The Valencia Shipwreck on the West Coast TrailThere were just 38 survivors of the Valencia shipwreck.  An estimated 140 people lost their lives on the ship over the course of 36 hours.  The 38 survivors escaped the ship at different times and different ways.  Nine of the survivors managed to make it through the first hour when all but one of the lifeboats were flipped in the surf or smashed against the ship.  These wet and freezing survivors gathered along the base of cliffs about 250 metres north of the Valencia.  

The Valencia Disaster

 Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail1. The Valencia Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail2. The Voyage Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail3. The Boats Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail4. The McCarthy Boat Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail5. The Bunker Party Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail6. On the Valencia Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail7. The Rafts Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail8. The Turret Raft Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail9. The Rescue Ships Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail10. The Aftermath Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail11. The Survivors Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail12. The Lost 

The West Coast Trail

Shipwreck on the West Coast TrailPrologue Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail1: The West Coast Trail Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail2: When to Hike & Fees Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail3: Trailheads Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail4: Getting There Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail5: Considerations Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail6: Campsites Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail7: Shipwrecks Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail8: Routes

In the morning they managed to climb to the top of the cliff where they entered the forest where they discovered a telegraph wire strung between trees.  They followed the wire through the near impenetrable forest until the reached a lineman's hut.  This group of men became known as the Bunker Party after Frank Bunker, who took charge when they set off from the cliffs.  Another group of survivors left the ship the following morning on the last lifeboat, boat No.5.  Boatswain McCarthy was first to volunteer to get on the boat and five others volunteered after him.  The McCarthy Boat was ordered to get to land near the ship and hike up to the cliffs opposite and receive a line shot from the Valencia.  They failed to get to shore anywhere close to the ship and ended up landing several miles north of the Valencia near the Cape Beale Lighthouse.  These six survived and reported the Valencia shipwreck to the world, though the Bunker Party had already done so an hour earlier.  The following day at about 930am, Wednesday January 24th, 1906, rescue ships would finally arrive.  Due to the stormy weather, they remained barely within sight of the Valencia which was being battered by huge waves and breaking apart.  About 90 wet and freezing survivors clung to the Valencia and with the ships seemingly unwilling to help, they chose to launch the two remaining life rafts.  The design of the rafts meant that the occupants would be constantly drenched with water and be hard to maneuver in the rough seas.  Getting away from the ship seemed unlikely.  Sometime between 10am-1030am ten brave men went off on the first raft and got away from the ship remarkably easily.  Seeing the success of the first raft, the second raft was overloaded with 19 men and also cleared the breakers.  Both rafts soon lost sight of each other and drifted apart.  The ships they were hoping to reach had actually departed and another ship, the Topeka did not know the location of the Valencia and was searching up and down the coast.  About six freezing and terrifying hours would pass before the second raft was finally spotted by the Topeka and brought on board.  The nineteen barely alive survivors of the Topeka Raft asked about the first raft which was not so lucky.  The ten on board the first raft was reduced to just four survivors when one by one they would succumb to the freezing cold of being partly submerged on the raft.  Twenty six hours after they first left the Valencia, three of the survivors were found on Turret Island where they managed to land about fourteen hours into their ordeal.  The fourth man was located a few hours later. 

Bunker Party Nine Survivors

Passenger Frank Bunker, fireman Frank Richley, passenger Frank Campbell, passenger Tony Brown, fireman George Beledhos, passenger Yosuki Hosoda, passenger Michael Hone, passenger Charles Samuels, and passenger Albert Willis.

Bunker Party Leaving Darling River

McCarthy Boat Six Survivors

Boatswain Timothy McCarthy and five brave crewmen, Thomas Shields, John Marks, William Gosling, Tom Lampson and Charles Brown.

Topeka Raft Nineteen Survivors

The 19 men picked up by the second raft, which became known as the Topeka Raft were: passenger Cornelius Allison, first assistant engineer Tom Carrick, fireman William Doherty, baker Charles Fluhme, passenger George Harraden, passenger A.H. Hawkins, waiter Charles Hoddinott, third cook John Johnson, coal passer W.D. Johnson, first assistant freight clerk Frank Lehn, passenger Joseph McCafferty, waiter P.V. O’Brien, second officer Peter Peterson, fireman P. Poivner, messman Walter Raymond, fireman John Segalos, quartermaster Martin Tarpey, waiter John Walsh, and passenger James Willits.

Topeka Raft Survivors

Turret Raft Four Survivors

The four survivors from the Turret Raft were, chief cook Sam Hancock, waiter Frank Connors, fireman Max Stensler and fireman George Long.

Turret Raft Survivors

ALLISON, Cornelius, Valencia Passenger - Topeka Raft Survivor

Cornelius Allison was a first class passenger on the Valencia and one of the 19 survivors picked up from the second raft by the Topeka.  In his sixties, he had been a sailor years ago and because he had some experience on ships he gave more forceful opinions than other surviving passengers.  The contradicting accounts from the various survivors makes finding the accurate details of weather and specific events hard to pin down.  Cornelius Allison comes from a perspective of a tough old sailor who has seen a lot of the world and doesn't scare easily.  He evidently has a lifetime of experience on ships and has seen a lot of stormy seas.  He testified during the Seattle investigation that, "the surf that finally battered the Valencia to pieces could not be called high."  He criticized the rescue ships for not attempting any assistance. "The vessels at sea stood off and made not attempt to lower a boat... There might have been some excuse for the Queen's not coming in closer, but there was a tug lying alongside of her that did not come any closer than the large vessel.  It all looked wrong to us."  Asked about the weather when they were picked up by the Topeka, he replied, "It was a trifle foggy, but there was no wind blowing.  The waves did not have combers on them.  I do not see why a boat could not have been lowered."  The Victoria Times Colonist on Feb 7th, 1906 reported on the testimony of Allison, "When the first life raft was lowered the witness said it rode the seas fairly well.  He said the raft on which he and seventeen others embarked also had no difficulty in riding the waves.  He understood, he said, this raft had a capacity of twelve, although eighteen crowded onto it."  The article went on to quote Allison, "The vessel which others aboard the wreck said was the Queen was standing about three-quarters of a mile off when the last raft left.  Our object was to reach this ship, but before we had traversed a third of the way to where it was the vessel blew her whistle and steamed away.  She made no effort at rescue, as far as I knew."

BELEDHOS, George, Valencia Fireman - Bunker Party Survivor

George Beledhos was a fireman on the Valencia that survived as part of the Bunker Party.  His name was hilariously misspelled in newspaper reports as B.E. Ledhos.  He left the Valencia in the first hour after the wreck on the No.3 lifeboat, the fifth boat launched and managed to get away from the Valencia for a short distance with fifteen people on board.  After one of the oars was lost, the boat veered towards the surf and flipped over, drowning eight.  Somehow George Beledhos and six other men survived and ended up along the shore at the base of a near vertical cliff about 250 metres north of the Valencia.  With George Beledhos were Frank Campbell, Tony Brown, Yosuki Hosoda, Michael Hone, Charles Samuels, and Albert Willis.  Among the drowned were the wife and 16 year old stepdaughter of Frank Campbell. These seven were joined by Frank Bunker and Frank Richley from the No.6 lifeboat that also flipped and killed all but two on board.  These nine men huddled together, soaking wet and freezing at the base of the cliff until daylight.  Later dubbed the Bunker Party after passenger Frank Bunker who took charge of the group.  All nine men in the Bunker Party would survive the Valencia shipwreck.

