A Kwakwakaʼwakw wedding ceremony in 1914
The Colony of British Columbia in 1863
Dionisio Alcalá Galiano was the first European to circumnavigate Vancouver Island
Sir James Douglas, first governor of the Colony of British Columbia
The Great Seal of the Island of Vancouver and its Dependencies was designed by Benjamin Wyon, Chief Engraver of Her Majesty's Seals, c. 1849. The symbolic badge he designed was the basis for the flag of Vancouver Island, which is still unofficially flown today.
A portion of the Cariboo Road in the Fraser Canyon, c. 1867
The flag of Vancouver Island was authorized in 1865 (colonies could place their badges upon the fly of a blue ensign). This flag uses the Colonial Seal of Vancouver Island from 1849. The flag was probably never actually flown in colonial times, but is used today as an unofficial representative flag.
Moody likened his vision of the nascent Colony of British Columbia to the pastoral scenes painted by Aelbert Cuyp
Topographic map of Vancouver Island
Moody designed the first Coat of arms of British Columbia
Köppen climate types in Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands
The centre of Vancouver Island contains high mountains, such as Golden Hinde.
The western side of Vancouver Island hosts a rainforest.
View from Mount Maguire in East Sooke Regional Park towards Washington
Northern resident orca Springer with her first calf in 2013.
Megaptera novaeangliae off the coast of Sooke
Long Beach, Tofino
Fireworks on August 15th at the Tofino pier
Campsite at Mystic Beach
BC Ferries MV Spirit of Vancouver Island, en route from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen

With the signing of the Treaty of Washington in 1846, which established the US border along the 49th parallel, the HBC moved the headquarters of its western operations from Fort Vancouver on the Columbia River (present day Vancouver, Washington) to the newly established Fort Victoria, on the southern tip of Vancouver Island.

- Colony of British Columbia (1858–1866)

The economic situation of the colony declined following the Cariboo Gold Rush of 1861–1862, and pressure grew for amalgamation of the colony with the mainland colony of British Columbia (which had been established in 1858).

- Vancouver Island

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Colony of Vancouver Island

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Crown colony of British North America from 1849 to 1866, after which it was united with the mainland to form the Colony of British Columbia.

Crown colony of British North America from 1849 to 1866, after which it was united with the mainland to form the Colony of British Columbia.

The Great Seal of the Island of Vancouver and its Dependencies was designed by Benjamin Wyon, Chief Engraver of Her Majesty's Seals, c. 1849. The badge he designed is the basis for the unofficial flag of Vancouver Island that debuted in 1988.
Sir James Douglas, second Governor of Vancouver Island
Amor De Cosmos, editor of the Daily Colonist, was an ardent opponent of the "family-company compact" of Bay men and Douglas associates who controlled the colony.
Sir Arthur Kennedy, third and last Governor of Vancouver Island

The colony comprised Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands of the Strait of Georgia.

To exert its legal authority, and undercut any HBC claims to the resource wealth of the mainland, the district was converted to a Crown colony on 2 August 1858, and given the name British Columbia.

British Columbia

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Westernmost province of Canada.

Westernmost province of Canada.

British Columbia's geography is epitomized by the variety and intensity of its physical relief, which has defined patterns of settlement and industry since colonization.
Outline map of British Columbia with significant cities and towns
Köppen climate types in British Columbia
The Strait of Georgia, near Vancouver
Shuswap Lake as seen from Sorrento
The Okanagan region has a climate suitable to vineyards.
Mount Robson, Canadian Rockies
Odaray Mountain and Lake O'Hara
Yoho National Park
Cheakamus Lake in Garibaldi Provincial Park
Humpback whale in Sooke coast
'Namgis Thunderbird Transformation Mask, 19th century
Fort San Miguel at Nootka in 1793
Kwakwaka'wakw house pole, second half of the 19th century
Fort Rupert, Vancouver Island, 1851
Cattle near the Maas by Dutch painter Aelbert Cuyp. Moody likened his vision of the nascent Colony of British Columbia to the pastoral scenes painted by Cuyp.
Victoria, 1864
Lord Strathcona drives the Last Spike of the Canadian Pacific Railway, at Craigellachie, November 7, 1885. Completion of the transcontinental railroad was a condition of British Columbia's entry into Confederation.
Memorial to the "last spike" in Craigellachie
Statue of Queen Victoria outside the British Columbia Parliament Buildings in Victoria
Internment camp for Japanese Canadians during World War II
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W.A.C. Bennett, 25th premier of British Columbia
British Columbia's pavilion for Expo 86, Vancouver
The Coquihalla Highway was one of the legacies of the Expo 86 world's fair, though creation of the toll highway sparked controversy. Tolling was removed in 2008.
The cauldron of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver
Population density map of British Columbia, with regional district borders shown
The Vancouver skyline
Canada Place in Downtown Vancouver
Entrance to Telus Garden
The British Columbia Parliament Buildings in Victoria
Coat of arms' escutcheon of the current lieutenant governor
John Horgan is premier, BC's head of government.
The meeting chamber of the Legislative Assembly
The flower of the Pacific dogwood is often associated with British Columbia.
The Alex Fraser Bridge on Highway 91 between Richmond and Delta
British Columbia Highway 1 near Brentwood, Burnaby
CPR train traversing the Stoney Creek Bridge
Spirit of Vancouver Island S-class ferry
Ice sailing in Whistler
Shoreline Trail in Victoria
Hatley Castle on the campus of Royal Roads University
Aerial view of Simon Fraser University in Burnaby
Quest University Canada Academic Building, aerial view

The Colony of British Columbia (1858–1866) was subsequently founded by Richard Clement Moody, and by the Royal Engineers, Columbia Detachment, in response to the Fraser Canyon Gold Rush.

British Columbia's capital is Victoria, located at the southeastern tip of Vancouver Island.

James Douglas with Order of the Bath honours

James Douglas (governor)

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James Douglas with Order of the Bath honours
Lady Amelia Connolly Douglas, his wife
The Douglas Obelisk
Statue of Douglas, at Fort Langley National Historic Site in Fort Langley, BC
Grave of Sir James Douglas at Ross Bay Cemetery in Victoria, BC

Sir James Douglas (August 15, 1803 – August 2, 1877), was a British Columbian fur trader and politician who became the first Governor of the Colony of British Columbia.

In 1841, Douglas was charged with the duty of setting up a trading post on the southern tip of Vancouver Island.

Map of the lands in dispute

Oregon Treaty

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Treaty between the United Kingdom and the United States that was signed on June 15, 1846, in Washington, D.C. The treaty brought an end to the Oregon boundary dispute by settling competing American and British claims to the Oregon Country; the area had been jointly occupied by both Britain and the U.S. since the Treaty of 1818.

Treaty between the United Kingdom and the United States that was signed on June 15, 1846, in Washington, D.C. The treaty brought an end to the Oregon boundary dispute by settling competing American and British claims to the Oregon Country; the area had been jointly occupied by both Britain and the U.S. since the Treaty of 1818.

Map of the lands in dispute

The Oregon Treaty set the border between the U.S. and British North America at the 49th parallel with the exception of Vancouver Island, which was retained in its entirety by the British.

The British portion remained unorganized until 1858, when the Colony of British Columbia was set up as a result of the Fraser Canyon Gold Rush and fears of the re-asserted American expansionist intentions.