Echoes recalls pioneer life

Book, CDs let audiences hear from early settlers in their own words

Robert Budd's Echoes of British Columbia tells true stories from the pioneers of the northwest in their words

In a follow-up to his well-received Voices of British Columbia, best-selling author and oral historian Robert (Lucky) Budd continues his exploration of the province’s history with captivating tales of its pioneering past, from coast to Kootenays, in Echoes of British Columbia.

Based on conversations recorded by legendary CBC Radio journalist Imbert Orchard between 1959 and 1966, Echoes of British Columbia features first-hand stories from some of the province’s most remarkable and inspiring pioneers.

Budd skillfully renders some of the most entertaining and astonishing accounts from the Orchard collection into entrancing prose, accompanied by a CD with the original recordings.

Stories about the Terrace area include The Ties Keep on Coming with David Ross speaking about Building the Railroad from Prince Rupert after he came over from Scotland, and at that time many young men were immigrating from Scotland.

Ross talks about how land was a good price: $10 for 160 acres (65 hectares) and work was said to be abundant.

He names the Grand Trunk Stations located about every six miles, including Terrace, Shames and Exstew and more.

Another story from our area is I will Die if You Keep Me Here, about a man known only as “Indian Issac,” who had to make a choice whether to save his daughter’s life or a surveyor’s in winter.

Based on his choice, he received medals and for being the best Catholic and was told they were valuable and could be important later in his life.

And when his best intentions to help the people get along went awry, the medals impressed a judge and kept him out of jail later on.

Echoes of British Columbia is available from Harbour Publishing.

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