History must be respected

People like Port Alberni's Jack James—who has a rich knowledge of the way things were done half a century ago—are becoming scarce.

When the new spar tree at McLean Mill National Historic Site was finally raised on Sunday, it was nothing new for supervisor Jack James. James is an oldtime logger who has worked his way up, down and around the forestry business for 50 years. Now as a volunteer he runs the steam donkey demonstration at McLean Mill.

James has raised “too many of these things in my  lifetime. I was a high rigger at one time and all I did was raise trees,” he says.

While the method of raising the new tree was filed solidly in James’ memory, the same could not be said for most of the other volunteers, who had never done this before. James patiently schooled them in the traditional method of raising wooden spar trees, which were replaced in the 1960s by steel spars. The whole process on Sunday was captured on video as well as in still photos, so we don’t lose this amazing hands-on wisdom.

People like James—who has a rich knowledge of the way things were done half a century ago—are becoming scarce. While there are better and more modern methods to log now (helicopter logging has replaced the need for wooden or steel spars), it is important to remember our roots.

There are still people around who lived through the age of steam, the electric motor and other critical developments of the past century. The last 100 years can arguably be identified as the most important in terms of mankind’s development (for better or worse); who is going to teach our children about these accomplishments if we don’t celebrate them?

Just Posted

Moms of those killed by illicit opioids take to B.C. Legislature in call for action

Moms Stop the Harm, a nationwide network of families who have lost loved ones to overdoses rally

Alberni wrestler heads to University of the Fraser Valley to compete

Ravi Manhas is one of 10 recruits signed to the Cascades for 2018-19

Taxing Vancouver Island

Big Read: find out which communities are paying the lowest and highest taxes on Vancouver Island

UPDATE: Construction on Hwy. 4 halted after tree crashes into traffic

Trees are being cleared along the highway between Port Alberni and the Tofino-Ucluelet junction.

VIDEO: Canadian toddler caught practising hockey skills in crib

Eli Graveline is getting praise from far and wide as the internet freaks out of cute throwback video

Canadian Syrian children’s choir not to attend festival over fears about U.S. travel

Many kids are recent immigrants from countries covered by Trump travel ban

Amalgamation fails in North Cowichan and Duncan

North Cowichan says yes, but Duncan says no

B.C. teacher ends Jeopardy! winning streak, taking home US$69,000

Ali Hasan, from New Westminster, has been gaining fans as a “one-man invasion,” says Alex Trebek

Jett Woo highlights 5 Canucks choices on Day 2 of NHL entry draft

WHL star out of Moose Jaw tabbed in Round 2

In a matter of hours, women in Saudi Arabia will be allowed to drive

Change was announced as a royal decree in 2017 by Crown Prince Mohammen bin Salman

Feds announce measures to protect endangered whale species

Canada’s Whale Initiative is part of the federal government’s $1.5 billion Ocean Protection Plan

COC session vote approves Calgary as potential host for 2026 Olympics

Scott Hutcheson, chair of Calgary’s Olympic bid corporation — called vote a positive step forward

Lawyer fired in B.C. courtroom during trial for dangerous driving causing death

Dustin Dennis Zinter was charged following November 2015 accident near Nanaimo, B.C.

Most Read