BROWN, Charles, Valencia Seaman - McCarthy Boat Survivor

Charles Brown, a seaman on the Valencia was one of the six crewmen that left the Valencia in the last lifeboat, the McCarthy Boat, the morning after the shipwreck.  The McCarthy Boat left the Valencia at about 9am on Tuesday, January 23rd.  They were specifically ordered by the captain to get to land as soon as possible and hike up to the cliffs opposite the ship to receive the line from the Valencia.  They did not attempt to reach land until they found an easy landing seven miles north of the Valencia, near the Cape Beale Lighthouse.  When asked about this while testifying during a Valencia inquiry, he responded, “I didn’t want to come back’.

BROWN, Tony, Valencia Passenger - Bunker Party Survivor

Tony Brown was a first class passenger on the Valencia who survived with the Bunker Party.  He was on board the No.3 lifeboat with Frank Campbell, George Beledhos, Yosuki Hosoda, Michael Hone, Charles Samuels, and Albert Willis.  The boat made it a short distance from the Valencia before getting caught in the surf and flipped.  These men survived and somehow made it to shore while eight people, including Campbell's wife and stepdaughter drowned.  These seven men and Frank Bunker and Frank Richley from another flipped lifeboat formed the Bunker Party that hiked to a telegraph hut at Darling River and notified the world about the Valencia shipwreck.  These nine men huddled together, soaking wet and freezing at the base of the cliff until daylight.  Later dubbed the Bunker Party after passenger Frank Bunker who took charge of the group.  Some of the party had lost their shoes and set out into the forest through ankle deep snow.  They were lucky to find and follow the telegraph wire that led them out of the forest and onto a beach which they had much less difficulty hiking to reach the Darling River hut.  The Bunker Party had arrived at the Darling River hut in the afternoon on Tuesday, January 23rd and two days later, in the afternoon on Thursday, January 25th a rescue party from Bamfield finally reached them by hiking in with food and clothing.  At about 3:30pm they started the long hike back out to a ship waiting for them in Pachena Bay.

BUNKER, Frank, Valencia Passenger - Bunker Party Survivor

Frank Bunker was a first class passenger on the Valencia who survived in the shore party that he led and became known as the Bunker Party.  During the horrific first hour of the Valencia shipwreck six of the seven lifeboats were haphazardly launched.  The first three, No.1, No.4 and the working boat No.7 were smashed against the side of the Valencia or dropped by one end.  Mostly occupied by woman and children, nearly all drowned.  The next three boats were considerably more successful, at least they made it away from the ship.  One disappeared into the darkness and was thought to have gotten away safely.  The lifeboat or its passengers were never seen again.

The other two boats made it a couple hundred metres from the ship before getting caught in the surf and flipped.  Frank Bunker was on one of these, boat No.6 with nine people on board.  Frank Bunker, his wife, 4 year old daughter Dorothy, 2 year old son Frank, fireman Frank Richley and four others.  He recalled after the boat he was in was launched and they got away from the side of the steamer they had no difficulty in navigating into the open sea despite the cold, dark and stormy weather.  They managed to get a couple hundred yards from the Valencia before being caught by a breaker and casting most on board into the freezing ocean. Frank Bunker, his wife and son managed to survive, though Dorothy was never seen again.  Moments later the boat, caught in another breaker was thrown again.  This time the boat smashed into the reef.  Frank Bunker managed to survive by crawling out of the surf and clinging to the base of a cliff.  The rest of his family were never found.  

“When I reached shore after being thrown from the boat and losing my wife and children I was dimly conscious, almost unconscious in fact. I dimly remember being sucked out by the undertow, and finally got strength enough to grasp a rock and then I crawled along at the edge of the water looking for my wife and children. I then crawled up and tried to get above the high water mark. I heard a shout and knew that someone else had escaped. It was Richley, the fireman. I crawled toward him in the darkness, and soon we heard halloos and knew that others were on shore. Soon nine of us got together and lay on the rocks. I guess it was about 1 o’clock in the morning, and pitch dark, with rain and sleet falling fast. We huddled up one against the other on the rocks in the bitter cold to keep ourselves warm, and shivered until daylight.”

Frank Bunker would later recall that they, “landed from a quarter to a half mile from the wreck.  The coastline was exceedingly steep.”  The Call newspaper on 31 January, 1906 would quote Bunker describing what the nine survivors from the wrecked boats did next, “My party climbed the bluff at a considerable distance from the wreck.  We thought to get into the interior and arouse the inhabitants and then get back to the bluff, be we found no inhabitants.  We found a rude trail along the telegraph line.  We were in doubt as to whether the Valencia had any means of shooting a line and whether she was near enough to reach the bluff.  Our judgement said to follow the telegraph line to the first station and get help by land and sea and to then return over the trail to the bluff, but when we found the station and telephoned, my party was brave, but completely exhausted.  It was a physical impossibility for any of us to get back over the trail that night.”

According to his recollection it was somewhere around 1pm Tuesday, January 23rd when he spoke to Mrs. Paterson of the Cape Beale Lighthouse on the telephone.  This was thirteen hours after the Valencia wrecked and the first the world would learn of the disaster.  He tried to make her understand that there had been a wreck that a steamer had gone on the rocks.  She called her husband, who said he knew where he was.  He told him there were nine in his party and that there were 100 people on board the wreck.  This is when the Bunker Party first learned they were on Vancouver Island and not along the coast south of Cape Flattery in the US.  

The 24th of January edition of The San Francisco Call newspaper wrote: “The Bunker family were moving from Berkeley California to Seattle, where Frank Bunker was to soon begin working as Assistant Superintendent of Schools.  Mrs. Bunker was formerly a Miss Bull of Tulare, and the two were married six years ago.  Two children were born to the couple – Dorothy, a pretty girl of 4, and Frank, aged 2.  The Bunker family had planned to make their home in the north, his position with the school department of Washington being a lucrative one; but the sea disaster put an end to a happy outlook.  Bunker was formerly vice principal of the San Francisco Normal School and is very well known in this city.  The family lived for some time on Baker Street, opposite the park panhandle.  Later he took up his residence in Berkeley.  Mrs. Bunker was a young woman and was very well known to the residents of Tulare, where she was born.  Bunker is a native of Los Angeles, having received his early education there.  He advanced rapidly in educational work.”

