Colonial Schoolmasters of Craigflower

Colonial Schoolmasters of Craigflower 1859 – 1870
 AUTHOR: Judith Stricker
Research Officer, Planning, Research & Interpretation Division Heritage Conservation Branch

April 25, 1983

Introduction

This report was prepared in response to a request for further biographical material on the schoolmasters at Craigflower. As time was limited for the project only the masters for the colonial period have been included; these are Henry Claypole, 1859-65, Thomas Russell, 1865-66, William Harrison, 1866-70 and Lyndon LeLeivre, 1870-75. The first schoolmaster, Charles Clark, 1855-59, has been documented in a separate report.

Henry Claypole – Schoolmaster – 1859-65

Present research has revealed no further biographic detail pertaining to Craigflower’s second schoolmaster Henry Claypole. However, while Claypole himself eludes documentation, additional material pertinent to the schoolhouse and the period in general has been revealed.[i]

Henry Clay Pole BCA F-06951

It appears that Claypole was one of the thousands to arrive in Victoria with the rush of 1858-60.[ii] He brought with him a letter of introduction from the Duke of Newcastle addressed to James Douglas; the letter was written at the request of Claypole’s father “William Claypole, a respectable inhabitant of Newark . . .”[iii] By May 16, 1859, Reverend Cridge had appointed Claypole to Craigflower:

“I beg to report for the information of the governor that I have this day put in charge of the Craig Flower School [sic] a gentleman whose name is Mr. Henry Claypole & whom after strict examination I believe to be fully competent for the charge in point of educational acquirements, moral character & general intelligence. As moreover he has not been trained as a Teacher, this is understood to be a provisional arrangement & I shall hope to report to his Excellency again on the subject at an early period.[iv]

No further correspondence is evident until 1861 when Claypole wrote to Cridge, stating, “… My renumeration for obvious reasons being insufficient under our present extravagant regime”. Cridge’s response was sympathetic and he supported Claypole’s request for a salary increase when reporting to the colonial secretary.[v]

While it is not clear whether Claypole received an increase, he continued correspondence expressing concern about the dilapidated condition of the schoolhouse.

“The School House at the above place having for a considerable period required numerous repairs, I should esteem it a favour if you could grant me any information as to the course to be adopted in causing them to be made. Some time ago I made repeated applications both verbal and epistolary in one of which I gave a list of necessary repairs and a rough estimate of the cost.

Desirous of avoiding the semblance of giving unnecessary trouble, I have waited for a communication to be made to me; anxious to preserve the house from premature decay whilst under my care, I have taken the liberty of making direct application to you.

And am,
Your most
Claypole To W.A.G. Young Esq.[vi]

Subsequently, Pemberton the colonial surveyor was dispatched; his description of Craigflower presents an appalling picture:

“I have honour to report with reference to your letter of the 24th March that I have examined Craigflower School House as ordered.

The buildings & premises are in so dilapidated a condition as to make it a question whether the present house ought to be repaired or a new house built.

The buildings is insufficiently supported and the foundation being insecure has sunk considerable. This has caused the plaster to crack in every direction, the ceiling to fall in and the floors to sink.

The backs of the fire places are burnt out, the chimneys smoke, the wind blows through the School room and the rats have made holes in every direction.

In the outer premises common decency has to be neglected, the well has tumbled in and the pump out of order and fencing down. I made a specification of the least repairs required to make the house and premises habitable and Mr. Lewis an Estimate – $800.00

I remain etc etc [vii]

The colonial secretary was not dismayed by Pemberton’s gloomy description and replied crisply:

“Arrangements made for repairs to be undertaken by local schoolmaster under supervision of Surveyor General, .£100 devoted to the {illegible}.”[viii]

Again, the outcome is unknown, but it does not appear that any major repairs were undertaken at that time.

As the general economy declined, so did Claypole’ s enthusiasm. Moreover, although not trained as a teacher he entertained certain ideas about the principles involved. When the School Act of 1865 established non-sectarian education, Claypole tendered his resignation:

“. . . I ask to be relieved of the burden of duty which I am now performing gratuitously . . . The Common School Bill before the House. I consider most injurious in its provisions and tending unnecessarily to lower the character and contract the usefulness of those entrusted with the task of education.”[ix]

However, it is difficult to determine whether Claypole’s vision of high moral purpose hid his own ineptness. Following his resignation, The Colonist wrote a scathing attack,

“Craigflower School–We are sorry to learn that this institution has been of late suffering from the most wretched mismanagement.

“The new Superintendent of Education, Mr. Waddington, has, we understand, recently paid the school an official visit, and it is rumored found the system of teaching most in-efficient, and the backwardness of the pupils most pitiable, exhibiting the grossest negligence on the part of the managers.

“A new teacher has just been appointed, but having been only a few weeks in office, he has not as yet had sufficient time to effect the requisite improvements.

“It is plainly evident that the state of the public schools of the colony requires the most thoughtful and enlightened consideration of the Board of Education.

“It is deplorable to think that the children of this community should so long have suffered through the incompetence and negligence of teachers, and one of the first and most obvious duties of the Board should be to establish a proper standard of qualification as to the ability and character of public school teachers”[x]

There are no further newspaper references to Claypole; nor is he mentioned in colonial correspondence. It does not appear that he remained in Victoria.

Appendix 1

The following material was derived from the trustee’s report for New Westminster for 1862. It includes details of classroom operation which were probably applicable throughout colonial schools.

F 556/12 Colonial Correspondence          W.D. Ferris et al

Board of School Trustees – re. School regulations undated c.1862.

From the first day of April till the first day of November – the hours of school shall be from 9:30 AM till 3 PM with an intermission from noon till 12:30 PM. Saturdays excepted when the school will close at noon.

From 1st of November to the 1st of April the hours of school will be from 10 AM till 2:30 PM with ten minutes intermission at noon.

The school will be … conducted on strictly non-sectarian principles. The Bible will be used as a text book for communicating a knowledge of Scripture, History & Biography but the Parents or Guardian of any scholar objecting to Scripture Reading it will not be enforced.

The school will be opened and closed with Prayer by the teacher.

… The teacher shall have power to expel a pupil for frequent acts of disorderly conduct or disobedience.

A public examination of the school shall be held at the end of each quarter after which there shall be one-week vacation.

Colonial Correspondence             F556/W. Ferris to H.E. James Douglas  -Trustees Report of N. Westminster – for July 1863

Textbooks used: in arithmetic of various kinds but the ones principally in use are those recommended by the Council of Public Instruction in Canada and almost exclusively used in the Canadian Schools viz.

National Board and Sangster’s Elementary. The following text books are also used, Murray’s English Grammar, Pinnock’s, Goldsmith’s History of England, Cornell’s Elementary & Intermediate Geography … The reading books are “Towns Series”.
[22 children]

 THOMAS RUSSELL
Schoolmaster Craigflower May 1865 – October 1866

Thomas Russell 1836-1912

Following the resignation of Henry Claypole in May of 1865, the appointment of a new schoolmaster for Craigflower was duly noted by the Colonist:

“May 13, 1865, p.3

Craigflower School

We understand that his excellency has appointed Mr. Thomas Russell to be Schoolmaster at Craigflower since Mr. Claypole resigned. Mr. Russell is brother-in-law of Mr. McKenzie of Craigflower”.

Born in Haddington, Scotland, Russell, aged 16, had immigrated to Vancouver Island in 1852 with Kenneth McKenzie and the party bound for Craigflower.[xi] Although listed as a labourer in McKenzie’s list of employees, Russell was obviously not working class and was presumably well educated. Indeed, when Douglas seconded Robert Barr for the Victoria School, McKenzie recommended Thomas Russell as schoolmaster for Craigflower. However, Russell possibly not desiring the confines of the classroom at that time, did not accept the position.[xii] He chose instead to work for McKenzie in diverse situations which eventually assumed a managerial aspect:

“6th August, 1860

Kenneth McKenzie Esq.

Dear Sir

I hope it will not be considered unreasonable in me to make application for an increase of my salary, as I now beg leave to do.

You are aware that my various duties in the Bakery, Butchery the Mills & C. are very labourious, requiring constant activity and care and often early and late attendance from me, and I hope you have reason to be satisfied with the manner in which those duties have been discharged hitherto.

The pay I receive is not, in my opinion, sufficient for the amount of work performed, nor equal to the pay of other workmen in the neighbourhood not superior to myself; and is considerably less than what I know I could earn elsewhere in a Bakery alone – proposals have been made to me by others but so long as my services are fairly renumerated I have no wish to leave the Company.

An advance of £25 on my present salary (or £100 per annum with rations) is under what I could obtain as above stated, but that salary from my present employers would satisfy me; and hoping that it may not be considered more than I am worth to the Establishment, I am Sir.

