CNHS - Motor Vessel BCP 45 - Campbell River BC
N 50° 01.206 W 125° 14.207
10U E 339770 N 5543262
Quick Description: A lot of Canada's history is tied to the sea. Here is an example of that. It's the wooden seiner that adorned the Canadian 5 dollar bill for a number of years.
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Date Posted: 4/29/2008 6:18:39 PM
Waymark Code: WM3PG0
The Campbell River Maritime Heritage Centre is presently open only Monday to Friday and a fee is charged to enter but you can see BCP45 from the outside through the large glass without spending money. I am not sure if the days open change once the tourist season starts.
At present there is no plaque for this site.
From the Parks Canada "Backgrounder" on the seiner.
"Motor Vessel BCP 45 is among the oldest and best-preserved surviving examples of a wooden seiner, a class of vessel intimately associated with the commercial West Coast fishery during the 20th century that has had all but disappeared from use. It was built in 1927 at Vancouver’s Coal Harbour, a location that was a hub of wooden fishing vessel construction and design. BCP 45 was launched at a time when seine fishing was coming into its own. The vessel’s original owner, British Columbia Packers, was to dominate the fish canning industry in the second half of the 20th century."
"The vessel is a worthy representative of its class, which was accorded an added iconic value through its depiction on the Canadian five-dollar bill from 1972 to 1986. Overall, in terms of its ownership, design and technology, the vessel illustrates key aspects in the developments in the West Coast fishery over a period of nearly 70 years"
From the Campbell River Maritime Heritage Centre web page where the seiner now resides.
"The vessel rose to fame in 1958 when it was photographed during the Sockeye season near Ripple Point, located just north of Campbell River. The photograph appeared on the cover of the Toronto Star's Sunday magazine but rose to greater prominence when the Bank of Canada used the image on the back of the $5 bill between 1973 to 1986. The skipper at the time the photo was taken was the late Mel Assu with crew members Andy Dick, Fred Seville, Ron Forrest, Allen Chickite and Allen Mearns.
In 1986 the BCP 45 was invited to be a special guest of Expo 86 in Vancouver. Captain Allen "Ollie" Chickite brought her to this event and spent his days answering numerous questions about her past and his evenings sleeping on one of her cramped bunks. As one of 185 exhibits, thousands of people walked her decks and McLean's Magazine rated her #6 out of the 185 exhibits.
After 68 years of service as a salmon seiner, troller, gillneter, beam trawller and tow-off for the winter herring, the BCP 45 was retired from industry in 1996. She was then donated to the BC Maritime Museum in Vancouver where she sat for 6 years. Thanks to the Daybreak Rotary Club of Campbell River, she then returned home on June 8, 2002 to the waters of Campbell River where she made her living and was immortalized in that historic photo. On October 24, 2002 the BCP 45 moved into its present location in the Campbell River Maritime Heritage Centre. She will settle into retirement as its centrepiece and will be restored to its 1958 configuration when the photo was taken."
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