Canada's History



“Before gold, geographic­al knowledge of British Columbia was sparse and spotty; after it, roads were built, population levels surged, and suddenly the world knew of British Columbia’s existence,” writes Derek Hayes in the paperback edition of British Columbia: A New Historical Atlas (Douglas & McIntyre, 368 pages, $44.95). This remarkable illustrati­on of West Coast “gold country” — one of more than nine hundred maps in the geographer’s award-winning atlas — was printed in Britain in September 1858 by Read and Company to highlight the Fraser River gold rush. While recognizin­g that this map “is woefully inaccurate in many details,” Hayes nonetheles­s calls it “one of the finest maps ever to depict British Columbia.”

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