Your Obediant Servant

Thomas Russell”

As indicated by the above correspondence, Russell remained with McKenzie after his five-year contract expired in 1857. His name appears throughout McKenzie’s accounts and ration books; the day book for 1859 indicates Russell’s clothing purchases prior to his wedding:

Feb. 25, 1859                     

1

Sac Coat

£  1/17/6

1

Pr. Black Trousers                           

17/3

1

Shepherds Plaid Vest                     

9/3

1

Silk Tie                  

3/2

1

Pr. India Rubber Braces                 

2/2

1

Balmoral Bonnet                             

2/5

1

Pr. Wellington Shoes                      

9/9

1

Pr. Sea Boots                                

1/7/9

Feb.28,  1859                     

1

Doz Pr. Cotton Hose

 

2

Balmoral Bonnets     [xiii]

 

In March 1859, Russell, aged 23, married an English woman, Sarah Collier, who had come to Vancouver Island in 1857.[xiv]

Thomas Russell & Family 1865 BCA G-01948

Their first and only child to survive to adulthood was born April 22, 1860 and christened Alice Marion.[xv]

Thomas Russell Land Grant at Craigflower

In 1861, Russell acquired two parcels of land in the vicinity of Craigflower, consisting of one 3-acre lot adjacent to the school reserve and a larger 19-acre section bounded by the Colquitz River to the north.[xvi] As it was customary for Puget Sound Agricultural Company servants to receive a land grant of roughly 25 acres on leaving services indications are that Russell planned not to renew his contract in 1862. Another factor which would have influenced him was that McKenzie’s contract as bailiff had not been renewed in 1861 although he was granted tenure at Craigflower until 1865. It appears that Russell continued to assist McKenzie in the management of contracts for supplying baked goods, beef and vegetables to British naval vessels anchored at Esquimalt.

By 1865 the brief prosperity of the gold rush was over and the effects of a general economic, recession were being felt. Money for educational purposes dwindled and at Craigflower the School house continued to deteriorate. Henry Claypole, the schoolmaster, after a long period of threatening to resign finally did so May 3, 1865.

By May 13, Russell had agreed to fill the vacant position. In view of the massive debt accumulated by McKenzie and his declining financial prospects it appears that Russell’s acceptance at this time was for economic survival and not from any great desire to impart knowledge. His tenure at Craigflower was brief – just over a year – and he left little commentary on his period in the classroom. However, an idea of the situation at Craigflower in general can be derived from the Minutes of the Board of Education:[xvii]

“July 18, 1865

A petition from the inhabitants in the neighbourhood of Craigflower requesting to be allowed to make use of the schoolroom there every alternate Sabbath, Revd. Mr. Somerville to officiate…

The Supt. reported that some necessary alterations were required in the School desks at Craigflower besides some small repairs. Resolved that the sum be reported to the Governor as entailing an outlay of money.

“August 1, 1865

. . . read a report from Mr. Russell teacher at Craigflower on the repairs wanted there. Resolved that the Supt. be authorized to make such repairs or alterations as he may deem most urgent to the amount of $60 as approved by his Excellency.

August 15, 1865

A letter from the Revd. W.S. Reece applying for permission to visit Esquimalt and Craigflower schools for the purpose of imparting religious instruction to such children whose parents may be desirous of availing themselves of it was read. Mr. Reece was informed that he could visit Craig-flower on Thursdays from 8 to 9 AM or from 4 to 5 PM.

[Revd. Cridge then applied for the same privilege at other schools]

November 7, 1865

Resolved that the Prince of Wales birthday should be kept as a holiday.

December 7, 1865

Resolved: That there be six weeks of holidays in the year, a fortnight at Christmas and four weeks at midsummer – the Christmas vacation to comprehend the 2 weeks on which Christmas and New Years’ day fall and the midsummer vacation to be made to coincide as far as possible with the harvest in the country. districts and with the reopening of the private schools after the vacations in the towns.

June 7, 1866

The Supt. then called the attention of the Board to the difference between the Salary of the schoolmaster at Craigflower at $1000 with that of all of the teachers in the country districts at $500, at the same time that his efficiency was more than doubtful. Moved by Dr. Powell, seconded by Mr. Wright that to secure efficiency in the Craigflower School and economy in the general expenditure, the present assistant teacher in the Fort St. boys’ school be removed to Craigflower at a salary of $750 and the services of the present teacher [Russell] of that school be dispensed with. (Carried unanimously.)

July 31, 1866

Supt. reported on the public examination at Craig-flower on the 20th, which was creditable considering the great irregularities in the attendance of the scholars … as many as 143 ½ days absence out of 230 school days … this question to be re-discussed at a future meeting …

The Supt … in reply …: that the present en-cumbent at Craigflower was to be discharged in preference to Mr. Nicholson as being by far the least efficient and having had no training as a teacher, the usual notice of one month to be given him, and the building proposed to be rented for a schoolroom was to be taken for twelve months …

… it was the resolution of Board that no teacher shall be appointed or continued in any school where the number of scholars is less than twelve … proposed to acquaint the teacher at Cedar Hill with this information so that he could muster that number if possible and inform the Superintendent of the result.

September 25, 1866 – P.76

The Supt. informed the Board of a verbal application from a Mr. William Harrison formerly Teacher in Canada for a situation in case Mr. Nicholson did not return or in case of any other vacancy.

October 10, 1866

The Superintendent read a letter from Mr. Russell, teacher at Craigflower enclosing a copy of his resignation as sent to the Colonial Secretary and dated 3rd Inst. The Superintendent explained that he had only received this letter on Monday the 8th … whereas Mr. Russell has closed the school and come to Victoria without the slightest (instruction?) … discharging the children and informing the parents that the school was closed, before leaving. The Superintendent to remedy the consequence of this extraordinary conduct has been Mr. Harrison, the Teacher whose verbal application entered . . . and explained to him the uncertainties attending the payment of his salary in case he should wish to apply . . . as well as the irregularity of his position until formally appointed . . . Resolved that the Superintendent write to Mr. Harrison, that the Board without assuming any other responsibility whatever would recommend his appointment as soon as the occasion might offer and that his salary be fixed at $60 per month . . [xviii]

July 29, 1867

A letter was read from Mr. Thomas Russell to the Chairman, claiming one month’s salary as Teacher at Craigflower in Sept. last. It was explained that Mr. Russell had closed the school and come to open a grocery in Victoria without the slightest indication . . . discharging the children and informing the parents that the school was closed before leaving; all of which the Supt. had only learnt on the 8th of October following (see meeting of Oct. 10, 1866). [the Board declined to recognize any claim]

September 9, 1867

A letter was read from Mr. Russell formerly teacher at Craigflower against the decision of Board July 29.  .. stating reasons for urging the claim . . .”

After leaving Craigflower, Russell chose not to reside on the property near the school and in following his new enterprise lived in a number of locations. His daughter described some of them:

“About 1867 we lived on Government Street, between Fort and Yates Streets. My father, the late Thomas Russell, ran a grocery store, and the back of the building joined the backyard of the B. N. A. Bank around the corner on Yates Street. The building was two-story and The Colonist printed their newspaper upstairs. . . .

Later, early in 1869, Christ Church Cathedral was burned down. At this time, we lived in a brick house on Rae Street, not far from the Cathedral and behind the Collegiate School. . . .

Next year we moved to a house on Blanshard Street where the Roman Catholic Cathedral now stands. My father had moved his place of business to the corner of Blanshard and Fort Streets. At that time the city was having dug a wide, deep hole to hold water at the intersection of Blanshard and Fort Streets, in case of fire.

One night some wag thought to create an excitement, and sprinkled brass fillings at the bottom of the hole. The next morning there was a great stir for a short time over what they thought was a discovery of gold.

Later, the store was burned down in the night and my father unfortunately was unable to save even his books.

Next year, 1871, we lived on View Street, not far from Quadra. My father had not long returned from an adventurous trip to Queen Charlotte Islands and at midnight, between June and July we woke up in terror to hear all the fire bells ringing, the great Tiger bell pealing over all the rest. My father looked at his watch quickly reassured us and said it was Confederation. Just like the passing of the year. “Ring out the old, ring in the new.”

In the Fall of 1871, we moved across the Bay and lived on Belleville Street, and afterwards had to cross the bridge four times a day. It was rather primitive over there with very few sidewalks.[xix]

For the remainder of his life Russell worked as a book-keeper or accountant. From 1873 until 1902 he held the position of Assessor and Collector of Taxes for the City of Victoria.[xx] From 1902 until 1912 he was book-keeper for Thorpe & Co. of Victoria. He died August 18, 1912 at the age of seventy-six and is buried in Ross Bay Cemetery.

APPENDIX 1

Alice Michael Reminiscences

ALICE MICHAEL: REMINISCENCES

Mrs. A., badly incensed at this breach of good manners and rights, flew at Mrs. B. and there was a tempest of tempers in which there was much punching and hair pulling. I did not learn who won out or what became of the poor little scone that was the cause of all this fighting and bitterness.