CAMPBELL, Frank, Valencia Passenger - Bunker Party Survivor

The first four boats launched were complete disasters resulting in nearly all the passengers drowning.  The No.3 boat, the fifth boat launched, managed to get away from the Valencia for a short distance with fifteen people on board.  After one of the oars was lost, the boat veered towards the surf and flipped over, drowning eight.  Somehow seven men survived and ended up along the shore at the base of near vertical cliffs about 250 metres north of the Valencia.  The seven survivors were Frank Campbell, Tony Brown, George Beledhos, Yosuki Hosoda, Michael Hone, Charles Samuels, and Albert Willis.  Among the drowned were the wife and 16 year old stepdaughter of Frank Campbell. These seven men and Frank Bunker and Frank Richley from another flipped lifeboat formed the Bunker Party after passenger Frank Bunker who took charge of the group.  Some of the party had lost their shoes and set out into the forest through ankle deep snow.  They were lucky to find and follow the telegraph wire that led them out of the forest and onto a beach which they had much less difficulty hiking to reach the Darling River hut.  The Bunker Party had arrived at the Darling River hut in the afternoon on Tuesday, January 23rd and two days later, in the afternoon on Thursday, January 25th a rescue party from Bamfield finally reached them by hiking in with food and clothing.  At about 3:30pm they started the long hike back out to a ship waiting for them in Pachena Bay.

CARRICK, Thomas, First Assistant Engineer - Topeka Raft Survivor

Thomas Carrick, the first assistant engineer on the Valencia survived on the second raft picked up by the Topeka.  In the chaotic first hour of the wreck, Carrick was in charge of the No.7 lifeboat.  Timothy McCarthy, boatswain on the Valencia recalled, “No.7 was a wrecking boat and was small.  She was in charge of Assistant Engineer Carrick.  As she was lowered, one end became unfastened, and the people in her were spilled into the sea, all losing their lives except Carrick, who was pulled on board by his shipmates.”  The Valencia wrecked just before midnight on Monday, January 22nd.  About 34 hours later, at 10am Wednesday morning the situation on the Valencia was horrific.  Battered by waves, the ship was breaking apart and sinking lower into the crashing ocean.  Rescue ships had appeared in the distance, however no attempt at rescue had been made.  Knowing the ship could collapse under the waves at any moment, the crew decided to launch the last two life rafts.  The rafts are designed to float and remain stable, however those on board would be constantly soaked from waves crashing over the sides.  The survivors on the Valencia were already freezing cold, hungry and thirsty and most refused to get on the rafts.  The first of two rafts left the Valencia half full, with just 10 men on board.  Not expected to get far, it broke over the breakers and out to sea with surprisingly little difficulty.  The second raft was then packed with Thomas Carrick and 18 other men and set off twenty minutes after the first.  Breaking into the open sea they paddled furiously toward the distant ships. 

Carrick was part of the Valencia inquiry in the days that followed the disaster.  On January 29th The Call p2 reported on part of Carrick's interview, “The other raft was launched about twenty minutes before we left.  There were ten persons aboard it.  The question was asked why more passengers and less of the crew did not board the craft.  “Did the sailors attempt to crowd the passengers off?” was asked.  “No,” was the answer of the witness.  “The passengers would not leave the ship.”  Carrick said the first raft cleared the ship’s side in safety and had little trouble getting out into the open sea.  “The raft we left on” said Carrick, “was the last thing aboard the ship for anyone to get on.  The Valencia was broken up and the two parts of her were ten to fifteen feet apart, the stern working toward the shore.  The foremast was standing, but there was no one in the rigging.  The only persons washed overboard that I saw were a woman and her child.”

“The seas were very heavy and knocked us down unless we had something to hold to.  There was only about fifteen feet of the hurricane deck left for us to stand on, and I should judge that there were fifty to seventy-five persons on this.”  “When we put off from the ship on the raft I called to my oilers in the rigging to come with us, but they refused.  All the forward part of the vessel was under water at this time.  There was no disobedience to commands at any time.  Every member of the crew obeyed the orders of his superiors, as far as I knew.  When we pulled away from the vessel the last words I heard the captain say were: ‘Goodbye Tom.  For God’s sake try to save your passengers and crew.”

The battered raft headed out to sea toward the rescue ship, the Queen in the distance.  To their horror the Queen sailed away.  When they lost sight of it they turned toward the land.  Freezing and constantly wet they were tossed by the waves and five hours later, close to dead from exposure, they sighted another ship, the Topeka and were finally rescued.  The barely alive men on the Topeka raft had no way of knowing that the Valencia crumbled into the sea about three hours ago, killing all the remaining survivors.  They wouldn’t hear that news for a couple more hours.  When they asked about the first raft, they were dumbfounded to hear it must still be out there.  They barely survived five hours of hell on the second raft, the first raft, later called the Turret Raft was still going through hell.  A horrific journey considerably more brutal and lasting 26 hours.  When the Topeka Raft was getting rescued, the nightmare on the Turret Raft was just beginning.

CONNORS, Frank, Valencia Waiter - Turret Raft Survivor

Frank Connors was a waiter on the Valencia and only one of four men that miraculously survived on the Turret Raft.  The first of two life rafts, which could hold 18 people, departed Wednesday morning, the 24th of January, with only 10 on board as everyone else was afraid to get on and many expected rescue to come quickly now that a ship had arrived.  Not only was there hope for rescue, but the difficulty of actually getting on one of the rafts deterred all but these ten men.  The rafts had to be kept away from the side of the Valencia in order to keep it from slamming into it.  To get on the raft you had to jump from the ship into the freezing ocean surging in and out and crashing all around.  If you do get on a raft you will be freezing cold, soaking wet and constantly hit by waves coming over the sides.  Frank Connors dove into the water from the maintopmast to try to catch the first raft as it was leaving and smashed his face on something underwater.  When he surfaced he was pulled onto the raft bleeding from his nose and mouth.  This raft would wander up the coast, pulled by the current for hours.  One by one, the men on the raft died of exposure or driven insane by the agony, jumped into the ocean and drowned.  They landed on Turret Island around midnight, fourteen hours after leaving the Valencia.  When morning came there were only four men still alive and three dead bodies on the raft pulled high on the beach.  The four set off to search the island for help and at about 9am Thursday, January 25th Connors split from the group to search for a lighthouse he imagined he saw.  The other three men would find help at about noon and taken off the island.  Connors would be found the following day, miraculously still alive, though barely.

DOHERTY, William, Valencia Fireman - Topeka Raft Survivor

William Doherty was a fireman on the Valencia who survived on the second and last life raft that left the Valencia.

FLUHME, Charles, Valencia Baker - Topeka Raft Survivor

Charles Fluhme was a baker on the Valencia who survived on the last raft that left the Valencia.

GOSLING, William, Valencia Seaman - McCarthy Boat Survivor

William Gosling was a seaman on the Valencia who survived on the McCarthy Boat.

HANCOCK, Samuel, Valencia Chief Cook - Turret Raft Survivor

Samuel Hancock was the chief cook on the Valencia and survived on the first raft on Turret Island.

