In 1948, some pieces of local history go on display at Ashcroft Manor

The remains of the grist mill at Ashcroft Manor, along with its mill stones, are shown in this undated photo, probably from the late 1920s. (Photo credit: Ashcroft Museum and Archives)The remains of the grist mill at Ashcroft Manor, along with its mill stones, are shown in this undated photo, probably from the late 1920s. (Photo credit: Ashcroft Museum and Archives)
The remains of the grist mill at Ashcroft Manor, along with its mill stones, are shown in this undated photo. (Photo credit: Ashcroft Museum and Archives)The remains of the grist mill at Ashcroft Manor, along with its mill stones, are shown in this undated photo. (Photo credit: Ashcroft Museum and Archives)


While the Journal archives are almost complete from May 1895 to the present, the issues of March and April 1898 are unfortunately missing.

100 YEARS AGO: MARCH 17, 1923

The Hospital Dance: The dance which took place on Wednesday night last in aid of the Lady Minto hospital, as had been advertised extensively throughout the district, proved one of the most brilliant successes of its kind that has taken place in Ashcroft for some years. The cause which stood behind the dance was no doubt in a great measure responsible for the support which it received from one and all, for everyone realizes the importance and necessity of a hospital in a community.

Lytton Happenings: Great excitement prevailed in the vicinity owing to the reported “big strikes” on Chaumox Creek, near Boothroyd, about 20 miles west of here on the C.N.R. An Indian found a “chunk” of float quartz, said to weigh 60 pounds, out of which he secured 20 pounds of gold. We fancy the dimensions have grown considerably in the telling, but in any case, if any considerable quantity of gold was found, it is safe to say that the creek will be under surveillance for some time to come.

Local Jottings: The Grim Reaper has traded his scythe for an automobile … Music with meals now at the Ashcroft Hotel. A gramophone has been installed … In the city police court at Kamloops recently, Jas. Allen and Thomas Driscoll, charged with bootlegging, were found guilty and sentenced to six months with hard labour … The lion still has possession of the month of March.

Lillooet News: The boys have been tapping maple trees. The sap boiled down makes good syrup and sugar. The B.C. refinery better reduce the price of their cane production.

Prune Theft: F. Parsons, of Shalalth, brought Geo. Rebagliati before magistrate S. Gibbs for stealing a box of prunes. The case was dismissed, Rebagliati being ordered to deliver the prunes. The accused man is in charge of the Bridge River warehouse, and his defence was that he had moved the prunes to another and safer part of the warehouse.

75 YEARS AGO: MARCH 18, 1948

Mill Stones On Display At Manor: Mr. Alan Parker, now resident at the [Ashcroft] Manor, has placed on display by the roadside near his residence the old historic flour mill stones and part of the machinery that have lain idle and neglected “up the creek” where they operated for a number of years in pioneering times. The stones were brought to this section of the interior by the late Cornwall Bros. about 1864. They came “around the Horn” presumably from France to Victoria in 1848. The stones are thought to have been the first to grind wheat in the interior, but there is rivalry as to priority with Lillooet and Dog Creek. The Ashcroft mill was operated by an overflow water wheel, the remains of which may be seen on the original mill site. [Note: The mill stones in question were from the grist mill operated by the Cornwall brothers at what is now Ashcroft Manor, not from the Harper’s grist mill at the mouth of the Bonaparte River.]

Rides For Help: Darwin Bell had a serious accident on Saturday last when he is reported to have fallen from a haystack and broken a bone in his neck. He was alone at the time and, upon recovering consciousness, managed to get to his horse and ride to Watch Lake for help. Bert Gammie took him to the Lady Minto Hospital at Ashcroft, where he is a patient.

Tingley Ranch: Mr. Talmage (Tom) Campbell of Kamloops was in this neighbourhood last weekend. Mr. Campbell recently bought the “Tingley Ranch” across the Thompson river, from the owners Wing Wo Lung. The ranch is one of the historic land masses in this section of the interior, having originally been occupied by the late John Craig and was known as the “Craig Ranch”, until purchased by Mr. Tingley. By old timers it is still known by its original name.

Yale To Celebrate 100th Anniversary: This year the historic town of Yale will celebrate its hundredth birthday, having been born in 1848. “We are busy digging around everywhere looking for old landmarks. We had a joint meeting and you would have been thrilled at the wonderful pictures of old times we had on display … We had a general clean-up on Sunday at the cemetery; the snow stopped us, but we came upon a grave marked 1860,” writes Mrs. R.M. Campbell of Yale, to the Journal. Yale is unique in the province of B.C. having its roots in pioneering Hudson’s Bay Company days, the Fraser river gold rush of the 60s, and the building of the CPR in the early eighties.

Daylight Saving Time: The Government, by Order-in-Council, has brought into effect Daylight Saving Time throughout the Province. Clocks will be moved forward one hour at midnight on April 24 and will be moved back to normal time at midnight September 25.

50 YEARS AGO: MARCH 15, 1973

Spences Bridge Derby Winners: The Spences Bridge and District Chamber of Commerce Steelhead Derby Cabaret was very successful. There were 280 fish weighed in. The [top] prizes were as follows: Mr. A.M. Scruton, Lytton, trophy — 27 pounds. Mrs. R. Schmid, Vancouver, Ladies trophy donated by Shaw Springs Resort — 21 pounds.

Clinton Fire On Europe Air: On the same day that the Frontier Hotel in Clinton was destroyed by fire a former Clinton girl, Anne Williams (Gillespie), at present living in Lahr in Germany, was listening to a German-based radio programme of CBC news, which is usually national or international, but occasionally has a local item inserted, when she heard that a 2 storey hotel in Clinton had burned down! As she said in her next letter, she was surely the only person in Europe who would be interested in that item of news! But on the other hand it had reached the ears of the only person in Europe who was interested! Of course, she was left wondering if it was the Cariboo Lodge or the Frontier which had gone! She had to wait for the next letter from home to find out. “But,” Mrs. N.E. Gillespie says, “I thought it was really something to hear Clinton news broadcast abroad. Clinton must be on the map!”

Cache Creek News Letter: The Council regrets that the offer of the historic log building from Mr. and Mrs. R.F. Colclough has to be declined as funds are required in more important areas of Village projects. The amount required to have the logs dismantled is $1,200, and for reassembly is $1,000. In addition a concrete floor would be required as well as a new roof, windows, doors, and a fireplace. This would be a very worthwhile project for a local organization, but action would have to be taken within one week as plans are to bulldoze and burn this historic building.

Ashcroft Fire Department: In May of this year the Ashcroft and Cache Creek Fire Depts., along with the local RCMP, will be holding the annual Children’s Bicycle Rodeo. It is our opinion that the majority of the children in this area cannot handle their bicycles properly. In fact you can see it for yourself every day on any street. Police Officers and Fire Dept. members can advise the children. But it is you, the parent, that must discipline and make them obey the basic rules of safety. DO IT TODAY.

Do you want to read more from the Journal archives? An expanded version of this story is available on the Journal website at

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