This Craigflower Schoolhouse was about the first built in B.C. and on that account when the idea was mooted to tear it down on account of it being unsafe, the Native sons and Daughters of B.C. thought it right and fitting to restore the old schoolhouse as a relic of pioneer days, and when finished they made the schoolroom into a Museum. The old Colonial farmhouse had been restored some time previously. In 1931, a Reunion of teachers and scholars was held in the grounds of the Schoolhouse and tea served under the old maple tree.

It was with feelings of great pleasure that I attended this function as my father had been a teacher and I a scholar. We had all lived in the school building which included living quarters for the teacher and family. Before that we lived in a small log house across the bridge which since 1931 had been taken apart, rafted across the Arm and rebuilt under the maple tree. When I viewed the restored home of my parents I said to myself, “If these old logs could speak what a tale of love and devotion they could tell. My parents’ united love for their two little girls, one little more than a baby, who lived in this home over 70 years ago.” The sad memories of the dear ones gone before saddens me much, as I alone am left of that little band of long ago.

It is fitting that this old house should be moved to these grounds of this old and historical schoolhouse, as it was to this building that my parents moved from this home. This old maple tree, which has always stood out as a landmark, now heavy with decay, was then large and beautiful. It stands out very clearly in my memory of Auld Lang Syne.

As the families were all served with provisions from the Hudson’s Bay Co., my father was made Commissariat or Dispenser of said provisions. Of course, at times there was much grumbling but my father told them that he could give them only what he was authorized to give, no more or no less. The women indulging in afternoon tea with their friends found their tea supply running short and hoped by threats to get more but found that it was not obtained so easily. Long afterwards my father remarked to me, °Perhaps they never saw tea in the old country.” When things were in running order, there were a store kiln to dry wheat and oats, and mills for flour and oatmeal, also baker’s ovens and a place to kill and dress beef and other meats. Later, Mr. MacKenzie moved to a farm of a thousand acres at Lake Hill where he died in 1874. His widow and some of the family lived there until their deaths; the last one, Miss Wilhelmina McKenzie, dying in 1928.

Five years after my father arrived, my mother who was then Miss Sarah Collier of London, England arrived in Royal Roads on the ‘Princess Royal’, also coming around the Horn, about 5 months from Gravesend. My father was the first man from the new country to come on board ship. He had a full beard as it was the fashion in those days. My mother seeing him, thought that he was quite old and paid little attention to him but as he was only 22 years old he was all agog to see her as they knew of her coming. In later years she used to say to him, “You never thought when you saw me sitting at the Cuddy table that I was your future wife.”

“I never doubted it,” he assured her.

As the house that she and her friends were to occupy was unfinished, they stayed for 4 months at the Colonial farmhouse with the McKenzie family. There she met my father but as he only spent mealtimes at the house, as he slept at the Office and was always busy helping Mr. McKenzie, he did not see very much of her. When he felt like writing he entrusted his letter to an Indian who worked for them and told him to give it to Miss Collier when she was alone. The Indian put it in his pocket and when he caught my mother’s eye, would tap his shirt pocket rather meaningfully so that she would know to make    a chance to get it. In 1882 my mother and I were walking along the street in Victoria and we saw two old Indians, a man and woman. I was surprised to hear the man say, “Miss Collier” and my mother ejaculated in surprise, “Peter’” She had recognized Peter and Lucy, his wife, who had been her mail carrier 24 years before.

An amusing story that my father used to tell about his sleeping quarters at the Office: as there was so much food around it attracted rats, which of course were a great nuisance. One night, having a festered big toe, he made a bread poultice to relieve the pain. In the night he woke suddenly to find a rat trying to haul the poultice from his toe! He used to laugh about it but I would not have felt that way as I feel they are a menace.

The old Craigflower Road used to be the only road from there to Victoria. People used to ride horseback a good deal in those days. I believe that a great deal of the freighting was done by water, in fact, all of it in the early days. The Gorge, a mile below Craigflower, was a hindrance as only at stated times a scow or boat could go through it. In those days only two logs which had fallen across the chasm was the only means of crossing the Gorge. Later there was a bridge, followed by longer and better bridges over the same chasm. I do not remember the logs but have heard my mother speak of them. As I was born near the Gorge the roar of the tumbling waters at low tide made a lullaby for me. It was later that we moved to Craigflower.

It is with tender memories that I recall the days spent at Craigflower. Life seemed to flow on like the Arm on whose shores we lived; nothing to break the even tenor of our days of happiness. The time went by like a tale that is told. We left Craigflower in 1866 and when my sister and I were old enough we learned from my father to pull a boat with sculls and went up the Arm to Craigflower on holidays or whenever my father could leave his business, my mother steering and we pulling. We used to enjoy a whole day in the open, reviewing old scenes and seeing old faces once more. An old Scots woman was always delighted to see us, and her Scotch scones made over the open fireplace, fresh butter, new laid eggs and delicious tea are one of the memories that cling through the years.

My father always liked to visit Craigflower. I remember after my mother’s death in 1906 we both went to the Gorge as he wished it. His mind was turning back to old times again. Some years later he wrote me, “I took a walk on Sunday viewing the scenes of long ago at Craigflower.” Perhaps the memories of those days eased his pain at the loss of my dear mother.

Craigflower today, except for the two restored buildings is but a memory as there is very little left but some few caved buildings and heaps of stones where fire has swept its devastating hand. The Native Sons and Daughters of B.C. are to be commended for keeping alive the stories, photographs, and traditions of the past in their Museum, of those brave souls who pioneered in the early history of the Colony. At the Pioneer’s Reunion in 1924 there were several men and women who, as children had come out on the ‘Norman Morrison’ but they also have all passed away. The families who came out on that particular trip of the ‘Norman Morrison’ afterwards scattered to other homes, farms, and work and their children and children’s children have helped to settle this country. I belong to the first generation born here of whom there are pitiful few left, but we have all tried to do our part to build up this lovely country in which we live and form a park.

From The Archives of B.C.
Victoria, B.C.

APPENDIX 2

RE: GRANT OF LAND TO THOMAS RUSSELL, 7 MARCH 1861.

This Indenture made between the Puget Sound Agricultural Company of London in England of the first part and Thomas Russell of Craigflower, Vancouver’s Island of the Second Part witnesseth that the said Puget Sound Agricultural Company in consideration of service to them rendered by the said Thomas Russell, Have Bargained and sold and do hereby Grant and Convey unto the Said Thomas Russell and his heirs and assigns All that certain parcel of Land situate in the District of Victoria in the Island aforesaid, consisting of nineteen acres, one rood and thirty-two poles (19. 1. 32) or thereabouts, founded in the East on a straight line throughout the whole length from north to south by land pertaining to Mr. James Yates, on the west in a straight line throughout its whole length from north to south by land pertaining to James Liddel, on the north by a line beyond Colquitz River running from north to ease, and on the south by the Arm of the Sea running up from Victoria; and also that other parcel of land situate in the said District of Victoria consisting of three acres (3) or thereabouts, founded on the East partially by land pertaining to the Maple Point School and partly by land pertaining to the said Puget Sound Agricultural Company on the West and north throughout the extent by land pertaining to the said Puget Sound Agricultural Company; and on the south or southwest by the Arm of the Sea running up from Victoria, both which parcels of land, containing 22 acres one rood, 32 poles or thereabouts the said Thomas Russell has agreed to accept in full of the Twenty-Five Acres (25) to which he became entitled in 1857 on the expiry of his five years contract of service with the said Puget Sound Agricultural Company – together with the (illegible) and appurtenances, and all the rights, liberties, and privileges hereunder to belonging or appertaining to have and to hold the same unto the said Thomas Russell, his heirs and assigns, to his and their proper use, benefit and behalf for ever. In Witness Whereof the Agent and Attorney in fact for said Puget Sound Agricultural Company has hereunto set his hand and Seal the Seventh day of March one thousand eight hundred and sixty-one.

Signed, Sealed and Delivered by Alexander Grant Dallas as and for the add and deed of the Puget Sound Agricultural, in Presence of Alex Monroe of Victoria VI.

1  COPY OF THOMAS RUSSELL LAND GRANT 1865 – FROM HBC ARCHIVES

 APPENDIX III

Waddington’s reports: School Visits 1865-67

From Alfred Waddington’s Report. School visits 1865-67. Friday, June 23rd, 1865 Craigflower

Visited the Craigflower School.

Property consists of five acres donated by the Puget Sound Co. The building cost $4,000, was erected in 1854. Requires some repairs to one of the chimneys, the other cannot be swept, the bell tower dangerous. Mr. Russell the teacher has written to the Colonial Secretary on the subject. Schoolroom 24 ft. x 30 well lighted, and roomed. Ventilation middling. Lobby or cafe room small. Desks and seats wretchedly constructed and arranged, must all be altered. Playground a good one, a good well, no gymnastic apparatus. The rooms of the School master downstairs very inconvenient.