HARRADEN, George, Valencia Passenger - Topeka Raft Survivor

George Harraden, a first class passenger on the Valencia that escaped on the raft picked up by the Topeka.  His name is spelled different in almost every newspaper reporting on the Valencia.  Variously spelled Haradan, Harradon and Harriden to name a few.  In an interview in the days following the Valencia disaster Harraden recalled sending his mother off on what was likely lifeboat No.1.  He was asleep at the time of the accident, having retired about 9pm.  He had spoken to the first officer earlier, who told him that they expected to get to Victoria about 3am.  When he came out to the deck he heard someone say “Lower the boats to the saloon rail.”  He then went and found his mother in the social hall.  He then heard someone call the ladies out to get in the boats.  He told his mother to go and get in, which she did, and it was the last he saw of her.  He did not know if she went from the port or starboard side.  He saw one of them capsize, and it appeared to him that she gave way at one end and turned completely over.  There were lines thrown over to try to rescue the passengers, but he could not say if any were brought back.”  The sea was very high and sometimes it came up over the deck.  He got away on the second raft and was picked up by the Topeka. Harraden heard someone tell the lady passengers before the raft was launched that it was their last chance, but did not hear any reply.  He did not see anyone jump overboard and miss the raft.  They had a hard time getting away from the ship.

Harraden saw the Queen, the tug and another boat.  The tug came within a quarter mile of the wreck.  She only had one mast, but they could not see any person on board.  It was misty and there was a rather heavy swell.  He saw someone go up in the rigging of the Valencia and make signals to the tug, but she did not answer.  He thought the tug could have gone in closer to the wreck than what she did; and if she had done so a line could have then been floated in.  He figured that the ship was about 200 yards from the shore, and thought the tug could have done more than she did.  Asked what the Queen did, Mr.  Harraden replied that the Queen did not do anything.  Harraden stated the tug could have come within 300 yards and could have taken a raft from the Queen and drifted it in.  He could not say if it would be successful or not, but it was worth trying.  On the raft, after they lost sight of the Queen, they turned back towards the land and then sighted the Topeka; she picked them up, and he was just about “all in.”

HAWKINS, A.H., Valencia Passenger - Topeka Raft Survivor

A.H. Hawkins was a passenger on the Valencia who survived on the Topeka Raft.

HODDINOTT, Charles, Valencia Waiter - Topeka Raft Survivor

Charles P. Hoddinott, a waiter on board the Valencia, and a brother of Chief Steward Hoddinott, J.E. who was drowned.  Hoddinott’s brother refused to leave the ship for a place on the last life raft, but urged the witness to go.  “I asked my brother to go with me,” said the witness, “but he refused, saying he was going to stand by the women and children.  So I bade him good bye and jumped overboard.” – 2 Feb Vic Daily Times.  Daily Colonist 13 Feb p6: Hoddinott testified that the weather was exceedingly clear when the boatswain’s crew in No.5 boat left on Tuesday.  The Lyall gun was fired before the boat left and the line was ashore.  When the Queen came in sight the gun had been fired three times and he thought they were loud enough for the report to carry to the Queen.  In his opinion the Czar came within a quarter of a mile but he could not say if those on the tug saw the people on the wreck.

Daily Colonist 13 Feb p6: Hoddinott testified that when the Queen came in sight the gun had been fired three times and he thought they were loud enough for the report to carry to the Queen.  In his opinion the Czar came within a quarter of a mile but he could not say if those on the tug saw the people on the wreck.  Hoddinott testified that there were 13 members of the crew on the raft and 5 passengers.  Launching of the raft took 45 minutes.  When picked up by the Topeka they informed the Topeka’s captain that there was another raft out at sea and also passengers on the Valencia.  Hoddinott recalled that when he left the ship on the last raft and saw the captain and chief steward go among the woman and ask if they would go on the raft. None expressed any desire to take the chance, evidently thinking that they would be rescued by the ships in the offing.  He remembered seeing Miss Van Wyck in the rigging and also Walter Jesse who was continually busy and cheering the passengers.  He mentioned an incident of a lady expressing fear of her husband leaving her side and the man in order to set her mind at rest had taken a scarf and tied himself to her by the wrist.  When the Queen, Salvor and Czar came in sight he thought that it would be a matter of only a short time before all were rescued. He thought the Czar might have come within 200 yards of the ship at the outside and drifted a raft down the vessel. He thought if the launching of the boats had been deferred until Tuesday some of them would have got safely away.  He did not think the shore was more than 100 yards from the stern of the ship.

HONE, Michael, Valencia Passenger - Bunker Party Survivor

Mike Hone was a first class passenger on the Valencia who survived in the Bunker Party.  He left the Valencia in the first hour after the wreck on the No.3 lifeboat, the fifth boat launched and managed to get away from the Valencia for a short distance with fifteen people on board.  After one of the oars was lost, the boat veered towards the surf and flipped over, drowning eight.  Somehow Michael Hone and six other men survived and ended up along the shore at the base of a near vertical cliff about 250 metres north of the Valencia.  With Mike Hone were Frank Campbell, Tony Brown, Yosuki Hosoda, George Beledhos, Charles Samuels, and Albert Willis.  Among the drowned were the wife and 16 year old stepdaughter of Frank Campbell. These seven were joined by Frank Bunker and Frank Richley from the No.6 lifeboat that also flipped and killed all but two on board.  These nine men huddled together, soaking wet and freezing at the base of the cliff until daylight.  Later dubbed the Bunker Party after passenger Frank Bunker who took charge of the group.  Bunker recalled the events of that night vividly a few days later in an interview.

“In the morning I found a place where by difficult climbing we could get up the bluff and get from the water into the bush.  Then I found a man who had been thrown up on the rocks, with his face smashed and he was crazy, and had to abandon him. I then struck back into the bush thinking to get into the interior – I had no knowledge of the country – and reach some place and give the alarm. I struck a telegraph line and reasoned that I could get to some habitation. I and the others with me followed the telegraph line for several miles, until we finally reached a telegraph lineman’s hut at the side of Darling Creek. The snow was ankle deep and it was difficult to walk on the logs, and it was dangerous crossing the slippery logs over the creeks. Two of the men were without shoes and one had his ankle sprained and badly swollen, causing him great pain. In the telegraph hut we found a receiver in a box. There were no directions, but I got it fixed on the wire and succeeded in calling up Mrs. Logan at Clo-oose and when she called her husband, Lineman Logan, I notified him of the wreck and he telegraphed to Lightkeeper Paterson at Cape Beale who gave the news to the world.”

