Cascadiens come to Barkerville Historic Town and Park

Patrick Haas from Tacoma, Wash., plays music to welcome visitors to the Cascadiens’ display Sunday (Aug. 11) at Barkerville Historic Town and Park. Lindsay Chung photos
Heather Kibbey of Eatonville, Wash., does some sewing with the Cascadiens Living History Reenactment Society. Lindsay Chung photo
Cascadien Karen Haas of Tacoma, Wash., weaves a shawl Sunday morning at Barkerville Historic Town and Park.
Kimberly Rose from Puyallup, Wash., knits Sunday morning in Barkerville. This is Rose’s second year coming to Barkerville with the Cascadiens Living History Reenactment Society. “I very much enjoy it,” she said. “This is a great place, and the people who work here are very special too.” Lindsay Chung photo
Cascadien Parker McIntosh of Vancouver makes a blanket coat using an old HBC bay blanket.
Cascadien Kimberly Rose of Puyallup, Wash., shows eight-year-old Cameron (left) and six-year-old Collin Clarke of Sorrento how to play wooden games from the 1860s Sunday morning at Barkerville Historic Town and Park.

The Cascadiens arrived at Barkerville Historic Town and Park last week (Aug. 8-11) and quickly set about making music, wooden toys and clothing for the prospectors who were trying to strike it rich along William’s Creek.

The Cascadiens Living History Reenactment Society is a troupe of friends from Washington, Vancouver and Quesnel who love history and come together to travel together and do re-enactments, mostly at historic Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC) sites, explained member Patrick Haas from Tacoma, Wash., who acts as a carver and musician with the group. His wife, Karen, does weaving, spinning and knitting.

This intrepid group of HBC employees arrived in Barkerville after travelling north along the newly-constructed Cariboo Waggon Road, hoping to see the sites of “the big city” and check it out for possible gainful employment.

In Barkerville, Karen was busy weaving shawls for the miners and their families, using goat, sheep and rabbit fibre.

“We came up the Cariboo Waggon Road,” she explained. “My husband worked for the HBC and heard about the Cariboo gold rush.”

Karen says the way to make money is “to mine the miners,” by making and selling items that will make their lives more comfortable. She had quite a bit of success selling items to the Cariboo miners, and she says they plan to return with more goods to sell next year.

“We live near Fort Langley, and I will spend all winter knitting and weaving,” she said.

In the group, Parker McIntosh from Vancouver is a tailor, and he was making a blanket coat out of a well-worn HBC bay blanket.

“When it’s work out and used, it’s still very valuable,” he said, pointing out many small patches of wool blanket that have been sewn together. “By the time I’m done, I will have used the entire blanket, save for a few threads.”

The blanket coat has a hood and collar and pockets in the back, and it is quite tailored.

“The style is copied from the European fashions, including the pockets in the back,” explained McIntosh.

Their trip to Barkerville was the third week of reenactments for the Cascadiens, and they had been in Fort Langley the previous weekend. From here, they were headed to Fort St. James to see how they fit in there, explained Patrick.

READ MORE: You could be part of a historic Cariboo Gold Rush pack train recreation



editor@quesnelobserver.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Military called in to remove inert practice round found in Quesnel industrial park

A maintenance worker mowing the grass found the round, which turned out to no longer be explosive

Ranch Musings: No-till pasture rejuvenation and sivopasture trials

Columnist David Zirnhelt is hosting a field day Aug. 29 in Beaver Valley

Meet Tour de North cyclist Chris Fedoruk

Quesnel man is a community rider with this year’s Cops for Cancer team

Forestry Ink: Forest tenure changes are occurring throughout the world

Regular columnist Jim Hilton writes about forest tenure and ownership

Quesnel Safeway honours its volunteer shoppers

This year marks the 20th anniversary of Safeway’s volunteer shopper program

Disney Plus to launch in Canada in November

Analysts say latest streaming service may escalate cord cutting

B.C. manhunt suspects left cellphone video before they died: family

Family member says Kam McLeod, Bryer Schmegelsky recorded final wishes

Okanagan bus driver assaulted for asking patron not to smoke

59-year-old in hospital with non-life threatening injuries

B.C. sets rules for ride hailing, same minimum fee as taxis

Larger operating areas seen as threat by cab companies

Two hiking families team up to extinguish fire in B.C. backcountry

Children and their parents worked for three hours to ensure safety of the popular hiking region

Vancouver man arrested after pregnant woman’s SUV stolen, then crashed

Police are recommending charges against a 22-year-old Vancouver man

Elections Canada to assess ‘partisan’ climate change rhetoric case by case

People’s Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier has said climate change is not an emergency nor caused by human

Unseasonable snow forces campers out of northeastern B.C. provincial park

Storm brought as much as 35 centimetres of snow to the Fort Nelson, Muncho Lake Park-Stone Mountain Park

Most Read