Books used are of worn description, not too alike; only two national fourth readers, and one arithmetic. No blackboard, several large maps used a fine globe.

Children divided into two classes, besides the very small ones. The teacher, Mr. Russell, has been there only six weeks. Before him a Mr. Claypole was teacher. Mr. Russell has no diploma. Salary $1,000 and the fees.

Hours of attendance 6 per day. Number of scholars 18 boys, and 11 girls, in all 39. There were only 14 during the last month of Mr. Claypole’s superintendence.

No monitors. The Bible read morning and evening. All the children protestants.

Attainments of pupils miserable, especially in passing, arithmetic, and history.

Questions put. – 100 – 10 1/2 = No answer

D.’ (ditto)           – If 4 cost .28 lb of sugar cost 6 l/2 a lb. how much the Cost.

first answer              – 15 pence

second Ditto.            – 4 1/4 Cost

Two answers correct out of nine. This class has been through Arithmetic and was in numeration.

July 19, 1865

Wednesday, July 19

Craigflower

Yearly Examination at Craigflower began at 11 a.m. ended at 2. New scholars 4, one left, increase 3, total 32. Present Revd. Mr. Sonnville, Revd. Woods, Mr. Alston, Revd. Mr. Cridge, Mrs. McKenzie,

Mr. McKenzie, Mr. Greig, and four other parents. These say that their children have learnt more in two months than in a year before with Mr. Claypole. The two young Baileys and Eva Marwick absent.

Reading

Primary Class 5 pupils           Spelling          Tolerable

Second     “     2    “                 Reading          Good

      “        “      “                       Definition

Third         “    8      “                Reading         tolerable

    “      “                                    Spelling

Fourth    “        7    “    Reading           No expression or manner a singing one very poor worse

                        English

                        History

                        Questions

                        definitions

Writing           Third & fourth                        Great improvement

 Grammar

Third   4          “          grammar         Very poor

Fourth 6          “          D”       Only 2 can frasse

 Arithmetic

Second 7          “          Simple Add.    Tolerable

Third   7         “           Simple Multiple              D”

Fourth 8          “          Proportions     Good

 Geography

Third   5        “ Europe Tolerable

Fourth                           7         “          New England  Rather good

West Indies

 The Revd. Mr. Woods then questioned the children at the request of Mr. Alston for about two minutes generally on Grammar, frassing, Geography and History: Grammar poor, only two children can really frasse, Geography good, History wretched. The progress of the children…. through to the best advantage but indifferent.

Prizes distributed:

1st Class          Elizabeth Reynell       1st prize

Mary Ann Brown        2nd prize

2nd Class        John Greig      1st prize

Henry Stewart 2nd prize

3rd Class         Robert McKenzie       1st prize

Robert Greig   2nd prize

4th Class         James Stewart 1st prize

Mary Ann Marwick    2nd prize

 Writing with A.B. McKenzie.

August 26, 1865

Saturday, August 26th

Craigflower

Visited Craigflower to examine the benches and other alterations done by Bruce and Geary. Found the cause satisfactory. The blackboard is too heavy and cumbersome. Nobody there but Mrs. Russell.

N.B. According to the Minutes of the Board of Education these “alterations” included minor repairs to the interior of the classroom, pupil’s benches, and installation of a blackboard. Re. “Nobody there. . probably relates to this being harvest time.

October 14, 1865

Saturday October 14th

Craigflower

Visit from Mr. Russell of Craigflower to request some alterations and additions to the Schoolhouse:

Fencing the playground along the area 300 f at 20′                                                            $ 60.00

Plastering in the Schoolroom and upstairs                                                                                 20.00

Repairing the roof $6, the bell tower $3, the chimneys $10, putting in a soot box $3, and frosting the windows $3                                                                                   25.00

Building a kitchen and woodshed and taking down a partition                                          120.00

$225.00

N.B. Re the above: On October 25, 1865, the Board of Education drew a list of “probable Expenditure” for 1866. It included an allowance for $250 to be spent at Craigflower for “plastering, repairing of roof &c., Building a kitchen and shed, fencing playground”. (p.38, Minutes, Board of Education, 1865, C/AA/30.8 M/1). Due to the recession in the summer of 1866, it does not seem that these alterations were ever done.

November 4, 1865

Saturday, November 4th

Craigflower

Visit from Mr. Russell, Teacher at Craigflower. Agreed that in consequence of the distance at while many of the children live from the school, the school hours during the winter season shall be as follows, to begin next week:

From half past 9 to 12    = 2 ½
|4 ½ hours
From 1 to 3                       =  2

November 6, 1865
Monday, November 6th

Craigflower

Visited the school at Craigflower and examined the children.

Number of scholars inscribed 30, of whom 6 habitually absent, remains 24; of these only 13 present the morning being rainy.

Grammar

First Class       5 pupils           Passing            Poor

Second    “      3    “        “      Very Poor

 Second    “                    3    “

3rd Reader      Reading tolerable

Spelling          Poor

Definitions        D”

Reading

Primary  Class 2     “   1st Reader       Reading & spelling good

First           “    6    “    4th Reader      Reading Good

                                    Spelling     D“

                                    Definitions  D’

                        Poetry Reading Fair

Arithmetic      First Class       6    “    Proportions & vulgar fractions           tolerable

Mental Fair

Writing           First Class                  Copies Fair

Second

Geography      First Class       5    “    United States of America       fair

The general discipline of the school is very much improved.

1866

February 10, 1866

Saturday, February 10th

Craigflower

Books delivered to Mr. Russell:

1             Introduction to art of reading. (To be returned.) 6 Tablets for writing

4 D.        A.B.C. from Hibben & Casswell

5             Second readers

6             Book Keepers

7             Key to D.

8             Ince’s English history

2             Arithmetics

N.B. These were the textbooks published under the direction of the Commissioners of National Education in Ireland. It was adopted that they be used in Vancouver Island schools at the meeting of July 11, 1865. It seems that 2 “orders” arrived, via Panama, this being the first. The second shipment arrived in July 1866.

Saturday, March 3rd

Craigflower

To Mr. Russell, Craigflower by Hibben & Casswell

3              Ince’s English History

2             Fourth Reader

June 16, 1866

Saturday, June 16th

Craigflower

Gave Mr. Russell of Craigflower an order on Hibben & Casswell for the following books:

2             Casswell’s Geography

3             second readers

There are at present 34 scholars, and on Monday there will be 38 comprehnding two of Mr. Russell’s own children, one 4 years old.

July 7, 1866

Saturday, July 7th

Craigflower

Visit from Mr. Russell Teacher at Craigflower. He complains very much of the irregularity in the attendance of the children some of whom only attend twice in a month, thus retarding the progress of a whole class. Has fears concerning the coming examination both on this account and the timidity and stupidity of the children before strangers. Fixed the examination for Friday week.

 Wednesday, July 18th

Craigflower

Visited the Craigflower School and examined the children from 1/2 past 9 till 1/2 past 12; 28 children. In Geography 1st Class very fair, 2nd Class poor. Reading, 1st Class correct but want of expression, 2nd Class fair. Arithmetic, 1st Class wanting in numeration, calculations correct, mental arithmetic poor, 2nd Class fair. Grammar 1st Class passing fair, system very poor. 2nd Class passing poor. Dictation 1st Class very good. English history poor excepting one boy, Bailey. General order and discipline remarkably good.

July 20, 1866

Friday, July 20th

Craigflower

Public Examination at Craigflower began at 1/2 past 10 a.m. concluded at 3 p.m. Present Revd. Mr. Woods, Revd. Mr. Gribbell, Revd. Mr. Somerville, Mr. Macdonald of the Board of Education, Captain Porcher and

Dr. Comnie R.N., Mr. McKenzie, Mr. Bailey, and many other parents. Total number of pupils enregistered 38, scholars present 30. After a few words from the superintendent the examination commenced.

Reading

Primary           5 pupils           Words of 1 syllable    Fair

First Reader    3     “   Words of 2 Syllables     D.

Second   “       4      “  Beginners        Middling

Third       “      6       “ Reading           Poor

                        Spelling          Good

                        History of Joseph Fall of        Very good

These four classes examined by Mr. Waddington    

Dictation         Fourth Class    6     “   Prose   Very Good

By Mr. Gribbell                                  

Writing           3rd & 4th classes        12    “  Show copies   Fair progress

Bookkeeping   1st class          4    “   Copies & questions    Very good

Grammar        2nd class         5   “     Definitions      Very poor

1st    “  4     “   Passing            Middling

 Arithmetic

2nd    “ 5    “    Compound division    2 correct out of 5

1st      “            6      “  Vulgar fractions, proportions and decimals  

History            1st      “            6      “  History of England     Fair

Geography      2nd     “           3       “ Physical geography    Very poor

            1st      “            5      “  D. a globe       good

Recitations      McKemzie and A. Bailey       fair

The Superintendent then made a short allocation, and prizes were distributed to the following scholars:

? Bayley, A. McKenzie, A. Bayley, J. Liddle, J. Greig, W.A.B. McKenzie 4th reader, H. Stewart, and

  1. McKenzie. 3rd reader, J. Kelly and J. Brown. 2nd reader, W. Rowland and Jessie Brown. 1st Class, W.M. Veitek 3rd Class, T.H. Hillin for dilegence and general good conduct. These prizes were contributed by Dr. . The Revd. Mr. Woods and Mr. Jessop then said a few words and the children were dismissed.