The Bunker party collapsed in exhaustion in the afternoon of Tuesday, January 23rd in the Darling River hut which was located near the KM14 mark of today’s West Coast Trail. The Valencia lay wrecked near KM18.  Lineman Logan was in Clo-oose near KM34 and the Carmanah Lighthouse is near KM44. Far in the opposite direction is Pachena Bay which is near KM0 and a few kilometres beyond is the Cape Beale Lighthouse.  In 1906 all of these points along what is today the West Coast Trail, were at that time along an unmarked route through the forest generally characterized as impenetrable.  The difficulty of hiking through the forest along the West Coast of Vancouver Island at the time of the Valencia disaster was nearly impossible to comprehend.  A single kilometre could take hours to hike through and with no trail to follow and surrounded by walls of forest, there is no way to know if the direction you are hiking leads anywhere.  This is the forest the Bunker Party first entered after spending the night wet and freezing.  Some of the party had lost their shoes and set out into the forest through ankle deep snow.  They were lucky to find and follow the telegraph wire that led them out of the forest and onto a beach which they had much less difficulty hiking to reach the Darling River hut.  The Bunker Party had arrived at the Darling River hut in the afternoon on Tuesday, January 23rd and two days later, in the afternoon on Thursday, January 25th a rescue party from Bamfield finally reached them by hiking in with food and clothing.  At about 3:30pm they started the long hike back out to a ship waiting for them in Pachena Bay.

HOSODA, Yosuki, Valencia Passenger - Bunker Party Survivor

Yosuki Hosoda, was a second class passenger on the Valencia who survived in the Bunker Party.  He was travelling with two other Japanese men, T. Manwakio and S. Rancuna, who didn't survive.  Yosuki Hosoda left the Valencia in the first hour after the wreck in the No.3 lifeboat, the fifth boat launched and managed to get away from the Valencia for a short distance with fifteen people on board.  After one of the oars was lost, the boat veered towards the surf and flipped over, drowning eight.  Somehow Yosuki Hosoda and six other men survived and ended up along the shore at the base of a near vertical cliff about 250 metres north of the Valencia.  With Yosuki Hosoda were Frank Campbell, Tony Brown, George Beledhos, Michael Hone, Charles Samuels, and Albert Willis.  Among the drowned were the wife and 16 year old stepdaughter of Frank Campbell. These seven were joined by Frank Bunker and Frank Richley from the No.6 lifeboat that also flipped and killed all but two on board.  These nine men huddled together, soaking wet and freezing at the base of the cliff until daylight.  Later dubbed the Bunker Party after passenger Frank Bunker who took charge of the group.  Bunker recalled the events of that night vividly a few days later in an interview.

“In the morning I found a place where by difficult climbing we could get up the bluff and get from the water into the bush.  Then I found a man who had been thrown up on the rocks, with his face smashed and he was crazy, and had to abandon him. I then struck back into the bush thinking to get into the interior – I had no knowledge of the country – and reach some place and give the alarm. I struck a telegraph line and reasoned that I could get to some habitation. I and the others with me followed the telegraph line for several miles, until we finally reached a telegraph lineman’s hut at the side of Darling Creek. The snow was ankle deep and it was difficult to walk on the logs, and it was dangerous crossing the slippery logs over the creeks. Two of the men were without shoes and one had his ankle sprained and badly swollen, causing him great pain. In the telegraph hut we found a receiver in a box. There were no directions, but I got it fixed on the wire and succeeded in calling up Mrs. Logan at Clo-oose and when she called her husband, Lineman Logan, I notified him of the wreck and he telegraphed to Lightkeeper Paterson at Cape Beale who gave the news to the world.”

The Bunker party collapsed in exhaustion in the afternoon of Tuesday, January 23rd in the Darling River hut which was located near the KM14 mark of today’s West Coast Trail. The Valencia lay wrecked near KM18.  Lineman Logan was in Clo-oose near KM34 and the Carmanah Lighthouse is near KM44. Far in the opposite direction is Pachena Bay which is near KM0 and a few kilometres beyond is the Cape Beale Lighthouse.  In 1906 all of these points along what is today the West Coast Trail, were at that time along an unmarked route through the forest generally characterized as impenetrable.  The difficulty of hiking through the forest along the West Coast of Vancouver Island at the time of the Valencia disaster was nearly impossible to comprehend.  A single kilometre could take hours to hike through and with no trail to follow and surrounded by walls of forest, there is no way to know if the direction you are hiking leads anywhere.  This is the forest the Bunker Party first entered after spending the night wet and freezing.  Some of the party had lost their shoes and set out into the forest through ankle deep snow.  They were lucky to find and follow the telegraph wire that led them out of the forest and onto a beach which they had much less difficulty hiking to reach the Darling River hut.  The Bunker Party had arrived at the Darling River hut in the afternoon on Tuesday, January 23rd and two days later, in the afternoon on Thursday, January 25th a rescue party from Bamfield finally reached them by hiking in with food and clothing.  At about 3:30pm they started the long hike back out to a ship waiting for them in Pachena Bay.

JOHNSON, John, Valencia Third Cook - Topeka Raft Survivor

John Johnson third cook on the Valencia who survived on the Topeka Raft

JOHNSON, W.D. Valencia Coal Passer - Topeka Raft Survivor

W.D. Johnson was a coal Passer on the Valencia who survived on the Topeka Raft.

LAMPSON, Tom, Valencia Sailor - McCarthy Boat Survivor

Tom Lampson was a sailor on the Valencia who survived in the McCarthy Boat.

LEHN, Frank, First Assistant Freight Clerk - Topeka Raft Survivor

Frank Lehn was the first assistant freight clerk on the Valencia who survived on the Topeka Raft.  Daily Colonist Feb 13 p6: Frank Lehn. Frank Lehn The second raft was prepared and he had jumped for it when he felt the steamer’s deckhouse being washed away.  Frank Lehn recalled in an interview, that on the raft passengers held on to the life lines on the raft, which had practically submerged.  He did not believe that assistance could have been rendered by boats from the Queen or other rescue steamers.  Assistance could only come from the shore.  The Queen looked to be about three miles away.  He remembered seeing Miss Van Wyck, a heavily built lady and her daughter, a little boy of about 7 years and several members of the crew of the Valencia when he left on the raft. The Valencia was about a ship’s length from the shore he said.  He remembered the gun being fired three times when the rescue steamers hove in sight, but no discussion as to the method of being rescued.

LONG, George, Valencia Fireman - Turret Raft Survivor

George Long was a fireman on the Valencia who survived on the Turret Raft.

MARKS, John, Valencia Sailor - McCarthy Boat Survivor

John Marks was a sailor on the Valencia survived on the McCarthy Boat.  His name is misspelled in a variety of ways in newspaper reports, as Jack Marks and in the same paper: John Monk and John Mark.  Sadly, a year after the Valencia wreck he died on another ship.  The Daily Colonist on June 11th, 1907 reported, "Jack Marks, survivor of the ill fated Valencia died on the steamship Minnesota when that vessel was en route from Yokohama to Seattle.  He was buried at sea."

