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A Pictorial View of the Comox Valley
City of Courtenay
The City of Courtenay was named after the Courtenay River which was named after George William Courtenay, Captain of the British Ship HMS Constance which was in the area ca 1846-1849 surveying the waters of the Georgia Strait and the coast of East Vancouver Island.
The settlement of Courtenay began in the spring of 1862. Some of the first settlers were coal miner’s from Nanaimo. In Sept. of 1862, the H.M.S. Grappler arrived in Port Augusta (Comox Harbour) with 35 settlers most of whom were from England, Scotland or Ireland, they joined the miners already here. Some of them then came up the small rivers by canoe and claimed land in the area as it was rich in nutrients and they knew they would survive and prosper.
Courtenay was Incorporated as a town in 1915 and a city in 1953. Population in 2011 was 24,699
(see Life and Times of the Comox Valley, by James Allan Krause, ISBN 0-9681968-0-2)
History of Downtown Courtenay, BC
Downtown Courtenay not only has the main shopping area on 5th Street but the surrounding streets are all part of the shopping experience from 4th Street to 8th Street. Explore not only the shops but the Museum, Art Galleries, Library, Seniors Centre, Native Sons Hall Heritage Building also the Simms and Lewis Park and sports centre just over the 5th St. Bridge.
Early Morning on 5th St
5th. St. was originally known as Union St.
Flower Display outside Hot Chocolates on 5th St.
Clock in from of Graham's Jewelry Shop
261 5th Street
In 1951, Walter Crosby, owner of Crosby’s Jewellers, found an
extra lamp stand in Victoria. He brought it to Courtenay and
mounted a clock on it, erecting it outside his store. The clock
has been telling the time for passersby for more than 55 years.
Note the dogwood flowers at the base of the clock—the provincial
Now Graham's Jewellers, this location has been owned by a suc-
cession of family members. In 1913, Charles Simms purchased
the store from Cumberland jeweller T.D. McLean. Simms sold
to Muttrie who sold it to Harry Simms, Charles’ brother. Harry
Simms sold to Mr. Crosby, who sold it to Richard Graham, Harry
Simms’ nephew. Graham’s is now owned by James Graham, son
of Richard and great-nephew of Charles and Harry.
Antique shop on 4th St.
6th St., picture taken from Cliff Ave.
Atlas Cafe, 250 6th St. in downtown Courtenay, BC