Monday, July 30th

Books

Received the school books from Hibben and Casswell which were forwarded via Panama and stored then in the Government buildings. After deducting those already delivered, the list was found complete with the following differences:

Laurie’s first reader                                                                         2 short

second                 ”                                                                              1 over

Key to Bookkeeping                                                                        1 short

(found Ince’s)

Elements of Geometry                                                                  2 short

(found Ince’s)

Tablets Spelling and Reading                                                       1 over

Saturday, August 4th

Craigflower

Delivered to Craigflower School.

1 School register

September 8, 1866

Saturday, September 8th

Craigflower

Delivered to Mr. Russell:

3 fourth readers

1 third D.

2 Second D.

4 Ince’s English History

2 first Arithmetic

Two things should be noted here: the effects of the recession were being felt by August 1866 and spending was being cutback, including teacher’s salaries. Secondly, despite the favourable exam results at Craigflower in July, the Board of Education apparently was not happy with Russell as a teacher. June 1886 Minutes, p.57 questioned the efficiency of Russell and in July plans were being made to replace him.

William Harrison  – Schoolmaster, Craigflower, October 15, 1866 – August 1, 1870.

William Harrison

Following the resignation in October 1866 of Thomas Russell as schoolmaster for Craigflower, the Board Of Education appointed William Harrison to that position. regrettably little is known about Harrison apart from the Superintendent Waddington’s description:

“Visit from Mr. William Harrison for a situation as Teacher. Mr. Harrison is recommended by the Rev. Mr. Somerville,; he has a second-class certificate from Canada and taught also five months in San Francisco. Considers himself well bossed in Grammar, Geography and Arithmetic. Is unacquainted with Geometry. Is for the present bookkeeping at Mr. Fell’s Grocery.”  

Harrison commenced teaching at Craigflower October 17, 1865 following an official “induction by Waddington:

Visited the Craigflower school in company with Dr. Tolmie, Chairman of the Board of Education, from 11 AM till 12 o’clock noon. Inducted the new Teacher, Mr. Harrison, with a short address to the children, and gave him a letter of introduction to the parents. 17 children were present, and a fair attendance may be expected when the school is finally opened on Wednesday. The children seemed altogether pleased with the reopening of the school and their new Teacher.[xxi]

Thereafter, the Superintendent’s references for 1866 noted that a number of textbooks were delivered to the school; in March 1867 a discipline problem was dealt with.[xxii] By the spring of 1867 it appears that” uncertainties attending payment of (teacher’s) salaries” as a result of the recession were taking their toll. Teachers had not been paid since the previous to August and schools were kept open through community donations and benefits. Harrison was destitute:

Visit from Mr. Harrison Teacher at Craigflower. He has now been living for more than a fortnight on bread, milk and potatoes, and the neighbours and parents of the children having lurked this deplorable state of things and rather than allow the school to be closed, have called a meeting for this evening at 7 o’clock to agree on the best mode of contributing something to assist the Teacher in his present cruel position. I desired for Mr. Harrison to thank the inhabitants for the lively interest they take in the support of their school.[xxiii]

By the end of July, Harrison was reported as “still very unwell”:

… But it was hoped that the holidays would enable him to recover his health so as to resume his accustomed duties at their expiration.[xxiv]

The economic situation continued to deteriorate and with Waddington’s resignation in September 1867, regular reports on the schools ceased. However, Harrison remained at Craigflower until made 1869 when he tendered his resignation. He remained at the school until the August holiday at which time he indicated he would not re-open the school. Then followed a long period of correspondence over the issue of salary owing.[xxv]

Meanwhile, the School Act of 1869 had brought into existence local school boards and Harrison was subsequently hired by the Board representing Lake Hill School. In January 1870 the Colonist commented on Harrison’s work:

We understand a tabulated report from Lake District School was placed in the hand of the Government (regarding the number of children, books, curriculum furniture etc.,)… Considering the labour involved we think a blank form should be used… The school is under the efficient charge of Mr. Harrison, formerly of Craigflower[xxvi].

However, before the end of the school year Harrison had resigned his position claiming the obstructionist policy of the School Board had caused irreconcilable differences.[xxvii][27] Harrison then decided to establish a school for adults:

“An Evening School” will be opened in New Dominion Hall, colonist building on Saturday, October 1 at 7:30 PM Mr. W Harrison a gentleman who holds two first-class certificates as teacher will conduct the institution, which is much needed here by many young men, the nature of whose employment prevents them attending a day-school.[xxviii]

Although there are no indications as to the success of this venture, by 1874, a William Harrison is listed as bookseller. This proved successful and by 1875 Harrison had moved to larger quarters:

A portion of the first floor of the Colonist office has been leased to Mr. William Harrison Bookseller, and the composing room for the newspaper hands in a large hall formerly occupied by Chamber Of Commerce…[xxix]

That the bookseller and schoolmaster were indeed one and the same is indicated by the unusual article which appeared in the Colonist, 1877, which questioned the wisdom of scholarships been awarded by the Victoria school system:

Such foolish expenditure… by a system whose proper adjuncts are wealth and affluence… answers to the above questions will be found in the best books on education, government, school teaching and self-government.

(Signed) W. Harrison[xxx]

As previously noted evidence regarding Harrison’s private life is obscured by the number of Harrisons in Victoria. However, records for a William Harrison, age 31, of Lancashire, England, who married in Victoria, January 25, 1873, to Martha McCorkall, 21, of County Derry, Ireland, may pertain to Harrison, the schoolmaster; a daughter Annie Isabella, was born January 12, 1881.[xxxi] in 1893 the Colonist reported the death of Mrs. William Harrison, age 42;[xxxii] present research has not revealed an obituary for William Harrison.

APPENDIX I

Correspondence 1869-70

William Harrison (October 8, 1866-1870)

The following letters cover a period of a year during which Harrison attempted to resign claiming also salary owing. (PABC Col. Correspondence F729)

Victoria, May 22, 1869

Harrison

To Frederick Seymour Esquire C.B.
Governor of British Columbia and its dependencies

May it please your Excellency

The undersigned Teacher at the Craigflower Public School, hereby tenders the resignation of his charge as Teacher of the said Public School.

Some time ago he spoke to the Chairman of the Board of Education stating his desire to withdraw from the Craigflower School, but there was no attention paid to his wishes owing to the important changes then taking place in the Educational System of the Island.

The requests that his charge over the School shall cease at the end of the present month.

I am your Excellency’s

Most Obedient Servent

William Harrison

I hope Mr. Harrison will remain in Charge of the School until the End of the present month, when I trust the arrangements respecting the Schools will be completed.

17/5/69      The Acts          Col. Sec.

Victoria, B.C.
August 2, 1869

Schools

Honorable Charles Good

Acting Colonial Secretary, British Columbia

Sir

In answer to a letter tendering my resignation as Teacher of the Craigflower School, I received an answer requesting me to continue until arrangements were made to relieve me.

To facilitate the action of the Government and to remove all ground of complaint on the part of the people, I complied with this request though to my own disadvantage; but as I do not intend to re-open the Craigflower School after the Vacation I shall take it as a great kindness if the Government would accept my resignation and relieve me of the charge of said School.

I hope in the course of a few days to be sufficiently recovered from sickness to enable me to prepare an Inventory of School Furniture.

I am, Sir,
Your Obedient Servant

William Harrison

To His Excellency A. Musgrave C.B.
Governor of British Columbia

May it please your Excellency,

The undersigned in answer to his resignation of the teachership of the Craigflower School received a communication, (dated June 17, 1869) requesting him to continue teaching the school until arrangements were made to relieve him.

Thinking himself to be perfectly safe he complied with this request and kept the school open until the 6th of July, and then according to the advice of the Acting Colonial Secretary he closed for the midsummer vacation.

During the month of July he received $125, but his full salary amounted to $180 thus leaving a deficiency of $55 on the quarter ending June 30, 1869.

At the end of July he informed the Government that he did not intend to re-open the Craigflower School, and requested that his resignation be accepted.

The deficiency of salary $55 and his month’s salary $60 for July – he considers himself justly entitled to.

Never in his experience in either Canada or the United States has anything been deducted from a teacher’s salary on account of a vacation.