MCCAFFERTY, Joseph, Valencia Passenger -Topeka Raft Survivor

Joseph or James McCafferty was a passenger on the Valencia who survived on the Topeka Raft  Daily Colonist 13 Feb p6: J. McCafferty, was questioned at the Valencia inquiry.  He said that when he came on deck there seemed to be a panic and no person had control of anyone.  He stated that none of the officers gave him any instructions but on the first night he had seen them trying to make the passengers comfortable.  He went on deck with a life preserver and was told by an officer that there was no need of them, but later he told him to put it on again.  He saw two boats launched and smashed up.  It was dark when he came on deck and there were quite a few people on deck.  He did not try to get in a boat, and did not see any officers.  Could not say who gave orders to let go.  No.1 boat was practically gone when he came on deck and he saw the second boat go down but could not say if there were any officers in charge or not.  He had heard some passengers say that no orders had been given.  He said there were no orders given and suggested that the officers should have been at their posts.  He said that when he came on deck there seemed to be a panic and no person had control of anyone.  He stated that none of the officers gave him any instructions but on the first night he had seen them trying to make the passengers comfortable.  When the steamers Queen, Salvor and Czar came in sight he thought that it would be a matter of only a short time before all were rescued.  He thought the Czar might have come within 200 yards of the ship at the outside and drifted a raft down the vessel.  McCafferty went on the second raft with 18 people, he found out later it was licensed to hold 18 persons.  They had considerable difficulty in getting away from the ship but after they reached the bow of the Valencia it was much easier.  He was pretty well done up when taken on board the Topeka.

MCCARTHY, Timothy, Valencia Boatswain - McCarthy Boat Survivor

Timothy McCarthy was the boatswain on the Valencia and survived on the last lifeboat, the No.5 boat launched the morning after the wreck, that became known as the McCarthy Boat.  McCarthy was the first to volunteer to crew this boat and was in charge of the five others that hesitantly volunteered after him.  

O’BRIEN, P.V., Valencia Waiter - Topeka Raft Survivor

P.V. Obrien was a waiter on the Valencia who survived on the Topeka Raft.

PETERSON, Peter, Valencia Second Officer - Topeka Raft Survivor

Peter Peterson was the second officer on the Valencia and survived on the Topeka Raft.

POIVNER, P. Valencia Fireman - Topeka Raft Survivor

P. Poivner was a fireman on the Valencia who survived on the Topeka Raft.

RAYMOND, Walter, Valencia Messman - Topeka Raft Survivor

Walter Raymond was a messman on the Valencia who survived on the Topeka Raft.

RITCHLEY, Frank, Valencia Fireman - Bunker Party Survivor

Frank Ritchley was a fireman on the Valencia who survived with the Bunker Party.  In an interview after the wreck he recalled, “I got on board No.6 by climbing over the rail before it was lowered.  There were nine men and a woman and children.  Could not say how many passengers of this number.  There was a mast, sail and oars in my boat.  Mr. Bunker and his wife were on board.  We were in the boat about 30 minutes.  Could not say how many oars were in use.  We were trying to keep her head to sea.  The current carried us right into shore.  We were capsized and righted up.  I only saw Mr. and Mrs. Bunker at that time.  She was in the boat and Mr. Bunker assisted me in.  A few minutes after she capsized again in the surf and hit the rocks, throwing us all out.  The side of the boat was smashed in.  I climbed up on the shore where Bunker, Campbell, a coal passer, Willis, Tony Brown and two other members of the crew were assembled.  Some had reached the shore from other boats or were washed up.”  These nine men huddled together, soaking wet and freezing at the base of the cliff until daylight.  Later dubbed the Bunker Party after Frank Bunker took charge of the group.  Bunker recalled the events of that night vividly a few days later in an interview.

“In the morning I found a place where by difficult climbing we could get up the bluff and get from the water into the bush.  Then I found a man who had been thrown up on the rocks, with his face smashed and he was crazy, and had to abandon him. I then struck back into the bush thinking to get into the interior – I had no knowledge of the country – and reach some place and give the alarm. I struck a telegraph line and reasoned that I could get to some habitation. I and the others with me followed the telegraph line for several miles, until we finally reached a telegraph lineman’s hut at the side of Darling Creek. The snow was ankle deep and it was difficult to walk on the logs, and it was dangerous crossing the slippery logs over the creeks. Two of the men were without shoes and one had his ankle sprained and badly swollen, causing him great pain. In the telegraph hut we found a receiver in a box. There were no directions, but I got it fixed on the wire and succeeded in calling up Mrs. Logan at Clo-oose and when she called her husband, Lineman Logan, I notified him of the wreck and he telegraphed to Lightkeeper Paterson at Cape Beale who gave the news to the world.”

The Bunker party collapsed in exhaustion in the afternoon of Tuesday, January 23rd in the Darling River hut which was located near the KM14 mark of today’s West Coast Trail. The Valencia lay wrecked near KM18.  Lineman Logan was in Clo-oose near KM34 and the Carmanah Lighthouse is near KM44. Far in the opposite direction is Pachena Bay which is near KM0 and a few kilometres beyond is the Cape Beale Lighthouse.  In 1906 all of these points along what is today the West Coast Trail, were at that time along an unmarked route through the forest generally characterized as impenetrable.  The difficulty of hiking through the forest along the West Coast of Vancouver Island at the time of the Valencia disaster was nearly impossible to comprehend.  A single kilometre could take hours to hike through and with no trail to follow and surrounded by walls of forest, there is no way to know if the direction you are hiking leads anywhere.  This is the forest the Bunker Party first entered after spending the night wet and freezing.  Some of the party had lost their shoes and set out into the forest through ankle deep snow.  They were lucky to find and follow the telegraph wire that led them out of the forest and onto a beach which they had much less difficulty hiking to reach the Darling River hut.  The Bunker Party had arrived at the Darling River hut in the afternoon on Tuesday, January 23rd and two days later, in the afternoon on Thursday, January 25th a rescue party from Bamfield finally reached them by hiking in with food and clothing.  At about 3:30pm they started the long hike back out to a ship waiting for them in Pachena Bay.

SAMUELS, Charles, Valencia Passenger - Bunker Party Survivor

Charles Samuels was a first class passenger on the Valencia who survived with the Bunker Party.  He escaped on the No.3 lifeboat in the chaos that erupted during the first few minutes after the wreck.  The first four boats launched were complete disasters resulting in nearly all the passengers drowning.  The No.3 boat, the fifth boat launched, managed to get away from the Valencia for a short distance with fifteen people on board.  After one of the oars was lost, the boat veered towards the surf and flipped over, drowning eight.  Somehow seven men survived and ended up along the shore at the base of near vertical cliffs about 250 metres north of the Valencia.  The seven survivors were Charles Samuels, Frank Campbell, Tony Brown, George Beledhos, Yosuki Hosoda, Michael Hone and Albert Willis.  Among the drowned were the wife and 16 year old stepdaughter of Frank Campbell.  These seven were joined by Frank Bunker and Frank Richley from the No.6 lifeboat that also flipped and killed all but two on board.  These nine men huddled together, soaking wet and freezing at the base of the cliff until daylight.  Later dubbed the Bunker Party after passenger Frank Bunker who took charge of the group.  Bunker recalled the events of that night vividly a few days later in an interview.

