Farming on Hernando Island

Settlers on Hernando in the 1890s came to homestead and hand log and had a post office by 1893, a school by 1894 and a government dock by 1895 with twice a week Union Steamship service.

However, the early settlers had largely left the island by the early 1900s. Once logging some of the accessible stands of timber was complete, homesteaders were drawn away from the island to other sources of income at a time when the Yukon gold rush and the growth of Gastown (Vancouver) were drawing newcomers.

After serving as a Conservative MLA from 1909 to 1916, Michael Manson left the government and decided to try sheep farming on the extensive Manson landholdings on Hernando Island. Michael and Jane took over a former settlers house (the Rorison house). In 1924, the Conservatives returned to power and Michael Manson to politics.

Two of Michael and Jane’s grown children (Wilfred Manson and Robina Manson Freeman) and their families then came to live on Hernando to farm, using the large natural meadow in the middle of the island for hay cultivation, as well as pastureland for sheep.