His claim to the difference of salary ($55) was acknowledged, but he was told that he ought to get it from the people at Craigflower.

How the teacher had no claim on the people there being no Local School Board in existence, but he thinks the letter of request did give him a claim on the Government.

Furthermore, the undersigned states that in his opinion the people had no power or authority to act until the publication of the Government Gazette on the 27th of June which defined School District boundaries, and gave authority for the calling of public meetings, and for the formation of Local School Boards.

The teacher did everything in his power to get the people at Craigflower to act in accordance with the conditions of the Common School Ordinance 1869, but for all this there was no Local Board formed till the latter part of July.

It may be asked why was this matter delayed so long?

There was some correspondence between the undersigned and the Craigflower Local Board, and the Acting Colonial Secretary on this subject; and furthermore, having heard of your Excellency’s state of health he could not think of making any move in this matter before this time, and even now he would have foreborne had not recent circumstances compelled him to seek a settlement.

There was a promise given to him of a quiet conclusion of this affair; the officers administering the Government could have done so for they had the power, but he perceives that there is a want of intention to perform an act of protection on his behalf.

If the undersigned has entertained false and erroneous ideas – explanations will be received with respect and attention; but there is a mistake made if it is thought that he will bow in silent submission to wrong and injustice in repeated instances.

Hoping your Excellency will pardon anything amiss in this communication, he signs himself with all respect.

Your most obedient Servant

William Harrison
Lake District
Victoria, BC
February 12, 1870

C.S.O.

February 19, 1870

To Mr. Harrison

Sir,

I am directed of the Government acknowledge the receipt of your letter of 12th inst. relative to certain arrears of Salary which you claim to be due you as late School Teacher of Craigflower School.

In reply I am directed to remind you that the School Act came into operation in March 1869. When immediately all connection between the Govt. and the School Teachers ceased, and to the Local School Board you should: look for compensation. It was entirely an Act Of the Govt. paying you any Salary. To the Local Board it should have been paid, but as no Board was formed until some months after the School Act came into operation, the Govt. allowed you Salary until the end of June at the rate of $500 per annum; which you have received.

I am further to inform you G.E. dues and consider you have any claim on the Govt., cannot therefore, entertain your request for any areas of Salary to be paid you for the day on which the School Act came into operation, all connection between the Govt. the School Teachers ceased by Law.

Schools

To His Excellency A. Musgrave C.B.
Governor of British Columbia

May it please your Excellency

The undersigned teacher of the Lake District School has concluded to resign his position as teacher of the said School for the following reasons.

One of the members of the Local Board during the last two months has pursued an obstructive policy that is injurious to the School and the Teacher.

He therefore declines working under the School Board as now constituted.

His continuance at Lake District would only be an aggravation of those circumstances that cause feelings of strife and enmity, and which would involve others in difficulty.

He therefore respectfully requests that his resignation be accepted and that he be relieved at once.

Your most Obedient Servant William Harrison

Lake School House, B.C.
April 26, 1870

C.S.O.

28 April 1870

Mr. Harrison,
Teacher,
Lake District School

Sir,

In reply to your letter of the 26 April I am directed by the Governor to acquaint you that the Local Board is the proper quarter to which you should address a letter of resignation.

LYNDON LELIEVRE

Schoolmaster Craigflower March 1870 – March 1875

Lyndon LeLievre

The period of 1869-1870 was one of transition for colonial schools. Although the School Act of 1869 had established local school boards the extent of their power and fiscal control was unclear. Moreover, expenditures for education were not a priority for a government recovering from a major economic recession. Historically, at Craigflower that period under Harrison’s tutelage (1866-69) was one of a ‘dark age’; moreover, between his resignation in August 1869, and the hiring of LeLievre in March 1870, there existed a gap for which nothing has been revealed regarding the functioning of the schoolhouse. Reports that John Jessop was the schoolmaster at Craigflower during that time are unsubstantiated. However, present research now indicates that William Fisher, a local resident and member of the newly established Craigflower school board, served as school master during the latter half of 1869 and probably into the spring of 1870. The following letter by Fisher makes apparent his position and the difficulties encountered by the board in attracting a teacher to Craigflower in 1869:

“Sir:

In reply to your letter of the 7th instant … on receipt of notice from executive Council 25th June defining the several School Districts of the Colony & the Common School ordinance of 1869 – several meetings were held in the town of Esquimalt and at Craigflower for the election of a Local Board. Application was afterwards made to the Gov. in Council for the grant of $500 per annum for the Craigflower School in which the name of Mrs. Lizzie Young was sumitted as Teacher. On the faith of this grant and the promise that $125 would be handed over to the Board on the 30th September the school was opened, and sufficient time allowed to Mrs. Young for making the necessary preparations; meanwhile certain repairs and alterations of the building were being proceeded with but Mrs. Young never appeared.

When it was understood that she required a letter from the Board guaranteeing the payment of her salary they immediately wrote to her with a guarantee of … $125 quarterly allowing her another week for preparation.

When she was expected to enter the school Mr. Young only appeared; and after making many objections to the state of the building and finding that the Board was neither prepared to take Craigflower House – late the residence of Mr. McKenzie – for the accommodation of his family – nor to alter their arrangements, he intimated that Mrs. Young would not accept the situation but promised to send in her written ultimatum the following day.

The Board met on Monday the 30th August but as nothing further had been heard either from Mr. or Mrs. Young action was deferred until Wed. Sept. 1 when they again met and resolved to appoint another teacher.

On the following day a letter was received from Mrs. Young informing the Board that “as the House was neither safe nor habitable she could not come to the Craigflower School until it was thoroughly repaired, and some arrangement made for a residence.”

After this letter was received … and considered by the Board, Mrs. Young was informed that her services would not be required; and in the meantime the duties of Teacher are being performed by the writer – subject to the approval of the Governor.

On the 18th Sept. a letter was received from Mrs. Young claiming $125 – a quarter’s salary as guaranteed to Mrs. Young in letter of August 23.

Since then a letter has been received from Mr. Wm. Harrison, a former teacher, claiming a month’s salary to Sept. 30 and $55 in arrears to June 30th before existence of the Board. He however appears to have resigned in May last and the inhabitants of Craig-flower contributed a fund with an understanding that the money would be returned in the event of his receiving anything from the Government. But as they had no wish to retain his services they do not consider that he can have any claim upon the existing Board. Nevertheless the Board has agreed to make him a liberal allowance for Firewood & c. remaining on the premises for which he appeared to have only a very questionable claim.

The school which had only 6 pupils when it closed July 6th opened with 13 the first week in September It now numbers 26 in regular attendance & is daily increasing.

We have the honour, 
& etc.

William Fisher Sr[?)’[xxxiii]

 To date, nothing further has been revealed regarding Fisher, However, following Mrs. Young’s refusal to teach at a school which she considered neither “safe nor habitable”, the local board appealed to E.G. Alston, superintendent of schools for support in requesting financial assistance.

Sir:

I beg to address you in reference to the District school house at Craig flower which stands greatly in need of repairs as the foundation is giving way & I fear unless it be attended to before the winter sets in it will become unsafe.

We have during the past 3 months expended $51 which money was collected in the District and have even [now?] on hand $25.00 in cash. The building is a commodious one and well adapted for the purpose & if repaired now would last for years. We require the sum of $75.00…for that purpose in addition to what we have on hand. This would enable the [new] ? board, new under pinings (?) which is necessary as the blocks ar all giving way and to repair the buildings generally: Under these circumstances I beg respectfully to apply to you for assistance and trust you will aid in the matter and that the Gov’t will aid us to the extent required. The school has now 35 scholar; at foot is an account of items on which we expended the money collected.

CB Brown
Chairman

$19  –  Repairing & putting up fences
 20          Desks & Seats
 12          Cedar Posts  51
 25          Cash in hand

 76 –  Total amount collected in district[xxxiv]

The request was subsequently approved by Council following Alston’s approving comment “…the school is a very good one.”

In the spring of 1870 the Craigflower board received an application for the position of teacher from Lyndon LeLievre.

March 16, 1870

Gentlemen,

I beg to apply for the situation of teacher at your District School.

I have had experience in teaching at home and in this colony, I enclose copies of testimonials.

Being a married man with a family, Mrs. LeLievre would be of great assistance in taking charge of the juniors, enabling me to devote more time to the senior boys.

My references are Dr. Helmcken and David Leneven [?]

Esq.

I am Gentlemen

Your Obedient Servant

Lyndon LeLievre[xxxv]

It is not presently known whether LeLievre was one of a number applying; his credentials are impressive and although he was not to live up to their expectations, it is understandable why the board would desire the appointment.

Sir:          March 22, 1870

…on behalf on inhabitants of Craigflower School District…to grant payment of Government allowance to above school.

Also to sanction the enclosed by-law passed…at a public meeting..in school room on 14th instant.

