On Sept. 16, 1868 the town of Barkerville was engulfed in flames.
Chris Linton, program manager for Historic Hat Creek Ranch read the following from the Cariboo Sentinal: “In just one hour and twenty minutes from the first cry of fire, the last roof fell, and the destruction of the town of Barkerville was pronounced complete… the merciless element had turned the tenants of 120 houses roofless into the streets, and many with no more property than covered their persons.”
The fire first appeared at 2:30 pm and by 4 pm, almost the entire town was burnt to the ground. While there was some discussion about how the fire started, a public meeting was held to discuss the lack of a fire brigade.
MLA Jackie Tegart, along with members of the BC Heritage Branch, Friends of Historic Hat Creek Ranch and community members attended the simple ceremony on Sunday to acknowledge the completion of the historic site’s enhanced water system and its new fire suppression system.