written in 1928, by Mrs. C. C. French from Cloverdale ranch of Crestwood, “that picturesque little suburb of Creston, which snuggles partly, along and over the arm of the western mountains to the international boundary.”

An excerpt —

“Yes, I have seen many changes since I have been here,” she said, and I held my breath lest I should interrupt her and not hear more these interesting stories.

“Just to think of the days when there was no boundary line here, “she continued. “I well remember when the first light shone from the Custom House at Rykert’s, and the little town of Porthill, just across the line, started up. I used to like to watch the reflection of the light from its stores and post office gleam across the river and flicker almost to my feet. They were wild days then, and when the lights burned on long into the night I knew that a poker game was being played.

Custom House at Rykert’s 1898Then there was Sam Smith’s stage line which ran from Bonner’s Ferry to the head of the lake at Kootenay Landing. It used to pass right along on “Dutchie’s Ridge,” only about two hundred yards from here. I could hear the occupants of the stage talking sometimes. And the tap-tap of the horse’s feet as they trotted along over the meadows. And occasionally Sam’s voice urging them to make time.

Yes, then there was that chugging thing that used to come down the river from Bonner’s Ferry and stop at the river and lake points, the first steamboat, and it did used to jar my nerves so. I was glad when it stopped.

Captain Long, I believe, was in charge of one of those first boats, and now I hear that his wife, “Grandma” Long, is living in Creston.

She made a visit to Crestwood last summer and thought it was such a pretty place, and said it reminded her so much of her girlhood home in Oregon, adjoining that of Dr. John McLoughlin, that historical figure of Hudson Bay fame, and—by—the—way—his grand-children have played on these same moss covered rocks where you are lying, right at my feet—little Angea, Johnnie, Amelia, Sarah and Annie, the baby. I’ve seen them all, and there—sleeping in the little cemetery at Porthill where the sun’s last rays can shine upon them—is their brother, David McLoughlin, son of Dr. John McLoughlin, the “War Eagle of the North” he was called, and with him rest his wife, their Indian mother.

David McLoughlin in 1901David’s sister, Mrs. Dewar, has told of many incidents in David’s early life, when he was a dashing youth, full of the fire and vigor early manhood, in Oregon,” and of his romance with the beautiful daughter of a Russian sea captain. His father sent him to England to be educated and later he received a commission in the British army and was sent to Afghanistan. Later on, seeing the possibilities for a young man in this great West, he sent for him to return to Oregon where he was engaged in his father’s office for some time.

During this time he sought the hand of the Captain’s daughter in marriage, and although she returned his love, her father would not give his consent to marriage, and as a dutiful daughter, she would not marry without it. So not being able to obtain her hand in marriage David became a wanderer through the Indian tribes of the north and finally settled in this valley, and later married a Princess of the Kootenay tribe.

I have seen him pass here many times —a commanding figure, well over six feet tall, and princely in his bearing, with dark, kindly eyes, bronzed complexion, and black wavy hair. He was a kind and dutiful father, and was also much loved by the Indians.

“Creston Review.” N. Creston, B.C. : Creston Printing and Publishing Co., 1 June 1928. Original Format: Royal British Columbia Museum. British Columbia Archives. Web. 22 Sept. 2023. <https://open.library.ubc.ca/collections/bcnewspapers/xcrestonrev/items/1.0175200>. Newspapers – The Creston Review.
Tales and Legends From Crestwood

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