“In the morning I found a place where by difficult climbing we could get up the bluff and get from the water into the bush.  Then I found a man who had been thrown up on the rocks, with his face smashed and he was crazy, and had to abandon him. I then struck back into the bush thinking to get into the interior – I had no knowledge of the country – and reach some place and give the alarm. I struck a telegraph line and reasoned that I could get to some habitation. I and the others with me followed the telegraph line for several miles, until we finally reached a telegraph lineman’s hut at the side of Darling Creek. The snow was ankle deep and it was difficult to walk on the logs, and it was dangerous crossing the slippery logs over the creeks. Two of the men were without shoes and one had his ankle sprained and badly swollen, causing him great pain. In the telegraph hut we found a receiver in a box. There were no directions, but I got it fixed on the wire and succeeded in calling up Mrs. Logan at Clo-oose and when she called her husband, Lineman Logan, I notified him of the wreck and he telegraphed to Lightkeeper Paterson at Cape Beale who gave the news to the world.”

The Bunker party collapsed in exhaustion in the afternoon of Tuesday, January 23rd in the Darling River hut which was located near the KM14 mark of today’s West Coast Trail. The Valencia lay wrecked near KM18.  Lineman Logan was in Clo-oose near KM34 and the Carmanah Lighthouse is near KM44. Far in the opposite direction is Pachena Bay which is near KM0 and a few kilometres beyond is the Cape Beale Lighthouse.  In 1906 all of these points along what is today the West Coast Trail, were at that time along an unmarked route through the forest generally characterized as impenetrable.  The difficulty of hiking through the forest along the West Coast of Vancouver Island at the time of the Valencia disaster was nearly impossible to comprehend.  A single kilometre could take hours to hike through and with no trail to follow and surrounded by walls of forest, there is no way to know if the direction you are hiking leads anywhere.  This is the forest the Bunker Party first entered after spending the night wet and freezing.  Some of the party had lost their shoes and set out into the forest through ankle deep snow.  They were lucky to find and follow the telegraph wire that led them out of the forest and onto a beach which they had much less difficulty hiking to reach the Darling River hut.  The Bunker Party had arrived at the Darling River hut in the afternoon on Tuesday, January 23rd and two days later, in the afternoon on Thursday, January 25th a rescue party from Bamfield finally reached them by hiking in with food and clothing.  At about 3:30pm they started the long hike back out to a ship waiting for them in Pachena Bay.

SEGALOS, John, Valencia Fireman - Topeka Raft Survivor

John Segalos was a fireman on the Valencia who survived on the Topeka Raft.

SHIELDS, Thomas, Valencia Sailor - McCarthy Boat Survivor

Thomas Shields was a sailor on the Valencia who survived on the McCarthy Boat.

STENSLER, Max, Valencia Fireman - Turret Raft Survivor

Max Stensler was a fireman on the Valencia who survived on the Turret Raft.

TARPEY, Martin, Valencia Quartermaster - Topeka Raft Survivor

Martin Tarpey was the Quartermaster on the Valencia who survived on the Topeka Raft.

WALSH, James, Valencia Waiter - Topeka Raft Survivor

James Walsh was a waiter on the Valencia who survived on the Topeka Raft.

WILLIS, Albert, Valencia Passenger - Bunker Party Survivor

Albert Willis was a second class passenger on the Valencia who survived in the Bunker Party.  Willis left the Valencia in the first hour after the wreck in the No.3 lifeboat, the fifth boat launched and managed to get away from the Valencia for a short distance with fifteen people on board.  After one of the oars was lost, the boat veered towards the surf and flipped over, drowning eight.  Somehow Willis and six other men survived and ended up along the shore at the base of a near vertical cliff about 250 metres north of the Valencia.  With Albert Willis were Frank Campbell, Tony Brown, Yosuki Hosoda, Michael Hone, Charles Samuels, and George Beledhos.  Among the drowned were the wife and 16 year old stepdaughter of Frank Campbell. 

These seven were joined by Frank Bunker and Frank Richley from the No.6 lifeboat that also flipped and killed all but two on board.  These nine men huddled together, soaking wet and freezing at the base of the cliff until daylight.  Later dubbed the Bunker Party after passenger Frank Bunker who took charge of the group.  Bunker recalled the events of that night vividly a few days later in an interview.

“In the morning I found a place where by difficult climbing we could get up the bluff and get from the water into the bush.  Then I found a man who had been thrown up on the rocks, with his face smashed and he was crazy, and had to abandon him. I then struck back into the bush thinking to get into the interior – I had no knowledge of the country – and reach some place and give the alarm. I struck a telegraph line and reasoned that I could get to some habitation. I and the others with me followed the telegraph line for several miles, until we finally reached a telegraph lineman’s hut at the side of Darling Creek. The snow was ankle deep and it was difficult to walk on the logs, and it was dangerous crossing the slippery logs over the creeks. Two of the men were without shoes and one had his ankle sprained and badly swollen, causing him great pain. In the telegraph hut we found a receiver in a box. There were no directions, but I got it fixed on the wire and succeeded in calling up Mrs. Logan at Clo-oose and when she called her husband, Lineman Logan, I notified him of the wreck and he telegraphed to Lightkeeper Paterson at Cape Beale who gave the news to the world.”

The Bunker party collapsed in exhaustion in the afternoon of Tuesday, January 23rd in the Darling River hut which was located near the KM14 mark of today’s West Coast Trail. The Valencia lay wrecked near KM18.  Lineman Logan was in Clo-oose near KM34 and the Carmanah Lighthouse is near KM44. Far in the opposite direction is Pachena Bay which is near KM0 and a few kilometres beyond is the Cape Beale Lighthouse.  In 1906 all of these points along what is today the West Coast Trail, were at that time along an unmarked route through the forest generally characterized as impenetrable.  The difficulty of hiking through the forest along the West Coast of Vancouver Island at the time of the Valencia disaster was nearly impossible to comprehend.  A single kilometre could take hours to hike through and with no trail to follow and surrounded by walls of forest, there is no way to know if the direction you are hiking leads anywhere.  This is the forest the Bunker Party first entered after spending the night wet and freezing.  Some of the party had lost their shoes and set out into the forest through ankle deep snow.  They were lucky to find and follow the telegraph wire that led them out of the forest and onto a beach which they had much less difficulty hiking to reach the Darling River hut.  The Bunker Party had arrived at the Darling River hut in the afternoon on Tuesday, January 23rd and two days later, in the afternoon on Thursday, January 25th a rescue party from Bamfield finally reached them by hiking in with food and clothing.  At about 3:30pm they started the long hike back out to a ship waiting for them in Pachena Bay.