The number of children in the district is 46 between ages of 5 & 18. The number likely to attend school from 35-40.

We propose to appoint a schoolteacher at a salary of $600 per annum whose applications & testimonial we enclose.

The means proposed to raise the above sum is at follows:

Gov’t grant                                                                                        $480

Poll tax on 60 inhabitants                                                                $120

                                                                                                             $600

Voluntary subscription for repairs of school house                  $50.00

CB Brown, Chairman[xxxvi]
Peatt
Henry Cogan

Lydon LeLievre – 1860
Note “cut-out” on right side BCA G01947

Prior to leaving England LeLievre, had taught on the Isle of Jersey. At the age of 32 he and his wife, Annie had immigrated to the west coast in 1862, originally residing in New Westminster where two of their seven children were born.[xxxvii] By 1869, LeLievre had moved to Victoria where he taught briefly at the Collegiate School under Frank Gribbell.[xxxviii]

LeLievre than attempted to establish his own academy in the autumn of 1869; in view of his application to Craigflower in March, 1870, this enterprise was short-lived:

Commercial & French Academy Mr. LeLievre will open his academy on Monday the 4th Oct. A thorough Course of tuition in reading, writing arithmetic, grammer, geography history & book-keeping, is guaranteed. A French class for adults on Tuesday & Friday evenings, Commercial class on Mondays, Wed. & Friday will be instructed. Children from 4 to 7 years will be under the immediate superintendence of Mrs. LeLievre.[xxxix]

LeLievre’s tutelage at Craigflower was unsatisfactory to most and by the spring of 1872, parents petitioned the school board for a replacement:

We the undersigned Heads, of Families residing in Craigflower school district, beg respectfully to request your honorable Board, to give us a change of School Teacher. The present incumbent, having proved himself to very [illegible] so that for the past two years, our children have in a measure, received no eduction whatever. We therefore humbly request you will consider the matter and relieve us a very negligent, and unworthy School Teacher.

Robert Anderson
send 5 children
William Hillier
James Dunn
Henry Cogan
Matthias Rowland
Peatt[xl]

However, LeLievre was not replaced at this time. With the creation of a provincial government in 1872 and the establishment of a department of education the long-awaited repairs on Craigflower school were finally undertaken. The newly appointed superintendent, John Jessop, expressed hope that the classroom situation would improve with the new renovations. However, by 1874, in his third annual report Jessop conceded that LeLievre should be placed:

“Craigflower:

My hope of improvement on this school – one of the most important in the Province outside of the cities and towns – have not I am sorry to say been realized. The same want of attention to Schoolwork, carelessness with regard to the condition of the school house and its surroundings, negligence of personal appearance and other habits incompatible with the proper discharge of his duties still characterize the teacher Lyndon LeLievre. He has been holding the teachership in violation of the School Act since July 1873 having declined to undergo an examination for two consecutive years. The education interests of the children have been and are still being sacrificed to a desire, on the part of a few, to keep him in the school. A change in the teachership is absolutely necessary; and the sooner it takes place the better for all concerned.[xli]

LeLievre was subsequently dismissed and replaced by George Pottinger, April 1875. The B.C. Directory 1877-78 lists Lyndon LeLievre as a clerk, Pembroke Street. LeLievre died in 1881 at the age of 52 “after a long a painful illness”.[xlii] One can only speculate whether some of the earlier charges of inefficiency and negligence were due to illness. LeLievre’s wife died 4 Feb. 20, 1889 at the age of fifty-six.[xliii]

APPENDIX I

Collegiate School,
Victoria,
September 20, 1869

Mr. Lyndon LeLievre has been for the last nine months Professor of French, writing and bookkeeping at this school – it affords me great satisfaction in stating that during that period he has been most successful in his method of teaching the boys. Under him they have made great progress and I wish him much success in his future career.

(Signed) Frank B. Gribbell

Clerk in Holy Orders

Principal

It affords me much gratificaiton to have it in my power to testify to the zeal, activity and energy Mr. Lyndon LeLievre evinced when an Assistant in my school.

He has a complete knowledge of the French language.

I believe Mr. LeLievre would discharge in an efficient manner the duties of any function entrusted to him.

(Signed) George Ponigdeslre M.S. Incumbent of Matthews & Head Master of Henry the 7th Grammar School

Jersey, August 28, 1862

Having been requested to give a testimonial to Mr. Lyndon LeLievre who is applying for an appointment in England I certify that I have known him for several years, and that I believe he is well qualified for business and that he will give satisfaction to those who employ him and amongst whom he may be thrown

(signed) Le Condeur Balleine M.A

July 9th

Rector of Mary’s Jersey[xliv]

APPENDIX II

Colonist: re: Annie Selina Kate LeLievre (Mrs. Lyndon)

Feb. 23.99 p.5 – A large funeral…services conducted by Rev. J.C. Speer….Pallbearers were J.H. Meldram, D. Cameron, A. Onions, Wm. Marshall, T.H. Wolff & C. Chislett.

Colonist:

Jan. 29, 1899, p.5

Eickhoff – LeLievre – At the residence of the brides parents, Quadra St. on Monday evening Mr. Henry W. Eickhoff, late of New Westminister & Miss Esther Vibert LeLievre,…married by Rev. J.C. Speer. Miss Trace attended the bride & the groom was supported by Mr. A.A. Marshall. They will reside on Cook St.

Colonist:

July 21, 1899, p.2. “Twain made one”

A very pretty wedding took place on Quadra St. on Thurs. evening when H.K. LeLievre & Miss M.A. Billingsley were [married] by Rev. J.C. Speer…. F.R. LeLievre was best man.

Colonist – Dec. 16, 1898, p.5 – marriage of…Charles P. LeLievre …Performed by Rev. J.C. Speer at home of groom’s sister Mrs. Borden of 12 Rendall St…to Miss Nellie Isabel Phillips…Mr. Thomas Plimley supporting the groom… etc. etc.

Colonist – May 12, 1899, p.8,

Charles P. LeLievre proprietor of the Horse Shoe Saloon on Gov’t St was charged…with the circulation of a business card “having a tendency to corrupt the public morals” & therefore prohibited under criminal code… based upon short publication on the back of the card bearing the caption “all Stock Exchange Expressions” …held to have a double meaning…committed the accused for trial in a higher Court – [out of Magistrates jurisdiction]

