economy.

Though today much of the natural resource based industry is in decline, the community is looking to diversify its economy, tourism being one option.

Dalzel, Kathleen. "The Queen Charlotte Islands - 1774-1966". Evergreen Press 1968 Canada

Henderson, R. W. "These Hundred Years - The United Church of Canada in the Queen Charlotte Islands - 1884-1984".
Published by the Official Board of the Queen Charlotte United Church 1985.


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