WILLITS, James, Passenger on the Valencia, Survived on the Topeka Raft

James Willits, a passenger on the Valencia that survived on the second raft, the last raft to depart the Valencia.  About two hours after they departed, the Valencia collapsed into the sea killing everyone still on board.  Willits and 18 others were finally found by the Topeka, after six hours on the freezing, soaking wet, overcrowded raft.  Barely alive, they were brought on board the Topeka and reported the situation on the Valencia when they left her.  His recollection of the events on the Valencia are terrifyingly vivid.  The Victoria Daily Colonist on January 26th reported an interview with James Willits shortly after being picked up from the raft by the Topeka.  Willits said, “The ship struck at 12:07 on the morning of Tuesday, Jan. 23rd.  I was on deck at the time smoking a cigar, and was looking at my watch when the first crash came.  In an instant all was excitement.  There were the shrieks of the frightened men and women, the wail of little children, and the hoarse orders of the officers of the ship.  The vessel reeled like a drunken man, slid over the reef and struck again.  The command to back her off was given and she went astern at full speed but it was too late.  The water was pouring in like a mill race.  The wind swung the vessel’s stern to the beach and her head to the waves.  This saved many lives, as she was then swept back to the shore, and struck once again in such a position that she remained partially above the water and on an even keel.  Every wave washed clear over her and many people who hastily rushed on deck went to their death without time to murmur a prayer.  The order was given to get out the boats.  Two of them on the weather side were launched and were smashed like eggshells as soon as they struck the water.  Then came the attempt to get out the lee boats.  Purser O’Farrell took charge; four women and a number of men went into the boat.  I do not know how many, but she was practically full.  Just as they were lowering the davits broke, and the stern of the boat fell to the water while the bow hung in the air.  Everyone was precipitated into the sea and swept away in an instant.  For a second or two I caught a glimpse of an agonized face, then another, and yet another, as they were washed by me.  The waves dashing over the ship swept the deck loose, and every swell lifted it.  We clung to the rigging of the deckhouse.”

Willits goes on to describe tragic and horrific moments on the Valencia, “One of the most pitiable incidents was that of a little boy of about five years old.  His father, mother and two little sisters put off in one of the boats.  The boat was capsized and all were drowned.  The little fellow walked around the deck crying for his mother.  The last I saw of him he was clinging to the rigging.”  Who this little boy was is a bit of a mystery, though Sam Hancock, who survived on the Turret Raft reported who he remembered on the ship.  He mentions Mr. and Mrs. Ogle, with four children.  When he left the parents and their children were gone, but one little boy was still aboard.

Mr. and Mrs. Ogle was travelling with four children.  Her body was never found.  Hancock(Turret Island survivor chief cook) 26 Jan Daily Colonist p8:  He says he knew the following passengers and thinks they are gone:  Mr. and Mrs. Ogle, with four children.  When he left the parents and their children were gone but one little boy was still aboard.  The San Francisco Call on February 2nd, “The bodies were brought down from Victoria on the steamship Princess Beatrice, and included the remains of two children, supposed to be those of W.M. Ogle, who was lost with his wife and four children.”  Maybe this little boy was one of the Ogle children?

Willits continued, “Every swell carried away a portion of the ship, and the decks rose and fell with every breaker, and it was impossible to stay on deck without clinging to a support.  The ship was sunk to about the level of the hurricane deck.  In the morning another sad calamity occurred.  About fifteen or twenty persons, amongst them one or two women, and taken refuge in the foretopmast.  They appeared to be in the safest place, as it was removed from the wash of the waves, although the flying spray dashed over their heads.  Suddenly and without warning the mas tottered and fell with a crash, carrying its load of shrieking human freight to a terrible death.  I do not think a single one was saved.  Their bodies were washed from the ship and we could see them dashed against the rocks.  To add to our misery, the last of our food was washed away and we had not water to drink.  The wind and rain combined with the sea soon numbed us.  Every time one of those in the rigging would lose his hold he would be swept away to the sharp rocks.”

The Valencia Disaster

 Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail1. The Valencia Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail2. The Voyage Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail3. The Boats Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail4. The McCarthy Boat Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail5. The Bunker Party Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail6. On the Valencia Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail7. The Rafts Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail8. The Turret Raft Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail9. The Rescue Ships Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail10. The Aftermath Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail11. The Survivors Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail12. The Lost 

After the McCarthy boat was launched successfully and cleared the breakers at around 9am Tuesday January 23rd the captain, crew and passengers on the Valencia confidently expected men to soon appear ...
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When the survivors on the second raft were rescued by the Topeka just five hours into their ordeal and so close to death that they could barely stand, one of them asked about the first raft.  It was ...
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All six boats launched in the first frantic 30 minutes after the Valencia wrecked were smashed against the ship or flipped and smashed against the base of the solid rock cliffs along the shore. ...
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This is a much more accurate list of the victims of the Valencia shipwreck than all the other lists currently found online and in print.  The passenger and crew list given by the owners of the ...
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At about 47 kilometres along the West Coast Trail you will pass the final resting place of the Lizzie Marshall. On February 7th, 1884, this 434 ton American ship headed out of San Francisco to an ...
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The Skagit, a 3 masted barkentine of 506 tons was wrecked on the reef in front of Clo-oose on what is now the West Coast Trail. This 156 foot ship was built in Port Ludlow, Washington in 1883 and ...
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The Revere shipwreck lays at the bottom of Port San Juan between Thrasher Cove and Owen Point. Thrasher Cove is the first or last West Coast Trail campsite you will encounter. She was a large 3 ...
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The Michigan shipwreck on the West Coast Trail is the first one you can see and actually touch, which is incredible since it is well over a century old.  On January 21st, 1893 this 695 ton steam ...
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When shipping in and out of Juan de Fuca Strait rapidly increased in the mid 1800's and an alarming and costly number of ships were lost, the need for a inland trail was realized. It would take decades, and many more brutal and costly shipwrecks in the waters leading to
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The West Coast Trail is incredible. Everything about it is amazing. From the wildly, incomprehensibly enormous trees to endless jaw dropping views. And it's tough.  Very tough.  It is a trail that shouldn't exist. Hiking trails always form out of the easiest route worn ...
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The West Coast Trail hiking season is confined to just five months due to the dangerously stormy weather during the winter months. In the winter the days are short, tides are high and heavy rain and strong winds are frequent. Hiking the trail in the summer is tough ...
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There are three entry/exit points for the West Coast Trail, however the midway entry/exit point at Nitinaht Narrows is for hikers only hiking part of the trail. The two main entry points are at Pachena Bay in the north(Bamfield) and Gordon River in the south(Port ...
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There are lots of options to getting to the West Coast Trail. The trail is linear so you have to arrange to get to the trailhead as well as from your exit trailhead. Most West Coast Trail hikers drive to one trailhead then bus to the other and hike back to their car. ...
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The West Coast Trail is a very tough hike. About one out of one hundred hikers don't make it, they need to be rescued. That's why there are so many fees. By the time you are done preparing and registering, you laugh at how hiking got so expensive. Isn't hiking usually ...
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