[1]. See also Appendix 1.
[2] At that time ships arriving from San Francisco often carried 1200 passengers; passenger lists were not considered mandatory.
[3] . I/B/C 57.9 The Duke of Newcastle was one of the directors of the HBC and also PSAC. Newcastle’s papers are presently located at the University of Nottingham.
[4] Cridge to W.A.G. Young, Col.Sect’y, May 16, 1859, Colonial Correspondence, F395.9.
[5] Ibid., May 16, 1861
[6] Ibid., March 27, 1862
[7] . Ibid., J. Despard Pemberton to W.A.G. Young, Col. Sect’y, April 25. 1862.
[8] Ibid., undated, reply inscribed at bottom of correspondence.
 [9] . Ibid., May 3, 1865.
[10] Colonist, July 18, 1865, p.3
[11] Russell was born Feb. 29, 1836, the son of Robert & Agnes Russell (nee Cameron). E/E M58, PABC.
[12] Colville to Smith, Sept. 30, 1853, “… I should wish you to write to Mr. Thomas Russell, the schoolmaster whom he [McKenzie] mentions …,” PSAC, Correspondence Inward F.12/2 fo.520 1-b (1843-53) HBC Archives Coville to McKenzie, Nov. 18, 1853. “… and Mr. Thomas Russell has been written to but we have not yet received his answer …”Colville, Correspondence Outward, A/E/M19/C72, PABC.
[13] Kenneth McKenzie,  Daybook 1858-59, A/E/M19/M19.2 PABC
[14] Sarah was born in London, March 6, 1836, the daughter of Noah & Annie Collier (nee Patience). E/E M58, PABC.
[15] Another daughter, Catherine was born March 4, 1862 and died at New Westminster Dec. 7, 1880; a son, Robert Henry was born April 7, 1865 and died Sept. 7, 1869. Alice married Edwin D. Michael, May 28, 1884; she wrote numerous articles on life in Victoria; see Appendix I.
[16] Grant of land to Thomas Russell, March 7, 1861, F.16/2 fo. 260-261 HBC Archives; see Appendix 2
[17] Alfred Waddington, Minutes, Board of Education, C/AA/30,8 M/1 PABC. See Appendix III for Waddington’s reports, School Visits 1865-67, regarding the classroom situation; cf. J. Stricker Craigflower School, HCB, Dec. 1979.
[18] The fact that Russell was about to be replaced was apparently “leaked” as there are later references in the Minutes to the “unfortunate results”.
[19] Alice Michael, loc cit. See Appendix I for the Colonist report on the 1870 fire involving Russell’s property.
[20] H.P. Grease, Correspondence Inward, A/E/C 86 C86 R911, PABC
[21] Alfred Waddington, Report; School Visits 1865 – 67, September 11, 1866 C/AA?30.8M. Records for This period show that four William Harrisons resided in Victoria; consequently it is difficult to ascertain which documents refer to Harrison, the School Master.
[22] Ibid., October 15, 1866
[23] Waddington, op. cit. citation, April 20, 1867.
[24] ibid., July 26, 1867
[25] See Appendix 1
[26] Colonist, April 26, 1870, See Appendix 1
[27] ibid., January 1, 1870, page 3
[28] ibid., September 6, 1870, page 3
[29] ibid., February 25, 1875, page 3
[30] July 12, 1877, page 3; BC Directory 1877 – 78, lists a William Harrison, bookseller, stationer and newsagent Government Street, residence View Street.
[31] Colonist, January 31, 1873, page 3; Verification of Marriage Particulars, Vital Statistics, Ministry of Health; also Colonist, January 13, 1881, page 3 and Birth Certificate, Vital Statistics, local citation.
[32] Colonist, July 11, 1893 page 5:   the many friends of Mrs. William Harrison, 238 Johnson Street will regret to hear of her death… She had for some time being a severe sufferer from rheumatism and complications of diseases. She had been upwards of 20 years in the city coming out from Moville, Ireland with her sisters Mrs., Maslin, Mrs. Jas. Smith & Mrs. Field.
[33] Wm. Fisher to Colonial Secretary, October 15, 1869, Colonial Correspondence, F565/12, PABC
[34] C.B. Brown, Chairman, Craigflower School Board to E.G. Alston, Sept. 19, 1870, Colonial Correspondence, F 209/1. PABC.
[35] LeLievre to Craigflower School Board, March 16, 1870, Colonial  Correspondence, F 209/1 PABC. See Appendix 1 for LeLievre’s testimonials
[36] C.B. Brown et al to Anthony Musgrave, Governor, March 22, 1870, Colonial Correspondence, F 209/1, PABC
[37] Colonist, Jan. 20, 1865, p.3; also Jan. 25, 1867, p.3
[38] F.B. Gribbell, Sept. 20, 1869, Colonial Correspondence, F 209/1. PABC. LeLievre taught for nine months at the Collegiate School.
[39] Colonist – Sept. 23, 1869, p.3
[40] May 20, 1872, Dept. of Education, Correspondence Inward, C/AA/30 8M.
Another letter contained in this file, dated Oct. 23,  1872 expresses support for LeLievre:
..I very much regret having to withdraw my child from the school solely on account of the wretched condition of the Schoolhouse, and I more respectfully regret that I am compelled to adopt this course as the child was rapidly improving under the tuition of Mr. LeLeivre.
[41] Sessional Papers 1874-75, p.15. Further notes on this period are contained in J. Stricker, Craigflower School, Heritage Conservation Branch, Dec. 1979
[42] Colonist, May 19, 1881, p.3
[43] Colonist, Feb. 21, 1889, p.2. See Appendix II for references to other family members
[44] Colonial Correspondence F 209/1 PABC

[i] See also Appendix I

[ii] At that time ships arriving from San Francisco often carried 1200 passengers; passenger lists were not considered mandatory

[iii] I/B/C 57.9 The Duke of Newcastle was one of the directors of the HBC and also PSAC. Newcastle’s papers are presently located at the University of Nottingham.

[iv] Cridge to W.A.G. Young, Col.Sect’y, May 16, 1859, Colonial Correspondence, F395.9.

[v] Ibid., May 16, 1861

[vi] Ibid., March 27, 1862

[vii] Ibid., J. Despard Pemberton to W.A.G. Young, Col. Sect’y, April 25. 1862

[viii] Ibid., undated, reply inscribed at bottom of correspondence

[ix] Ibid., May 3, 1865

[x] Colonist, July 18, 1865, p.3

[xi] Russell was born Feb. 29, 1836, the son of Robert & Agnes Russell (nee Cameron). E/E M58, PABC

[xii] Colville to Smith, Sept. 30, 1853, “… I should wish you to write to Mr. Thomas Russell, the schoolmaster whom he [McKenzie] mentions …,” PSAC, Correspondence Inward F.12/2 fo.520 1-b (1843-53) HBC Archives.
Coville to McKenzie, Nov. 18, 1853. “… and Mr. Thomas Russell has been written to but we have not yet received his answer …”
Colville, Correspondence Outward, A/E/M19/C72, PABC

[xiii] Kenneth McKenzie,  Daybook 1858-59, A/E/M19/M19.2 PABC

[xiv] Sarah was born in London, March 6, 1836, the daughter of Noah & Annie Collier (nee Patience). E/E M58, PABC

[xv] Another daughter, Catherine was born March 4, 1862 and died at New Westminster Dec. 7, 1880; a son, Robert Henry was born April 7, 1865 and died Sept. 7, 1869. Alice married Edwin D. Michael, May 28, 1884; she wrote numerous articles on life in Victoria; see Appendix I

[xvi] Grant of land to Thomas Russell, March 7, 1861, F.16/2 fo. 260-261 HBC Archives; see Appendix 2

[xvii] Alfred Waddington, Minutes, Board of Education, C/AA/30,8 M/1 PABC. See Appendix III for Waddington’s reports, School Visits 1865-67, regarding the classroom situation; cf. J. Stricker Craigflower School, HCB, Dec. 1979

[xviii] The fact that Russell was about to be replaced was apparently “leaked” as there are later references in the Minutes to the “unfortunate results”.

[xix] Alice Michael, loc cit. See Appendix I for the Colonist report on the 1870 fire involving Russell’s property

[xx] H.P. Grease, Correspondence Inward, A/E/C 86 C86 R911, PABC

[xxi] Alfred Waddington, Report; School Visits 1865 – 67, September 11, 1866 C/AA?30.8M. Records for This period show that four William Harrisons resided in Victoria; consequently, it is difficult to ascertain which documents refer to Harrison, the School Master.

[xxii] Ibid., October 15, 1866.

[xxiii] Waddington, op. cit. citation, April 20, 1867

[xxiv] Ibid., July 26, 1867

[xxv] See Appendix 1

[xxvi] Colonist, April 26, 1870, See Appendix 1

[xxvii] ibid., January 1, 1870, page 3

[xxviii] ibid., September 6, 1870, page 3

[xxix] ibid., February 25, 1875, page 3

[xxx] July 12, 1877, page 3; BC Directory 1877 – 78, lists a William Harrison, bookseller, stationer and newsagent Government Street, residence View Street.

[xxxi] Colonist, January 31, 1873, page 3; Verification of Marriage Particulars, Vital Statistics, Ministry of Health; also Colonist, January 13, 1881, page 3 and Birth Certificate, Vital Statistics, local citation.

[xxxii] Colonist, July 11, 1893 page 5:   the many friends of Mrs. William Harrison, 238 Johnson Street will regret to hear of her death… She had for some time being a severe sufferer from rheumatism and complications of diseases. She had been upwards of 20 years in the city coming out from Moville, Ireland with her sisters Mrs., Maslin, Mrs. Jas. Smith & Mrs. Field.

[xxxiii] Wm. Fisher to Colonial Secretary, October 15, 1869, Colonial Correspondence, F565/12, PABC

[xxxiv] C.B. Brown, Chairman, Criagflower School Board to E.G. Alston, Sept. 19, 1870, Colonial Correspondence, F 209/1. PABC.

[xxxv] LeLievre to Craigflower School Board, March 16, 1870, Colonial  Correspondence, F 209/1 PABC. See Appendix 1 for LeLievre’s testimonials

[xxxvi] C.B. Brown et al to Anthony Musgrave, Governor, March 22, 1870, Colonial Correspondence, F 209/1, PABC

[xxxvii] Colonist, Jan. 20, 1865, p.3; also Jan. 25, 1867, p.3

[xxxviii] F.B. Gribbell, Sept. 20, 1869, Colonial Correspondence, F 209/1. PABC. LeLievre taught for nine months at the Collegiate School

[xxxix] Colonist – Sept. 23, 1869, p.3

[xl] May 20, 1872, Dept. of Education, Correspondence Inward, C/AA/30 8M. Another letter contained in this file, dated Oct. 23,  1872 expresses support for LeLievre: ..I very much regret having to withdraw my child from the school solely on account of the wretched condition of the Schoolhouse, and I more respectfully regret that I am compelled to adopt this course as the child was rapidly improving under the tuition of Mr. LeLeivre.

[xli] Sessional Papers 1874-75, p.15. Further notes on this period are contained in J. Stricker, Craigflower School, Heritage Conservation Branch, Dec. 1979

[xlii] Colonist, May 19, 1881, p.3

[xliii] Colonist, Feb. 21, 1889, p.2. See Appendix II for references to other family members

[xliv] Colonial Correspondence F 209/1 PABC